Thursday, August 22, 2013

Budget-Friendly Bedside Table Organization

Micro-organization is the name of the game in our house recently and I have been loving going through every nook and cranny until there are no spaces left untouched. Today was a rainy dreary day, perfect for this kinda stuff so I tackled our bedside tables but first I started under the bed with these two storage boxes. They held overflow jewelry in one and random items in the other. 

I was able to completely clear them out (and now I can use them for storing other things!) and move a few items into my bedside table.

To organize I simply used bins and boxes I already had on hand so this entire project was free 99. Woot. And now, the Before and Afters, starting with Dan's side since it's not nearly as cute, although it is functional:




And no, my husband did not purchase a journal with swirls and hearts, it was a gift from me years ago.

And now my side. I got rid of SO much stuff and it felt great.





To hear more details and see it all in 3D check out the video!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Organizing Under The Kitchen Sink

A few months ago when I showed our kitchen cabinet tour the area under our sink looked like this:

Random items and recycling were everywhere with no real purpose. Also, our main garbage can used to just be out in the open, with no lid. Truth Time: It used to live on the far wall of our kitchen under the frame and I would move it for photos. Oh the shame...

So I finally said enough is enough and bought a slighter smaller can to put under our sink. This particular can is from Home Depot and it isn't meant to have a lid, which is perfect for this situation, rather it has these convenient little side clips which hold the bag in place. I really pushed the limits with this sized can because anything taller wouldn't fit at all but I still wanted to be able to hold as much trash as possible.

After relocating or tossing pretty much everything in this cabinet and adding in a new garbage can and wire rack it now looks like this:

I moved the recycling can to the middle, printed off the recycling symbol from the computer, cut it out, and taped it on. Yes I realize I actually spent time doing that and it probably makes me a giant nerd but honestly I kinda love the graphic black and white look and it is now much easier for any guests to know just where things go so they don't have to feel like they're gonna mess something up. The large two-drawer organizer on the left I picked up at The Container Store and it fit perfectly in this cabinet and now holds all my little cleaning accessories up top...

...and our dishwasher detergent below. I picked up that clear bin (and four others) at Home Depot a few days ago for 99¢ each and the detergent fit perfectly inside. It fit an entire box of Cascade detergent and then some... I could probably fit two! For scooping purposes, I just threw in an extra measuring spoon I had on hand.

Since I know I'm just gonna blink and Evey will be walking I'm glad I got that trash can out of the room and what's even better is that our guests no longer have to look at last night's dinner.

To see the video tour click here!

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

More Counter Space, Please

Before, the far corner of our kitchen sink countertop looked like this:

And now it looks like this:

In order to make room for the gorgeous vase of sunflowers, a gift from my FIL, I had to move the toaster. Since we only use the appliance 1-2 times a week it wasn't a sacrifice and an item so infrequently used did not deserve our valuable counter space!

By tucking it away in a box in our cabinet the toaster is still completely accessible and I can simply bring it up, plug it in, use it and put it away, all while enjoying my newly freed up counter space! The box is also helpful for catching the crumbs that inevitably fall out.

To see how I made room for the toaster, check out the video!

Friday, August 16, 2013

Cute + Inexpensive Housewarming Gift

Do you remember what it was like when you first moved out on your own? Were you excited, scared...both? I got married pretty young so when I moved out of my parents' house it was right into our very first apartment and I was so excited! I have always loved house-y things, decorating, and organizing, so the chance to do whatever I wanted to my very own home was awesome. 

After moving into our first apartment, and then continuing to move a total of 5 times in 5 years, I know what it's like to start over, and over, and over. So when I found out my friend was moving into her own apartment in just a couple weeks I took the opportunity to make her a little housewarming gift full of things I found helpful when moving in for the first time. 

To make this housewarming "basket" I hit up the dollar store because I knew I would be able to find some great things and sure enough I wasn't disappointed. For just $10 I threw together this adorable gift and I think she'll really love it!

For the "basket" part of the gift I decided to be practical and used a colander instead in a fun cheery yellow color. I'm not sure what her home's color scheme is going to be but I know she loves yellow so I took a shot.

After lining the colander with a little tissue paper I filled it with my dollar store deals: Tide detergent, measuring cups, hand soap, Febreeze spray, Dawn dish soap, bottle opener, trash bags, bathroom wipes, and a bag of popcorn...because moving makes you hungry of course.

I raided my gift bag stash and was so happy to find this one that was just the right size and the colors matched perfectly! What a happy surprise. I hope she likes it :)

Click here to watch my housewarming gift video!

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Basement Storage Closet Organization

Oh boy has this been a long time coming. We've lived in our house for over two years now and for those past two years this basement storage closet has been organized, junked up, cleaned out, and junked up again and enough was enough! Having our garage sale was just the kick in the pants I needed to continue de-clutting those hidden spaces in our house. There aren't many, since I've been at this for a while, but they're still lurking in the dark, behind closed doors.

I grabbed these two stills from my Basement Family Room Tour video to give you a better look at the before, since I only snagged the one photo above.

After buying the 18-compartment organizer from The Container Store and vowing to get all our screws and nuts and bolts organized I simply continued that organization over to the storage closet as well. But back to that first step was to gather all the screws, etc. from around the house like in our kitchen junk drawer...

...and the 6-drawer organizer in the storage room off of our laundry room.

This thing needed a good clean-out.

So I hunkered down with my Evey girl, some YouTube, and my junk drawers and screws and got down to business.

There were so many piles like this of just pure randomness.

In the end I purged a ton from the drawers and threw out SO MUCH PACKAGING.

Once the drawers were done I headed into the storage closet, knowing full well that the two boxes on the left held a bunch of random screws at the bottom and I took the time to go through them all and tossed anything we didn't need. Then using some simple white printer paper and masking tape I labeled the boxes. Quick and dirty. And cheap. Not usually nice things to say but in this case it works.

In the wall we stash long pieces of trim- it works perfectly!

Now as for that organizer...viola!

Isn't it glorious? I did run out of room so I bought this smaller organizer at the dollar store and it perfectly fit the rest of the things, many of which were too big for the other organizer.

I even found this washer kit when I was cleaning out the boxes!

Now they are all nicely organized and we will know exactly where to look the next time we need something!

Watch the video tour of the storage closet here!

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

I ♥ The Container Store

Hey guys! So last week I went on an exciting little road trip to check out The Container Store for the very first time. I had heard people rave about that place over and over and I wanted to see for myself what all the hype was about! I went online to see if there were any Container Stores in NJ and sure enough there were two, but they were pretty far away which is why I never came across them. The one store was an hour and fifteen minutes to the south and the other was fifty minutes up north so I decided it was worth the trip and headed north with two friends. Since we went during the week there was no traffic and we made a nice little road trip out of it, stopping for lunch on the way back.

Basically, the store is incredible. It was everything I expected and more! They literally have every type of container and organizer you could want and then some. We joked that the store sells "everything you never knew you needed" because as you're walking the aisles you're continually thinking how useful it all is!

It took great restraint to only leave the store with four items but since I planned ahead and checked out the store online ahead of time I was much less tempted to make those impulse purchases. Tempted still, oh yes, but having a list made me much more accountable! Since I've been really focused on our kitchen lately and trying to make it as organized and functional as possible that is where I spent the bulk of my time and budget. Best of all, each of the four items I purchased were under $18 each! So for those thinking TCS is just too expensive, I'm here to say it's not and you can find some great deals!

Let's jump right in. The first item I picked up was this under-the-shelf coffee pod organizer and it is just perfect for organizing the extra Nespresso pods we have since we buy them in bulk on Amazon.

This particular shelf is made for K cups and there is a spot in the front of the shelf for displaying which flavor you are storing, as shown below:

But since we have a Nespresso machine and not a Keurig I didn't need the display space so I simply took a business card sized magnet and peeled off the logo, replacing it with a few strips of washi tape to match the rest of my labels and voila! It's completely removable since it's simply a magnet but helps to keep the Nespresso pods from falling through the hole.

The shelf is now hanging out in our baking cabinet, located right above our coffee station, and fit nicely right above our mixer. I did have to move my top shelf up one notch to allow it to fit but since there's not much up there it was no problem at all.

Next up I planned ahead and grabbed this large two drawer organizer to use under our kitchen sink. The frame and drawers are very sturdy and are perfect for corralling smaller items that tend to get lost under the sink. 

I'm working towards making this under the sink space more functional and this is just one more step in the right direction. 

Moving on to my junk drawer I replaced the dollar store cutlery tray that used to be there with this much more functional drawer organizer with a sliding top tray that gives me even more storage space. 

The cutlery tray was fine for the time being and hey, it was only a buck, but the items were sliding between the sections and driving me crazy. Now everything has its own compartment.

And last but not least I grabbed this 18-compartment organizer because I want to organize all the screws and anchors and nuts and bolts that are currently stored all over the house into one single container for easy access. Yes it is going to be a pain but once it's done it will be so nice to only have to go to one spot when we need something and not have to check here, there, and everywhere.

If you want to watch the corresponding video for my little road trip check it out here on YouTube!
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