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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Creative Ways to Organize your Stuff

Do you sometimes want to clean house and organize, yet don't really feel like getting rid of some of the clutter to weed out your house.

There are many ways to get creative and be organized when it comes to designing your lifestyle in your home.  We all want to be creative in making our house a home that we are going to want to live in.  Sometimes we look at our disheveled house and wish things were neater.  Don't you ever look at one of those Better Homes and Gardens magazines or another home magazine and look at the pictures and wish that room was yours?

Sometimes these magazines help us to figure out how we want to decorate our rooms.  Try cutting out some of your favorite pictures of what you would want your rooms to look like.  Make a little scrapbook out of it.  Write some little notes.  Maybe ideas about how you want to use the idea in your house.  If your into sewing or crafting, maybe you want to write some notes of the things you want to make for your house.

Then, when you've got your little scrapbook kind of thought out a little, it is time to do some shopping.  It's always fun to go looking for things to fill your house.  And yard sales are always fun.  Just when you go yardsaling, learn to be selective.  You've got to remember that you don't want to end up putting it right back into your yard sale.  Or then you sometimes buy something and then later think, "Why did I buy that?  That was a stupid purchase.

That's why we always see so many people returning things to stores.  They often get it home and end up deciding that it wasn't what they wanted after all.

Some other ideas if you are really creative and like to sew or knit.  I've seen some pretty homemade curtains that cover up some people's sinks.  Something I designed once was some fabric curtains to cover up the stuff underneath my studio table.  I then attached some Velcro to the fabric and the table, so I could remove them at any time.  Maybe you want to add some cool pockets to them, so you can put little supplies in them.  It would be a neat way to hold some pencils, scissors or pens.

I often would look at other artists studios to get ideas for inspiration for organizing.  Everyone likes different types of containers to put things in.  Some people love baskets, others like photo boxes, mugs, bins, etc...  There are all sorts of different types of containers that are useful for placing your stuff in.  Maybe you want different containers for different types of supplies.

Say a container for your gardening supplies or scissors, art supplies, crayons, rubber stamping stuff, knitting, and on and on.

Making little pocket books to hold stuff is a good idea too.  One friend I know made one of those quilted caddies that get tucked into the arm of the couch or chair and then you can hold some of your magazines and remote controls in it.

I like to save some of my seed packets in a small size pretty gift bag.  It keeps it organized and a little hidden too.

Maybe you might like to find a big gardening bucket to put some of your gardening tools in.  Maybe one of those pretty ceramic pots would be neat.  You could always hot glue gun a fabric ribbon on it.

Hair stuff and make up sometimes looks pretty in a nice basket that can rest on your vanity.  Again,  add some ribbon on it if you want.  That wire edged ribbon is neat to wrap around the basket handles.  I've done that before to dress up a basket.

Finding things that you can fix up is really neat.  Maybe you might like buying some plain pots and then practice painting on them.  Gold leaf painting is kind of a neat effect.  Maybe try rubber stamping on a pot too.  Or practice making your own patterns.  For this kind of thing, buying some of those special sponges in an art store can be quite pretty.  Dip them in different paints and dab it on your pot.  Then when you are done you could get a special type of glaze for them.  Once again, the art stores have many different clear glazes and Walmart always sells the timeless Modge Podge.  Who hasn't ever used Modge Podge?  I was brought up on that stuff.

Or you could glue pictures on pots too.  That could be interesting.  Get creative.  Look for any found object that might come in handy.  Textured fabrics that you don't care about could be useful for that too.  I used to have some bumpy dotted fabric from one of those old table cloths or bed spreads.  That came in handy for ideas.

Decorate plain boxes too for storing thing.  Anything that is going to put your personal touch on things is great.  And down the road your kids will love it because you made it.  I will also admit that I have also thrown out things that I made too.  We don't ever keep every single thing that we made.  Maybe we thought some of it wasn't very good.  I couldn't begin to tell you how many drawings I have ripped up over the years.  And I still have many of my favorites.

Wicker bins are neat to collect.  I used to buy a bunch from JCPenney and you can stack them anyway you want.

Laundry baskets are good for putting things in.  So many times we used to use laundry baskets to put the kids toys into.

I have a large wicker hamper that I put my fabrics in so my cats can't get to them. And a lid is really good.  Add a beach towel or something on top and your cats can have a nap on top.

I had one type of basket that I got at a yard sale, thinking my cats would like it.  They sure did.  So much that they attacked it and I was constantly sweeping up little broken bits of the basket.

People also love to get furniture and repaint it, sand it and all kinds of stuff to it.  That's another way of making a beautiful living space out of your furniture.  Get rid of anything though that really looks like it is falling apart.  Some things are just beyond fixing.

I've seen some gardens that make use of a lovely metal bedpost for the background.  I think that is absolutely gorgeous and your flowers can climb it.  Imagine clematis or your lovely rose bushes surrounding it.

Could you even imagine a bed in your garden?  Look at Kate Moss with that bed they used for their wedding.  Although if you had a bed outside in your garden or near a secluded lake, you would want it well protected so it wouldn't get wrecked by Mother Nature.  Isn't that the stuff of dreams?  Any dream can be made a reality.

Sometimes it is a good idea to keep a little daily notebook of all your thoughts and ideas. It can be sort of like a journal or a diary, but you can just choose to document any little idea.  Then you will have a little book to come back to filled with your ideas.

Then check mark them after you have done the project.

Knitted bags are always nice to put stuff too.  Something to hold your yarn.  Baskets are always great for yarn too.  And handmade fabric  containers are great for your needles.  I made a little floral one once.  Then a folded the fabric up half way and sewed up sections for all the needles.  Then it was something I could just roll up and tie with a ribbon, or even more fun (how about a knitted chain).  My girls know how to finger knit those things.

Once I even tried to braid some fabric to make a homemade jump rope.  It's long gone, but we had some fun with it when my kids were little.

If you know someone who can make built in shelving for you, that is also great.

These are only a few of the millions of ideas we can come up with.  We just need to spend a little time hunting for our favorite things to decorate our living spaces with or take time to make our own creations to surround us.

And another neat idea for holding art supplies is one of those fabric closet containers.  The ones that are on a hanger and you could put all your shoes in them.  Use those in your kids rooms too.  Your girls could put all their hair stuff in them. Clothing, jewelry, little knick knacks and all kinds of other uses.

I've seen people make their own fabric closet hangers too.  Those are gorgeous.

Jennifer Jo Fay

Copyrighted January 19, 2012


Whatever you decide to do, have a little bit of coffee before you get started.  And looking at this picture I forgot, I used to love putting some of my sewing stuff inside a small ban box like that little floral one.  Marshalls and TJ Maxx sell a lot of those different  types of boxes and baskets.  And they are fairly inexpensive.  Those are great places to shop at.  Even though I don't work at  Marshalls anymore, I still find myself shopping there sometimes.  There's always good bargains there.  They get new shipments in at least three days each week, so there is always something new.  Unfortunately, there is only one Marshalls in Vermont.  So everyone travels to shop there.  They are always getting the Canadians shopping there.  I learned a little bit of French.

And then looking at this picture again, my coffee table that it is resting on.  I found this really cute little coffee table once at yard sale.  In it's early days, Sean and I glued pictures on it as if we were scrap booking on a large surface.  One section had all kinds of animals and dinosaurs on it and the other half had flowers, dolls and pretty women on it.

My Nana had a scrapbook when we were little and my mom had one too.  Then when my boys were little, she made one for them to look at.  She found all kinds of kid pictures, Christmas themes, snowmen, etc.. and filled it.  I think it is still at my dad's house.  I should ask him if it is still there and if I could have it for the kids.

It would be neat to have something that she made.  She used to make those knitted dishcloths too.

Then later, this coffee table turned into one with pictures of my kids.  Some of the scrap booking stuff was getting ripped up.  Then I had memories of my Nana's glassed coffee table that had all kinds of pictures of us in it.  My cousin ended up getting that one.  My Nana loved it.  And later on, she got Alzheimer's and we would keep telling her who everyone was. 

And that is yet another post with such a sad ending.  It's terrible when they suddenly don't know who any of their family is.



If anyone likes paperdolls or knows someone who likes paper dolls, check out my paperdoll post on each of my blogs where my paper dolls are for sale:

http://jennyjofaypaperdolls.blogspot.com/
http://jenniferpaperdolls.blogspot.com/  The Official Paper Doll Blog
http://mommiedearest101.blogspot.com/ 
http://yourstrulycraftygal.blogspot.com/
http://prolificpoetrychick.blogspot.com/ 


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