How to Get Your Home Organized to Reduce Clutter.

Let's Start at the Bottom.

Replace Cardboard Boxes with Plastic Storage Containers.
Replace Cardboard Boxes with Plastic Storage Containers. | Source
If you can't fit your wireless keyboard on top of your desk or in the desk drawer, add a reachable shelf on the wall above your desk.
If you can't fit your wireless keyboard on top of your desk or in the desk drawer, add a reachable shelf on the wall above your desk. | Source
A simple tension curtain rod and an old sheet can hide a multitude of sins.
A simple tension curtain rod and an old sheet can hide a multitude of sins. | Source
I keep all paper plates, napkins and plastic ware in the tin with the fruit pattern,  for summer time use.  I also keep extra  cookware next to the tin.
I keep all paper plates, napkins and plastic ware in the tin with the fruit pattern, for summer time use. I also keep extra cookware next to the tin. | Source
I took all the linens out of the linen closet. Put them in a cedar chest and measured the vertical space of the shelves. I hunted for containers that I would be able to see what was inside and at the same time be able to pull out for easy access.
I took all the linens out of the linen closet. Put them in a cedar chest and measured the vertical space of the shelves. I hunted for containers that I would be able to see what was inside and at the same time be able to pull out for easy access. | Source
We replaced the bedroom night tables with shelves. (This quickly cut down clutter.)
We replaced the bedroom night tables with shelves. (This quickly cut down clutter.) | Source
I kept the cornice that was above the window from the '70's.  It saved me money because I didn't have to buy a curtain. Then I stored items that we only use once in a while on top.  (Don't they look pretty?)
I kept the cornice that was above the window from the '70's. It saved me money because I didn't have to buy a curtain. Then I stored items that we only use once in a while on top. (Don't they look pretty?) | Source
I bought this shelf in a thrift shop to keep tea ever ready.  No searching for tea in the kitchen cabinets for us.
I bought this shelf in a thrift shop to keep tea ever ready. No searching for tea in the kitchen cabinets for us. | Source
I try to store a few items on top of the china cabinet. Mostly water pitchers, so I always know where they are.
I try to store a few items on top of the china cabinet. Mostly water pitchers, so I always know where they are. | Source
No shoes on the floor in my home.  If there is an overflow I know it's time to donate.
No shoes on the floor in my home. If there is an overflow I know it's time to donate. | Source
I noticed there was room for a stock cabinet in my walk in closet.  I store Winter Sweaters there.
I noticed there was room for a stock cabinet in my walk in closet. I store Winter Sweaters there. | Source
These shelves were Black!  I sprayed them white and store VHS tapes in  a walk-in closet. Yes, we still use a VCR, sometimes.
These shelves were Black! I sprayed them white and store VHS tapes in a walk-in closet. Yes, we still use a VCR, sometimes. | Source
I keep my body wash, shampoo and homemade products in this built in book shelf.  I put a tension rod up with a homemade curtain to conceal everything.
I keep my body wash, shampoo and homemade products in this built in book shelf. I put a tension rod up with a homemade curtain to conceal everything. | Source
The stereo system has been long gone.  I filled the closet with dry goods stored in glass jars.  Also keep canning supplies and homemade liquid soap there also.
The stereo system has been long gone. I filled the closet with dry goods stored in glass jars. Also keep canning supplies and homemade liquid soap there also. | Source

Ready, Set, Simplify...

One room, one closet, one shelf at a time.

The method that I've followed for years has helped me simplify everything that I touch. I can come and go everyday, without wondering where something is, or if the house is respectable enough for unannounced visitors.

Let the Journey Begin...

Most of my organizing takes place in the long winter months. If you do some organizing in the winter it will greatly cut down on spring cleaning. Instead of complaining about the bad and cold winter, I take advantage of it. It's amazing what you can do in a weekend or snow day.

1. Figure out how many weekends there are in the winter where you don't have plans for vacation, weddings, etc. Most weddings and vacations are usually in the spring or summer anyway, so I'm sure you can find some down time to fit your needs. Next, make a list of what you want to accomplish. You don't even have to do the whole house or apartment in one season. Just peck away at it until you are satisfied. There are no deadlines. Go at your own pace. If the Spring, Summer or Fall seasons work better for you then use one of those seasons for your starting point.

2. Make a separate list for each room that you want to organize. Break the room down into bite size projects. By keeping a to do list for each room, you won't become overwhelmed by the idea of the whole process.

3. Purchase, or better yet, when friends or relatives ask you what you can use as a gift for your anniversary or other occasion... ask for various sized containers. Be specific, nobody is a mind reader. If you don't give exact requests, you'll be making trips to return items. Who wants to spend $4.00 on gasoline to return anything! You can also request hooks, shelves, jars, whatever it takes to keep you on the organizing path. Better yet, you can request gift cards. Remember, you have to prepare ahead of time to get organized, in order to be organized. If there are no gifts that will be coming your way anytime in the near future, just make a list of supplies that you'll need and buy them. Consider it an investment... because it is.

4. Shelving, glorious shelving! My motto is... "If it doesn't fit, add a shelf." I'm not saying to stack it high and heavy. What I mean is, if your desk is cluttered, see what can be safely put on a shelf, above or to the side of the desk. What good is a shelf that is too high or not easy to reach?

5. Throw Out Cardboard Boxes! Boxes can invite bugs, rodents and mold or mildew into your home. If you must store things then purchase plastic storage containers. I store all grains, dried herbs, cereal, pasta, etc. in glass jars. Out of season clothing is stored in plastic containers. You can also use the empty boxes to organize a room with a three box method.

One box for Garbage, one for things that you will be Keeping and one for Donations.

I stopped having yard and garage sales a few years ago. I figured out that if you take a picture of what you are donating, make a list of the items and take it to Goodwill, you get a receipt for your taxes. Who wants to price things, get up early, bring the stuff outside, then bring it back inside after the sale? If you want to have a yard or garage sale, by all means have one. I've done it for many years... but that's another hub, I'll be writing about soon. One more thing. Don't give your stuff to friends or relatives. Trust me, they don't want your stuff. I've seen my stuff in a friends yard sale and in her garbage.

6. Day One, Room One... Take a good look around the room. Start with every pile on the floor that doesn't have a place to call its own. Go through the pile with a critical eye and a decluttering frame of mind. Use the 3 box method mentioned in step 5. Now, start purging. After all piles are gone, start on surface tops. Take everything off ALL surface tops. Once again, use the 3 box method. Note: Putting on some music that you like, will help move the project forward.

7. Put the items that you will be keeping back into your dresser, night table or onto a freshly installed Shelf! Remember to put only the items that you will be using... ALL THE TIME. Everything else is... CLUTTER!

Alas, the Dreaded Closets...

8. I felt that this project needed a special step of it's own, so to speak. We all have a closet or two in each room. Now is the time to make good use of your closet space.

A. Take everything out of the closet.

B. Purge into the 3 Box method. Put the clothing from the closet on the bed. Try on everything. Do you really need to keep that jump suit from the 1970's?

C. Clean the closet from top to bottom. Vacuum, sweep and wash the floor, walls, bar where you hang the clothes, etc.

D. Add shelves, hooks, over the door shoe caddies, extra lighting, and purchase same size hangers. You can bring those wire hangers that you don't want to any dry cleaning store. We put a few round battery operated touch lights inside our closets where it was too dark. Some closets had lighting, some did not. I like to see it all!

E. Don't you think that this would be a good time to paint the closet? Only use white paint. When we moved into this house the closets were all painted brown! The first thing we did before we moved in was to paint the interior of the closets bright white.

YOU CAN DO THIS! After you get organized by accomplishing this project you will benefit from all the time you put into... "Getting Organized, to simplify your life."

Until we meet again... Francesca27






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Comments 15 comments

bri36 5 years ago

Francesca27 you are amazing. somebody who can use the three box method in that many closets is a goddess! this was a great hub. i think i am really going to give my closet a go. thank you


Francesca27 profile image

Francesca27 5 years ago from Hub Page Author

There is nothing more satisfying then reaching into a closet and actually getting what you need out of it. It really doesn't take as long as people think. Thank you so much for being such a loyal fan.Your comments and votes are really appreciated. Happy Organizing.


SJKSJK profile image

SJKSJK 5 years ago from delray beach, florida

I love being organized. thanks for this information.


Francesca27 profile image

Francesca27 5 years ago from Hub Page Author

Thank you for stopping by my hub. That's a beautiful dog you have there! I'll be stopping by your hub in a minute.


cnocera profile image

cnocera 5 years ago from North of Boston

Hello Francesca

I need so much help with organizing. This is awesome.

Thank You,

Cheryl


Francesca27 profile image

Francesca27 5 years ago from Hub Page Author

Don't get overwhelmed. Start small. Maybe with a catch all drawer or under the kitchen sink. Make a game out of it. Once you start and you see results, you'll never want to go back to all the clutter.


cnocera profile image

cnocera 5 years ago from North of Boston

Hello Francesca

Before I started a new job, I went to the Dollar Store and got all kinds of containers and put all of my art supplies that were everywhere in them. That was the last time I got organized. So this is good information.

Have a Great Day


Francesca27 profile image

Francesca27 5 years ago from Hub Page Author

You will get organized, if you take one thing at a time. It could take as little as a few weeks to a few months. But you can... Get er done. Let me know how you progress and what new ideas you create, as you go along.We all learn from each other.


WandasHomePlace profile image

WandasHomePlace 5 years ago

What a useful tip and creative way to utilize space.


NTR57 5 years ago

What a great idea regarding what to give people on their anniversaries, birthdays, etc. I'm also going to request these items as gifts if someone asks me what I would like. I love reading your hubs. You may have just succeeded in getting me motivated.


chonett 5 years ago

You are a smart person to execute this marvelous solution

to eliminate useless clutter in a simple and efficient

manner. I am overwhelmed, but your method will help in my getting my place a bit more livable and less hectic,just by

planning and starting small and not tackling everything all

at once. Although I'm disabled, I know I can accomplish this a little at a time. Thank you so much!


ajthesmeagol 5 years ago

My older sister just moved out, we need to do some of the things you wrote about.


cmgilson 5 years ago

My dream is to be clutter free. Thanks for the tips. I just need to make the time to take care of my stuff. You have reminded me that winter will be here before we know it and I still havent put away all the winter sweaters I wore last year. They are in a box heaping over in our bedroom instead of hung up neatly in the outside closet. Our house has weird closet space. Here I sit instead of organizing and hoping to for an uncluttered winter!!


Francesca27 profile image

Francesca27 5 years ago from Hub Page Author

Believe me, cmgilson, if I can do this, so can you. Just take baby steps. Hey, you are already ahead of the game... you don't have to look for your winter sweaters... they are already in arms reach. I look for places to put up shelves, or hooks, etc. You will be surprised at the space you will find on your way to a clutter free home. Let me know how you do this winter.


Cassidella profile image

Cassidella 5 years ago

Hey Francesca, it's about time to start putting away summer items and getting out fall and winter things. I like your suggestion of using the linen closet for storage and the black wire mesh baskets you used there. Thanks for sharing!

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