7 TIPS FOR ORGANIZING A SMALL SPACE
We live in one of the most expensive areas in the country. So, when we purchased our first home, we quickly realized we weren't going to get a dream home just yet. We weren't going to get a spacious house like the ones we'd seen in Texas or Ohio for the same price here. It just wasn't going to happen. The houses we could purchase there for around $200K were at least $450K here, most were muuuuch higher. Not only that, our dreams of owning a single family home were pretty crushed. We looked for over a year. We finally agreed to look at townhouses so we could get a house in decent shape that was still affordable. Townhouse it was. We found a townhouse that we love and it most certainly works for now!
With all of our accumulating kid things, we are running out of space pretty quickly, however. We are planning on having one more child, so as Caroline grows out of clothes, and no longer uses her toys, we are packing them away for baby number 2. It certainly doesn't make sense to sell things and purchase them again later. I'm trying to only save the favorites- the must haves... but it is still a LOT of stuff! It is essential that I keep things organized so I know where everything is.
Here are my tips on organization in a small space:
1. Use every bit of space for storage. Have an empty wall? Use it for a bookshelf or cubbies that will provide more storage. We literally had a 3.5 foot space between our wall
mounted TV and the entertainment center below. I needed more storage in the family room (things were literally accumulating on the floor), so I ran out to Target one day and purchased a shelving unit to set on top of the entertainment center, below the TV.
2. Invest in storage containers. I buy bins like they are going out of style. I have bins for under the bed, bins for the closet storage, etc. This allows me to keep like items together and stored neatly. I even buy small bins for toys that she is using now. Today we decided to stock up on some inside arts and crafts items (since it's too hot to play outside)! Guess what I bought at the craft store along with these items? A bin to store everything in!
3. Label everything. I need to get a tiny bit better at this, but every bin needs a label. I want to be able to look in my closet at all of the bins and know exactly what is in them. I've done really great at this for Caroline's clothing storage. Everything is labeled by size.
4. Have bins ready. Kids outgrow clothing in what seems like a matter of hours. I found myself trying to keep track of which items I needed to pull from her closet and store away. I finally figured out that I needed a small bin in the closet that was the catchall for things that needed to be stored away. I didn't have time right then to deal with it, but if I threw it in the bin, I could deal with a bunch of items all at the same time, and I knew these were clothes that didn't fit anymore, toys that needed to be stored, etc.
5. Get creative. There are some pretty inexpensive ottomans that are hollow on the inside for storage. They act as seats if you need them to, hideaway storage on the inside, and they look great.
6. Get rid of things. You can't keep everything. Keep the favorites, the must haves, the essentials. Keep the baby and kid items that you know you'll need again. Purge things that you haven't touched in ages and aren't saving for another child. Don't hang onto the jeans that are too large or too small just because you might need them again. Make room and be smart about what you keep.
7. Teach your children to organize and clean up. My daughter is 20 months old and is so accustomed to cleaning up, she does it unprompted at times. She says "way" for putting things away. It is the only way to keep track of things and keep them in the correct location.
Today is Pinterest Day for the Babywise Friendly Blog Network and the ladies in the group are all discussing topics about organization! Be sure and check out our Pinterest Page and check out the other posts today!
Carrie at Wiley Adventures
My Favorite Household Organization Trick
Emily at The Journey of Parenthood
Keeping Kids Clothing Organized
Cole at Twinning Babywise
Organizing Small Spaces to Improve Your Mood
Natasha at Let's Be Brave
5 Organization Tips for a Clutter-free Home