9 Must-Haves for Dorm Living
February 8, 2017
9 Must-Haves for Dorm Living – Inexpensive Items to Get You Organized
College life can be challenging, especially when you are leaving home for the first time. Dorm rooms are often smaller than you’re used to, with limited floor and storage space. Closets tend to be undersized and drawers, scarce. Shared spaces like bathrooms usually mean less storage for you, so you might even want to keep some of your accessories in a carrying case for transporting to and from the bath to your bedroom.
No matter what kind of room you end up with, you’re likely to be looking for ways to expand that limited storage. Here are 9 must-haves for college living that are sure to convenience you during your college stay.
1. Bed Risers
Bed risers add instant height to your bed so you can store clothes, bedding and other items underneath. Genius? For sure! You won’t believe how much you can fit under your bed.
2. Under Bed Storage Containers
Under bed storage containers and bags come in a variety of materials and sizes. Some even have wheels and handles for easy access. Use them for shoes, linens, coats and things you may not need every day.
3. Scarf and Belt Hangers
Scarf and belt hangers consolidate your accessories in one place and hang easily from a hook or closet rod for convenient, compact storage. Lots of styles are available with double and even multiple hooks for the extreme accessory freak.
Over-the-door-shoe-racks make instant shoe storage over standard doors to create tons of storage in unused space. Many models are available including wire, canvas and see-through plastic varieties. You might even want to share one with your roomie.
5. Cosmetic Organizers
Makeup organizers keep all of your beauty supplies in one location – so no more unpleasant black eyeliner surprises in the bottom of your purse. Small acrylic organizers are available for the small-needs student and larger, multi-compartment carousels appease the makeup queens.
6. Charging Stations
If you have a dedicated charging station, you’re less apt to lose your devices and recharging becomes habit. Whether you need a large one for multiple devices or a small-profile one to plug into the wall, Organize-It has you covered.
Everyone needs a backpack in college. It’s a purse, a lunch bag, a tablet holder and a desk thrown over your shoulder.
8. Bulletin Boards
Memo boards remember things when you can’t. They’re also good for keeping your roommates current, writing to-do lists, sharing random thoughts and writing poems.
9. Laundry Bags
Laundry bags are a lightweight alternative to bulky laundry baskets when lugging your soiled laundry from dorm to laundromat – or home on the weekends. Some can even be folded and stashed in a drawer when not in use.
Whatever your needs for college, Organize-It is sure to have it. Be sure to check out our Back-to-School category for lots of ideas for organizing and furnishing your dormroom.
9 Ways to Use a Lazy Susan
January 30, 2017
9 Ways to Use Lazy Susans
Lazy Susans are among the most versatile kitchen accessories you’ll find. They make food accessible in your cupboard or fridge and can be used for serving as well. And they aren’t limited to food storage either! Use them for cosmetics, hobbies, small tool organizing and more. Here are 9 storage ideas for getting organized with your lazy Susan.
1. Spice and Herb Storage
Make spices in your cupboard completely accessible while saving tons of space.
2. Vitamins, Supplements and Pill Storage
Organize pills, vitamins, food additives and all those miscellaneous items that tend to get scattered around your cupboards. Lazy Susans rock for maximizing space.
3. Refrigerator Corner Storage
Use a lazy Susan in your refrigerator to maximize space and make small condiments and other items easily accessible.
4. Condiment Server
Add a lazy Susan to your dinner table for serving condiments, sugar, butter and other items. Single-level lazy Susans come in a variety of materials including wood and marble – so they make LOVELY centerpieces for your dinner table.
5. Cheese Server
Lazy Susan turntables make fabulous cheese and bread servers and may be used on a counter, table or buffet.
6. Craft Paint Organizing
Organize your craft paints, ink or other small crafting supplies right on your work table for convenient access to your favorite tools.
7. Tole Painting Carousel
Tole painting is so much easier if you arrange your cups and other items on a turntable so you can spin as you paint, switching between items and colors. Lazy Susans make great production tools for painting miniatures, figurines and model kits too.
8. Cosmetic Organizer
Organize makeup, nail polish and other beautifying products right on your dresser to maximize your space and keep your essentials neat and consolidated.
9. Tea and Coffee Bar
Your lazy Susan makes an excellent mini-coffee bar or tea-serving station. Use it on the table, your food bar, or even on your patio for warm summer snacks or loungeful weekend mornings.
Organize-It has a huge selection of lazy Susans in every material imaginable including marble, wood, bamboo and steel. Multi-tiered, in-cabinet lazy Susans are extreme space savers and make great use of awkward corner spaces. Shop Organize-It lazy Susan turntables for more great ideas.
by Laurie Halbritter
Why Clutter is Harming You
January 23, 2017
Guest blogger and professional organizer, Daria Harvey, has some valuable insights into how clutter can harm you and what to do about it. We are pleased to have her as a guest.
At the start of every new year, the buzzword is always “decluttering.” January is the natural time to put your home in order. The holiday decorations have all been tucked away and we look around at what we’re left with. New presents means now there’s even more stuff in our homes! Decluttering seems to be a popular New Year’s resolution.
If you have ever tried to declutter and failed, or are perhaps the rare type of person who does not get jittery and nervous in a cluttered space, you may ask yourself “why even bother? Why do I even need to declutter?!” Because clutter is harming you.
The Cost of Clutter
The average American home has over 300,000 items. Mind boggling. Do we really use 300,000 items? No, in fact, most people use 20% of what they own. (National Association of Professional Organizers) Yep, you are not using 80% of what you own.
That stuff sometimes makes it hard to find what you need. Ever rush around trying to find your keys when you have to leave the house? Maybe your child can’t find a glue stick the night before a big project is due. Now you have to run to the store. According to US News and World Report, we spend one year of our lives, in total, looking for stuff we need. Wow. What would you do with all that extra time? Pursue a hobby? Spend time with family and friends? Travel?
So let’s say you do run out and get that glue stick, only to find a week later that you in fact had already purchased the mega 20 pack of glue sticks from Costco last month. Money wasted. Or perhaps you decide it’s time to finally organize the pantry and discover much of the food has already expired. Sometimes having clutter is like pouring money down the drain.
Clutter costs us time and money, two very precious commodities.
Clutter is much more than taking time to find lost items or purchasing duplicate things. Clutter could be costing you productivity and happiness, trapping you in a vicious cycle of depression and anxiety.
According to a Princeton study, clutter in our environment affects our ability to focus. Ever find that you have a hard time finishing that paperwork in your office? Clutter may be to blame.
- It’s distracting.
- Clutter overstimulates the senses.
- Piles can overwhelm us so that we can’t figure out what to do.
I always remind my clients that their homes should be their havens. When they walk in the door, they should feel calm and at peace. That’s hard to do if you have to brush by ten pairs of shoes on your way in.
Some people say “oh, clutter doesn’t bother me.” I’m not convinced. Next time you enter a cluttered room, take notice of how you are feeling. Do you suddenly feel overwhelmed by all you have to do? We do live in an increasingly busy world, but that oppressive feeling may have to do a lot with your physical environment.
UCLA conducted a study of 32 families with cluttered homes. They found that the women had elevated levels of the stress hormone cortisol. Yes, your clutter is stressing you out. Men did not seem to be affected by the clutter. I’m not even going to go there.
So, you’re ready to declutter. But oh, the guilt of letting go. Often I find clients feel guilty about:
- Items they spent a lot of money on
- Items that represent who they used to be
- Items that represent who they thought they wanted to be
- Gifts from well-meaning family and friends that they don’t want
- Sentimental items they have no room for
This is the part where I gently tell you that just because you spent a lot of money on something doesn’t make it useful to you. Sell it.
Used to be a size 2 when you were in your first job and still hanging onto that suit? Why keep something that makes you feel bad whenever you look at it. Celebrate who you are now.
Thought you wanted to be a knitter and bought needles, yarn, and a cute bag to hold your supplies in only to find you absolutely hate it? Be kind to yourself. Be yourself. And donate the items to someone who thinks knitting is cool.
Gift givers want their presents to give you joy. If all you feel is guilt, it’s time to pass the gift on. It really is the thought that counts.
Sentimental items are hard to get rid of, I admit. Perhaps keep one example of your mother’s angel collection. Perhaps another member of the family would love to have some of those albums boxed up in your attic. Give yourself permission to let go. You aren’t letting go of the love.
The Gifts of Decluttering
Whether you start small or go all Marie Kondo on your house, I promise you decluttering will be worth it. You will gain more time, save money, have less stress, guilt and become more productive. Sounds pretty nice, huh?
Now grab a box and label it “Donate.”
Daria Harvey is a professional organizer and blogger, operating from Holly Springs, North Carolina. Be sure to visit her website for great tips and inspiration, and check out our earlier Interview with an Organizer feature for a more details about Daria.