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organizing | one room down


I have been very lazy since Christmas.  You know me…I’m usually ultra productive, but every signal my body was sending me said to just rest and relax, so I did.  I did totally unproductive things like playing games on my iPad (I’ve been enjoying 1010! and The Room Three), watching Netflix, combing through the 25% off clearance sale at Anthropologie to make sure I didn’t miss anything, and relying on leftovers, so I didn’t have to cook.  I even painted my toenails!

It’s been a nice break, but I felt my usually energy make an appearance yesterday morning.  It’s always a good sign when I start working before breakfast, while I’m still in my jammies.  I finally did take a break and got ready for the day, so I was presentable when the babysitter came over.

I have a goal to purge and organize the entire house.  I did this a couple of years ago and now I’m ready for round two.  Organizing is something that needs to be maintained, anyway, but I find myself more and more willing to let things go, now that I’m getting a taste of living in a more organized, less-cluttered space.

I also used to not care too much if things behind closed doors were messy.  As long as the room looked okay and I could find things, I was alright with a bit of disorganization.  Now, I want to open a door or drawer and feel that little lift of joy that comes when things are tidy, neat, easy to see and, dare I say, even pretty.  I mean, why not?  Shouldn’t every cranny of your home make you happy?

Well, within reason.

So, with this in mind, I tackled all of the behind-closed-doors spaces in the master bedroom.  I really want to do the entire house in one day, but I know that’s completely unrealistic, so I have to set out attainable goals.  One room, even just one cabinet or one drawer at a time.

Planing to do the entire master suite was even a little optimistic, but I was focused and motivated, so I dove in.  I emptied everything from my side of our little, shared closet onto the floor and then started sorting, pitching and organizing.


I have wanted to switch to all-matching wooden coat hangers for years, but buying coat hangers doesn’t seem like much fun.  I finally got them, though, and I am so glad I did.  They make a huge difference and my clothes look so much better!  And, I’ve decided that the number of hangers I have is my clothing limit.  This will force me to get rid of clothes I’m not wearing as I purchase new clothes.  It’ll keep my wardrobe fresh.


Yeah, my closet walls are still mauve.  That was the wall color in the room when we first moved in and I never repainted.  Now that it looks so pretty, it just might be worth taking everything out and painting it a pretty color that sets off the clothes a little better.

Clearly, I like my blues, whites and grays!


I did the same thing in my wardrobe, which I use instead of a dresser.  I still need to find a good way to organize scarves.  Right now they are just folded on the bottom shelf, but I know they will become a jumble in no time.  So, I’m on the hunt for a good solution.


I even cleaned out the magazine hoard in my nightstand.


And I cleaned out the master bathroom vanity and linen closet as well.  All expired medicines and beauty products were pitched.  Everything was wiped down and vacuumed.  I added shelf liner and clear organizational trays.  And I tried to really think through the way I use each space as I go about my daily routine.  For example, I always throw my bobby pins and hair ties in the top drawer and they usually slide around, loose.  I finally gave them a dedicated spot right where I naturally want to put them.


I’ve been keeping my makeup in a zipper cosmetic bag for a couple of years.  It’s easy when I travel, but it’s not the best way to care for the products, so I moved them into a neat tray.


I already had everything except the hangers, so it cost $90 and a day of hard work to get everything straight in the master suite.

I think I’m going to tackle the basement next…

Does anyone else have the organization bug?

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  1. Marybeth Longstreth says:

    There is a new approach to organization, it’s called Konmari. I did it about 6 months ago and it si life changing and EASILY maintained! It isn’t a room by room approach…it is by LIKE ITEMS and it is amazing. The book :The life-changing magic of tidying up the japanese art of decluttering and organizing will change your life!!

  2. I did some last week, and while I would love to tackle more this week, the garden is calling. It’s my busy month in the garden and I have grape vines, roses, and 40 or so fruit trees to prune! So I have limited the organzing to one small drawer, and I will also be cleaning the globes in the master bath when I clean in there this week.

    I’ve also got quite a bit of sewing to do this week, and abit of baking, sometime after homeschooling is done each day. It should be busy! Last week felt a bit lazy (though I did do a fun Cinderella photo shoot) but this week it’s back to business!

  3. Sas L says:

    Hi, what about a small antique ladder that you could lean up again the wall for your scarves? Easy to see what you have and easy to pop them straight back on.

  4. Hi! I’m in the middle of an organizational marathon! After living 5 years abroad I’m returning to my apartment and almost everything needs to be reorganized. I’ll be coming back to your posts for inspiration 😉

  5. Debbie Klausing says:

    They make hangers designed for scarves. Keeps them from getting jumbled in a drawer.

  6. I, also, have been bitten by the bug although I’ve been calling it a “season too early” cleaning bug. I have to get the house that my Mother has lived in for the last 45 years ready to put on the market, which is one of the reasons I was lead to your site. Repainting the kitchen and most of the woodwork was recommended by the realtor. I have found so much inspiration in painting furniture that I believe nothing is safe at this point. My mother has so many nice old pieces that I think will sell nicely in an estate sale. Like everyone else has said, thank you for the inspiration!

  7. Kimberly says:

    Marian, excellent job on the organization, your closet looks amazing! Love what you did with your bins in the bath, too; you’ll find it takes a lot less time doing makeup when you can just grab everything you need from its proper place and not be forced to dig around for it.

    As a former makeup artist, I can give you a few neat tips on cleaning your makeup bottles, containers, and the inside and outside of your palettes (blush and eyeshadow, etc.). You can use a makeup remover cloth to clean the gunk and grime off the outside of your makeup containers and palettes. Windex on a paper towel works, too; you can also use it to clean the mirrors inside your palettes.

    A liquid-y eyemakeup remover (not a cream or a gel) on a Q-tip can get inside the tiny spaces in your palette, like the areas of plastic separating one eyeshadow color from another. Brushes can be washed using shampoo, lay flat on a towel to dry (not upright in a jar, you don’t want the water flowing into the ferrule, it will loosen the glue over time and your handle will separate from the brush head). After a good washing, you can use a makeup remover cloth after each use to wipe down your brush bristles, that will keep them clean in between uses and lengthen the time between shampooings. We used to have to keep our containers and palettes looking spotless and grunge-free all the time when doing location shoots, people felt more comfortable sitting still for us in our chairs when our tools were all nice and clean!

  8. Eileen says:

    Love your matching hangers! Over the holidays, I reverse all of my hangers, then when I wear the item, I hang it back on the bar the right way. The following year, if something is still hanging backwards, I know I haven’t worn it. If it is a classic piece, I keep it, if not, I give it away. Works great to purge things that I don’t wear.

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