Saturday, February 21, 2009

Capturing Closets (part two)

Welcome!  We’re closing in to the end of our closet journey.  This week we are discussing the linen closet.  The linen closet is the place to keep sheets, towels, and possibly table linens. 

As usual, anything that you do not love or does not suit your purposes can be donated, as can surplus.  If you do not have a twin bed in your home, why are your storing twin sheets?  If you are saying, “For indoor picnics!”  or “To make dining chair tents, of course!”  Limit yourself to one (not ten!)

Sheets – divide sets by size (twin, full, queen, king)  or divide by ownership (son’s twin sheets, daughter’s twin sheets, etc).  Fold the sheet set EXCEPT for one pillow case.  Slide the set of folded sheets into the pillow case.  No more hunting for all the pieces when it is time to make the beds!  I like to stack these packets on my shelves vertically like books so that I don’t have to dig through a stack for the right sheets.  I can also fit more on my shelf this way!

Towels – fold in “ready to use” sets (bath towel, hand towel, wash cloth) or fold in stacks (all bath towels in one stack, all hand towels in another, wash cloths in another).  To keep extra wash cloths from getting lost in the shuffle, you may want to use a small basket or shoe box. 

Table Linens – To fold or to hang?  That is always the question when it comes to table linens.  I find it easier, in most homes, to store table cloths as folded items.  When they are needed they can be quickly ironed or tossed into the dryer. 

Off season items - (like beach towels and blankets) can be folded and set apart onto the top (aka hard-to-reach) shelf in the closet.

What’s in your linen closet?


Check out this current “Get Organized for Free Article” from  Not only are there some super cute organizing ideas, there are some surprising closet statistics.

Common Closet Clutter-Uppers
51% of women cling to clothing they haven’t worn in three or more years.
64% find the stuff they no longer wear hard to get rid of because they might need it some day.
60% hold on to clothes that don’t fit anymore because they might lose or gain back the weight.
58% have clothes hanging in their closets with the tags still on them.
50% know they have too many shoes, boots, or handbags but cannot part with them.
54% complain that shoes, boots, and handbags are the hardest to store.
32% have too many T-shirts.
33% admit that their closets are bulging.
18% are actually embarrassed by their closets!
More than 1,000 women in our new national survey reveal what’s
hiding behind closed doors.
Also listed are tips for what not to buy when taming closet overflow.

Bloggy Winner for the month of February is….. Snaphappee!!!!!  Keep an eye on your mailbox Elli.  You will be receiving a super special gift for being the reader to leave the most comments on in the month of February!  Thanks for being such a great support to this blog!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Capturing Closets - Update

Are you are looking for something to do on Friday afternoon/evening?  I have been invited by Wendy Miller (aka Little Miss Efficiency) to speak about closet organizing on her WEEKLY radio show.  Check the time zone and adjust accordingly!

Listen to our

"The Efficiency Corner" Radio show!

Live on Fridays, 2 pm PST

Tune your Valley radio into 1230 AM, KLAV - The Talk of Las Vegas

You can also listen online from anywhere at:

This week we are going to organize all your closets,

just in the knick of time for Spring.

Learn how to de-clutter your closets for good.

You do not want to miss this week's "The Efficiency Corner" show!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Capturing Closets (part one)

Thank you for joining me this month for our series on closets.  For our purposes this week, I am using the example of an adult clothes closet.

Where do I start?

Make your bed.  :)
Take everything out of the closet and lay it on your bed.  (That’s why you have to make your bed first!)
Try to keep like things together if this is possible.

This is one of those times where we can really see the 80/20 principle in action.  We use 20% of our stuff 80% of the time.  We wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time.  So why do we own the other 80%?  And what can we do about it?  Purge.

How do I know what to purge? 
If you do not LOVE it…
If it does not look good on you…
If it is old, faded, or otherwise beyond repair… 
If it does not properly fit…
If it is too big or too small…
If it is from a different era of you life…
If there are multiples of the same or a very similar item…
It is time to let it go.

What do I do with the things I have purged?
TRASH - if it is worn out, needs repair, etc PLEASE do not donate it.  It has live its life and served its useful purpose and now it is time to let go.
DONATE– There is a plethora of local places just waiting for your wonderful items to come along.  Think about the local City Rescue Mission, Food Banks, as well as Goodwill and Salvation Army
CONSIGN– This is a great option if you have high end clothes that no longer fit your body or your style.  You will not make back your entire investment.  It is a way to ease the pain of letting go.  ***Make sure you know the rules of the particular shop before you choose this option.
HAND DOWN – Maybe you have a co-worker, neighbor, or friend who could benefit from some of your castoffs.  Many MOPS groups have a clothing trade for children’s clothes.
OTHER OPTIONS – ONLY if you are disciplined enough to set a “good-bye” date and time -,,, yard sale

Now that you’ve purged it is time for the…
Group like things together. 
T-shirts, Dress Shirts, Collared Shirts.  Pants.  Skirts.  Dresses. Ties.  Scarves. 
Group like colors together. 
Use baskets and bins to group smaller items together on shelves.

Things to keep in mind for organizing Kids’ Closets.
Make it accessible.
-What they cannot reach or see they will not use.
Keep it kid friendly.
- Make it easy to choose outfits and easy to put things away.

I keep a box in the bottom of the closet for things to donate.  As my son outgrows an item I don’t hang it back up when it returns through the laundry cycle.  I simply toss it into the donate box.

I keep a laundry basket in the top of the closet for clothing items that my son is not yet ready to use due to size or season.  When he hits a growth spurt or the weather changes, I check that basket first before I plan any shopping.

Thank you for joining me on this journey through the closet.  Let me know what your tips are for keeping your clothes in check.  What are your problem closet areas?

Next week:  The Linen Closet.

Oh, and for those of you who are attending the WE function on Friday Feb 20th, I look forward to meeting you there!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Goals revisited. Easy task list.

February First.  The first day of a new month.  A fresh start.  If you didn’t do so well keeping up with your goals in Jan, now is the time to “drop back 5 and punt”.  Take a deep breath and start again.  Make one step this week toward your goal.  For example:  even if you only work out one day, that is one day MORE than before.  Need another example?  Example two: If your goal is to read a certain number of books, start with a chapter a day/week.   Keep moving forward!  One more word:  if your goal was to cut out something completely (television, chocolate, video games, commuting by car) try moderation instead of cold turkey.

For this week I am including 4 very simple tasks.  You can do it all.  Are you ready for this week’s list?  Sure you are! 

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, it is time to purchase supplies - candy, cards, class party items.  Do not over buy!!!!  You do not want to have to store all the extras trinkets until next year.  It would also be a shame to have to throw out a ton of extra candy.  (And heaven forbid you and your family consume all of that extra sugar, right?)

Empty your e-mail’s inbox. 
Clear off your voicemail.
… no these things aren’t actual “clutter” that you can see, but it is electronic clutter.  Deal with it!

Get your paperwork ready for tax time.
… April 15th is just around the corner.


My informal poll has shown that there is a concern about cleaning out closets.  Next week will be our big kickoff for the “Closet Clean-out”!  Send your closet questions my way this week  And stay tuned for next Sunday’s answers to all of your closet questions.