General Inspiration Interior Designers Tips and Advice

Small Space Solutions

If you are like most people, no matter how big or small your space is, there still isn’t enough space for storage. But, if living in an apartment or condo, you are often presented with situations that leave you without a logical space to store an item. The key is to come up with creative solutions to add storage and shelving in places that you wouldn’t even have considered it! We have compiled a list of clever ideas that we have either seen used or tested out ourselves that made great use of otherwise “useless” spaces.

  • Kitchen
    • Use hanging shelves/containers to store things that usually clutter your countertops – think fresh fruits/produce or bread. Depending on your space, add hanging shelves to the end of cabinets, or find shelves that can hang underneath your cabinets and instantly free up counter space.
    • Make the most of your pantry. Even if it’s a small space – add storage to the inside of the door – think small things like spices, or aluminum foil/plastic wrap, that usually takes up shelf real estate that can be better utilized. When I did this, I got different shape desk organizers and drilled them directly onto my door and it added so much extra space!
  • Bathroom
    • Floating shelves! These can literally solve so many problems in small bathrooms – for giving you shelves next to the sink for basics – toothbrushes/toothpaste, cosmetics, q-tips, medicine (especially if your bathroom is lacking a medicine cabinet). They can also work over the toilet for towel storage, back up toilet paper, and any other bathroom products.
    • Shelves in the space between the toilet and sink. In most bathrooms, while not a lot of space, there is a space between the two that is completely un-utilized. Whether you find open shelving or shelves with baskets, you have added extra storage for anything you need, without taking away from the space in the bathroom (because honestly it was a wasted space to begin with).
  • Bedroom
    • Floating shelves again are key in the bedroom. Whether you have space to add them next to the bed – think over the nightstand or maybe in place of the nightstand, or over a vanity or desk – they can be used to store anything and everything. Again, keep in mind how neat you are – using baskets can always limit the amount of clutter.
    • Make the most of your closets. If you have hanging space in your closet, you likely have enough space to hang a shelf directly above that can be used to store more clothes. You probably also have enough space below for a shoe organizer – or even Rubbermaid bins that can store clothes that aren’t in season.

The thing to keep in mind when figuring out what space you can better use, is by looking at the room and seeing what space is being wasted, and finding shelves or containers that can make the most out of this space. Hope this helps a little with your spring cleaning/organizing!!

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General Tips and Advice

Spring Check List

Spring Check List

With spring here it’s finally time to get outside!!! But that’s not all; its time to get to all those projects you have had in your mind all winter long. When I start to think about these task I start to get overwhelmed, because I had so many fun and impactful projects on my mind all winter, so what I do every spring is sit down and start jotting them all down. When starting I always just list everything on one big list then I start to prioritize as well as break them out into different categories. Below is an example of how I tend to keep myself organized and busy now that I can get outside and really enjoy the weather.

  1. You want to make sure when you are planning your projects they aren’t just all things that you need to be outside to do. As much as we would for every day to be beautiful and sunny, what I like to save for these days are things that I can either do in the garage like re painting or staining a piece of furniture or re thinking storage space in a closet. (Specially one with all the big winter coats, gloves and hats).
  2. I like to break out yard projects, things like mulching the beds, weeding which unfortunately needs to be done more than once a year… and planting new annuals and other plants/trees. One thing I do each year is I pick a specific flower bed in my yard or spot I want to make into an herb garden and really focus and setting it up so that when next year comes I will still need to mulch and weed but it should already be good to go and start blooming as soon as spring comes back!
  3. Lastly are over all events and projects can do with the kids. I like to set up a scavenger hunts, or find other little DIY/Gardening projects that they can do with me.

You want to prioritize the projects in the categories each to fit what’s most important to get done before the summer as well as what you think will be the most fun! One of my favorite times of the years is spring and because you finally get to get back out side and just attack all those projects that you haven’t gotten to do this winter. If you have any questions let us know!

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General Tips and Advice

January Resolution: Organizing

Sometimes your resolutions may not reference your own health or fitness, but rather may take on an issue in your home: clutter! When tackling this resolution, the same rule applies as it does to any other, this is your plan for the year – not just the first week of the year! Just like you won’t lose 25 pounds in week one, you won’t declutter your ENTIRE house either! Using the first week to come up with a manageable plan you can hold yourself to throughout the year is actually a great way to start any resolution!

  • Make a checklist of everything you want to tackle. Divide it by room, and then by task. (This gives you a great sense of accomplishment as well!)
    • Kitchen – top cabinets, Tupperware cabinet, bottom cabinets, pantry, under sink.
    • Guest room – closet, under bed storage, dresser, bookshelf.
  • Take the list of each area you want to tackle and prioritize it. Come up with one project for each week – of course some weeks may be easier – under the sink vs the guest room closet, but that will make you not dread it each week!
  • Take the priority list and divide it up on a calendar. Generally best idea to use the calendar you reference the most – phone, wall calendar, planner, whatever you look at weekly!
  • Go to work! Once you complete a task, check it off the list. If you come up with new ones along the way, add them to the weeks following what you’ve already filled up. If you have a bad week, push your “to-do” until the following week – make sure to not forget about it completely.

When you get to tackling whatever item is on your list each week, make sure you are setting enough time to thoroughly complete the project. If the task is to clean the closet, make sure to pull everything out and start from scratch. Use the mindset of – trash, donate, keep – with whatever area you are tackling. My theory usually is if you haven’t used something in over a year, you don’t need it! The idea behind only taking on one project a week is to give yourself time to complete it, and be completely done with it when you move on – so don’t leave behind a pile to sort out, or a bag to bring to the thrift store, use the week to tie up all loose ends. And, like any resolution, don’t lose sight of the reason you decided to make it your resolution to begin with! (And hey, organizing is easier than exercising everyday isn’t it?!)

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General Inspiration Tips and Advice

Winter Decor

The Christmas tree is down, and the stockings are put away, but winter is here to stay for a few months. Figuring out how to decorate your house (which is suddenly looking bare) tends to be a challenge. We’ve put together a few ideas to keep your house looking warm and cozy for the next few months.

  • Keep around the greens. Use any evergreens you have around the house for decorations. Adding them to the mantle or using them as a centerpiece creates a feeling of warmth. Even better is – you get to use something you already had bought for Christmas!
  • Sort through your holiday decorations. Keep out any pieces that feature just snow, snowmen, or white and red designs. Although they make look festive with the rest of the Christmas decorations around, you’ll be surprised that they just make the statement of “winter” by themselves.
  • Use a lot of white. Throw pillows, blankets, even candles. Even though it may seem silly – because you are looking outside at a lot of white snow – bringing white in the house during these months brightens up your décor and gives a feeling of warmth to a room.
  • If you had a real tree, cut some pieces from the bottom of the stump. Use these pieces around the house for decoration. Create centerpieces or just decorate coffee tables. If you are feeling inspired, look up ideas for creating decorations out of the wood from your tree! (they require some work and creativity, but it allows you to cherish memories you made during the holidays).
  • Get the kids involved. The excitement of new toys is probably wearing out, so get them involved in helping you decorate. Help them to cut out and decorate snowflakes, and then let them choose where you want them to hang them around the house.

Even though it seems simple at first, you’ll quickly realize that cleaning and organizing is definitely a bit easier without all the clutter around. And hey, that’s the look of nature out our winter right now, so let’s take advice from Mother Nature!

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