SoBo Mama's Tips & Tricks











{December 29, 2016}   Decluttering the Closet. Again.

Hello, my readers!  It’s been a minute, no? Crazy year, not much to say, etc. 

I’m on Christmas Break from school this week and next. Due to the decision makers at the school board, we have a really interesting schedule this year, but I’ve adjusted, as much as someone who hates change can.  My pool game is improving (just don’t ask Coach), I’m developing closer relationships with some amazing folks, and my family is still breathing. Productive as heck, I think.

I talked to Jeepnmom the other day and set myself a couple of staycation goals. 1) swap over to a capsule wardrobe and 2) straighten out the hall closets.  Don’t I do this EVERY year?  Isn’t Jeepnmom ALWAYS my accountability partner? Even though she’s checking on me daily-ish, I’m pretty off-task.  But today was a good day.  

When Grizzly is at work and the monkeys with their Nana, I’m either going to nap or I’m going to accomplish something around the house. And because I felt motivated, the linen closet became goal #1.  As the photos show, my linen closet has become a random Hodge podge of hot mess.  I really do tackle it every year, but I’m not the only person living here, using these spaces.

Lightbulbs, medicine, toothpaste – they go together, right?

Cleaning rags, washcloths, vacuum cleaner parts…who even knows?

Sheets, towels, toilet paper, and so forth.

This  is the “before” of my linen closet. Yes, we’ve been here before.  But because we’ve been here before, it was a little easier to unload.

Um, this isn’t all of it.  But my bed gives me a big workspace to sort through things.  And sort/cull I did.  I realized we have enough pillow cases to supply all of SoBo.  I still have a pretty tablecloth – that goes with my old table.  Things that belong in the toolbox in the garage don’t go back. And we no longer have a twin bed anywhere in the house…. So decluttering before restocking was completely necessary.

It always amazes me how quickly and easily things get out of order and just clustered together.  But after years of working with this mess, I was able to sort my piles with remarkable speed – in between texts from my bestie, calls from my girl down the street, and snapchats from Monkey #2.  And I already had a plan in mind for putting it all back together.

Bins from an unused organizer

I was given two bin towers a few years ago. One is in my front hall, cluttered with half-finished projects. The other never made it in from the garage.  Upon careful examination, I thought the bins might fit the closet shelves more effectively than the Rubbermaid boxes I’ve been using.  And they do!  I can add labels for shampoo, conditioner, and whatever the last one will be. 

3 drawer desktop organizer

Next to the “new” bins, there’s plenty of room for a 3-drawer organizer.  I repurposed this a few years ago to store toothpaste, lotion, and soap.  It’s great for all of the samples I get in the mail from Freebies in Your Mail.  I also store extra toothbrushes in the toothpaste drawer.

Ignore the cleaning rag – that doesn’t live right there.

Because of the height of some shelves, I took apart a plastic bookshelf to add some more function to the space.  It makes my life easier to have it divided up like this.

Easy peasy added storage

The rest of the bookshelf is combined with another set.  This is where I keep a small basket of feminine products and the height of these shelves is perfect for toilet paper.  I can fit a 6-pack on each shelf.  And as much as the House of Cheaptitude uses?  I should fill  every shelf.

Functional, pretty storage for cleaning supplies and blankets

Years ago, I was a consultant with Thirty-one Gifts and I absolutely love their totes.  They’re roomy and well-made.  The one on the closet floor is full of throws and small quilts that don’t get used all the time but I still like to keep handy. It fits the space much better than the round basket I used before.  The smaller one on the shelf holds mop pads and cleaning rags.  Most of my totes are earth tones and go together without being matchy-matchy.

My lightbulbs stay in the original packaging until they’re needed.

A small toolbox or tackle box in a bright color makes a great first aid kit.

The top half of this closet is where I’m keeping those things that we don’t use regularly or things I don’t want the Monkeys to bother.  I have lightbulbs one one end.  On the other is the toolbox I repurposed as a First Aid Kit, as well as a basket of cloth napkins and placemats. Down below, I use photo boxes for deodorant and shaving items. Notice the whole shelf is dedicated to personal hygiene?

All the bath stuff on one shelf!

I keep a decorative bowl on top of the single shelf to hold washcloths.  Underneath, I can fit two small baskets for extra storage.  The frog is from Scentsy, a goodie from a home party.  They sell scented things that go in the toy to make everything smell better.  I did keep it in the Monkeys’ bathroom for years but I’m changing the theme in there so now it can keep my closet fresh.

More bath shelf

I folded some towels and shelved them, checking the best fit.

Finishing the tallish area

The crate acts as more shelving in the part of the closet.  I’ll keep plastic containers of odds and ends in the bottom part.  The blue 4 drawer organizer doesn’t go with the color scheme (it does  go with the frog!!) but the drawers are great. I have my Scentsy bulbs and bars, plug ins, and batteries. This is my favorite Avon purchase ever.

Kitchen and cleaning, minus table linens

Beginning the bedding shelf

I did end up with the ill-fitting Rubbermaid tub after all.  We have twelve bazillion pillowcases. Most of them are actually made by Grandma Cher, my mama, and go with quilts she’s made, so I don’t mind having so many. Dollar store baskets hold my dishcloths and potholders.

A more complete view

The frog makes me smile.

I wish all the baskets matched, but im a firm believer in “use what you got!”

I ended up with more bins than I need right now but am pretty pleased with the way it turned out!  Hopefully my motivation will stick around and I can move on to the closet in the front hall.

What’s on your project list?

~ SBM



et cetera
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