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2013: Upstairs Closets

Last year, we made (and I never blogged about) a cloffice (closet office). It’s one of my favorite things in our house. One day I will explain the creation/inspiration for said cloffice, but today…I am writing about closets, in general. Toni, from A Bowl Full of Lemons set an organization challenge this week of closets, so I’m here blogging about our three very different closets: our cloffice, our master closet, and our linen closet. Would I say that any of these three are *completely* finished? No. Are they all FAR more functional and actually pretty enjoyable? Yes. 

#1- The Cloffice

It’s pretty simple in that…I love it. There are a few wire shelves to the left (that came with the closet) as this room is relatively small. This is also a terribly bright picture, but the wall is super navy and I super love it. I super hate the chair. We’re saving up for a nicer one…maybe acrylic? I want it to stop stealing the show from my navy wall. This stores all of my gift wrap, old magazines, tissue paper, random small crafty things, and, obviously, our files. I also copied Toni’s original filing system[I couldn’t find the link but it’s all over pinterest] and it made my heart so happy over spring break (last year) that I probably could’ve cried. That’s serious. 

I should write more on how amazing this is, but for now, the pictures are on my hard drive and it’s not hooked up…so I’m moving on to…

#2- The Master Closet

Truthfully, our “master” isn’t billed as the master. The boxier room downstairs has an attached bath. It also has a smaller closet…with the water heater in it. This one has a double closet and it has been my room since my mom purchased our house when I was a sophomore in college. It has been different colors (on its way to a new one) and had many different sets of furniture and arrangements, but I love this room best. We redid our closet system in April 2011…after my husband’s side fell. down. It has worked pretty well. It’s still not huge, but that’s the nature of the beast. Our upstairs bedroom closets like this one and the cloffice have slanted ceilings because they begin the transition under the eaves of our house. It’s kinda weird to explain…maybe one day it will make sense and I’ll have a picture of our oddly-shaped home. 🙂

Basically, this closet kinda stopped functioning so our room looked INSANE. Seriously.
Exhibit A:

 This was the point where I took everything on the floor (ie: should go in the closet) and threw it all on the bed. That has ALWAYS been how I clean my room. I make it so that the room “looks” clean-ish and then I go through the stuff on the bed. Typically, it works (as I’d like to get in bed at night). However, in college I slept on a pile of laundry for a few days because I just didn’t. feel. like. folding. 

This is what the bed looked like from the other side. WHY DO I HAVE SO MUCH CRAP?!?!?!?!?! Seriously, almost none of this is my husband’s. In fact, none of it is his. 

 This beautiful clear space on my side of the bed was my motivation. It still looks this way days later, thankyouverymuch.

 True confession? This part still looks slightly similar. The stuff closest to me & the camera needs to be donated/consigned and I just haven’t been home during daylight hours to go through it the rest of the way. #comeonsnowdays2013!

See? I told ya we’d sleep here that night. How we sleep without moving the frames/canvas to adjust to center (to align with our mirror), I will never know.

This is the bag of donations. You’ll notice they’re mostly my husband’s. Someone keeps losing weight. The only weight I’m losing is the half-ounce of nail polish that has clearly disappeared from my toes.

Then, I look into this beautiful closet and I don’t care that my toes are chipped or that I won’t be able to work out until April (#lifeofanOdysseyoftheMindcoach) because my closet is SO PRETTY. Things are organized my sleeve-length, and then rainbow order. I do keep all jackets to the right and dresses to the left. Also, in the right side there are probably…7-10″ of space. I hung some 3M hooks with my 4 big purses, which house all of the little ones. It’s splendid.

 Please don’t judge the crazy curtain situation. I hung one of two panels on his side of the closet to see if I liked the no-door, curtained look. I do. I just haven’t gotten around to hemming all 4 or hanging the other 3 panels. Soon. And very soon (that’s an inside joke for you, Mom…and anyone else super familiar with the Baptist hymnal).

This is my husband’s side. See all of those empty hangers? They were full FIVE MONTHS AGO. I tell ya, Insanity works. My man is looking mighty fine and diminishing by the day. He’s so healthy I can’t stand it. If he has to give away any more shirts he’s going to be so naked nobody else can stand it.


And on to my newest addition to the 2013 Cleaner Closet Campaign, the Linen Closet! Hooray!

So, I went to Target at 10:20 p.m. on a Monday. I just…I had to have some baskets. I got the lovely y-weave and (apparently) I got the fall/winter ones that they are phasing out because 5 of them were on clearance- SCORE! I bought 5 of their large size and 2 of their mediums in white. Sidenote: The spring ones are also teal, but they were slightly lighter by comparison in person. Also, we used red ones for our laundry room and the ones now are a tad more…fluorescent? It’s hard to describe, but noticeable since I already owned some. 

I also bought one of the little tiny Sterilite drawer sets for things I wanted to corral. I hit up the dollar bins because WHY NOT and found one other little box I didn’t even know I’d use. 

This closet performs many duties: sheets, towels, medicine cabinet, paint supplies, extra throw pillows, beach bag [not pictured=not organized- sorry, beach bag]. I just needed to corral items in a way that would make sense. Here’s where we started:

There are few more bed pillows that get stacked on top, but they were used this past weekend by some guests, so I haven’t gotten them put away yet. Otherwise, this is pretty much what it looked like. OH, it did have a basket with ALL of the “medicine cabinet” related items. They were all thrown in with extra soaps, travel stuff, random lotions (kids give the best and worst teacher gifts), aloe-type stuff, back scratchers, etc. That was in my living room floor but came from the shelf that has the…smoke detector on it. You’ll see the basket filled with trash later.

Yes, the lighting is terrible. No, it really is that ugly. Brassy knob. Builder white? beige? paint. I have not painted, but now that it’s organized, it will be much easier to get everything out of here and paint it up one weekend. 

 You can see that I tried REALLY hard to utilize baskets, but I had random ones and some didn’t really fit or you had to pull them both out to get to one…
now I have THIS:

Top Shelf: 
-still pillows (and the zip-up picnic blanket/pillow thingy)
Second Shelf: 
-basket on left: hand towels/wash cloths
-drawers: medical tape, ointments/creams, floss/oral ointments, bandaids, Breathe Right strips, sinus/allergy meds, thermometer
-divided organizer on top of drawers: small hair rubberbands (the plastic-y ones I use for special teacher-spirited hairdos), extra contact cases
-basket on right: “medicine cabinet”, travel-sized stuff, extra glasses/cases, a few bars of soap & body butter, a box of unopened Prilosec, gauze/Ace bandages, handheld back massager, and that little thing from Avon that gets the pills off sweaters- what’s that called? Sweater shaver?

You can probably guess that the third shelf is towels. We have 2 that go on the left (in the wash) and guest towels are in that basket in the middle.
Below that, the left basket is extra sheets. When we travel and bring sheets we have a set for a double bed and a set for a king. We use them more than I would’ve anticipated. The set in the middle has never been opened, but one of our current sets is wearing thin. The basket on the right has our current sheets that are in rotation.
Bottom shelf left basket has cleaning supplies for the upstairs, a make-up bag I can use for bottles & things during travel, and the right basket is where we keep random electrical things (extra smoke detector, pop-up lights & bulbs, my husband’s knee brace, heating pads).

One last look! Top!

 …and bottom!

 The beach bag will fit perfectly in the middle of the floor between those paint cans! Booyah!

The basket below WAS my “medicine cabinet” basket. That is now trash/recycling, minus the peroxide which is going downstairs to make laundry (armpit) pre-treater.

This make-up bag is a little less effective for me, but I’m going to see if I can’t change my travel habits with packing that kind of stuff and keep it in my closet with the matching garment bag. I hate splitting up a set but I do know some really good consignment places.

And this will ALLLL be going to Freecycle. Freecyclers love beauty products because they’re often expensive. If someone has extras of something you use, might as well get it for free!

I’m feeling MUCH better about my life in our closets. It took less than a day to construct our cloffice and less than 2 hours to organize the other two. Definitely a do-able night or weekend thing! I think our life will run MUCH more smoothly with our closet stuff organized…and I can’t wait to get some bookplates/labels for those linen closet baskets! 

Our space-filling project for under our shelves is coming later this week! 🙂
A Bowl Full of Lemons

One thought on “2013: Upstairs Closets

  1. Good work! Your cloffice is adorable, the difference in your master closet is terrific, and I love the way you used baskets to organize the linen closet. Thanks for sharing!

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