Everyone knows it’s hard to get anything done when the house (or office, or desk, or anything) is a mess. For one thing, you can’t find any of the things necessary for getting work done because everything is a huge pile of old paperwork, food containers, and dirty socks. For another, there’s no way you are going to be comfortable perched atop said mound of paperwork and dirty socks and if there isn’t room for you, then there isn’t room for work. Or play. Or company. Or, you know, having a life like a functional adult.
But cleaning up, especially when it gets really bad, can be daunting. First, life gets in the way. You have to go to work, make meals, take care of kids, and (if you’re lucky) get some sleep. And hey, that marathon of Buffy the Vampire Slayer isn’t going to watch itself, right? Second, even if you have the time to clean, where do you start? And where does everything go?
Luckily, a bunch of cleaning enthusiasts came up with easy solutions to organizing your life that will not only look great, but are also affordable, many times using things you probably already have.
Bungee Cords: Good in the Home, Too
An old board and a bungee cord make for a cheap, lightweight rack to store not-too-heavy things like sunglasses, scarves and wires. Just thread the bungee cord through holes drilled into the boards and fasten with staples. If you want to get fancy, you can also decorate the board.
DIY Pen and Marker Holder
This nifty pen holder is made from toilet paper and/or paper towel rolls, trimmed to size and lined up inside a shoebox. Feel free to decorate the box with paper for a stylish look. You can organize the pens by type and color, too.
A regular hanger and some shower curtain rings make for a space-saving way to hang up your scarves, as well as a way to pick them out easily.
These magnetic dishes make it easy to store tiny metal things like pins, tacks, and clips vertically, which will save you space. A coat of spray paint will add color without affecting the magnetic properties.
Sheets IN the pillowcase
File this one under how-did-we-not-figure-this-out: store sheets (and the other pillowcase) inside their matching pillowcase for easily stackable and grabbable packets.
Mason Jar Crafting
Not just for food, mason jars can store anything, including craft supplies. Add labels to the lids so you know what’s in each one.
Makeup Brush Organizer
A bamboo placemat and a strip of elastic make a cheap, easy way to keep your brushes organized and clean. Simply roll up to store or travel.
If you have a lot of low-profile dishware, you might be wasting vertical space in cabinets. Clamp-on hanging selves can double your space.
If you’re a notebook user, you can simply glue an envelope onto the back cover to store odd scraps of paper (receipts, notes, etc.) that would otherwise end up in a flurry on the floor.
This one requires some power tools, but it’s a neat way to keep toothbrushes out of the way and prevent them from falling.