This weekend, I painted two of the walls a soft, buttery yellow. I don’t generally like yellow, but it coordinates perfectly with the quilt for the bed, and it plays nicely with the curtains too. More importantly, it’s warm and not white.
Once the paint was dry, The Husband hauled Grandma’s bed frame down from the attic for me. I spent an evening spiffing up the finish, then set it up in the room. It took up a bit more floor space than I imagined, but once I made an important discovery, that didn’t even matter:
The frame rails sit rather high up off the floor, which allowed me to use some fairly tall baskets under the bed. I thought I would need to purchase more under-bed storage boxes in order to use all of the space under there. Instead, I was able to use 6 baskets and the boxes that I already had. I can store way more stuff, contained, under the bed than I had ever hoped. Yippee!
Once all the boxes were safely stowed and labeled under the bed (which I still need to find a box spring for), I decided to put on the mattress, quilt and pillows. Then, I brought in the little side table that I repainted a couple of weeks ago. It was an ugly shade of brown, but I think it’s much prettier now. Just the right spot for the lamp, formerly my grandma’s. Are you noticing a theme here yet?
I used the space behind the headboard to hide the collection of poster board and bulletin board elements that didn’t have a home. I used these to protect and contain it all. Much cheaper, and sturdier than storage solutions that are designed for the job.
I finally got the closet mostly situated to my liking.
I fixed up a hanging lamp to add some light in there, but still no luck finding a chair. The Husband attached mending plates to the top and bottom of the doors to stop the bi-fold action, and we used some magnetic cabinet latches to make them stay closed. Then, I chose several pieces of fabric from my stash, used them to cover some cork squares, and hung them on the inside of one of the closet doors. There was still room on that door for the slacks hanger that I found to control my ribbon collection. On the opposite door, I hung a brand new 3-shelf pantry organizer, and filled it with paints, brushes, glues, crochet hooks, and other crafty-type stuff. Then, I labelled them.
I finished labeling the jars of bulk tea (and anything else that would hold still), and rearranged the shelves (again) to make room for a new shipment. I used some wire shelf dividers to separate the different types of tea, and I left room for additional jars.
There is one box of dishes, one box of picture frames, and a shadow box frame left that don’t belong in the craft room. The dishes will have to stay until my last kitchen cabinet comes in, and the frames are projects that I hope to complete in the next few weeks (not that I have a clean space to work on them). Other than those things, this room is DONE!
So here are the questions, and my answers, for the 29-Day Organizing Challenge:
1. What space did you decide to organize and why? I decided on my craft room because it was the biggest mess left to deal with in my home.
2. What steps did you take to ensure you completed the space within the 29 day timeline? I thought about what I needed the room to be, and then made a list of what I needed to have done for each update. I have a tendency to get sidetracked, and this helped me to stay focused. Then I gathered up and labeled boxes so that I could sort and purge my way through the mess. Since the sorting process took several days, it allowed time for me to find other things throughout the house that belonged in those boxes. That gave me a very realistic idea of what I had, and what it would take to contain it all. As I went through the month, I wound up re-working the craft closet and my inventory shelves until I was finally satisfied with them.
3. What was the hardest part of the challenge for you and how did you overcome it? Watching the clock. I get wrapped up in what I’m doing, and have no idea how much time has passed. That wouldn’t be a big deal, but my unreasonable family thinks that they need to eat regular meals and wear clean clothing. They’ve eaten a lot of PBJs this month, but they’ve been really good sports about it all. I think maybe they were tired of the disaster too.
4. What did you do with the “stuff” you were able to purge out of your newly organized space? I sold off some of my yarn and fabrics, and donated even more. I moved a bookshelf and books to a room where they’ll be enjoyed, put away the folding table (maybe we can actually use it for a big family gathering this year) and donated my old sewing machine and several boxes of just plain junk that I was finally ready to part with. I put framed pictures on walls where they belonged. I took out a grand total of 10 bags of trash, and emptied out approximately 8 large, 6 medium, and 20 smaller totes and boxes.
5. Tell me one of your proudest moments during this challenge? When I was looking through the photos I took of my closet, I realized that it was every bit as pretty and organized as the ones that I’ve drooled over on Pinterest. It felt great to know that I took that from an idea in my head to a finished crafting space.
6. Explain any organizing “tools” you used to help you create additional space and to establish some limits and boundaries? I think the most important tool that I used was vertical space. I used pantry organizers, pegboard, doors and walls to store and organize craft supplies that were formerly taking up a lot of valuable square footage in my home. It doesn’t seem to make sense, but bringing the bed in really helped too. It created hidden, functional storage, while helping the room to become a room instead of a giant dump.
7. What is ONE piece of advice you’d give to someone else to encourage them on their organizational journey? Looking for inspiration, planning, and brainstorming are all good, but at some point, you have to just start. The details will sort themselves out as you go.