Every house has clutter prone spots. Messy, catch-all areas that accumulate the everyday remnants of a life well-lived. A little chaos is harmless, but too much disarray costs time, space and energy.
So get organized now. When you unclutter a room, you open up the space. And when you make an area more efficient and organized, you lighten a psychological burden too; YOU feel unencumbered.
We turned to our expert stylists and designers for insight and discovered they use this helpful mantra when cleaning up: contain and maintain. And corner cabinets are one of their best secrets. Corner cabinets are small-footprint organizational wonders because they occupy unused space and stow the “stuff” away behind closed doors.
Discover how you can make 2016 the year of getting organized and successfully transform a messy home, room by room.
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Entrances and Exits
Many times the untidiest spots are the entrances and exits of a home. These zones are transitional spaces, so the gear that is used outside but kept inside tends to accumulate here. You know what we mean: coats, shoes and boots, car keys, even athletic equipment, dog supplies, and recycling bins pile up here.
Our Maldives Corner Cabinet is a great solution for a mud room or back entrance. Maldives is large enough to house everything you need to get out the door quickly, but because it scoots into the corner, it doesn’t occupy nearly as much space as a typical cabinet of shelves.
Use the Maldives for the dog’s leash, flashlight and bags, or your running shoes, water bottle, car keys and umbrellas. And, the equipment you’d rather keep out of sight can hide neatly behind the closed doors on the bottom.
At the front entrance, the stately Greta Corner Cabinet is pretty and practical. A solid oak antique of Swedish design, Greta has plenty of room, stretching over 8-feet tall. But because it’s a corner piece, everything is close at hand. It’s the perfect place to keep off-season accessories. No more fishing for that pair of gloves, hat and scarf on deep, dark shelves.
Living spaces, entertainment rooms, and family rooms are next in line for accumulating clutter because they get a lot of traffic. It’s good to have an organizational system that works for each of these places.
For example, our gorgeous Majorelle Carved Cabinet in the family room can satisfy many needs. First, it’s just the right height and depth to serve as a TV stand—a very beautiful one! And second, its drawers and shelves can hold much of the odds and ends that accumulate in a TV room: DVDs, remotes, games, extra throw blankets, etc.
Our Round Tufted Storage Ottoman is another great idea, especially in a living room or conversation nook. The flaps around this plush ottoman hide a large storage compartment. It is a quick and ample space to gather up and keep magazines, dog toys, extra pillows, slippers and more out of sight.
For DVDs and remotes, our Sebastian Side Table is a sweet, petite solution. The oval top made of bleached, sanded reclaimed pine has a raised rim, almost like a tray top, to keep books, pens and reading glasses secure. And the curved door cabinet is a wonderfully unexpected place to stash videos and electronics not in use.
We love when our customers tell us about unexpected storage solutions they’re created with our home furnishings. One of our favorites is the fan who used our Le Vallee Du Loire Cabinet as a shoe, purse and accessories closet.
She lined up her heels and pumps like soldiers on the top shelves, had room for belts, bags, totes and clutches too, and then hid her less-pretty running shoes and slippers on the shelves behind closed doors on the bottom. She even had room for a basket of shawls and scarves. Ingenious.
Another Soft Surroundings’ follower used our Allier Framed Linen Board next to her vanity to organize her necklaces and bracelets. She just tacked them to the linen board so getting accessorized every morning became effortless.
Even though our Mirrored Lingerie Cabinet says it’s for lingerie, one of our customers reinvented it. She uses it for make-up, lotions, hair ties and toiletries.
Tired of having stacks of serving dishes and cookbooks on your countertops and fridge? Invest in a space-saving corner cabinet for that forgotten corner of the dining room or great room. Our Millau Cabinet is tailor made for this purpose.
Nestle it in a corner and leave the top doors open against the walls of the room. It’s ideal to display china and serving dishes. Or shelve all your cookbooks in it. Then shut the Swedish grey finished doors to keep things looking neat as a pin.
Laundry and Linens
That leaning tower of linens in the hall closet can find a new home in our Fantine Cabinet. Its nearly square shelves keep sheets, towels and pillows separated and perfectly stacked while the small footprint saves space.
But Fantine would also make a wonderfully charming addition to your dream laundry room. Its four adjustable shelves can store detergent, fabric softener, the iron, those lone unmatched socks, and even light bulbs and a handy tool set.
Space to Create
The freedom to create—and still stay clean and organized—is a luxury. But this ideal balance is easy to maintain with a multi-purpose cabinet like our Stockholm Corner Cabinet. First of all, it won’t take up a lot of room because it has those hug-the-walls angles.
But we think this Swedish design is especially useful for crafts and creativity because it has both a closed cabinet and open shelves. Put glue, paper, paints, fabrics, and craft supplies in the bottom and use the shelves above to display your creations (or use them to let the glue dry!)
If there’s one home accessory that can contain the chaos in every room, it is a tray. Yes, trays, not baskets. Baskets and bins easily become black holes; they may hold the clutter but they don’t organize it.
Trays like our Montaigne Trays, on the other hand, are handy on the nightstand to confine water and eyeglasses, books and small electronics together in place. Trays are indispensable on coffee tables to corral the assortment of remotes, magazines, and the daily news. Trays are also ideal to keep office supplies organized and in easy reach.
We’d love to hear from you. How have you controlled the clutter at home? Let us know in the comments below.