Wednesday, July 31, 2013

29 Reader Space: A Working Wow Factor!

I am a crazy closet obsessed person.  Something about seeing organized closets makes my heart race like Secretariat.  And then there are those closets that are out of the ordinary awesome.  The ones that turn into an extension of the home.  A room in itself if you will.  Those closets really do something good for the soul.

I have been checking in on Deme's blog, House For Five, for awhile now {I even featured her once before here}.  And the moment I saw this sweet little closet of hers, I just knew I had to share it!  So, I did what I do each week, and asked her some must know questions about her recent closet makeover.

What is the main function of the space?

"We've been slowly changing this 4th bedroom from a guest room into a his/hers shared office that can still accommodate overnight visitors. Upping the functionality of the closet played a huge role in being able to effectively store all our craft and office supplies without them overflowing into the room.  Or onto our guests!"

Any superstar tips for keeping it organized?

"Before we could work on keeping it organized we had to actually get it organized. What lurked behind the closet doors was years of accumulated junk with some really important non-junk buried in the mix.  And I could think of a thousand other things I would rather do than go through it all.  But I somehow found my big girl pants, pulled everything out {including the doors - does it bother anyone else when you can only see half the closet at a time and never really see the middle} and did a cut-throat purge.  We purged, tossed, donated, and consolidated.  Getting rid of the clutter and anything I didn't need or have a specific plan for left me with a much more manageable amount of stuff to organize.

This isn't a huge space, so now that it's finally whipped into shape, it forces me to really be selective about what I bring in and not keep too much excess.  The size also forced us to make the most of every inch of space.  It's important for everything to have a home or it will just end up in a random pile or shoved between things.  In order to do this we had to go vertical with our wall space {wire rack for printer paper storage}, take advantage of the rod {hanging fabric storage}. and use some unconventional real estate {under-the-shelf wrapping paper storage}.  I keep my sewing machine on the floor below the fabrics in a basket I inherited from my Grandmother.  My cutting mat {a large, floppy item} slides perfectly out of sight behind the bookcase.

And of course, the biggest key is trying to make sure we put whatever we take out right back into its designated spot as soon as we're done."

What items did you find were essential in organizing the space, and why?

"The biggest hero to our storage woe's was this 9-cubby bookcase that used to house our kids' toy bins.  It was something we already had, but the right baskets, bins and buckets allowed us to really maximize its functionality.

The largest pile begging for organization was by far my fabrics.  I wanted to store them in a way that I could easily see what I had {without having to dig through a pile}, categorize them by color or genre, and get to them with ease.  I spotted these 5-rung pant hangers while walking through the laundry aisle and knew they were my answer.  The side release makes it super easy to access them without pulling them all down."

What did you do to go the extra mile and "Make it Pretty"?

"I went for the bling!  What's better than a little gold and polka dots?  Since the rest of the room had to appeal to my manly other half, the closet was the perfect place for me to have some girly fun.  This is my creative space and I wanted to be inspired when I opened the doors to all the tools that help me do it.  I went with an easy painted gold dot wall treatment, and loved the tone it set for all the other elements we would bring into the space.  The zigzag baskets, white pails and white strapping cube bins are all from Land of Nod.  Their black and white palette play off of my desk curtains {made from a black and white Nate Berkus duvet}, and the gold, teal, pink and navy elements are also found throughout the rest of the office."

What items did you DIY to stay on a budget?

"Almost all of the labels were either an easy DIY or I used something I already had on hand.  I used some natural stationary paper and clothespins to label the zig zag baskets.  The found labels were gift tags that I flipped over, traced with a pink Sharpie and labeled with Washi tape.  The chalkboard labels were extras from a previous project, and were perfect for the white buckets.

The sneaky wrapping paper storage was another simple DIY using just a few pieces of twine.  And the closet "doors" that hide it all away were a no-sew DIY project made from a white tablecloth {courtesy of Target clearance rack} and trimmed with some playful teal pom pom fringe.  Shopping my house for items that could corral small supplies helped us finish the job without spending extra cash."

How has it impacted your life for the better?

"Not only has this closet taken our room from mammoth clutter zone to organized workspace, it really does make me smile.  I love opening those sweet curtains, seeing all of my supplies and knowing exactly where to find them.  It's amazing how much time it has saved me looking for an anniversary card or birthday card... and how much money it's saved me from just buying a new one because I couldn't find the pile of cards to begin with.  I used to be completely stressed out by this room, which doesn't make for a great place to work... or help to keep those creative juices flowin'.  Now I'm able to be so much more productive and am much more likely to whip out my sewing machine or a craft project knowing everything is easily accessible and has a home.  And I no longer transfer the piles of randomness to our bedroom as my way of "cleaning up" before guests arrive.  Good for everyone."

Are you loving this sweet little WOW factor closet as much as I am!?  So many great little space saving tips to snag!
  • I adore that she repurposed the cubbies with new storage containers for her craft supplies.  It's always fun when you can reuse items on hand!
  • Those labels are just too darling!  Love the different styles and they are simple yet smart!
  • Those wire baskets on the wall!  Seriously smitten.  Loving the use of vertical space and the touch of classic they add to the closet.
  • Helloooo! {in my best Clueless voice}  She painted gold polka dots!  So fun and fabulous!
  • That fabric hanging solution is genius.  So easy to access yet nice and compact!  She totally found a new use to an everyday object!
  • The pom poms add such a sweetness to the space.  And wahoo for using a clearance tablecloth as curtains!  Such a resourceful idea!
  • It is neat to see her solution for tucking away and storing her wrapping paper.  It's protected, simple to snag and up and off of the floor.  
Deme really created a darling and hard working little closet nook!  You can find all of her lovely office projects here.  Here is a little sneak peek at the awesomeness!

A huge thank you to Deme for letting us virtually crash her closet!  Anyone else have a crazy obsession for cute closets?

ATTENTION!!  Want to be featured in a Reader Space edition?  Have an awesome organizing story to share?  I am looking for projects that have made a positive impact to your life.  Please submit your story and photos here and I would heart to feature them right here, on the blog!!  Photos should be high resolution and unedited.  Please include a description of the project, including any costs, inspiration, and how it has changed your life and routine for the better!  Oh, and no worries my friends, we will NEVER judge "before" pictures because that just wouldn't be nice!  Only love goes on at this blog!


  1. So pretty and well organized! Love the polka dots!

  2. Love the closet, and the color choices are uber gorgeous!

  3. Wow, this is fantastic! The fabric organization is awesome. I have a bunch of those trouser hangers that are unused, and now I know what to do with them.

    Funny enough, I just bought pillow shams from West Elm in that blue ikat fabric that she has hanging in her closet!

  4. I am loving the fabric storage!!! I have so much that it is all over the place. This would so help de-clutter!

  5. Thank you so much for sharing our closet on your amazing blog, Jen!!

  6. Love the idea for those hanger to store fabric....thanks for sharing such a great space....learn something new everyday (and when I visit your blog)

  7. Love the space , could you tell me where the hanging folder case/book (wire basket one) .

  8. "What lurked behind the closet doors was years of accumulated junk with some really important non-junk buried in the mix." ---That was so brilliantly said!! Oh is that my problem right now or what?!! Thanks for the inspiration. It must be a real weight off of your shoulders!

  9. Yay, so happy to see Deme featured here again. She is amazing and I love everything about the closet, especially the hidden gift wrap storage and the gold dots! :)

  10. This is so stylish and organized!!! In love with it

  11. What a genius idea on using the hangers for fabric! I've held on to 6 or 7 of those same hangers knowing I could repurpose them but not sure how yet. And I plan to get my fabric organized and out of large bins for the exact same reason, I hate digging through a large stack to see what I have already. I'm so excited, yay!

  12. Clever clever clever idea for using hangars for fabric. I stick mine in a wire basket and it takes up so much room, plus you get folds and creases galore. You are my hero today.

  13. Now I just need to apply this to my whole house

  14. I love her office!!! I had been searching for a method of storing my fabrics for a while, and came across Deme's method - days after I sent 4 of those pant hangers to the Goodwill!!! ugh! ...I will re-buy them though. It's a great solution.

  15. Love the colours and the use of different bins and baskets!

  16. I love this.

    It's organized and super cute to boot. I've thought about adding a lamp to a dark closet. With the right lamp, it works.

  17. Love the polka dots and stylish organization! Such an inspiring space!

  18. Such a great little space! I love her idea for using a pants hanger for storing fabric. I think I will use that same trick for hanging table cloths. Brilliant!

  19. I love black&white design! I'd like to have so lovely space in my house too, but I don't have any talents to design space...

  20. The dots! The chevron! The fabric hangers! Love. Going to look at her blog now.

  21. I LOVE the wire baskets! there are so many great things going on in this small space! xo

  22. I love the idea for the material with the pants hangers! Fantastic!!!

    Kristen from The Road to Domestication

  23. Please tell me where you got your desk! That is the exact style I have been hunting for!!

  24. Hi! I got it from Walmart a few years back and I couldn't be happier with it! Good luck on the desk hunt!

  25. Where do you find those hangers!?! I could use that solution!!

  26. I love how you hung your fabric! Keeps them organized, reduces creases, and showcases their beauty.

  27. Hi Jen, I'm really glad you wrote about this--especially since Deme's blog apparently no longer exists. Did you know that your "About Me" was written in 2009--when your youngest was in first grade?! I'd say it's time to update that. Is he a senior this year? Glad you're still blogging--and organizing!


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