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Archive for the ‘Maximize Space’ Category

Create the Best Organizing Systems and Avoid Mistakes – TV Segment

By Diane Albright CPO, Organizing and Productivity Expert
January 11th, 2016

channel-_69_wfmzHave you ever invested time and money into getting your home or office organized but over time it goes right back to where you started? Perhaps a friend or co-worker has helped you get organized but even with their great ideas, the organization doesn’t stick, or it may be even worse than when you started.

Don’t get discouraged; there are some simple tips on how to avoid organizing pitfalls and challenges all while creating the best organizational systems that will last.

In celebration of January’s Get Organized month, Certified Professional Organizer Diane Albright shared tips with WFMZ-TV’s news anchor, Eve Tannery, on how to create the best organizational systems and avoid organizing mistakes.

TV segment – please come back to view once segment has been posted online.

How to Create the Best Systems for Staying Organizing

Mistakes to Avoid When Getting Organized 

Happy organizing!
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Posted in General, Maximize Space, Media Appearances | 0 Comments »

How to Avoid Mistakes Getting Organized

By Diane Albright CPO, Organizing and Productivity Expert
January 11th, 2016

7 paper-_folders_pileMistakes to Avoid in Getting Organized

Nothing can be more frustrating then spending time on getting organized only to find that over time it returns back to the way it was. There are common mistakes made in getting organized – most often because you tried to hard. When getting organized at home or work, remember to set up a system that will work for everyone in your environment – not just you. You don’t want to be the only one who can understand and use the system. Seven common organizing mistakes are below. 

1. Be Careful with Color Coding Files
Use caution when color-coding. When setting up a filing system don’t color code with file folders. The only color you will probably remember is green for money. If you can’t remember the color-coding, how will others remember it?

It is okay to use simple color-coding. For example, you may want to designate files that belong in one location. You can designate them by using two different colors, one color for each location. This way it will be very obvious when a file was put back in the wrong place.

You also can designate important files versus unimportant files. Important files can be red. A good rule of them to keep it simple is to use no more than 2 colors.

2. Getting Rid of Air Space, aka Wasted Space
Don’t fall victim to thinking that all items of the same category have to be on the same shelf. If you do, you may have air space or wasted space above them. For example, if you place baking items on a shelf and you place a bag of flour and box of baking soda on the same shelf, you’re definitely going to have some wasted space above the baking soda. If you find considerable air space, you may want to get rid of it by making some easy adjustments.

To understand the concept, think of the soda isle at the grocery store. All Coke products are not on the same shelf or row. Instead, all Coke products are in the same column. You’ll find each shelf, or row, with soda of the same height. All 2-liters of soda are one shelf. All 22-ounce bottles of soda are on another shelf. All soda cans are on yet another. This way there is no air space or wasted space above the different heights of Coke or other sodas.

To maximize storage space, always choose pullout shelving over stationary shelving. With stationary shelving you need to leave space above items to see and reach to the back. With pullout shelving you do not need to leave any space. You will be able to put in more in pullout shelves than with stationary shelves.

3. Don’t Buy Containers
When taking on an organizing project, don’t buy containers before you begin. You’ll need to sort and purge to determine what and how much you have left to organize and containerize.

4. Don’t Let Your Giveaway or Recycle Pile Stay
The first step in getting organized is to purge and get rid of what you don’t need or want. Designate two bags or boxes as giveaway and recycle. But more importantly, make a definite plan as to when you will be dropping these off. A common pitfall is letting the giveaways and recycling sit in a room or garage. If you need to, designate someone, a family member or friend, to see it through.

5. Organizing Takes More Time than You Think

Divide your organizing project into achievable segments. Don’t pull everything out of your garage or clothes closet and think you will get it all done. Before you know it, it’s nightfall. The car needs to go in the garage, but there still is stuff that you pulled out and put on the driveway. Or it’s time for bed and now you need to move your clothes from the bed to chair. Your organizing project looks worse than when you started.

To avoid this common pitfall, first decide the area you want to get organized. Then, determine how much time you have or how much time you can realistically last working on organizing. Then decide what specifically you are going to work on and divide it into achievable segments. Keep in mind the first step in any organizing project should be to sort and purge. Then you will see what you have left to organize.

6. Hire Help or Take a Class
Realize that you’re not an organizing expert and that you can’t be good at everything you do. Your niche may be crafts or cooking. If it is, let it be just that.  Some artists are born with the natural talent to paint. The same is true for organizing.  You’re either born with the organizing gene (passion) or not.

Books on organizing may be great but most people have trouble getting organized from a book because there is no one to talk to and ask questions. If this applies to you, consider taking a class on organizing or hire a professional organizer. This way you’ll have the opportunity to ask questions.

There is so much to learn and know about organizing. Keep in mind, “You don’t know what you don’t know.”

7. Organization Takes Maintenance
There are very few things that don’t require maintenance. Just like your lawn and laundry, organization requires maintenance. Your house or office is not going to stay organized unless you take the time to maintain it. For example, your file folders and clothes closet will be bursting at the seams if you don’t take the time to purge once a year.

Have a designated place for everything and put things back right away. If your life gets chaotic, stop and take a half-hour to put things away. For consistent ongoing maintenance to have a clutter-free home, consider having clutter patrol once a night. That means taking 10 minutes at the end of each day when everyone in the household goes around putting their things away.

The same techniques appliy at the office. Stop a half-hour before quitting time. Take 10 minutes to tidy-up. While tiding-up, create your to-do list for tomorrow.

Happy Organizing!
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Posted in General, Maximize Space, Paper Management | 2 Comments »

Kitchen Cabinet Blind Corner Solution

By Diane Albright CPO, Organizing and Productivity Expert
January 2nd, 2016

blind_corner_cabinet_solution_webAs a professional organizer and designer for custom pullout shelving, one of my favorite solutions is one that converts the unusable space in a blind corner into usable space. This creative solution gets rid of the black hole.

If you look closely at the photos I took in my client’s home you’ll see how it works. blind_corner_cabinet_solution_1_open_webThe blind corner solution consists of installing two perpendicular shelves on two separate levels each. We install two pull out shelves, one upper and one lower, to pull through the door opening. Then we install two pull out shelves, one upper and one lower, in the blind section that pull over perpendicular to the first.

When one of the pull out shelves is pulled through the door opening into the kitchen, the pull out shelf on the same level in the rear (in the blind spot) can be pulled into the space that was made vacant by the first pull out shelf after it was pulled through the door opening. It doesn’t matter if the blind spot is to the right or left of the door. We adjust the solution accordingly.

blind_corner_cabinet_solution_2_open_webIn a standard base cabinet, typically the upper shelf only comes out halfway causing you to loose storage space. When we install the blind corner solution we make our pullouts shelves the full depth and width of your cabinet maximizing your space to the full extent.

If you are interested in this blind corner solution, or any other pullout shelving solutions, feel free to contact me for assistance. You can reach me at Organize@DianeAlbright.com or call (610) 782-0636.

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Posted in Kitchen, Maximize Space | 3 Comments »

ShelfGenie® Glide-Outs™ Everything Within Reach

By Diane Albright CPO, Organizing and Productivity Expert
June 25th, 2014

shelfgenie_pullout_shelvingIf you’re lucky enough to be reading this post, we have a limited number of $100 ShelfGenie® gift cards to give away. See the last paragraph for details.

Do you need more storage space in your kitchen? Are you tired of getting down on the floor and digging to find what you need? Do you have a pantry closet with items lost in the back? Or perhaps it is a blind corner in your kitchen cabinet that frustrates you the most. Our professional organizers have found some amazing solutions with ShelfGenie® Glide-Outs™ and our clients are loving it! These pullout shelves or drawers are retro fitted to your existing cabinets or closets.

At first you may be wondering how I could be so excited over pullout shelving. Without experiencing it first hand, it’s difficult to picture what a difference it can make, but I’ll try to get you excited as well. Take a peek at your lower kitchen cabinets. You’ll most likely find that the upper shelves in your base cabinets only extend halfway from the back of the cabinet forward. This means you may be losing up to half the storage potential for these shelves in each and every lower cabinet you have.

Now don’t be upset with your cabinet installer. It’s not his fault your shelving extends only half the depth of your cabinet. There’s a logical reason why. If the upper shelf extended the full depth of the cabinet, you wouldn’t be able to see or find anything on the shelf below. When you add ShelfGenie® Glide-Outs™ to your existing cabinets, the upper shelf becomes a full depth shelf that pulls out providing you up to double the storage space. This eliminates air space or in other words,  it maximizes your space. Since the Glide-Outs™ have a 100 lb weight capacity you can store heavy items on them such as a KitchenAid® mixer.

Beside maximizing space, pullout shelving reduces or eliminates the need to dig or get down on your hands and knees while trying to find what you’re looking for. The Glide-Outs™ are full extension which means what is all the way in the very back of your cabinets pulls completely forward to the front of the cabinet making it easy for you to see and get what you need. As you get older, you’ll want to bend and kneel less. For others, knee and hip replacements make accessibility a necessity, not a luxury.

shelfgenie_pantry_beforeshelfgenie_pantry_after When you install pullout shelves or drawers in your kitchen cabinets or pantry you can install more shelves than what you previously had, maximizing your storage space. You can add more because pullout shelves or drawers can be as close together as the tallest item on the shelf or drawer. With stationary shelves (ones that don’t pull out) you need to leave space above all items on the shelf to fit your hand in and over the items to access what is in the back. With pullout drawers or shelves there is no need to leave the extra or “air” space, also known as wasted space.

There are unlimited solutions with ShelfGenie® from under the sink pullouts built around your pipes and garbage disposal to trash and Lazy Susan solutions. Look through ShelfGenie’s Solutions Magazine to see what creative solutions await you. If you can imagine it, ShelfGenie® can probably create it.

Here’s why I love ShelfGenie® Glideouts™ so much:
1. They have full extension glides made of steel giving you access to everything in the back.
2. The pullout shelves have a 100 lb weight capacity (even when you pull them all the way out).
3. You can store heavy items such as canned goods and a KitchenAid® mixer.
4. Their Classic and Designer lines have a lifetime warranty on parts and labor.
5. They are made of wood and made in the USA.

If you are interested in a ShelfGenie® $100 gift card and a free in-home design consultation, let us know. We have a limited number of gift cards to giveaway. ShelfGenie® is a nationwide company with most locations accepting the gift card – the only catch to the gift card is you must activate the gift before scheduling an appointment. Please call or e-mail us, (610) 782-0636 or Organize@DianeAlbright.com

Happy organizing!
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Posted in Kitchen, Maximize Space | 52 Comments »

How to Organize T-Shirts

By Diane Albright CPO, Organizing and Productivity Expert
May 1st, 2013

If you’re wondering how to save space in your dresser drawers, it’s quite simple. Store you clothing vertically. Vertical storage provide two huge benefits, the first and foremost is the space that you save by using the height of your drawer. Secondly, you can see all your clothing at a glance allowing you to quickly see what’s there (not there) and make a quick select of what you want to wear. I call this a quick pick vertical storage system.

I have been teaching this vertical storage methodology for years and showcasing the clear bins to make vertical storage quick and simple. To add to the mix of simplifying there is a new product coming on the market to make t-shirt folding a breeze. It is my pleasure to introduce you to pliio™.

pliio™ is the fool proof method of folding t-shirts and vertical storage. Think of pliio™  as a folding board covered in a lightweight fabric. To fold, lay your t-shirt flat (emblem side down). Place a pliio™ centered (both vertically and horizontally) on the t-shirt. Next, fold in each arm/side (how you normally would fold a t-shirt). Then, fold up the bottom portion of the t-shirt 1/4 way up and the top of the t-shirt a 1/4 way down. Next, fold the bottom halfway up, and the top halfway down. Then fold or “close” the t-shirt in half. You’re done! Place the t-shirt in your drawer vertically (with the pliio™ inside). Repeat the steps to fold the rest of your t-shirts. You can also watch a video on folding with pliio™.

Going on vacation? Just grab your t-shirts and pack with the pliio™ inside. When you unpack your suitcase, place your t-shirts in the drawer vertically. Even on vacation you’ll maximize your space and enjoy being organized.

Happy organizing!

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Posted in Clothes Closet, Laundry, Maximize Space, Travel | 0 Comments »

Pullout Shelves

By Diane Albright CPO, Organizing and Productivity Expert
May 1st, 2012

If you find yourself digging in the back of your shelves ShelfGenie may be just what you wished for. ShelfGenie offers custom pullouts so you can use the space in the back whether it is in your kitchen, pantry, bathroom, and or a piece of furniture. ShelfGenie also offers solutions for lost usable space that is in the back of a kitchen corner cabinet. There is a solution for everything when it comes to ShelfGenie.

I was introduced to ShelfGenie a number of years ago and was intrigued with this company’s quality of product. The pullout shelves are made from Baltic birch and have full extension drawer glides. What makes these pullouts even more irresistible; is that they come with a lifetime warranty from the manufacturer.

This year at the 2012 National Association of Professional Organizer Conference and Expo I was not at all surprised that ShelfGenie received the Excellence Award from NAPO. This is an award given to only one company per year. Congratulations to ShelfGenie!

ShelfGenie is nationwide company and offers free in-home consultations for design and pricing. If you are interested in scheduling an appointment, call 888-218-8548. You can learn more about ShelfGenie at http://shelfgenie.com

Wishing you organizing success!
Diane

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Posted in Kitchen, Maximize Space | 0 Comments »

 

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FTC Disclosure: Every so often companies may provide me products at my request or theirs so I can review them for TV segments or my blog. I only review and recommend products I feel are worthwhile to my clients, audience, and visitors. On occasion I may receive compensation which helps to offset the time and expenses I incur reviewing and writing about products. I can assure you, I have turned down many offers as I truly must believe in a company and product to be associated with it. My reputation comes first.
Thank you for your understanding. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact me.