Organizational Resolutions

Resolved: to get organized this year!

I received a lot of organizational suggestions in response to my request last week.  So much so that I am working on an article using them.  Skip to the bottom of this page if you would like to read the beginning of it.  And.. I always need more suggestions (on any topic, really) and would love it if you would share your pictures.

Speaking of pictures, check out the results of the New Years Day mystery!  Holy cow!  You can see some of the pictures here:  They are all thumbnails – click on them to see them close up.  Our next mystery will be on Super Sunday, February 2, 2014.  Fabric requirements and cutting instructions are at

Resolve to Get Organized this year!

If you have lived with the chaos for years and no longer find it inspiring, it’s time to DO something about it. It doesn’t have to be a daunting, overwhelming task. Break it down into small pieces and do it a bit at a time.

Start by defining the area you want to organize. Is your sewing area an actual room, or just a corner of the dining table? Either way, you need to define it, label it (if only in your head) and set priorities for its use. For example, if your sewing area is also a guest bedroom, make a decision: which one is more important to you? There is no reason a space in your home can’t have multiple uses, but you do need to clarify which use is the primary one.

If you can, take everything out of the room. It doesn’t matter if another room fills up, it won’t be for long. Take the time to freshen everything – paint the walls, wash the carpets, clean the windows. No, it’s not necessary, but it does make you feel better! And it will help you make decisions in the next step, which is putting it back together.

As you move stuff out of the room, try to group like items together. You may discover that you have three sets of sheets for a bed that is used once a year. Or perhaps you will find that you actually have two blenders. You may find that missing rotary cutter, or discover that you have three 6″ x 24″ rulers and six spools of blue thread. Keep all similar items together as much as you can. It will help you decide what to keep, because the next step is going to purging.

Donate anything you haven’t used in a year or more to charity. Donate is the key word here. If you try to sell it, you will want to keep it the instant someone calls. Yes, I know, you might need that second blender someday if the first one breaks down. Donate it anyway. Think of it as giving someone else the chance to enjoy and appreciate your blender. But read through the organizational tips below before getting rid of anything you might use for organization.

Now you have an empty, fresh and clean space ready to be filled with items you consider important. It’s a blank canvas on which you can paint your organization scheme. Like any artistic creation, you need to pencil in the bones before you can flesh out the subject. Based on the primary use of your area, start putting furniture back in the order of their importance.

Armoire converted to a sewing spaceIf your room is primarily a dining room, the table goes back first, then the hutch – but not necessarily the items IN the hutch. If your primary room is a guest room, perhaps you can use an old armoire as sewing storage. The sewing machine can rest in the top section, while the inside and the back of the doors can have storage solutions for supplies – a peg hook, perhaps, or a thread rack. If you are really organized, you might be able to fit in a drop down table with folding legs. The picture is from Cottage Hill – click here to see how she did it.

If your room is primarily a family room, the big pieces might be the couch and the TV set. (OK, you probably didn’t take them out to begin with.) Now draw a diagram of where you want the rest of the pieces to go. Lazy Boy has a great free room design planner.  If it doesn’t all fit, you may need to use some items in other rooms. Or perhaps you can downsize a bit. Can you trade that big couch for a love seat, maybe? Maybe you could use an interesting trunk as both a storage check and a coffee table. Check with the Salvation Army, people donate the neatest things:-))

I have rambled on long enough! I will continue in the next post. Meanwhile, if you have any comments, Leave a Reply below.