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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Slimline hangers

At last, the lowly clothes hanger is now new and improved.

Slimline hangers are made of a stable, flexible plastic and coated with a soft flocking, to give your clothes support, but yet take up less space in the closet.  The flocked surface grips even the slipperiest fabrics, so tops don't tumble off the hanger to the floor.  You can fold pants over and buy separate packages of clips to hang skirts.

They come in several different colors and styles, depending on where you buy them.  I found mine at Bed, Bath and Beyond.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Laundry room redo

My client was tired of tripping over pails, mops and miscellaneous stuff which had gathered in her tiny laundry area over the years.  So, I went about designing an Elfa closet from The Container Store.

We took everything out of the space and had the handyman remove the shelving system that had been installed years before.  We sorted the useful items from those things that don't belong in the space in the first place, and discarded the old and unused.  The space is tricky because a stacked washer/dryer has to have room to open the doors and be accessed for use.

The completed space - which now allows for cleaning products, supplies and equipment to be housed within reach, and yet has plenty of room to access the machines.  The client is now looking forward to laundry day and we can see why! 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


I don't know about you, but as I grew up, my mother kept me busy after school and on weekends with chores. It was expected of my sister and I to "earn our keep" as mom and grandma used to constantly remind us. Every day before school our beds were made and our room was tidy, and after school I was responsible for dusting, washing all the dishes (my sister dried them), and taking care of the dog, BEFORE homework.  Weekly, laundry had to be done and the vacuuming.  After a trip to the grocery store, I had to put everything away (this chore I never minded doing!).   On weekends, I had to earn any time off by cleaning the entire kitchen and the bathroom.  After a satisfactory inspection, I could go play.

I wasn't always happy about this arrangement, I assure you.  I missed a lot of fun activities because chores came first and that was that.  And, there was no moping or whining about it allowed either.  When I got older, a small allowance (and I do mean SMALL) was SOMETIMES given, but it was not to be expected or counted on.

While I complained bitterly as a kid, I now know that it taught me a lot - discipline, neatness, delayed gratification - to name a few things.

Today, as I visit home after home, I find that the majority of kids don't have to do ANYTHING remotely resembling chores.  Either mom or the housekeeper does it, or it just doesn't get done at all.  Yet they have so much stuff and most of it is just strewn around their rooms like so much junk.   Everything is replaceable and anything desired is gotten.  When one of my young clients casually tossed an IPOD into the trash because they had been given a newer model, it was very hard for me to keep quiet.

My adult clients complain about their kids bad habits, but don't seem to associate them with the lack of chores and/or earning some of the non-essential things they get so freely.  So, parents, wise up -  bring back the chores and make your kids EARN their rewards.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

An organizer's refrigerator

Last week Jamie Oliver posted a site that shows photos of the interior of people's refrigerators. I couldn't resist, so I grabbed my camera and photographed mine...

Naturally, every section is labeled, so the cats will know where things go. I use turntables on my top shelf and keep like things in containers. I love to have fresh herbs or even flowers inside the refrig. It's easy - just snip off the bottom of the stems and stick the herbs into a glass of water. Change the water every day and they'll stay fresh for a week or longer.
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