Tailored Living (Burnaby, Coquitlam, Maple Ridge, Pitt Meadows, BC)

Your Home, Tailored to the Way You Live

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Home Organization Hacks: 85 Ways to Use Slatwall In Your Home to Make Life Saner

laundry room slatwallOne of the most versatile and, therefore, popular products over the years that we’ve been serving the Greater Vancouver market has been our slatwall  product. Slatwall consists of wood planks with grooves in between that can be installed over drywall. You’re probably familiar with slatwall even if you don’t realize it or recognize it readily. It’s sometimes used by retailers in stores to hang and display their wares for shoppers. Thanks to its excellent functionality and versatility, it has begun to catch on in the home, too.

The grooves in slatwall allow for quick and easy placement of hooks and hooked devices or containers. Once you place the hooks, previously unused wall space becomes practical storage space for a variety of different types of items. Best of all, you aren’t locked into a particular configuration when it comes to the things you hook into your slats. You can rearrange them any way, any time you need to. Your wall can be changed when your needs change without ever having to change the wall itself.

Tailored Living most often installs slatwall in garages, but slatwall can actually be used in any part of the home. In fact, we have installed it in laundry rooms, home offices and even bedrooms. Don’t worry… slatwall isn’t strictly utilitarian. Although extremely practical, it looks amazing, too. It can even be painted to match or complement an existing color scheme in whatever part of the house you want it.

Once you’ve installed your slatwall, you can adapt and customize it to your needs using a variety of storage maximizing accessories. As already mentioned, hooks are common, but you can also insert baskets, bins and shelves. You can insert them in seconds and move or remove them just as easily.

Here are 85 slatwall hacks for every room in your home that might inspire (or surprise) you.

steel slatwallIn the garage:

1) Hand tools (hammers, saws, etc.).

2) Organize nails and screws.

3) Hang bicycles.

4) Sleds.

5) Surfboards.

6) Skateboards.

7) Skis and ski poles.

8) Baseball bats.

9) Golf clubs.

10) Tennis rackets.

11) Skates

12) Sports balls (baseballs, golf balls, etc.).

13) Hand gardening tools.

14) Large gardening tools (shovels, spades and rakes).

15) Snow shovels.

16) Ladders.

17) Folding stools and chairs.

18) Fishing poles and gear.

19) Cleaning supplies.

20) Automotive fluids.

21) Camping gear.

In the playroom or a child’s bedroom:

22) Hold and sort Lego.  lego-615239_960_720

23) Toy cars.

24) Small toy balls.

25) Small blocks.

26) Play dough/clay and accessories.

In the office:

27) Pens and pencils.

28) Markers and highlighters.

29) Scissors.

30) Staplers and staples.

31) Rubber bands.

32) Paper clips.

33) Thumb tacks.

In the craft room / sewing  room / art room:

34) Scrapbooking embellishments, such as stickers, tape, etc.

35) Craft foam.

36) Craft fabric pieces.

37) Stamps and ink pads.

38) Craft wood scraps.

39) Felt scraps.

40) Clay.

41) Chenille wire.

42) Beads.

43) Paint and paintbrushes.

44) Glue guns and glue sticks.

45) Sewing scissors.

46) Sewing notions, such as buttons, thread, thimbles, bobbins, etc.

47) Sewing embellishments like sequins, patches, etc.

48) Yarn.

48) Embroidery floss.

49) Serger thread spools.

50) Crayons.

51) Markers.

52) Pens/pencils.

53) Kids scissors.

54) Popsicle sticks.

55) Glue bottles/glue sticks.

56) Miscellaneous craft supplies and embellishments such as pom poms, googly eyes, paints, paintbrushes and play-dough or clay.

In the kitchen:

57) Pots and pans.

58) Large utensils.

59) Gather and store small utensils like forks and knives using cylindrical containers.

60) Spices.

coffee-beans-618858_960_72061) Coffee beans/grounds.

62) Mugs.

On the deck / patio:

63) Small potted plants.

64) Gardening tools.

In the bathroom:

65) Towels and washcloths.

66) Toothbrushes and toothpaste.

67) Barrettes and hair clips.

68) Cosmetics.

69) Shaving supplies.

70) Miscellaneous grooming products (deodorant, lotion, etc.).

71) Hair styling tools (blow dryer, curling iron, etc.).

72) Small hair tools (brushes and combs).

General and Miscellaneous Home Use:

73) Clothing and accessories.

74) Display pictures on shelves.

75) Display decorative items on shelves.

76) Jewellery (necklaces and bracelets).

77) Mirrors

78) Pictures.

79) Hang keys (perfect near the front door).

80) Bags and backpacks.

81) Purses.

82) Umbrellas.

83) Hats.

84) Small candies.

85) Wine bottles/small wine racks.

Even covering just a small area with slatwall (say, a 3 foot by 5 foot space over your desk) can make a big difference in your ability to store items and stay organized. Imagine how much more desk space you could have! If you’re interested in seeing how slatwall could change the functionality of your home, let Tailored Living come by for a free in-home consultation. You’ll be under no obligation to purchase anything, and you might be pleasantly surprised how little it costs to save your sanity!


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The Five Most Common Objections to Getting a Free In-Home Consultation (And Why You Shouldn’t Listen to That Nagging Voice In Your Head)

tailored-living-design-processMaybe you’ve been thinking about getting your closet, garage, home office or laundry room made-over. Perhaps you are one who has been sitting on the fence for awhile, trying to decide whether to move forward on such a project. Or maybe you only just recently stumbled on Tailored Living at a local Home Show or on the Internet, or encountered an acquaintance who raved to you about her ultra-organized, super-efficient new closet and thought maybe you’d benefit from one too.

If you relate to any of these scenarios, you are the type of homeowner that Tailored Living had in mind when it designed its Free In-Home Consultation.

1) I don’t have time to sit down and listen to a long presentation. Don’t you hate it when you’re contacted by a salesman who talks you into a “short” in-home presentation, only to show up at the appointed time with a display board, an iPad with a 100-question survey, a product catalog and a giant box filled with samples (and “you simply MUST see them all,” he insists)? And suddenly you realize that by “short” he meant at least an hour, probably more, and you’re desperately grasping for excuses to get him to leave.

Tailored Living’s expert representatives know that your time is valuable, and they are committed to respecting that. After all, it’s a privilege to be invited into someone’s home as a guest, and our reps make gracious guests. We don’t come with a three-dimensional display board, a questionnaire or dozens of samples. It’s really just a congenial visit. No props, just ideas and suggestions. It only takes 15 minutes or less of your time (unless you get so excited about the possibilities that you invite us in for coffee). Not only that, but your representative is also your contractor, so he or she really knows what they are talking about when it comes to potential products, design and installation questions. There is no second-guessing, no empty promises, and no communication gap between rep and contractor.

2) There’s no such thing as “free.” There MUST be strings attached, or fine print or a hidden clause or something….. Tricking potential customers is NEVER good for business, no matter what that business is. There’s no fine print anywhere on our website, catalog or other marketing materials. “Free” really means free. No strings. You don’t have to do anything or buy anything if you don’t want to. We authentically appreciate the opportunity to see and talk about your home with you and we want to earn your trust.

3) I don’t want to be hassled by a high-pressure salesperson. Tailored Living’ reps are not salesmen (see point #1). They are owners and contractors whose genuine interest is to help you make living easier by getting better organized with custom solutions and systems for every individual or family. You will probably receive a follow-up phone call after your in-home consultation, especially if you’ve indicated an interest in a renovation. However, we won’t call if you ask us not to, and we won’t spam your email inbox. Remember, we want to build trust, so we’ll respect any contact requests that you make.

4) I can’t afford a renovation right now. We know that doing any kind of a home reno, even small ones, can be costly. However, many homeowners don’t realize that they can achieve a desired set of results at a lower cost simply by choosing more economical (but equally-functional) materials or accessories, or slightly altering a particular design feature. The only way to find out this information is through an in-home consultation. Additionally, Tailored Living doesn’t outsource the actual renovation work to a third-party, which also helps to keep costs lower than other companies in the market.befunky-collage-2

5) My closet/garage/house is so small there is nothing anyone can do to improve its storage capacity. There is no space too small that Tailored Living cannot transform into a fully-functional and highly efficient storage space. In fact, Tailored Living was founded on the philosophy of improving small spaces because they are usually the ones that need the most organizational help. (If you had ample space you probably wouldn’t have thought of us in the first place.) Because everything is custom-cut, shaped and designed to fit your space, size doesn’t matter at all.

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Five Home Organizing Mistakes NOT to Make in 2017

sign-1732791_960_720We’ve blogged about home organization and eliminating clutter before, but January is always a good time to revisit the topic. Did you know that every year, “get organized” falls somewhere on the top ten New Year’s resolutions list? We’re not just making this up, either. According to Nielsen, one of North America’s most well-known and reliable consumer statistics and information gatherers, “get organized” was #6 on the top ten list for 2015 (the most recent year for which such stats are available).

This tells us two things. One: there are a LOT of disorganized people out there, and TWO: most of them wish that they could be more organized, and some of them want it so badly they are willing to go to great lengths to make a real change.

So that’s why we decided to explore this topic again, because there is a good chance that YOU are one of those people! By the way, we get it. The struggle is real. Even the most organized people wish they could be more organized. In fact, many professional home organizers admit that they are not very organized in their own homes. So don’t sweat it, just check out this list of home organizing mistakes that we hope you’ll avoid in 2017, compiled from a variety of sources and home organization professionals:

1) Biting off more than you can chew. In other words, don’t set organization goals that are too big. In other words, instead of saying “this year I’m going to clean up the garage,” start with something more manageable, like “this year I’m going to get rid of all of the old paint cans in the garage and organize my tool box.” Not only is this more manageable, you’ll feel a sense of accomplishment afterward that will make you actually want to move on to set a new goal.


Break big jobs down into smaller parts.

2) Setting goals that are too broad. “Get more organized” is too broad a goal. Instead, think about what “get more organized” means to you. Would you like to spend less time hunting for lost papers on your desk? Maybe you wish your children’s closets didn’t have clothing in them from every size they’ve worn over the last five years. Maybe you just want to get into the habit of making your bed every morning. Setting several specific goals (keeping the previous tip in mind) instead of one broad one will help ensure success.

3) Buying more storage bins. The solution to clutter is not acquiring more things inside which to store that clutter. It might create the illusion of organization, but it’s really only compounding the problem, at best. At worst, it’s a sign of your denial that you may simply have too much stuff. (Hint: if you’re paying rent on a storage unit to house your extra stuff, you have too much.)

The first and most important step toward getting (and staying) organized is eliminating stuff that you really shouldn’t be keeping. Examples of such things include: books you’ll never read again, DVDs you’ll never watch again (it’s probably available for streaming or digital download anyway), clothes you and your family members haven’t worn in more than one year, toys your children no longer play with, old Christmas cards, items that you spent a lot of money on but have only used once or not at all (doesn’t matter what it is or how much it cost to purchase), things that you keep because someone you love gave it to you but you really don’t like it and/or never use it….. we could go on and on about this. But you get the picture. (If you have trouble parting with stuff, consider hiring a professional organizer for moral support.) Whatever you do, though, for the love of all things sane, DON’T BUY MORE STORAGE!

4) Going it alone. Maybe you are zealous about making a real change in 2017 when it comes to getting organized, but if your family/spouse isn’t on board, your plans are destined for failure. This doesn’t mean that everyone has to help you spend a whole Saturday going through boxes in the basement (although it would be extra nice if they did). What it does mean is that everyone who lives within the same walls as you needs to buy into the vision. If they don’t, they won’t follow your system because they just don’t care about it the way you do. Laying down the law might get you quick results in the short run, but your efforts will be lost after the passage of a few weeks.

Getting that family “buy-in” might mean sitting down together and you sharing your vision with them. Talk with them about some of the many benefits of getting organized (having things to give away to a charitable cause, having more space to play, being able to buy new things without worrying about where to put them, etc.). Ask them for their own thoughts on the subject as well as their organization ideas. Implementing some of their suggestions will also increase the chances that they will get on board with your vision.

5) Confusing “rearranging” with “reorganizing.” Sometimes, in an effort to get organized, home owners start moving things around. They rearrange the furniture, move a filing cabinet to another room, move the dishes from one cupboard to another, stack up all of the boxes in the garage, but at the end of the day, the house isn’t really any more organized. It’s just different.

PantryStorage-1Getting organized takes a lot of thought and pre-planning. Resist the urge to start shuffling furniture and boxes from one location to another. Instead, think about what your goal is, what means you have at your disposal to achieve that goal, and what kind of space you have to work with in order to be successful. Then act accordingly.


If you do have spaces in your home that just aren’t working for your lifestyle, consider getting some help from Tailored Living. This is a great time of year to think about getting a closet makeover. It will help you meet your organization goals, AND you’ll get a beautiful new closet. We can transform any size or style of closet into a pillar of organization and storage for your home.

Pull-down clothes rod.

January is a great time of year for a new custom closet.

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Spring Cleaning: Great Places to Donate Unused Items in Greater Vancouver

Spring officially starts on March 20, and many people have already begun, or are at least thinking about beginning, spring cleaning. While it’s not exactly the most fun part of spring, it does feel good to shed clutter and get organized.


Go from cluttered to organized

Tailored Living is all about helping people get organized and STAY organized with personalized systems that are tailored to the individual, family or home. We’ve done a lot of blogging about getting organized. What we haven’t talked much about is what to do with all of that STUFF that you don’t need anymore once you’ve taken the time to re-organize. We thought it would be helpful to provide our readers with a list of places and resources in Vancouver, Greater Vancouver and the Fraser Valley that accept recyclable household items. We know that once you spring clean, you’ll have things to get rid of. Making the effort to properly dispose of these things benefits the planet and sometimes it even benefits local charities and organizations in the way of cash donations.

Where to Donate or Recycle Clothing & Textiles

Value Village – multiple locations throughout Greater Vancouver. Accepts clothing, linens, housewares, home décor, books and furniture in usable condition.

Salvation Army Thrift Store – multiple locations throughout Greater Vancouver. Accepts clothing, linens, housewares, home décor and furniture in usable condition.

There are hundreds of other thrift stores throughout the lower mainland which are typically operated by community-based charities. Chances are good that there is at least one in your area, and many of them accept all of the things already mentioned.

Trans-Continental Textile Recycling Ltd. : Located in Surrey, this innovative company collects donated clothing, both wearable and unwearable. Nothing goes to waste, and a wide variety of charities benefit. All clothing is sorted into different categories. Wearable clothing in good condition is shipped to developing countries and distributed to people who need it. Clothing that is not in wearable condition is processed, usually according to the type of material it’s made of, and is sold to manufacturers who make it into new goods. The business employs 90-100 people and profits benefit numerous local charities, including Canuck Place Children’s Hospice, Vancouver Firefighters Charitable Society, the BC Centre for Ability and the Deaf Children’s Society of BC. Donate your old clothing and textiles by dropping it into one of Trans-Continental’s donation boxes (various locations throughout Greater Vancouver) or by contacting Trans-Continental directly.

canuck place bank

One of Trans-Continental’s many donation banks


Where to Recycle Used Motor Oil & Automotive Fluids

The BC Used Oil Management Association is a non-profit society that facilitates and encourages the recycling of used motor oil. It partners with businesses throughout Greater Vancouver who establish drop-off points for used motor oil in their shops. For a list of places to recycle motor oil near your own home, visit http://bcusedoil.com/.

Where to Recycle Batteries

Call 2 Recycle is BC’s official battery stewardship program. Visit www.call2recycle.ca/british-columbia/ to find out where in your area you can drop off any kind of household battery (no automotive batteries). Many automotive battery retailers and automotive shops accept used automotive batteries for recycling. You can also visit http://www.rcbc.ca/ and use the generator to find out where you can recycle automotive batteries in your area.

Where to Recycle Almost Anything

Regional Recycling Vancouver – Billed as your “one stop recycling shop.” Located in Vancouver, it accepts beverage containers, paper products & packaging, appliances, tools, equipment, scrap metal, paint, pesticides, fuel and most types of light bulbs (an official Light Recycle BC partner). For a comprehensive and detailed list of acceptable goods, visit the Regional Recycling Vancouver website.


Regional Recycling offers household pick-up services

For a comprehensive list of recyclers of all types of products close to your home, visit http://www.regeneration.ca/ or http://www.rcbc.ca/.  You’ll find a handy little generator on the right of each of these sites’ home pages. Simply choose the kind of item you want to recycle from the drop-down menu and the city in which you live. You will be given a list of places near your home that accept the particular item you need to recycle. This includes all of the items already mentioned as well as items like appliances, old computers and electronics, paint, tires, building materials, thermostats, hazardous items, furniture and even vehicles.

What NOT to Recycle

Waste facilities in Greater Vancouver will not accept any items that are able to be recycled. This list grows and changes regularly as new recycling facilities are opened. If you have items that you’re not sure whether you can legally dispose of, visit http://www.metrovancouver.org/services/solid-waste/bylaws-regulations/banned-materials/Pages/default.aspx for a list of materials that are banned from local landfills. This list is updated whenever there are changes to regulations. If something is on this list, then there is a facility (or facilities) where it can be recycled.

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Never Let These Four Awkward Spaces Get the Best of You and Your Home Ever Again

Custom Walk-In Closet by Tailored Living

Custom Walk-In Closet by Tailored Living

Tailored Living was founded on the idea of making the most efficient use of available space in the home. Buying a bigger home or expanding one’s current home is not a viable option for most people, most of the time, and here in Greater Vancouver, expanding is often not possible due to small lot sizes and strict community by-laws. This is where Tailored Living shines. You don’t have to move or expand to get more space. You just need the space that you do have to work harder and better for you, and that includes “awkward spaces” just like these four:

Alcoves: This design feature was popular in new home builds in the 1990’s and early 2000’s. These voids or recesses in walls were usually used merely for showcasing artwork, photos or decorative pieces. However, with urban and even suburban lots getting smaller and tighter, the focus of many new builds has shifted to maximizing space, and alcoves are waning in popularity. Maybe you live in one of those older homes with an alcove and it’s starting to feel like nothing more than wasted space that needs constant dusting. Tailored Living can work with alcoves and wall recesses of all sizes and transform them into functional spaces like shelves, drawers or cupboards. Larger recesses can even be outfitted with a Murphy bed that can be used for overnight guests.

Sloped ceilings and non-square walls: These are common with homes built up to the 1980’s, especially in Vancouver. Even some modern homes have them. While there is something nostalgic about them, they also present some very frustrating design and space challenges.

Don’t resign yourself to wasted space when it comes to these design and space challenges. There are lots of ways to make use of these areas in the home and create more storage space and even multi-functional spaces (like storage plus home office space).

Closet corners: Tailored Living built its reputation on efficient closets that make maximum use of minimal space, which includes those funky but unavoidable corners. Closet corners in a standard-build closet are wasted space. Tailored Living uses insider tricks of the trade and uncommonly-clever accessories and gadgets to make those corners usable, practical and able to store more than you probably imagined. This goes for any and all closets in your home, whether it’s a bedroom, hallway or utility closet.


Photo: Nicola Betts

Under-the-stairs and other non-standard room shapes and sizes: You understand this struggle if you have stairs in your home. Many people just give up on these areas. Others use them as storage for random items that, hopefully, they won’t need to use very often because once stuff has been placed underneath they’ll be next to impossible to access again. Tailored Living has put some very unique and creative ideas to work with under-the-stairs spaces, even turning one client’s awkward space into a charming display area for some family heirlooms.

Floating shelves by Tailored Living with tea pots on display

One client’s creative use for space under the stairs.

So what’s the moral of this story? Don’t give up! You might be pleasantly surprised how hard we can get these awkward areas to work for you. All we need is about 20 minutes of your time. We can drop by for a free consultation and we can create plans based on your specific needs that show your awkward space in three-dimensions so you’ll be able to see exactly what your frustrating spaces can become with a bit of know-how.

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Resolving to Get Organized: The Clutter Audit

Anyone who has owned a home for more than a few years knows how quickly clutter can accumulate.  Often, it sneaks up on you until suddenly, one day, you’re hit with the reality that you’ve run out of room for all the STUFF.  You may wonder how you let things get the way they have and may even feel a little bit guilty for what appears to be an undisciplined loss of control.

First and foremost, it’s critical to understand that you are not alone.  Every home owner is confronted with this problem, on one scale or another, at some point in life.  The more family members and others you have living in your space, the more likely and quickly this problem is to develop.  So let yourself off the hook and resolve this new year that you’re going to take back control over your space and your stuff, starting with a clutter audit.

The clutter audit is comparable to a tax audit, but instead of looking for omissions and missing receipts, you’re going to be looking at places where clutter tends to accumulate in your home and why.

How to Conduct a Clutter Audit in Your Home

1) Identify clutter “hot spots.”  A hot spot is a place where clutter consistently piles up around your house.  They’re easy to identify because no matter how many times you’ve cleared clutter from these places in the past, with time the clutter reappears, again and again.  In many homes hot spots consist of desk tops, shelves, the corners of a room, the top of the piano or even the inside of a drawer (just because it’s hidden away doesn’t mean it’s put away).  Take some time (15 minutes is usually sufficient) to identify these spots, and we suggest that you even write them down on a list (or make a list in your smart phone).  Writing them down makes them tangible and real and, therefore, more likely to be dealt with.

2) Figure out why clutter accumulates in hot spots.  Now, evaluate those hot spots.  Why is it that the right hand side of your desk seems to become piled with papers, bills, kid’s homework, etc.?  Why are your family members throwing all their mittens and scarves on the floor of the closet?  Why do all your kids’ toys end up under the bed?

The most likely culprit in 95% of clutter hot spots has to do with a lack of a proper “home” for the items that comprise the clutter.  When you designate a dedicated “home” for each and every type of item in your home, you decrease the amount of accumulated clutter.

It’s also important to remember that clutter piles up in spots that are related to the type of clutter that’s accumulated.  There’s a reason why you don’t stack bills and homework on the bathroom shelf…. it’s simply more convenient to pile it on the desk where you pay your bills and your kids do their homework.  Designating a spot (one that’s close by) for these items is the first step toward reducing clutter.  Educating your family members is the second step.  This will likely mean that gentle reminders will be in order for several weeks or even months for everyone to put things where they belong.  You might fear you’re starting to sound like a broken record, but eventually your household members will get it, and soon your need to remind them to put things away will become less frequent.

3) Scale back.  Part of the reason that clutter accumulates is because you just plain have too much stuff.  Most home owners could live comfortably with only half of their current possessions.  So take some time to decide whether you really need all of the things you have.  If you don’t, get rid of them.

4) Prevent unneeded items from coming into your home.  Just because it’s on sale for 75% off doesn’t mean you really need it.  And just because someone offers you a free promotional mug doesn’t mean you have to take it.  Stop letting unneeded items into the house to begin with and you’ll prevent future clutter from ever occurring.

5) Conduct periodic follow-up audits.  Go over your home every three months or so and determine how effective your efforts at preventing clutter have been.  Is your strategy working?  Are there more improvements to be made?  Are family members buying into the effort and doing their part?  This process will help to ensure ongoing success and compliance.

Perhaps you need to create some better “homes” for your stuff in your home.  Adding shelving, cubbies, cupboards, baskets, containers, etc. can be very helpful in your quest to be clutter-free.  Consider a professional closet makeover or home office renovation, like the ones Tailored Living can provide.  In-home estimates are always free.  You might be surprised how organized we can help you become.

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How to Make Your New Year’s Resolution to Get Organized STICK

Custom Walk-In Closet by Tailored Living

Custom Walk-In Closet by Tailored Living

According to a University of Scranton study published in the  Journal of Clinical Psychology and on Statistic Brain (http://www.statisticbrain.com/new-years-resolution-statistics/), “getting organized” was number two on the top ten list of New Year’s resolutions for 2014, second only to the ever-popular resolution: “lose weight.”  The same study indicates that a mere 8% ever successfully achieve their New Year’s resolutions, and one-quarter of people who make such resolutions admit to complete failure to keep their New Year’s resolution.

At Tailored Living, we are all about organization.  We think that those who want to get organized CAN, as long as they have the right kind of help and support.  We’ve built our business and have helped to forge an entire industry on home organization.  Here are some of the things that we’ve learned when it comes to the roadblocks people face when resolving to get organized:

1) The biggest part of the challenge is mental.  Everyone accumulates stuff.  Even anti-hoarders invariably end up with more stuff than they’d like to have around.  The problem is the mental and emotional issues that come with getting organizing: how do I get rid of stuff that I’m attached to?  You know, after all, that there is no reason to keep your adult child’s old report cards, but nostalgia prevents you from sending them to the shredder.  So how do you get past the emotion of downsizing?

There’s no easy answer, but start by telling yourself that old report cards are not equal to the relationship you have with your adult child or the fond memories that you have of his childhood.  Getting rid of things that you associate with those feelings does not equate to disowning your son.  Separating things from memories and feelings is the first step to being able to get rid of things that are just taking up space and complicating your life.

Now, here is a practical idea.  If you have things that have meaning to you, like your grandmother’s old ceramic teapot, but are nevertheless making your home hectic and affecting your quality of life, take a picture of them.  Digital photos last forever and take up miniscule space.  Then give the object away to someone who can use it or donate it to a worthy cause and feel good that you’ve done something not just for yourself but for someone else, too.

2) It’s time consuming.  This is one of the most common excuses people give for not getting organized.  In reality, getting organized IS time consuming.  However, most people don’t consider the fact that NOT being organized is also time consuming.  You’d be surprised if you added up the amount of time you spent looking for lost items amidst clutter.  You’d probably find that it takes hours and perhaps even days or weeks out of your lifetime.  And then there is reduced quality of life, the frustration and even loss of self esteem that can come with disorganization that can’t even be measured in hours which contributes to the issue.

The solution: just do it.  Take a day and devote it entirely to getting organized.  It might mean giving up your regular Saturday afternoon tennis game or weekend drinks with friends for one day, but the results will be worth it.

For some, it might take more than a day, perhaps an entire weekend.  The advice still goes: give something else up temporarily and just do it.  Enlist the whole family and maybe even some outside help if you need it.  Whatever it takes, just do it.  It will be a drudgery, but you’ll feel better than you dreamed you would afterward.

If you do need a little professional help and maybe some minor renovations to help you stick to your home organization resolution, Tailored Living offers a wide variety of organization solutions as well as expert advice.  Book a free in-home consultation with one of our professionals this December.  If you do decide to do a renovation, we’ll give you a free upgrade as our holiday gift to you.

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Seasonal Storage Tips from the Organization Pros at Tailored Living

We’re well into Fall now and marching swiftly toward Winter.  Now that Halloween is over, like it or not it seems that everyone is getting into holiday mode.

Transitions between seasons are always a great time to evaluate (and re-evaluate) your home and to get organized.  It may soon be time to get out the winter jackets, mittens and scarves and to polish up those sleds, so remaining organized during the transition will make everything smoother. We’ve already blogged about getting organized for Fall, and now we’d like to share a few more organization tips that have been provided to us courtesy of the Tailored Living home office’s team of professional organizers and planners.  They can also be viewed in full-colour online by visiting http://lms.dbmgroup.com/Email/TailoredLivingCorporate/J111010/J111010.asp?EmailAddr=pachal@tailoredliving.com&LogID=6596&ID=61097732&EID=NjEwOTc3MzI=

1) Have a closet in your home dedicated to seasonal items for the entire family.  This is where all of your winter coats would hang during the spring, summer and fall, for example.  When winter arrives, these items can be moved into your main entryway closet and spring/summer items can take their place until winter is over.

Cedar-lined closet dedicated to seasonal clothing for the family

Dedicate an entire closet to the family’s seasonal wear

2) Make the most of unused garage space.  Garage space in 95 percent of homes is either under-utilized or could be made more efficient by re-configuring garage spaces.  The garage is the ideal place for storing seasonal items like holiday decorations as well as things found in most garages like tools, spare vehicle parts, automotive and cleaning fluids, etc.  Need ideas for making better use of this space?  Visit Premier Garage.  You can also check out our recent blog post for garage winterization tips, perfect for this time of year.

Tidy renovated garage by Tailored Living

The transitions between seasons is always a good time to reorganize the garage

3) Enhance your entryway.  This area is another space that is often under-utilized or poorly configured.  Tailored Living suggests that doing some very simple things like adding strategically-placed hooks can make dramatic improvements in this area.  Or, consider having an entryway makeover to really get the most out of this space.

Entryway renovation with cubbies and hooks for coats

Prevent clutter at the front door with an organized entryway