Have you ever heard the saying “A place for everything and everything in it’s place”? What happens when things don’t have a place? You have a mess. Chaos. A ‘balagan’.
This was the situation in my home. The problem was not clutter, but not having a place for things to go was causing a huge headache. There were coats, backpacks, and shoes everywhere. I tried a few different things to solve the problem. Nothing worked. Until today.
I digress momentarily to tell you about the book I’m reading with one of my classes. It’s called Hatchet by Gary Paulsen. A boy named Brian is on-route to visit his father in northern Canada. The pilot of the single engine plane suffers a heart attack mid-flight and dies. Brian must land the plane himself. Though it crashes, he survives. For two months he is alone in the woods of Canada. Besides teaching himself to make fire and catch fish , he finds new purposes for the items he has with him. For example, his tattered jacket becomes useful to collect berries. His shoelace is used to make the bow for a bow and arrow. I found it amazing to see ways in which Brian was able to multipurpose objects.
So now back to my coat closet. Since running to Ikea was not an option I had to get creative. Like Brian, I had to re-purpose things I already had. It took some creativity, but it worked.
How did I do it? I had plastic stacking shelves. A broom handle. A coat tree. See-through drawers. Sounds like an episode of Master Chef with the ingredients for a dish, doesn’t it?
I made two sets of shelves in the form of an L with a small gap in between. I place the broom handle between the shelves as a hanging bar. On one set of shelves are boots, a basket of rollerblades, backpacks, reusable bags, raincoats and spare coats. The other set of shelves has two shelves of boots and shoes and two shelves for school materials.
The effect: AWESOME. When the kids came home from school I met them at the door and guided them to the closet before they could drop everything helter skelter and disappear. Bags got unpacked, coat hung, shoes put away.
Thanks to my teen neighbor with her iPhone, I can share a photo of the closet. (Half of it, anyway). If I want to close the ‘door’, I have a rattan screen.
My closet doesn’t look like a glossy page in a magazine for a DIY project or Pinterest project. We all know those photos are staged. Right? You all know that, yes? My home is a real life home with people who live in it. Imagine these items scattered everywhere– a balagan. Now they are organized and I’m thrilled.
I don’t to bother my neighbor again for photos of my neat living room and bedrooms so, I will leave that to your imagination. Just imagine all these items you see in this ‘closet’ on the floor, on the table, on the couch, on the back of a chair.
I am now going to admire my handiwork and clean home. Thanks for reading.
-Karen, The Klutter Koach
December 22, 2015