July 2, 2008

Perhaps it is because I’m enamored of rigging and frock coats and piratical vernacular. Perhaps it is because I am a little (okay, a lot) Type A. Or perhaps it is simply because I live in a tiny house. Whatever the reason, I love compartments, cubbies, tins, trays, stowaways.

boxesIn short, I love storage.

The term “smart storage” ricochets around small space living blogs like that little pixel-ball in Pong. (Remember Pong, you guys? Yeah. Pong.) While I agree that clever storage is key to keeping a small space clutter-free — see those boxes at left? Inside: cat toys, receipts, and our unused, parking lot gate clicker — I’m also keenly aware that, if storage is too clever, it can either a) allow you to keep clutter you don’t need (read: approximately 34 Bic pens and two piccolo cleaning rods), or b) allow you to hide clutter you do need (read: tax forms and your favorite pair of velveteen, paisley-print winter gloves). What’s to do?

First, assess the situation. This means that you have to go through the clutter (junk drawer included), but you’ll feel lighter once you’ve divested yourself of the piccolo cleaning rods. I sure did.

Second, take stock. How much stuff remains? How much can you hide? How much can you display? If you’re supercrafty, take a tip from the folks at de-JUNKed, who transform bread bag ties and kewpie dolls into art, and then turn a tidy profit.

Third, categorize. I make piles of like items. These alikes are then ranked by use; that is, I determine how much access I need. This helps me decide how to contain each “set” of stuff. For example: my 2008 electric bills need to be accessible, but not as accessible as earrings. You get me?

Fourth, box it in cool containers. Grab your piles and start stuffing. I’ve found that it’s easier to organize when I’m Zen with my storage containers. Every decorative box and basket in my house contains something that doesn’t belong in the open (the aforementioned feline funsies, for instance); but, because I like the storage piece, I’m down with displaying it. This way, too, I’m not taking up precious space in the closet with eyesore storage. Everybody wins!

Fifth, admire your awesomeness. Enough said.