Jen Jones

Organize This: Space Saving Laundry Nook!

It seems that each year I make a resolution to simplify our laundry routine.  With a family of five, laundry piles tend form in the blink of an eye.  However, there are a few things we have done that have really streamlined our process.  For example, our dirty clothes go straight to the washer each day, we only sort out linens and delicate pieces.  Over-sorting was causing multiple piles that needed attention at once and quickly cluttered our laundry zone.  Another step that has helped us is to always keep extra hangers in the laundry room so we can fold and place items on hangers the moment they come out of the dryer.  And finally, each member of the family has a small stackable basket that remains next to our dryer, so once the clothing comes out and is folded, it can be placed into each member’s basket to be put away.

Although over-sized laundry rooms are dreamy, there are many ways to organize and maximize a small laundry nook or closet to make it just as functional as a larger space.

The laundry alcove above is only a few feet wide, yet the storage is truly maximized to create an ultra-functional place to wash and fold laundry.  Let’s take a closer look at some super simple ways to make the most of a small laundry space.


1.  The optimal  solution for maximizing storage is to go vertical.  Consider adding rows of shelving that span all the way to the ceiling.  Cabinets are a great alternative if the goal is to conceal visual clutter.

2.  Create a stain removal tray.  Research solutions for removing common household stains such as grass stains, wine spills, wax spots, makeup, etc… Put together a small bin or tray with a stain removal reference guide and correlating cleaners and store above the washer and dryer.  This will allow you to treat the stain on the spot and increases the odds of saving your clothing, upholstery and carpets.

3.  Install a hanging valet for your clothing.  Whether hanging a delicate item to be washed separately or providing a place to air dry a blouse, a simple retractable rod saves space while adding hanging functionality.

4.  A benefit of open shelving is that you can quickly see and access your items.  Selecting wire baskets or clear bins to corral smaller products, will also take away from the guessing game.

5.  Create a cleaning caddy for your home.  By using a single bin or tote to transport your cleaning supplies from room to room, you cut down on the number of trips back to the cleaning cabinet.

6.  Install a space saving ironing board holder on a nearby wall or over the laundry room door.  Many of the amazing options also come with added storage for spray starch and distilled water.

7.  Add a decorative basket to the top of the washer/dryer area for delicate items that must be washed separately.

8.  Install a counter across the washer and dryer to provide a solid surface for storage and folding items straight out of the dryer.


Bonus tip:  Decant your laundry detergents and cleaners into decorative storage containers to create a streamlined, clean look.  Manufacturer’s product labels and colors quickly create visual clutter that take away from the esthetics of the space.


{ ironing board storage / wire basket / wall shelf / storage tin / decorative jar / hanging valet / stain remover / garment brush / woven basket / tray }


Rachel Shingleton

Get the Look: Stylish Entryways

In the beginning of my design career, I designed custom invitations primarily for brides. My favorite thing about beautifully designed paper goods is that they set the tone for the event to come. A gorgeous invitation gives you an idea of what to expect. Will it be fun? Funky? Formal? Colorful? Elegant?  And in the same way,  main entryway of your home tells the same story. It’s like the perfect space to set the tone for what the rest of your house will reveal.
But entryways need to be more than just a pretty space; more often than not they have to do double duty as functioning storage/landing pad. It’s the first place you see when you come home and the last place you see when you leave. Odds are you’re taking a bag (or two), keys, sunglasses, a phone, and a litany of other items. And that’s just for you – other members of the family might need sports supplies, weather-appropriate gear, boots, etc.
My other favorite thing about our entryway is that it also provides the perfect spot for holiday decorating.  I love using our entryway as a place to display Christmas cards and  decor for all seasons.  Pumpkins at Halloween, a glitter putz village at Christmas, and hot pink hearts at Valentine’s have all made a starring appearance in our entryway.  The possibilities are absolutely endless so don’t be afraid to have some fun with it.
Here are a few of my favorite tips for designing your entryway:
1. Go with a big mirror perfectly placed over the entry table. It provides the perfect chance to make sure every thing is in place before you dash out the door.
2. Get creative with storage and don’t forget to think seasonally. Winter items such as scarves, mittens, hats, etc., can all happily cohabit in an easily accessible tote. Find a cool tray to put snowy or rain-ridden boots.
3. Your entryway table could be anything from a cool desk to a Parsons-style sofa table. For smaller spaces, a glass top or lucite sofa table can be perfect to keep the eye from getting overwhelmed.   Add layers and personality to your space with a rug, mirror, artwork, wall treatments such as paint or wallpaper, and other decor. And don’t forget – functional hooks can be pretty too!
What are your favorite tips for creating functional but pretty entryways? I’d love to hear in the comments!

Chelsey Andrews

DIY-ify: Under Cabinet Rice and Pasta Storage

The husband and I have plans for our tiny kitchen, and it will take quite a bit of time to finish. For now we are going to do a little here, and a little there. Right now we are working on storage the storage situation since our 94-year-old home is lacking in closets and cupboard space. Our challenge: find storage on a small budget. I’ve seen this jar storage wandering Pinterest A LOT, in fact I used it for my calendar work station DIY. After looking through our overstuffed cupboard and knocking over the jar of rice, I decided it’s time for a change. I’ve installed a Pasta and Rice Jar Storage under one of our open cabinets. This project took 1 hour and cost under $10. My kind of kitchen organizer update.


- glass jars (with lids)

- screws with washers

- nail

- hammer

- drill



- Use the nail to poke a hole through the center of the jar lid.

- Measure and use a pencil to mark where you’d like the jars to hang. Drill in the screws through the holes you poked through the lids into the bottom of your cupboard.

- Fill your jars and screw onto the lids. Done!

I’m so happy with how this turned out. I definitely think I’ll be changing the jars to quart jars. We need just a bit more room for the pasta, etc. Ok, happy Thursday!

- Chelsey, The Paper Mama

Joni Lay

stylish toy storage

January always feels like a good time to do a little organizing, purging, and cleaning.  It can also be challenging when you have little ones with new goodies from the holidays on their hands, so a little strategizing is in order.  Our house isn’t very large, so almost any room is fair game during playtime.  I find it’s helpful to have adorable baskets around so toys can be quickly stashed and organized without a lot of stress.  Below are some of my favorite options for toy storage that can fit into nearly any decor (sources listed below the image):toy baskets

Sources, from top left: (1) Wire Bakset; (2) Purple Seagrass Basket; (3) Dotted Floor Bin; (4) Cutout Storage Bin; (5) Belly Basket; (6) Pecan Basket; (7) Dancing Dots Basket; (8) Pencil Stripe Canvas Basket; (9) Charming Floor Basket; (10) Nesting Floor Baskets; (11) Color Block Basket

Enjoy! ~Joni, Lay Baby Lay

Jen Jones

Organize This: Dorm Room!

Trend: Neon


Neon emotes a youthful and happy feeling.  So what better space to integrate some neon, than within your dorm room?

Organizing a dorm room takes some smart thinking.  Often times, you are given a box of a room, which must function as a kitchen, living room, bedroom and office in one.



When given the opportunity, maximize the dorm room space by lofting the bed.  By raising the bed, you can tuck a living room and workspace below.  In front of the couch, storage ottomans are the best solution as they can act as a surface for food and drinks, while also storing essentials inside.



If lofting the bed is not an option, check out bed risers.  Even raising the bed a foot or two will allow for  multiple storage bins to be stowed away below.


Closet space is often times limited within a dorm as well.  Don’t just settle for a standard shelf and clothing rod.  Add a mixture of stackable storage pieces to create custom organizing solutions.  Also consider adding a second rod for double hanging space {and hang items on super slim hangers} and finding organizers for the back of the door to ensure every amount of the closet is being utilized.



In a dorm, the wall will be your best storage friend.  Adding in adjustable shelving with provide ample surface space for books, binders, accessories and baskets.  The wall is also a great place to create a command center by adding a bulletin board and wall pockets, for keeping your daily schedule, assignments and social life on track.



The desk space is one of the most important spaces within the dorm room, as that is ultimately why you are there right?  Therefore, it is important to have adequate work surface space, task lighting and a very comfortable chair.



If possible, build in a mini kitchen.  Simple big box store cabinets can be pieced together to hold a miniature fridge, sink, cook-top or microwave.  The drawers are a great place to stash small dishes and cookware.


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Jen Jones

Organize With This: Acrylic!

Trend:  Acrylic Organizers!

Acrylic organizers are some of my favorite for many different tasks and for many different reasons.  They can be used in endless ways and come in a large variety of options.  Here are some of my favorites!


Acrylic drawer organizers do their job of keeping items separate and simple to find, but they also keep drawers looking down right chic and pretty!  I love going the extra mile and adding some pretty liner in the drawer and have it show through the acrylic dividers as well.


Acrylic drawer dividers come in endless shapes and sizes, and many even stack to offer up extra storage.  They can be used for anything from office drawers to jewelry sorters and when you don’t need them anymore in one space, they can easily be adapted into another.


Where I really love to see acrylic organizers being played with, is at the desk!




Acrylic gives desk spaces both a sophisticated yet playful vibe.  You can find organizers that work for corralling business cards, desk accessories and even stacks of papers, folders and mail.



Another show stopper is the acrylic tray.  It is so gorgeous and versatile, that you see them being lined with cloth and used as jewelry holders….



Or for corralling accessories on top of a sideboard cabinet, a dresser, coffee table, and yet again, at the workspace.




Acrylic organizers are really wonderful for organizing beauty products, since there are some of us who may like to have a few options on hand, the clear organizers help find everything quick and easy when dolling up.



Or even for those looking to take their makeup goodies on the go!


The portable caddy would also look incredible center of the table with some cutlery, or on a desk with pens, pencils and a pad a paper.  I personally love it for corralling my manicure items.


Hosting a party or just love having a bar setup in your abode?  An acrylic bar cart boasts organization for the supplies and bottles, and looks super glam besides!



Although I am a fan of keeping the acrylic on display, it also functions big in tucked away places.  Smaller acrylic shelves can be added to medicine cabinets to create extra storage space for little things.


Smaller containers are wonderful for desk accessories, or in the bathroom for itty bitties such as cotton swabs and brush holders.


Acrylic drawer options that stack are ideal storage for under the sink as you can see the contents and save space at the same time.


Acrylic is an organizational win all around for many reasons.  It is versatile enough to be used in many ways, in almost any space.  It is glam, chic, sophisticated, lovely and can be dressed up or down.  It goes with everything, is durable, simple to clean and typically is quite sturdy for even the toughest organizing jobs.  One of the reasons I crush on it the most is because you can always see the contents of what you are storing, which means less rummaging and sifting for objects you are looking for.

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