Sunday, April 17, 2011

$50 Closet Makeover

My client had a very unusual closet in her studio apartment.  It was almost the size of a small bedroom and had great built in shelves and cabinets.  Unfortunately, you had to go through the closet to go to the bathroom.   Her disorganized closet was such a huge source of embarrassment that she sometimes forbade her boyfriend to go to the bathroom.    As a full time student, she didn't have a lot of time or money to devote to organizing her closet, but she knew she couldn't live with her chaotic closet anymore.  We decided to spend most of her organizing budget on my time and spend $50 on supplies.

The first thing we bought was a double hanging rod for $12 to add more hanging space.  Woven tops went on top, and skirts and jeans went on the bottom.

Jeans used to be kept stacked on a shelf in the cabinet.  We hung them on hangers for easier access.  By having all the tops and bottoms close together, it was easier to mix and match her pieces when she got dressed in the morning.  To save money, we used existing hangers.

Next on our list was a $5 belt hanger.  This hanger kept her belts neat and tidy without getting tangled.

Jewelry was formerly scattered  through out the apartment.  We consolidated everything in a $19 jewelry organizer.  This is one of my favorite jewelry organizers as it is very affordable and compact.  It's double sided too. 

My client didn't have a dresser, so we took advantage of a built in cabinet for underwear and other personal items.  After sorting and purging, we containerized like items in random cardboard boxes she had in the house.  To create a more decorative, cohesive feel, we covered these boxes in $5 contact paper.  We also bought two $3 shelf risers to take advantage of vertical height.

I did make one "donation" to the project.  I had some shoe racks at home that I no longer needed and was happy to give them to my client. These were pricey wood racks, but you can buy very sturdy, affordable shoe racks for less than $20.

My client is thrilled with her new closet.  Every item has a home, everything is neat and orderly, and she now encourages her friends and boyfriend to use her bathroom.  She has described this process as life changing.  I can't ask for a better compliment.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Weekend DIY: Pottery Barn Inspired Wire Wall Baskets

Make your version of a Pottery Barn Wire Basket for a fraction of the price.

Courtesy of Attempting Aloha

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Organizing Online Inspiration:

My craft board at

I am constantly on the prowl for new organizing and decorating ideas.  Most of my research is done on the internet, and while there is a wealth of inspiration online, I had a difficult time organizing all my bookmarks to keep track of everything.  My browser bookmark was exploding with too many subfolders, and it became increasingly difficult to browse.  I tried other online options like but didn't like their interface.  Since most of my research focused on beautiful pictures as well as practical information, I wanted a way to visually organize my bookmarks with a picture representing the URL.  Luckily, I came across which does exactly the visually organizing I was looking for.

Pinterest is a visual pin board,  a place where you can create collections of things you love.  People use Pinterest to collect and share all sorts of things like wedding inspiration and recipes.  The easiest way to pin an item is to use the Pin It bookmark. This is a special button that lets you grab an image from any website and add it to one of your pinboards. When you pin from a website, Pinterest automatically grabs the source link so they can credit the original creator.

Pinterest also allows you to browse other member's boards, and I find myself frequently looking for ideas on these boards instead of Google image search.  The boards are carefully curated with absolutely breath taking  images and smart comments.  I have auspiciously stumbled upon amazing new sites and blogs through these boards created by fellow members with keen eyes and great taste.

Here's a board I created to collect ideas and products to redecorate my bedroom.  I've been obsessed with an creating an opulent Chinoise look, and this board helps me keep focused on my end goal.

My bedroom inspiration

Friday, April 8, 2011

Weekend DIY: Craft Organizer

Believe it or not, I once bought the Pottery Barn version for a client.

Copy Cat Crafts

Friday, April 1, 2011

Weekend DIY: Bathroom Organizer

Cute and affordable.  A touch of industrial and shabby chic.

Liz Marie