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Make Your Closet Clutter-Free With These 10 Closet Organization Ideas

Make Your Closet Clutter-Free With These 10 Closet Organization Ideas

 

Your closet is much bigger than you think. No seriously, if you relook the way you store things, and with a little bit of closet cleaning and creativity, you’ll be surprised at how much more you can store! These 10 simple storage solutions will show you.

10 Space-Saving Ideas For A Clutter-Free Closet

  1. Make the door useful: Nail a few hooks into the closet door and it doubles up as a bag or belt hanger. You could even string your necklaces and other accessories. Having things in front of your eyesnot only makes it easier to pick out matching stuff, but also saves you the trouble of hunting for them in all the wrong places.
  2. Prioritize: Store your everyday items at eye level and within reach. The less-used ones can be designated to the bottom and the least used ones, such as out-of-season clothes,on the top shelves. This is one of the most practical closet organization ideas that puts the things you need the most within your reach. So now you needn’t mess up your cupboard looking for things.
  3. Adjustable shelves: Shelves which can be shifted around help you accommodate clothes piles as well as hangers and can be shuffled according to the increase or decrease of items in your cupboard. Hanging shelves are an equally good idea as they can also be moved out and hung somewhere else if you need more closet space.
  4. Box it up: Use boxes to store knick knacks and accessories and hanging shelves to store towels, shoes and other heavier items. Transparent boxes make life easier.
  5. Coordinated hangers: Single colour hangers give the appearance of a neat, clean wardrobe. Colour coordinating your clothes also makes them easier to find.
  6. Add a mirror: One of the simplest closet ideas, this makes trying on clothes so much easier as you are more likely to put them right back inside if it’s not the chosen one.
  7. Shower rings as scarf holders: Slip on some shower rings onto a hanger and voila! You’ve got a scarf holder that keeps your scarves crease- free.
  8. Double decker hangers: Take the looped clip of a soda can and slip it around a hanger hook. Now slip a second hanger through the lower loop. You can use this to hang paired or matching items. Organizing wardrobe has never been easier!
  9. Label: Designating and labelling space to specific items gives them their slots and helps keep them there.It also makes things easier to find.
  10. Innovate: Use an upright bin or unused umbrella stand to hold umbrellas, yoga mats, sports racquets or other unused items.
Baseball player sitting on field

How to Wash a Hat

How to Wash a Hat

They’re prone to some sweat and dirt, here’s how to clean your hats to keep them in top shape.

Whether wearing one in winter to keep your body warm or donning one in the summertime to ward against the rays, hats are a necessary part of every season’s wardrobe. But, have you considered how to clean these well worn accessories (or even washed them before)? Certified housecleaning technician, author, and blogger at unclutter.com, Donna Smallin Kuper, gives us her tips for taking care of these everyday items. First thing’s first: consider the material (is it knit, straw, cotton, embellished?) Once you’ve done that, note the structure (is it loose and floppy or starchy and rigid?). Now, follow these guidelines below based on what you find—some can be cleaned in a washing machine, while others require a spot cleaning. Kuper even suggests some products to keep on hand that can revive a beloved, but worn hat. If you stay vigilant about their upkeep, they will serve you well for years to come.

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Baseball Hats

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Photo by Hero Images/Getty Images

These caps tend to get pretty grimy with sweat, dirt, and other debris that gets kicked up during a rowdy game. You can toss these in the washing machine, but help them maintain their structure by clipping them within a cap washer. Have some room on the top rack of the dishwasher? You can actually run them through a cleaning cycle in that machine as well. But Smallin Kuper says to use the dishwasher as a last resort.

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Sun Hats

Luckily, your favorite poolside sun hat does not require too much effort to clean. Straw hats, particularly, only need a rinse with the hose to remove any sand or sweat. Just let it air dry in the sun before donning it on the shore once more. If you’ve got a fabric fedora or other similar cap that has been exposed to suntan lotion, Smallin Kuper says to wash them if you can. She says the dishwasher trick will work for these styles as well. And make sure they are completely dry before storing them away. If the dishwasher cycle does not dry them completely, stash them out in the sun for a couple hours to do the trick. When it comes to any kind of structured hat, first try to spot clean any stain (if there is one). This will prevent it from losing its shape.

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Knit Hats

If you have a knit hat, Smallin Kuper stresses the importance of washing it using a mild detergent (like Woolite) and doing so by hand (as opposed to putting it through the machine’s cycle). Fill a sink or bucket with cold water and add a drop or two of the detergent (Not too much, you do not want to overdo it!). Before adding your hat, swirl the water around to create suds. Once you drop the hat into the container of sudsy liquid, squeeze the water through the hat for a few minutes, then rinse clean. Remove any excess water by squeezing the hat (but don’t wring it too hard as that could affect the hat’s shape). Remove any remaining liquid by laying the hat flat on a towel and rolling it up. Then lay flat to dry completely. If it’s a shaped hat, use plastic grocery bags to stuff it and keep the shape as it dries. If you just can’t see yourself hand washing your knit cap, toss it in the washing machine within a mesh laundry bag. Set the washer to the soak cycle, then rinse, spin, and lay it flat to dry (as above).

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Cleaning and Seasoning a Cast-Iron Skillet

Cleaning and Seasoning a Cast-Iron Skillet

With a little TLC, this versatile pan should last a lifetime.

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Photo by bonchan/Getty Images

Seasoning

Traditional cast-iron skillets don’t emerge from the box with a nonstick surface. That comes with seasoning, or coating the skillet with cooking oil and baking it in a 350° F oven for an hour. It won’t take on that shiny black patina just yet, but once you dry it with paper towels, it will be ready to use. You’ll reinforce the nonstick coating every time you heat oil in the skillet, and you can hasten the process by seasoning as often as you like. Or you can forget seasoning and go with Lodge Logic (available at hardware and cookware stores), a line of preseasoned skillets from Lodge Manufacturing, the oldest U.S. maker of cast-iron cookware.

Cleaning

A cast-iron skillet isn’t ideal for a set-aside-to-soak sort of person. For best results, rinse the pan with hot water immediately after cooking. If you need to remove burned-on food, scrub with a mild abrasive, like coarse salt, and a nonmetal brush to preserve the nonstick surface; you can also use a few drops of a mild dishwashing soap every once in a while. If the pan gets a sticky coating or develops rust over time, scrub it with steel wool and reseason it. To prevent rust, dry the skillet thoroughly and lightly coat the cooking surface with cooking oil. Cover with a paper towel to protect it from dust.

Tips

  • Although everything from Dutch ovens to cactus-shaped cornbread pans comes in cast iron, nothing is more versatile than a basic skillet. Either a 10- or 12-inch will do.
  • There’s only one thing you shouldn’t attempt in cast-iron cookware: boiling water, which will cause the pan to rust.
  • Cast iron takes longer to warm than other surfaces but retains heat remarkably well and diffuses it evenly.
  • Cast iron remains hot long after you remove it from the stove. As a reminder to be careful, drape a thick towel or a mitt over the handle.
  • To avoid getting smudges on all your kitchen towels, designate one to use exclusively for drying your cast-iron skillet.
  • Cooking in cast iron increases the iron content in food. The longer the food is in contact with the skillet, the more it absorbs.
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Inside a Dreamy Bedroom Makeover for a Deserving Mom

Inside a Dreamy Bedroom Makeover for a Deserving Mom

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

How to Clean Pillows in a Few Simple Steps

How to Clean Pillows in a Few Simple Steps

When you’re washing your pillowcases and sheets, don’t forget to clean your pillows. The experts give us their best tips for different types, from the ones on your bed to decorative accents.

They cushion your head when you sleep, and they’re a major player in a polished-looking bed—but compared to bigger bedroom pieces, pillows can sometimes seem a little insignificant. So even if you’re the type who regularly deep cleans the house, it’s easy to overlook cleaning your pillows. You’re probably washing your sheets and the pillowcases on a regular basis—that is important, of course—but, let’s face it: Those fluffy, feather-filled sacks (which absorb oils from your hair) also need some extra TLC. Keep in mind that not all pillows can be cleaned the same—down and feather-filled ones require a different method than decorative accent pillows you have on your sofa or chair. It’s not hard or time-consuming; just follow our expert tips and tricks for foolproof pillow cleaning that will leave them looking like new. Plus, we’ll also give you tips for cleaning your mattress and pillowcases while you’re at it, too.

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Wash Pillowcases Weekly

When it comes to washing pillowcases, the pros suggest a weekly (and twice-weekly during the hot summer months) machine wash. If the cases are made of cotton, flannel, synthetic, bamboo, or modal, wash them in hot water. If your pillowcases are linen, silk, or sateen-weave cotton, opt for the gentle cycle and a cold water wash. Dry both on the low setting.

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7 Sleek and Sophisticated Bathroom Accessories

7 Sleek and Sophisticated Bathroom Accessories

Mix marble pieces and metallic accents and even a basic bathroom will shine. Look for essentials with luxe details, like a brassy brush stand, a hand-carved storage box, or a gold-lacquer hamper.

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Fault Hamper

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At nearly two feet tall, this lidded laundry hamper would add just the right amount of metallic shimmer to a bathroom or bedroom.

Photo by cb2.com

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Geo Marble Box

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Stash jewelry or cotton swabs within this solid marble box. The addition of a brass handle makes it extra glam for your bathroom’s countertop.

Photo by westelm.com

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Brass Toilet Paper Storage Tower

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Functional and fashionable, this sleek brass tower will keep backup rolls of toilet paper at the ready.

Photo by cb2.co



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Classic Bath Towels

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Super soft and absorbent, these Turkish cotton bath towels will become the ones you reach for after every shower. Choose from four neutral shades.

Photo by parachutehome.com

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Quip Electric Toothbrush

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Yep, even a toothbrush can add to your décor. Sign up to receive replacement heads for this electric option every three months for ultimate freshness.

Photo by getquip.com

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Aila Earring Organizer

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Corral up to 43 pairs of studs and chandelier earrings on this hinged organizer. Choose from a gold or copper finish.

 

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5 Mini Decorating Moves for a Boring Home Office

5 Mini Decorating Moves for a Boring Home Office

See how a designer transformed Broadway and TV star Sutton Foster’s home office in just five easy steps.

 

Photos by Matt Harrington Photo

A home office can easily become a neglected space. Since it’s not usually a place to entertain guests or hang out, people tend to keep the home office bare and focus their decorating efforts on other spaces, like the living room, dining room, or family room—which was the case with the home office in actress Sutton Foster’s New York City apartment.

So Foster enlisted the help of interior designer Mike Harrison and HomeGoods to give the office more personality and style. “Functionality doesn’t mean lack of style,” Harrison says. “One of the great advantages of this space was that there was so much natural light with a stunning view, so the interest is already built into one entire wall. Another great plus was that the three pieces of existing furniture were beautiful, quality pieces so my job was just to marry the function with the style of the space and execute a clear vision for the room.”

Foster, who wanted the space to be neutral but not boring, says Harrison’s updates make the new office “come to life.” And it was all done with some inexpensive styling tricks you can use to give your own space a makeover. Here, Harrison’s tips:

1. Bring in Color.
Your favorite, eye-catching colors can make a space feel unique and more relaxed. “For this room in particular, it was important to Sutton that it be a place of inspiration for her husband, who is a professional writer,” Harrison says. “She wanted a space full of interest with a sophisticated whimsy. I wanted to achieve this through a layered neutral palette, with an occasional pop of color.”

2. Add Accessories.
“When personalizing an office space on a budget, try to remember that a little goes a long way,” he says. “One new desk lamp or one new rug can really transform a room. Also, it’s important to remember that even if a room needs to function as an office, it is still an extension of your home. It doesn’t need to be stale and corporate, so inject personal touches like framed pictures, special objects, and artwork.” In Foster’s office, Harrison added a geometric rug, abstract art, patterned pillows, plants, and unexpected lighting.

3. Play With Scale.
Often, your home office might be a small nook or a tiny room, so it’s important to maximize every inch of space. “When dealing with smaller spaces remember that scale is important,” Harrison says. “I used a great mirrored end table to serve as a coffee table instead. I also found a clean, white leather desk chair that brightened up the space to juxtapose the dark wood in the furniture.”

4. Organize With Style.
Keep the clutter contained. “Since the office is a highly functional room, organization is key,” he says. “Let the organizational supplies that you use exhibit the room’s style.” And, luckily, you can easily find inexpensive office supplies that pack a lot of color and flair—think metallic notebooks and pens, acrylic boxes and pencil cups, and colorful tape dispensers and staplers.

5. “Fake” an Office.
Don’t have a designated office? Don’t worry: You can still create a working space wherever you have a little bit of extra space. “Create room for a small desk in your living area, bedroom, or even dining area,” Harrison says. “You can add floating shelves above it to house office supplies and display decorative objects.” Ta-da, an office nook.

Jars containing different types of rice, risotto rice, basmati rice, sushi rice, sticky rice, brown rice, wild rice, jasmine rice, pudding rice, red rice (camargue rice), long-grain rice

How to Purge Plastic From Your Kitchen

How to Purge Plastic From Your Kitchen

Whether or not your plastic containers are BPA-free, some research suggests that they might still contain harmful chemicals. Want to go plastic-free at home? Here are six genius swaps to make it happen.

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Photo by Will Heap/Getty Images

Swap plastic wrap for…

  • Bee’s Wrap, reusable sheets of organic cotton muslin that are infused with beeswax. Use the heat of your hands to mold around the top of a bowl, sandwiches, cheese, or a loaf of bread. Each sheet lasts for a year, and comes in a variety of beautiful, vibrant patterns.
  • GIR Silicone Lids come in a variety of sizes, shapes, and colors, and suction onto every sort of bowl and casserole dish to keep food fresh.
  • Tinfoil! To keep things simple.

Swap zippered plastic bags for…

  • Lekue silicone food storage bags, which are safe for the fridge and freezer. Each reusable, dishwasher-safe bag has a sturdy zipper and flat bottom, so it stands up on its own. Each bag has cup, ml, and oz measurements marked clearly on the side.
  • Lunchskins Sandwich Bags are made from lightweight, quick drying cotton fabric. Each cute bag fastens with a hook and loop, and is dishwasher safe.

Swap plastic storage containers for…

  • Anchor Hocking Glass refrigerator sets, which are made from sturdy, dishwasher-, microwave-, and oven-safe glass. They come in a variety of sizes and have heavy glass lids that keep food fresh. Opt for these 100 percent glass containers over storage containers that have glass bottoms and plastic tops.
  • Stainless Steel Tiffin, traditional Indian food carriers made from stackable tiers. In other words, these compartments take up minimal space in your refrigerator, and keep food super organized. They make fantastic lunchboxes, too.
  • Weck jars or mason jars.

Swap ice packs for…

  • Oynx Stainless Steel Ice Packs are about the size of an iPhone, and can slip directly next to your food. Filled with distilled water, they freeze solid in about two hours, and will keep lunch cool for four to six hours.

Swap plastic water bottles for…

  • Klean Kanteen water bottles come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes—and are made entirely of stainless steel.
  • Hydro Flask products have insulated walls that keep drinks cold for 24 hours, and warm beverages hot for six hours.

Swap sippy cups for…

  • Pura Kiki Toddler Bottle, made from stainless steel with a silicone spout and travel cap, is totally plastic-free. Internal volume markings make measuring beverages a breeze.
  • Green Sprouts Glass Sip ‘n Straw Cup holds liquid in a glass insert that’s covered with a plastic shield for protection (which never comes in contact with the beverage). This is a great option if you’re looking for a transparent sippy cup.
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Patio Furniture Cleaning Tips

Patio Furniture Cleaning Tips

Follow these simple instructions once a month and neither rain, wind, sun, nor drop of bird can ruin your patio pieces.

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Cast Aluminum

Cover furniture pieces from top to bottom with all-purpose cleaner and rub with a nylon scrub brush. Next, wipe with a microfiber cloth. For extra protection, finish with a coat of car wax, says Linda Cobb, the author of the Queen of Clean book series.

Cushions

Combine 1 quart warm water, 1 teaspoon dishwashing detergent, and 1 tablespoon borax in a bucket. Dip a sponge in the solution, then use it to scrub the cushions on all sides. Let the solution soak in for 15 minutes. Rinse with a hose. Stand each cushion on an edge until dry.

Umbrella

Hose down the umbrella. Rub a wet soft-bristle brush across a bar of laundry soap. Run it over the open canopy, working from bottom to top. Rinse with a hose. Leave the umbrella open until dry. In between cleanings, wipe off bird droppings as soon as you spot them; the high acid content damages fabric, says Don Aslett, the founder of the Museum of Clean, in Pocatello, Idaho.

Wicker

Use the vacuum’s crevice attachment to dislodge leaves and bugs from the cracks. (A paintbrush works well, too, says Cobb.) Next, wet a microfiber cloth with all-purpose cleaner and glide it over the wicker. Rinse with a damp sponge. Dry with a cloth to prevent mildew.

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3 Feng Shui Tips

3 Feng Shui Tips

Follow these three decorating tricks to make your house feel happy and calm.

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1. Clear Clutter

Mess is the number one enemy of feng shui. Dead or uncared-for piles sap your home’s strength and block positive energy from entering. Most significant is entryway clutter, so deal with this first. Next up, any clutter at the center of your home.

2. Fix or Toss Broken Things

They’re impediments to vitality. Toss chipped plates, burned-out bulbs, and clothes with holes. Repair stopped clocks, clogged drains, teetering chairs, and loose cabinet pulls.

3. Clean the Windows and Oil the Doors

In feng shui, the windows are the eyes of a home, and the front door is its mouth. To bring clarity to the space (and to yourself), maintain them, making sure that they open, close, and lock well.

Want to know more? Learn all about fung shui, then use this 8-point guide to create a feng shui house.