One of the most common challenges people often face when living in an apartment is space – or the lack thereof. However, when space is utilized at an optimal level, even the “junk” found in all homes can become neatly organized, tucked away in space-saving areas that take up hardly any room at all. The trick is to store smarter, not necessarily to store less. Everything from jewelry to books can either take up space, or become charming additions to any room. It just depends on how they are stored. Below are three fantastic tips to rethink and organize the “junk” in your apartment:
- One of the most challenging areas of an apartment (or any home) to keep clutter-free is near the front door. This is especially true if you don’t have a front coat closet nearby. A great way to keep things in order, other than using a coat rack, is to use small colored bins on a shelf or bench near the door to hold items that people in the home will need to grab as they leave the house. This can include keys, mail, gloves, notes for school, umbrellas, hats, etc. If you use a bench, shoes can be stored out of the way underneath. You can also use a wall-hanging coat rack near the floorboards, and hang shoes on it to keep them off the floor entirely. Along the same lines, color-coded bins also work great for sorting homework, bills, and even recyclables. Instead of letting schoolwork, mail and other items pile up on shelves, counters, and everywhere else, they can be dropped into the appropriate bins.
- If you’re not too keen on having little bins out and about near the door, consider using a “junk trunk” – one clever-looking, decorative box to hold things in. We’re not talking shoes really; we mean things like your umbrellas, scarves, hats, and anything that is “on its way out the door”. Even items you purchased and need to return, or an item you’ll be bringing over to a friend’s house can be put in the junk trunk. If you have things that need to be repaired or even items you’ve gotten for free and you’re not sure you’re going to keep, it all can be kept in your “on the way out” junk trunk.
- Shelf space is always a prized commodity, and although it’s usually advisable to just “have a few decorative items on the shelf to prevent clutter”, it’s not always practical or easy to achieve. When it comes to shelving and storage, you can use small, labeled boxes to keep odds and ends in, and you can also “stack smart” just about anything. If it’s done right, it will look neat, orderly, and really nice. You can try arranging the shelves with solid-colored items for maximum “pop”. If you’ll be using boxes to store things in on shelves, choose boxes that are solid-colored and avoid those that have designs on them. Heavily designed boxes (full of multiple colors, paisley prints, swirls, etc.) tend to make shelves look even busier than they already are.
There are dozens of additional ways to optimize the space you have available in your apartment, and that includes visible space as well as space that is out of sight. Using desk organizers in kitchen drawers, tension rods in cabinets, clear boxes for school supplies, and even rolling clothes in dresser drawers instead of folding them can open up a world of space in your apartment you never knew you had!