Monthly Archives

March 2016

As the to-do list grows…

By | Weekly Tip | 2 Comments

Everybody has a to-do list. Always. All. The. Time. And even if you complete everything on your to-do list it’s never empty for very long. At some point in time there’s a good chance “organize ___________” will be on that list. And there’s an even better chance there will be MULTIPLE “organize__________” entries on that list. So how do you tackle them all? Well, you may not be able to. At least not right away. So here’s a tip from the professional that will hopefully make tackling the “organize _________” items on your to-do list a little easier – focus on the areas that directly impact your life first. If your pantry is a mess and you know you need to organize it, don’t waste time cleaning underneath your bed. Or if you can never find matching sheet sets or towels, don’t start a huge organizing project in the basement. Find the areas that frustrate you daily or weekly and deal with them. Now.

(In between the bigger projects it is okay to do smaller ones. Those keep you motivated. But if there’s a space in your house that directly impacts your life and needs to be dealt with, then deal with it. First.)

A post of remorse

By | Weekly Tip | 2 Comments

Well, for me, this tip comes too late. When I was in the midst of my recent “closet purge mode”, I had a couple of big candles I didn’t know what to do with now that I had burned them all the way down to the end of the wick. Since I was in my “purge mode” and not in my “be creative and organized mode”, I pitched them. Eeek! I know I know, some of you are freaking out right now.Please don’t judge me and please keep reading. In the future, I’ll totally know what to do with them. Just keep reading so you won’t fall in to this bitter waste land either.

Here’s what I should have done and here’s what you can do too: put the used candle in the freeze and leave it in there until the wax is frozen (this can take anywhere from 20 minutes to 2 hours – obviously the less wax the better and faster). Unlike water, wax constricts when frozen. Once the wax is completely frozen take it out of the candle holder (this can be done with a butter knife). You may need to clean off some residue that will be left behind by either scraping it with the knife, washing it with soap and warm water or, if you have it, with baby oil.

Now here’s the cool part – once the candle holders are wax-free and dry you can use them as jars for your vanity! They’re great decorative storage for cotton balls, q-tips, decorative soap, etc. Or you can pour some glass balls in it and create a holder for your make-up brushes, tooth brushes, lip liners and eye liners, etc. Or (I’m on a roll now!) maybe there’s something else you can put in there. Use them as candy dishes when guests come over, or to hold loose change, the extra buttons that come with dress shirts, safety pins, hair pins, bracelets, elastic hair bands, barrettes, rings…. Seriously, there’s a lot you can do with empty candle holders… And now that I’m writing all this out and thinking through what I could have used them for I’m deeply regretting the two I threw away… *Sigh I need to buy more candles.

Cupboard doors…. yes again!

By | Weekly Tip | No Comments

AAAAAAAAND here’s another post about the inside of the cupboard. Man, if you guys utilize all of the “inside of the cupboard” ideas I’ve given you, you are going to clear up so much space in your cupboards! You’re welcome!

Anyways, here’s the tip: Take a magazine holder and adhere it to the inside of the cabinet door (3m Command Strips or hooks are great because you don’t have to use any tools and they won’t damage the door). There! You have now provided a handy space for cutting boards! Go you!

Since I like to be honest in my blogs, I’m going to admit one…. hang up I have with the “inside of the cupboard door” ideas – I often wonder if some of these ideas would cause more of an issue because the items that reside inside the cupboard will have to be pushed back enough so the container hanging on the door can fit when the door is closed… But ideally, now that you are utilizing the inside of the cabinet door, you have space to move the cupboard items back a little bit. So that shouldn’t really be an issue. And if it is an issue, pull everything out, take inventory of what you have and what you actually need, then put the items back in an organized fashion so everything fits with the door closed… Alright! Glad I could figure that issue out. 🙂 Sometimes I just need to talk out the issue and then I can solve the problem along the way. Thanks for being a listening (errr reading) ear!

PS if you want a picture to reference a magazine holder, click here.

PPS For cupboards that have shelves in them this idea won’t work because the shelf most likely comes to the edge of the cupboard. If you have a cupboard without a shelf, or if the shelf is only half as deep as the cupboard, this tip and others like it should work for you with no problem at all.

As Martha Stewart does…

By | Weekly Tip | 2 Comments

When I’m researching organization ideas and tips, I always try to post about practical ways to organize. There are some awesome organizing tips out there but is the average, non-handy person going to do them? Probably not. I’m a professional organizer and even I’M like “Mmmm not gonna happen” when I see some of the ideas. Unless you’re at the Martha Stewart level of organizing and handiness, or you have an at-hand handyman, chances are you’re not going to do a lot of extra work just to get something organized in your home. Because of that, I try really hard to find good but practical and easy organizing ideas.

So, all that to say… this is not one of those posts. But! This IS a smart way to use wasted space that is present in ALL homes and if you can do this, I would highly recommend it.

Look at the closest door in the room. Now raise your eyes and look above it. Anything there? Probably not. A blank space? Probably yes. And I’m willing to guess the space above your bathroom door is empty too. You probably don’t even need to look. Here’s the tip: the empty space above the door makes an ideal location for a shelf to provide handy storage! Get a couple of baskets and store extra toilet paper, towels, “spa” supplies, nail polish, etc; anything that’s not needed on a daily basis but is taking up valuable space in your bathroom.


Picture credit: Martha Stewart

Home Office

By | Recent Work | No Comments

This client is a multi-career woman. She and her husband own a graphic design company and she is also a real estate agent. Between her 2 jobs and regular life, her home office was completely unorganized.

She called Top Shelf and in 4 short hours we were able to get her get her home office organized and put together. And as an added bonus the closet was turned into her own stock closet for the extra office supplies she’ll eventually need.

Now when this job-juggling woman goes in to her office, she’ll be able to focus on her work and not on the clutter around her.

Slide the blue line right and left to see “Before and After” pictures.


Enjoy this blog? Please spread the word :)