Archive for the ‘Office Organizing Ideas’ Category

Home Sweet Home (Office)

Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009

One of my favorite modern furniture stores in DC, Vastu has a great design blog.  Recently they had a great post on home office design.  I wanted to share with you their words of wisdom.

Home Sweet Home (Office)
Designing your home office can be challenging.  It needs to complement the design aesthetic of the rest of the house, but be different enough that it promotes productivity while in the space.  Your home office may not even be a room of it’s own, but need to exist in a space that has other functions like a guest room, bedroom or living room.  Well the Vastu Design Services team is here to help!  Here are a few suggestions and products to consider when designing your work space at home:

desk-copy1Wall-mounted desk system. Think about having a wall-mounted desk system installed, especially if you have a small space.  You have the surface area you need to work without taking up as much floor space as a traditional desk would.  Here’s a look at a wall-mounted desk system used in a bedroom…

Dual purpose desk chair. Have your desk chair be the same chairs you’re using around your dining table.  This way when you have dinner guests, you can easily add additional seating and maintain a uniform look around the dining table.

Storage, storage, storage. When designing any space, be sure to consider how much storage space is required to make your space work for you. This will help to make selections of furniture and organizational pieces easier.

Don’t ignore the floor. Depending on the flooring in your home office space, you may want to consider an area rug.  If you have wooden floors, it’s a great way to add warmth to the space, bring in color and define the work area.

Set the mood. Think about what mood you want the space to evoke. Fast-paced, upbeat environment or a relaxed, calm space? This will help in your selection of materials, finishes, fabrics, colors and accessories.

Color! Color! Color! Painting or adding some sort of wall covering to the walls (either a pattern or texture) will make a world of difference in the overall look of the space. Stark white walls are never an option! Walls with color will bring life and character to your home office space which will help in motivating you to want to do work.

Organizing Experts Recommend Products to Stay Organized

Sunday, October 5th, 2008

Blogger Debbie Jordan Kravitz of Virtually Organized is a self described “recovering perfectionist” who writes about simplifying and organizing your life.  We’re virtual colleagues since she lives in York, PA.

Recently, she surveyed her colleagues on Facebook and Twitter asking what products they love to use when organizing with clients and she also asked what we didn’t like.  Everyone who’s worked with me knows I am a huge fan of The Container Store’s elfa®.  So it’s no surprise, that was the product I recommend.  Check out her blog to learn about the other organizing products various industry experts love and hate.   Everything from the basic staple to Rubbermaid’s Easy Find Lid food storage containers received props.  You may recall me blogging about the Easy Find Lid containers when I highlighted the products I featured on WUSA9 News.  They’re great for food storage and have a space saving design.

I have to agree with Allison Carter,
of The Professional Organizer who dislikes the toy storage racks that hold 9-12 bins.  These racks for toy storage may look like a good idea, but they are poorly designed.  The bins are too shallow for anything substantial in size, they are hard to take off the rack, the bins fall through the slats, and the bottom two rows are halfway covered by the row above.  Want to know what else was liked or disliked?  Read the whole article here!

Stop Junk Mail, I Dare You!

Tuesday, August 5th, 2008

Junk mail is a huge waste of time. Don’t you agree? Unwanted mail is often what I see cluttering clients’ counter tops, entryway tables, home offices, and the never ending ‘in box.’

I dare you to follow these steps. I dare you to take a step forward by stopping unwanted mail. Do you accept this dare? If so, here’s how!

Step One

Stop unwanted junk mail by registering

with the Direct Marketing Association’s Preference Service.  Click on “remove my name from those lists.” You have to select each company individually, which can take some time, but in the long run it’s worth the extra effort. A credit card is necessary to confirm your identity, but there will not be a charge.

Step Two

Take a stand to reduce local junk mail through these resources.

  • Valassis Marketing – Call 888-241-6760 between 8:30 AM – 5:00 PM EST or complete this online form
  • VAL-PAK Coupons – You need to have a current pack envelope when you remove your name. Complete this online form
  • Call Carol Wright – 800-67-TARGET to get off that list

Step Three

Remove your phone number from the lists those

pesky telemarketers use by completing the Do Not Call Registry online. This list was previously only good for five years, but in February 2008 a new law made it permanent.

Tip to Share with Friends

If you move, do not fill in the USPS change of address cards. I’ve heard over the years that the address changes are sold to companies.  I reviewed the privacy statement and the 62 FAQ’s on the USPS website, but didn’t find anything for or against this belief.  I believe it is true, so stay away!   If it is true, you’ll be right back where you started.

Step Four

Cease bank and credit card offers by contacting the appropriate bank.  Banks and credit providers offer the opportunity to opt out of marketing efforts.  Some banks require a form, others require only a phone call.  Here are a few popular banks in the DC area:

  • Wachovia’s Online Form
  • Bank of America’s Online Form
  • Citibank – Call 888-214-0017 and tell them you’d like to update your privacy choices.
  • Chevy Chase Bank – Call 301-987-BANK or 1-800-987-BANK to update your privacy choices.

Step Five

Fellow organizer Ramona Creel offers additional tips on stopping junk mail in this post.  If you aren’t satisfied with the suggestions above, she offers some unorthodox approaches.

We’re passionate about stopping junk mail.  Be sure to subscribe to our blog by RSS Feed or via email (see upper left corner to enter email address).  We’ll be sharing more helpful information in the near future focusing on companies who will help you get rid of junk mail.

Do you have any other tips for our readers?  Please leave a comment with you ideas.

Opting Out Saves You From Unwanted Credit Offers

Tuesday, July 15th, 2008

The volume of credit offers I see cluttering the homes of my clients is unreal! All the paper, postage, gasoline to move those letters, and time to deliver them is such a waste. Needless to say, they usually just go into the trash and fill our landfills.

Take a stand and opt out of these credit and insurance offers! Here are two to choices to help you opt out.

According to the FTC’s website, you can opt out of receiving credit and insurance offers for five years or opt out of receiving them permanently. Call toll-free 1888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688) or visit for details. The telephone number and website are operated by the major consumer reporting companies. When you call or visit the website, you’ll be asked to provide certain personal information, including your home telephone number, name, Social Security Number, and date of birth. The information you provide is confidential and will be used only to process your request to opt out.

It’s important to remember that if you have joint credit relationships, like a mortgage or a car loan with a spouse or partner, you are likely going to receive further unwanted solicitations until both of you exercise your opt out rights. Typically, the requests to opt out are processed within five days, but it may take up to 60 days before you stop receiving prescreened offers.

If for some reason you want to opt back in, you can simply reverse the process by calling the same phone number listed above. What are you waiting for? Do it now!

Could You Live Like These Three Women?

Sunday, July 13th, 2008

I was recently flipping through Domino magazine’s February Issue, “The Organized Home!” which contained three advertisements that really caught my eye. The first ad was by Citi Cards featuring their ‘Whatever your story is’ ad campaign. Grace lives in a small apartment in the big city and doesn’t cook, so she used her Citi Card to buy some closet organizing supplies to transform her kitchen into a walk-in closet. The ad continued by saying Grace saved room for plates, glasses and silverware, but I certainly don’t see any in the photo!  I love how the stemware holder is now used for sunglasses glasses and the coffee mug tree is used for bracelets. Do you know anyone who stores stuff in their kitchen or stove that’s not specific to cooking related?

Click on any image to see it larger.

The next advertisement for American Express featured writer/actress Tina Fey in their “Are you a card member?” campaign. Obviously she enjoys Post-it notes to capture her creative flow process. I am willing to give her some slack, because she’s a Macbook user and because her daughter is adorable. Tina’s perfect day “Coffee/Playground/Nap/Exercise/Flea Market/Playground/Bath Time/Dinner with Grownups/See a Great Movie/Asleep by 9 PM.” Obviously she does not have time to organize her office. Could you be creative in this mess?

Click on any image to see it larger.

The final ad was by Kohler and features this very glam Hollywood Mom, who’s devilish son (hiding behind the door) used the Purist® Hatbox® Toilet to hide one of Mom’s favorite hats. Perhaps if she had put away the hat, this wouldn’t have happened! After all, there are over 60 hat boxes in the photo that could have been used. Why is the toilet in the middle of the room anyhow? Kohler wants us to believe this $3000 toilet would work just about anywhere, including Bryant Park. You guessed it right, this high fashion toilet was debuted at Fashion Week in New York City.

Click on any image to see it larger.

Could you live like these three women? A kitchen for a closet, paper clutter in your office, or your hats strewn throughout your dressing area? If you have a favorite advertising campaign that features organizing or a lack there of, I’d love to hear about it.