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Thursday, January 21, 2016

{Organized} Office Closet Befores & Plans

Oh January...the month of resolutions, new beginnings, and big declarations. Three weeks into the new year, and I've already fallen behind of a few of mine (cough cut down on sugar cough cough), but along with everyone else, organization is top of my list.

We haven't even lived in this new-to-us house a year yet, so how am I already unorganized, you ask? (Okay, you didn't ask, but go with me anyway.) Well, the truth is, I never actually got fully organized...or even unpacked, for that matter!

Sure I did a few spaces, like the Pantry and Bathroom Cabinets, but {One Room Challenge} took over (both times), and the rest of it is history either shoved in cabinets and closets, or still in boxes! It overwhelms me to think about it as a whole, but when I break it up into individual spaces, it feels more manageable. So instead of declaring, 'I'm going to organize this entire house!,' I'm starting with a single closet.

Behind these sweet wallpaper-bordered doors lies my first victim of 2016...my office/craft closet!

Hi Sugarplum | Organized Gift Wrap & Craft Supplies



You may recall from Phase 1 of this project, that I lived like this for the first six months. It was neither efficient, nor inspiring, so I don't recommend going with a cardboard box motif for long.

Hi Sugarplum | Organized Craft Supplies & Gift Wrap

Since I'd already implemented a gift wrap center in our last house, it migrated to the new space easily, and was a great start.

Hi Sugarplum | Organized Craft Supplies & Gift Wrap
Hi Sugarplum | Organized Craft & Gift Wrap

Hi Sugarplum | Organized Craft & Gift Wrap

Since the door system worked so well, and this closet is blessed with two wide-swinging doors, I added another one to the opposite side for craft paints and decorative paper. #paperhoarder

Hi Sugarplum | Organized Craft & Gift Wrap

Hi Sugarplum | Organized Craft & Gift Wrap

But the rest of the closet is a different story.

Hi Sugarplum | Craft Closet Makeover

Initially, I was really excited about this larger closet, with the built-in cubbies and shelves, but none of the systems from my last Craft Closet work well in this space. The Ikea Algot pooped out, and we couldn't get it to re-install properly, the boxes aren't a good fit, and there's a lot of wasted vertical space. So while I can kind of get to the stuff I need, I'm certainly not using the closet to it's full potential.

Hi Sugarplum | Craft Closet Makeover

Hi Sugarplum | Craft Closet Makeover

So of course I did two things...first consulted with my Master Shifu for her best tips and advice, then hopped over to the Grand Poobah of organizing. I rounded up a bunch of inspiration, and wrote down what I liked about each of these spaces, and how they could help corral mine.








Are you having heart palpitations? Because I am. Armed with my notes, a general idea of the items I want stored, and the dimensions of my closet, I trotted over to Container Store, the world's happiest place, for a free consultation and planning session...because it's Elfa Sale Time!!! #themostwonderfultimeoftheyear

Sugarplum Tip: There are less-expensive door storage systems, but Container Store is the by far the most sturdy, and will last forever. I always wait for one of their big sales and stock up...like right now!
Hi Sugarplum | Elfa Planning

You can create your own custom space using their simple online design tools, or have one of their experts design your dream space for FREE in-store or on the phone. And expert is not a word I throw around loosely...they really are organizing wizards! By the end, I was having heart palpitations and hyperventilating.

We created two options...one is installing their Elfa shelf and drawer system around the existing closet shelf and cubbies.

Hi Sugarplum | Craft Closet Plans

And the second involves removing the existing bases, and optimizing the entire closet by building it out with all Elfa systems. The cool thing about their planning tool, is you can access it online and tweak the design until you get it just right. It also creates a complete product list, installation instructions, and views from every angle.

Hi Sugarplum | Craft Closet Plans

The installers are coming soon, so I need to decide on an option! Which one would you implement? Either way, it's going to be a huge improvement!

Hi Sugarplum | Craft Closet Makeover

Are you tackling any organizing projects this month? I know I said I was sticking with one space at a time, but Container Store's Elfa systems & installation are only 30% off once a year, so my wheels are spinning! I'm stupid-excited to work with them on this project...I'll report back next week with progress!

28 comments:

  1. IMO, you're better off ripping out the old built-ins and going all Elfa. This will give you the most options if the purpose/needs of the room/closet change(s) later on. It's so easy to just re-arrange what you already have, or add another pieces, etc.

    I have Elfa in all of our closets, and even use it as our main living room bookshelf and entertainment center. You just can't go wrong with it.

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    1. In ALL YOUR CLOSETS??? How dreamy is that?! I think after I see the difference it makes in this closet, I'll be addicted! So let's see, if I do one closet every year during the sale....

      ;)

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    2. That's what I've been doing. So far, my 3 kids' closets are done. I learned from the first one to not let them overshelf you. They like to sell you so many shelves (more $$ for them) and then they are so close together as to not be practical. We ended up taking about 25% of the shelves out of my son's closet. Measure the spacing on shelves you have in place and like and mimic that.

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  2. I like option 2. We have something similar to option 1 in our house now and having tons a little drawers isn't at all practical for my family...of course, it could be perfect for yours! That's my two cents anyways!

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  3. Do you ever watch Income Property? The correct answer is always option #2!

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  4. I think it really depends on what you're storing: do you need large bins or small ones?

    I just purchased some of the elfa gift wrap station pieces & I can't wait for my husband to install them! I don't have that much paper 😉 but it's going to look so pretty!

    I was pleasantly surprised that with the 30% off elfa sale, it was less expensive and better quality than what lowes & Home Depot offered!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The Elfa gift wrap station will make you happier than you can imagine! Seriously. Ever since installing it, I practically squeal when it comes time to wrap a gift! ;)

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  5. Door #2!! You've got to start fresh. I can't wait to see how it turns out. We had a beautiful built in closet installed in our old home; 2 weeks later our house sold and we now have half the space. We have two large bedroom closets and three built in drawers in the office; that's the only storage in our new place, plus no garage! Many trips to Goodwill and the dumpster left us with the bare essentials and my handbag collection (that is essential, right)??

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  6. Option #2 for sure! We moved into our current home two years ago, and I've learned that when I make decisions based on working with what's already there, I end up not being happy with it and eventually starting all over from scratch anyway.

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  7. If you are going to do it, I say bite the bullet and get it all done. I love our elfa systems that we have in our home!

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  8. Love the door organizers! I'm going to be down sizing in the next year so I'm certainly going to pin all these great storage ideas!

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  9. Go with Option #2!! You'll thank yourself later.

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  10. I kind of like option 1 better. There's so many cubbies which I think might be more useful?

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  11. Cassie, how much does a client install like this generally run? i'm a new homeowner, and have a smallish walk in master closet. Its fine, but also has a lot of wasted space and non sturdy shelving. I'm intimidated to even start the process though!

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    Replies
    1. I think the install is based on the amount of product, but it gives you a self-install and full-installation price when you're building it online (free service!) So you can choose how detailed you want your organization, and who you want to install it. If you choose to do yourself, it includes full instructions. If you choose to have them do it, their installation is also 30% off right now! I'll report back how the install part goes soon!! Hope this helps, and congrats on your new home!

      Delete
    2. The hard part is taking out the old one and spackling/sanding/painting. To install the elfa, you are only putting in anchors for the top rail. Everything else hangs off of that rail. It is a totally do-able DIY as long as you can sink an anchor.

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    3. Thank you both so much! Just saw the new post Cassie, looks awesome and very inspiring :D

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  12. Oh sweet lord...If you are categorizing your paper selection as "paper hoarding" I don't even begin to know what you'd call my problem! (I'd probably need 4 doors to store it all!) Oh, and I like option 2.

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  13. Option 2 seems like it would be more efficient!

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  14. I have a full walk-in Elfa closet and love its look and versatility. What I do not love is the wire roll -out baskets. They just don't stay on track, and collapse fairly often...especially if they hold heavy stuff. I would stick with stationary shelving as much as possible.

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  15. Even though it appears the minority opinion, I would go with option 1. The shelving already there seems more versatile. All those little drawers and shelves just look too busy to me. By adding pretty bins and boxes (my addiction) to your existing larger shelves you can still customize to what you are storing. Bottom line it has to come down how each plan works with what you need to store. The best piece of advice I received when designing my kitchen a few years ago was "move in" to the cabinets and drawers as you are planing. Taking that advice and knowing what I had to store and the zone set up I wanted, I figured out how many and what size drawers and cabinets I needed and where they should be laid out. The kitchen turned out perfect. I use this technique now on every space I plan.

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  16. Option 2 for sure! Cant wait to see the final reveal. Keep us posted

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  17. I like the symmetry of #2 but I think #1 might be more practical/ functional because you have large and small spaces to use.

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  18. Certainly I love option 2 the best!It looks to be more versatile :)

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  19. I seriously am thinking Elfa is the way to go for my daughter closet. Thanks for sharing the sale and info about working with their designers.

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Your comments are like popcorn with milk duds, I just can't quit them. Thanks for taking the time to share your positive thoughts! xoxo, cass

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