Getting It Done: The Office Makeover

When I started the process of cleaning up my office/craft room, I wasn't exactly sure what to expect, or even planning on doing it right away; however, I'm looking at starting a job here soon, and I need to get things in order before I do. That is one of the reasons for the quick succession of blogs. 

I also want to point out that I am actually writing these as I am doing them, so that I can document the process and let you know what works and what doesn't. Plus, this whole blog is about my journey to get to a simpler life, and my hope is to inspire you along the way. 

As I talked over what I accomplished last night with my mother last night, I began to think about what I could accomplish today. I don't want to overdo it, because if I do, I will overwhelm myself and give up on the process and wind up back to square one again. That's what we are trying to avoid. Procrastination is my worst enemy, and this room, along with my garage, are proof of that. 

My train of thought is that if I can get this room in order, then I can begin to
clear out my garage, since there are items that need to be moved into this room from there, as well as my dining room (my sewing machines are in my dining room at the moment). 

To begin, I thought I would tackle what I left in the middle of the room to be sorted. I didn't use my nifty sorting totes today, because I knew they would be overflowing, plus the put away is still awaiting me to organize my files. So, for this sorting, I just created piles on my floor.

The trash pile was actually quite minuscule as I had already done the purge last night, but the split between what was to keep and donate was quite even. I decided to launder the keep items before either putting them in the closet or storing them elsewhere. I will also add a fabric sheet, that way they will retain a fresh scent when they are pulled out later. I did find there were several work styles that would currently fit me in this pile, so this process was definitely a benefit for me, and will help me not spend money when I do go back to work.

As for the donate pile, I immediately put it into bags and into my car so that I may take them to the thrift store this afternoon. I don't want to second guess myself with these items and have them continue to clutter my home. There were also items that could be put on the Facebook Marketplace, so those were also put to the side.

I also did some research on the hangars that are in the wicker basket. If you have wire hangars from dry cleaners, they will collect them back from you. Plastic hangars are recyclable. The problem comes with the hangars you receive with your store purchases. Because they are made of both metal and plastic, they are not considered recyclable. So, when you are asked if you would like to keep your hangars, it is better to politely decline.

After clearing that all away, I was now able to focus in on the closet. It is technically a walk-in closet, but not really. I don't know how to describe it. It only has one shelf installed, and I have put a white, plastic shelf to one side so far in one of my attempts to organize the room. There is so much wasted space in there that it is hard to understand or plan on what to do with the space itself. I have some thoughts on how to tackle the space, but first, I need to empty the space and purge what is not needed. That will take time.

As I had mentioned in This Room Should Be Condemned, I have worked as a consultant/contractor for several years now, and after I leave each assignment, I have boxed my mementos from each of those assignments into a box thinking I'll use them again at some point. My closet is full of those intentions.

To be honest, after clearing out the closet, I was a bit apprehensive. In fact, I was quite frightened by the effect it had on the room itself. You can see the state of the room in the photo to the right that it was no longer coming along. In fact, it seemed to be more in a state of chaos than it was before. But after a few deep breaths and boxing up the trash and putting the items to be sent to the thrift store into the car, the damage wasn't as horrible as originally thought, and my blood pressure did lower a few notches. Thankfully.

Another nice thing was that I was now able to take a good look at the closet itself and what it had to offer. I left the shelving unit in there, as well five empty, decorative boxes that I'm contemplating using for storage. The next step is to determine how to use the space more efficiently now that it is empty and ready to be organized. I have another shelving unit just like the one in there that I purchased at the same time as that one, but it just needs to be put together. I also have the white compressed wood shelving that I mentioned earlier in this blog that I plan to use, as well. The plan is t make this space efficient, not inefficient. 

After putting together the other shelving unit, I placed it into the other side of the closet and found that it allowed enough space to store my suitcases, which are actually nested together for space saving. I then put a double door storage unit into the back of the closet. I was a bit concerned with this one, as it did block a portion of the newly installed shelf. But since the unit is not that deep, I am not really overly concerned at this point. The unit will allow me to hide items that need to be stored away, rather than have them out in the open, too. This will make storing items much easier in the long run.

The next thing on the agenda was more vertical storage. I have had these stack-able shelves for my closet since I was in college, but I no longer needed them in my closest. I thought this would be a great place to utilize them; however, I ran into a snag. The support for the shelf above made it impossible to put two shelves on top of the unit, so only one will be used.

Now that the shelving is in place, it is now time to put everything back into its final resting place. This will actually take some time and effort, especially since I'll be adding items that I had inherited, as well. These items had been stored in my garage until I had the chance to make room in this space.

I decided to start working with the shelves that were outside of the closet first. This is where most of my business items reside. I was able to consolidate a lot of items onto two shelves, instead of three, making more room. The bottom of the photo on the right shows what I had done before finishing. The one on the top is what I finished with. Once I had finished bringing everything in, it did seem like the room kind of cramped up on itself, so I do plan on working more on consolidating more space to make it more user friendly. Right now, it will have to work as it is.

The third shelving unit right now is only holding the bags I use for my business on the top shelf, items for the sewing machine on the second, and items that I need to post on marketplace sites on the others. I will probably look into removing that unit to make more space later, as I wound up with plenty of other storage space elsewhere.

I have to say that I was really pleased with how the closet space came out. It was easy to put together and organize. Everything I need is in an easy to reach space for when I need it, and it isn't an eyesore any longer. I was a little leery of placing the under-bed storage unit on the upper shelf, but it seemed to work perfect. And my stability ball easily rolls in and out of the way when I need to get to the shelf below.

There were a few things I didn't finish doing, as I did get tired and needed to finish up for the night. The wooden cart that I placed by the door is empty, and I placed the tote that has what goes in it on top of it for the moment. So, it does look a little out of place at the moment. But right now, I am pleased with the results of this room decluttering makeover. The funny part of it is that my garage looks empty after all of this now! Go figure!

Here are a few of the other photos from the end of today's work.