Prior to starting a family, I led a minimalist’s life. My household required very few things... and then I had kids and my life exploded. At first it was pacifiers and baby booties and bottle covers everywhere: in my handbags, on my nightstands, and inexplicably underneath our living room sofa. Then it grew into one sole mitten (for the love all of that’s good in life, where do all the missing mittens go?!), tiny Cinderella figurines, and non-stop artwork coming home from school, collecting on kitchen counters, office desks, and of course, the dining room table.
Clutter is a bad habit that is somewhat manageable … until you're managing more than just yourself, at which point it becomes hopelessly overwhelming.
Luckily for us, Carson Kressley is here to help! Helming Bravo’s new show Get a Room with Carson & Thom, the style maven also knows a whole lot about interior design… with a little help from his Queer Eye bestie Thom Filicia, that is. If there’s one thing Carson can’t stand, however, it’s clutter, and he’s dished to us some genius ways to ditch the excess.
1. Invest in Dual Purpose Furniture.
Let’s face it: We’re not all living in a sprawling space, with loads of nooks and crannies to store our stuff. If this is the pickle you find yourself in, Carson has just the solution. “When space is at a premium, consider furniture that does double duty,” he told Bravo’s Home & Design. “Ottomans and coffee tables with built in hidden storage are great for infrequently used items like board games, playing cards, and DVDs.”
2. Put It in a Basket…
Catchalls don’t have to be hideous. Case in point: Baskets! “The texture and global look of chunky woven baskets are so hot right now,” Carson said. “Use large ones to wrangle toys, blankets, magazines, even firewood.”
3. Or a Tray!
Carson said, “Coffee tables are clutter magnets as they offer a lot of flat space.” Um, guys, Carson just gets me. This is literally the nightmare I’m living right this very second. His solution? “Corral the clutter with simple lacquer or lucite trays to hold coffee table books, magazines, small vases, and candles. Add a fun box to conceal a bevy of remote controls.”
4. Hang it Up.
Where else do our messes gather? The floor, that’s where. “Get things off the floor and up on the wall,” Carson suggested. “Try floating shelves to organize DVDs, video games, and the like.” Or, if you’re like me and your hallway closet is a swamp of kids’ jackets, hats and backpacks, hang up a slew of Command™ Large Wire Hooks, which each can hold up to five pounds of gear and don’t require any tools!
5. Get Your Gallery Wall Going.
Photos of loved ones and memorable moments can brighten your home, but all those frames can result in clutter-induced chaos. “I love to have tons of framed photos of family and friends (including my horses!) all over my living room,” Carson told us. “But I don’t like the dust they collect or the visual noise they create when displayed on an end table. Why not create a gallery wall instead? I like to scan and print all the photos in black and white and use similar frames to unify the look.” If you're not so handy with a hammer and nails, try Command™ Picture Hanging Strips.
6. Invest in a Credenza.
Unless you’ve got the tidiest TV on the market, then your home entertainment station is likely filled with wires, consoles, and more. “A credenza below the TV is a great furniture investment to keep clutter at bay,” Carson suggested. “Organized and edited vignettes of special personal items always look better displayed in a contained space as opposed to scattered about.”
Got all that? I’m going to be honest, the thought of all my clutter still overwhelms me, but these tips are definitely going to make the organizational process a whole lot easier. Thanks, Carson!
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