Okay, I’ll admit it: I’m a bit of a slob.
I spend a lot of my time cleaning up after myself. And I do mean a lot. It’s sad, really. This may be, in part, because I commute quite a distance to work and have precious little time in the evenings. And, perhaps not. Either way, I am always leaving a mess of dirty dishes, scraps of yarn, and half-consumed coffee cups in my wake!
At the start of each year, therefore, getting more organized is often on my mind. And one of the things that I love to do is to de-clutter! No doubt, this comes after packing away all the Christmas decorations and the tree. In the process, it always feels like I’ve created more space even if the actual square footage does not change. I’ll often leave areas empty for weeks, including buffet surfaces and table tops, just so I can determine what to donate and what to keep. And it’s the items I wish to keep that ultimately determine the type and style of storage I’ll need.
The first area I like to get organized is our living room. After all, it is the heart of our home. It’s where we entertain, read, write, nap, daydream, watch Netflix and eat dinner together most nights. (The latter may be because I have crafts strewn across the dining room table, but I digress 😉 ).
As a result, I am big on providing only the essentials that support our living room’s needs. As much as possible, I also prefer to keep non-decor out of sight. Boxed up or behind a closed door, I like to keep things orderly. This may seem contrary to my nature, but I do love order and fight against my slovenly ways 😉 Anything else that’s not out of sight is, therefore, carefully selected and, at the very least, ‘prettied up.’
And that’s where simple and stylish storage comes in.
Storage is always at a premium in most households and ours is no different. So when it comes to adding extra storage in our living room, I always look for ways to integrate storage in a simple and elegant way that adds functionality without compromising on style.
Here are 5 simple and stylish ways that I’ve added extra storage in our living room:
Trays are one of my favourite ways to corral both decorative and functional items. They are a great way of creating a tidier appearance on any surface that needs more order. Trays can store items like pretty books, candles & matches, TV remotes, vases, flowers and other decorative objects.
I have had this particular tray for a few years now and it has stored a variety of items over the years, depending on the season. Here are a few ways that I’ve changed things up:
I also use a similar tray on our living room console which stores a mix of practical and pretty items, including bottles of wine, shot glasses, and decorative objects.
2. Blanket Ladder
As the one who is perpetually cold in our house, I always have several extra throw blankets in the living room. A decorative basket stores a couple of them, but so does a blanket ladder next to our TV. What’s great about it is that I can add a different dimension to our decor by changing the throw(s) on display, depending on the season or colour scheme.
3. Cubby Shelves
For those of you who have been following the blog for a while now, you may recognize these cubby shelves. They were a great way to do something with this wall space (about 9 feet long). But while these cubbies are a great alternative to book shelves, they are shallow and tend to be more decorative in our space. I currently use them as a way to display seasonal decor, whether it’s ornaments at Christmas time,
or decorative bottles and other treasured objects.
But you can store all sorts of practical as well as pretty items in cubbies, including plants, books, flowers, vases, photographs, art, small baskets, teacups, wine glasses, decorative plates, sculptures, and other objects from your home.
One of my all-time favourite small-storage solutions are decorative baskets. They are a great way to add warmth while also storing practical items. These may include throw blankets, pillows, books, magazines, board games, puzzles, kids’ toys, DVD’s, craft supplies, wood (if you have a fireplace) and other items normally stored in your living room.
And if you’re concerned about how a mish-mash of items end up appearing in an open basket, purchase ones with lids. Otherwise, simply add a throw blanket on top or a decorative branch over top.
5. Storage Ottomans
And, finally, don’t forget to add a storage ottoman or two into the mix. These are a great way to add hidden storage for miscellaneous objects that don’t fit well into your decor scheme. This particular ottoman was an inexpensive way to do this. And while it currently sits in our reading corner in the bedroom, it stores a mix of things, including a throw, a couple of magazines, slippers, and other odds and sods. And, best of all, I can lay my sore feet up on top after a long and stressful day at work 🙂
Even our cat Napoleon loves to hang out here.
I hope these tips and tricks help you as you get more organized in your home this year.
Happy organizing 🙂