Saving the Study

This is my entry for The Organizing Junkie's Whole Room clean up challenge.
Are you ready? It's not for the faint of heart, I assure you.

Ok then, you asked for it.

I apologise profusely...I know...I know.....here, let me hold you until the horror has passed.


A picture speaks 1000 words and so there is not much more to say. This is the culmination of a couple of weeks worth of dumping. I do tidy it fairly regularly but without a good system it would get trashed again in no time. We have a teeny tiny house with exceedingly little storage space so when there is a need to dump, it inevitably ends up in this little shop of horrors. Since there is not a lot of sunlight in that room, I generally don't use it, so it is the dumping ground and very little else. We have to pass through it several times a day though, and it really does give one a sinking feeling. Here it is after several frantic searches for something. You can tell that the garbage bag was open and ready to go...

Here's the other side of the room:




And after..oooohhh....ahhhh...look, even the sun is shining!




Unfortunately this still appears cluttery. It's something about photos and papers..they don't play well together, but really it is soooo organized now. It is a thing of beauty and a joy forever.

And! But for the printer, is now clear and lovely under the dresser (you can tell a smidge from this picture)

We were so inspired by the clean up that we got a long intended project done. Since my family are all in South Africa and Australia, I stole my mom's idea of three clocks. We don't live in New York but we are on EST and we just thought New York looked so much cooler then..Ohio. Wouldn't you agree? Indeed. So now I am so exceptionally organized, even my phone calling habits are organized. No more midnight phone calls mom. I am sure you are so sad.


1. What was the hardest part of the challenge for you and were you able to overcome it?

Getting started. It was a depressing room filled with papers of varying sentimental value. Sentimentality has always been my downfall. I knew tough decisions would have to be made.

2. Tell us what kind of changes/habits you have put into place in order for your area/room to maintain its new order?

Well I have tossed a bunch of stuff. As flylady says, "you can't organize clutter" so I just got rid of a lot of it. We tossed a bunch of cords and even a CPU we did not need there to make room for the filing system. Getting it off the desk means I can use the desk for work , rather then the couch. Now I am closer to where I need to be to file stuff and it does not build up into chaos. The paper shredder is now easily accessible, and plugged in (!) so I can get rid of stuff immediately. That has been a delight.

3. What did you do with the “stuff” you were able to purge out of your newly organized space?

I threw it away or donated it. I have a rubbermaid tub for sentimental things that I really really had to keep and I added a few things to it.

4. What creative storage solutions were you able to introduce in order to create additional space as well as establish some limits and boundaries?

I used the baskets I had more effectively-designating one of each large one to each "theme" in my life-soccer club, church, kids. I put brown paper of varying shades (to coordinate with the wall hanging) in the fronts of the plastic set of drawers. This makes them opaque and makes the whole room look better. When they were see through, it just added to the image of chaos and made me less motivated to put things away.

5. Why do you think you should win this challenge?

Because I pushed through with a dreary and dreadful task on an exceedingly dreary and dreadful day. I was so exceptionally depressed that day but I did it anyway. Even my children are thrilled with the results so even if I don't win, it was completely worth it. I have created a whole new viable space in my home rather then the messy walk in closet it was before. Since I have to walk through it several times a day it makes my heart sing each time.

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15 comments:

Minky said...

I love the clocks and the pictures! It all looks great, but the clocks are my favorite part! Well done!

2busy said...

I think a clean surface is so satisfying. Nice job! (you should win)

Shriram INC. said...

the change is almost unbelievable. i had to scroll up and down at-least a dozen times to verify the pics were of the same surroundings

Lynn from For Love or Funny said...

I love before and afters!!! Your study looks 100% better!!! :)

Kim said...

Great job! I love the clocks.

Ms Bibi said...

I love the clock idea. Most of my family lives in Europe and some in Australia so that would be great idea for my son's room.

You did an excellent job.

Anonymous said...

What IS it about studies????? If I could put into one lump of time all the woman-hours I have spent on various studies trying to restore order, I am sure it would be about a year! I too have JUST finished tidying the study (created by dear Marc during his "holiday") and am now balking at the cost of the filing system I have to buy to make the whole thing look decent. Please, help me to DO it. I have now made this MY spot, because the other two inhabitants of the house know no bounds (or boundaries) when it comes to TRASHING a space. So, it is my wonderful refuge and DESERVES the filing system, no????

Erin K. said...

Great job! I also did the organizing challenge for our "dumping ground" so I can relate to the part about not wanting to get started. It was so overwhelming to try and get going on it! I can also relate to walking through/by the space and just feeling yuck about everything. I'm realizing the extent of the negative effect clutter has and it motivates me want to declutter the rest of my house. :) I see some serious spring cleaning in my future...

I love how you put the brown paper in the front of the clear drawers. That's such a creative solution for eliminating the "eye clutter" and making everything feel more organized.

Good luck! I don't know how Laura is going to judge all of these because everyone did such a good job!

cassie said...

it looks great!

chacha said...

I also have a bad habit of allowing things to get "cluttery" and then getting bummed out about it. I am somewhat unorganized with "stuff" though money, work, and things in my head are very organized :o)

On my list of "things I want when my husband finds a job again" (and the list in my head is long) is a cleaning lady. It's an indulgence but two full-time workers gone for 10 hours a day - makes it hard to get anything done well.

Sheila said...

I'm so excited for you! That's now a room that you're actually going to WANT to work in, and you'll keep your bills and papers so much better organized! Way to go!

Sheila from To Love, Honor and Vacuum

Katie said...

I love this space now! Plus, you're a flybaby! Yay! I love your clock idea, as well.

SmallWorld at Home said...

Love it, love it! Those clocks are fantastic.

k said...

Isn't FLYing great?? You did a great job. I too love the clocks.

ter@waaoms said...

great job!