Keep clutter under control with these clever organizing products
I'm always searching for storage products and other organizational tools for my clients. Although I don't think that bins, baskets and shelves alone can solve someone's organizational problems, they are helpful in providing a designated place for belongings. Clutter tends to pile up when people don't know where to put things. As the saying goes, a place for everything and everything in its place.
- The Now You See It Acrylic Shelf Bookcase from Land of Nod ($249, landofnod.com) isn't just for kids' books and toys. Its simple design makes it perfect for bathrooms, offices and family rooms, too. I've recently used these in a basement playroom, hung horizontally, to display Lego projects on the inside and top surfaces, but they can also be hung vertically on a narrow bathroom wall or in an office.
- The Brabantia Stackable Laundry Sorter from Crate & Barrel ($35, crateandbarrel.com) is appealing not so much because it's stackable (although that can be useful when space is at a premium) but because it's easy to use. It has a lid, which I prefer, but you don't have to remove the lid each time you want to put clothes inside. The opening in the front makes it simple to toss in your laundry (especially for kids), and the handles make it easy to pick up and take to the laundry room. And if you want to hide it or put it away, it folds up.
-- I have a Lazy Susan in my spice cabinet, and it works pretty well. However, the bottles occasionally topple over, which can be frustrating. With the Container Store's Clear Linus Divided Lazy Susan ($17-$25, containerstore. com), the contents will stay upright and can be divided into categories. It's useful not only for spices and other kitchen supplies but also for makeup, office supplies and more.
- The versatile Folding Wire Storage Basket from the Container Store ($20, containerstore.com), which folds into at least five shapes and sizes, is perfect for storing all kinds of things, but it also doubles as a piece of art. It can be used as a fruit basket, a container for things such as cloth napkins, a trivet or even a wastebasket. It's fun and functional. And because it folds flat, it's easy to store.
-- Crate & Barrel's Wine-Stem Rack ($50, crateandbarrel.com) is perfect for small kitchens with little storage, but its use doesn't have to be limited to tight spaces. Most people have at least a dozen wine glasses - and usually more - but rarely use more than four at a time. This rack makes the wine and the glasses easy to access and frees up cabinet space for other items that you don't want to display.
-- The Over the Door Mirror With Storage from PBteen ($79, pbteen.com) works well on either side of a closet door. The shelf and hooks provide easy-to-access storage for such things as jewelry and scarves in a bedroom and for perfume, hair products and towels in a bathroom. Despite its name, it doesn't have to be hung on a door - it can also be attached to the wall in a front or back hallway and hold keys, umbrellas, coats and sunglasses. The height is adjustable, making it easy to adapt to your needs.
-- Desk-organizing products are great as long as your desk is large enough that you still have enough room to do work. But if you have a smaller desk without a drawer, the No Nails Fabric Wall Organizer from PBTeen ($49, pbteen.com) will come in handy. Not only can it hold notebooks, pens, pencils, scissors and more, but it can also serve as a display space for photos and keepsakes. And the best part: You don't need any nails to hang it. All it requires are double-sided adhesive strips, and they come with the shelving. Easy.
-- I dislike seeing cords, even when they're organized with ties, clips and labels. The Kvissle lidded box from Ikea ($10, ikea.com) can be used under a desk to conceal cords or on top of a desk as a charging station.
- Anzia is a freelance writer and owner of Neatnik.