Conquer clutter

Do-it-yourself storage projects help you get organized and give your home a new look.

Toss, keep, sell! : the suddenly frugal guide to cleaning out the clutter and cashing in
Leah Ingram.
Avon, Mass. : Adams Media, c2011.
The American house is one cluttered place. Frugal folks need to get their homes in orderandfind ways to make money from the junk they no longer need or want. That's where this book comes in!

Organized by rooms of the house and tasks of the day, this book becomes a veritable clutter checklist. Each chapter in this reader-friendly guide features:

  • Cashing In: A profile of everyday people who have earned big while clearing out
  • Quick Clutter Challenge: Easy ways for you to declutter a space in thirty minutes or less
  • A Keep, Toss, Sell Chart: A visual organizer to help get every room of the house under control
  • Cash Back in This Chapter: What better way to motivate you than to point out potential earnings from one chapter's worth of tips?

You can forget paying big bucks for a professional organizer. With Leah Ingram as your guide, you'll have extra money--and a home you can be proud of--in no time!

Live more, want less : 52 ways to find order in your life
Mary Carlomagno.
North Adams, MA : Storey Pub., c2010.
Strip away the chaos and clutter, freeing space in your life for order and serenity. Mary Carlomagno's 52 WAYS-each featuring a theme for the week and daily practice suggestions-are organizational and inspirational gems, designed to set you on the path toward a more fulfilling life. Less stuff; more time to enjoy the things you love. Book jacket.
200 tips for de-cluttering : room by room, including outdoor spaces and eco tips
Daniela Santos Quartino.
Richmond Hill, Ont. : Firefly Books, 2010.
Practical storage solutions for reducing annoying clutter throughout the home.Household clutter is often caused by a lack of storage or the poor use of existing storage. Room-by-room, 200 Tips for De-cluttering addresses many typical storage problems -- from clothing in the bedroom to gadgets in the kitchen to toys in the living room to newspapers, magazines and remote controls in the family room. For each challenge, the author offers useful solutions that are easy to put into action right away.Color photographs show the beautiful and orderly results of de-cluttering, and helpful captions describe the design features and storage solutions that hide the messiness of life and help keep everything neat and tidy. The projects range from a "kitchen garage" to store small appliances to moveable walls that increase a room's versatility.200 Tips for De-cluttering addresses these problems and many others in an organized way, tackling one area at a time. It covers: Storage inside the house -- kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, living rooms, hallways, awkward corners, garages, gyms, home theaters, playrooms, billiards rooms, music rooms and small spaces, including studio apartments Storage outside the house -- pool areas, porches, patios, balconies, roof gardens, outdoor dining areas, sheds, play areas, parking "Green" tips -- eco-friendly de-cluttering, using green materials and establishing ecologically sound household routinesA directory of resources provides a comprehensive list of retailers and services that specialize in the de-cluttering process.200 Tips for De-cluttering is an easy-to-use, practical guide that helps the home owner or apartment renter streamline their space for easier mess-free living.

And the best part is that in a weekend you can complete projects that add shelves to kitchens or garages, makeover closets, or take the clutter from the home office.

Preparation is one key to a successful project. 

Use the right tools

Before the first board is cut or nail pounded, you will need to:

  • Sketch out the plan
  • Consider the area where you will be working--Is there enough space?
  • Have necessary tools and supplies available

Pay attention to details

Taking time to do the project right is another key. 

  • Build in extra time and materials to practice 
  • Pay attention to the detail and finishing work
  • Expect some things will go wrong or will have to be redone
  • Put safety first.

From quick fixes to creating an entirely new look for any room in the home, creative storage solutions await the weekend do-it-yourselfer.

What are you waiting for?

Article by: St. Louis Public Library staff