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The Pros Weigh In: Best Organizing Tips

Something about coming out on the other side of the holidays makes me want to purge and organize every year. Do you feel the same way? I thought for this month’s edition of “the Pros Weigh in” – in which we get top tips from a handful of home bloggers – I’d collect some amazingly helpful organizing tips.

Just reading these tips makes me want to get rid of everything around me:

Clutter? GONE!
Important paperwork? Accidentally shredded prematurely!
Sofas? Unnecessary clutter!
Children? Okay, they can stay. Only ’cause they’re cute.
Best organizing tips from top home bloggers!

Here are the best organizing tips from some of my favorite bloggers.

My best organizing tip is kind of preventative. Ready for it?

Keep the main surfaces clear.

It’s a hard one for a girl like me who likes to display pretty things but our coffee table and breakfast table don’t have any designated decorations. That way when we need to use it, it’s ready for us. And they usually have drinks and a computer or card game a few books and crushed goldfish on them anyway, so they rarely look empty.
-Nester @ Nesting Place

My best tip is to use Amazon Prime. Seriously, by not having to think about keeping my house stocked with toilet paper, paper towels, and diapers, I avoid that clutter-causing shopping trip. You know the one where you head to the store with a list of necessities, then leave with new dishes, a tablecloth, toys for your kids and shoes, and somehow no toothpaste?
-Jessica @ Stay-at-home-ista

Use simple baskets from the dollar store to organize spices in a pantry.
(See more on this organized pantry here.)
-Ashley @ Domestic Imperfection

Keep surfaces completely clear when possible.

To keep organized when traveling, I keep various bags around the house that are 90% empty. The 10% includes various items like diapers, chapstick, pens, a little money, etc that I always need. I can grab any of these bags, fill them with what we need for that specific trip and not have to worry about all the little details because they are already hanging out in the bag waiting. It sounds like it would make clutter everywhere, but the 10 or so bags at various entrances makes my life a little easier on an almost a daily basis!
-Amy @ Nest for All Seasons

Have a place for everything. At the end of each day, put everything back in it’s place. If you don’t have a place for something, get rid of it!
-Michelle @ Decor and the Dog

* * *

And one of my favorite tips is:

I also collect brilliant organizing tips on my “Organization Tricks” pinboard. At some point I’m convinced those ideas will leap out of pinterest and into my life.

Now it’s your turn! What’s your BEST organizing tip?

Let's connect


  1. Great tips! Thanks for sharing. I also go to the store for deoderant and toothpaste and come back $100 poorer and don’t have the toothpaste. Glad I’m not the only one. 🙂

  2. Thanks for sharing my wisdom. 😉

    I love the other tips. Way to be organized on the blog front!

  3. Really appreciate you posting this. I am so going to steal…er borrow the pantry basket idea! Brilliant, I tell you. I have a box in the car to take to charity today from my de-cluttering and more to follow. I really like not having every nook and cranny full but still have a way to go. On the surface it looks great, just stay out of closets! lol

  4. love it Kelly! Just what I need getting back into the swing of things!

  5. Yay! I need this inspiration to push me over the edge to purge! Those awesome shelves my dad and I made back in 94′ for my shot glass collection … time to let go and move on!

  6. great tips!! Now, if I can just remember to use them 🙂

  7. I’m totally with you! I just had a massive “throw everything away” moment this morning where my kids cried since they didn’t have their artwork left, but I feel a million times better to have gotten rid of so much paper. New year, new spaces to fill with clutter:)

    • That’s very sad 🙁

    • I scan my kids art work then display in a digital picture frame set to slide show. Everyone is happy. Except the garbage man.

    • I cleaned my son’s room one day when he was at school, and he was so shocked and angry when he came home (you could not walk a straight line in his room before for the clutter) claiming I had gotten rid of all his favorite things. I challenged him to name one thing that was missing and he could have it back. He couldn’t, because I had paid attention to what was REALLY his favorite stuff.

  8. I am so on board with getting organized right now. My favourite tip is to spend 5-10 minutes at the end of each day putting away stuff that has crept out of it’s proper spot. It’s amazing how those few minutes can turn your messy place back into an organized haven. Happy New Year Kelly!

  9. Oh boy do we relate! Actually my husband was feeling this way the past couple of days, he completely organized the laundry cabinets, pantry, AND garage! Haha! I was thinking, “Just stay out of it Anneke, and let him go to town.” These are all great tips! I’m may have to jump on the Amazon Prime thing for those essentials. I think after Christmas and such as time of giving, people feel that need to purge since they’ve been given items. Ours rule is when something comes in, “usually” something needs to go out. Otherwise, you start to get overwhelmed with “stuff”.

    Next up, the bathrooms and closets!

  10. Great tips! I love the idea of shopping on Amazon Prime for your necessities like TP and paper towels cause I’m definitely one of the forgetful/sidetracked ones that walks out of the store with everything except what I need haha

  11. My tip: copy other people’s tips. 😛 I am fairly organized but my desire to organize seems to come in surges as opposed to being consistent in any way. My desk at school is a disaster. I had a student write a story about my desk’s life underneath all of the junk. 😛

  12. Hmmm…. trying to think of a tip. I can’t. So I guess I will have to be the best example of the worst organizer – so don’t listen to anything I say on the subject.


  13. I love these, especially since I am an organized freak attack kind of girl. My tip is simple, but seems so hard for some, especially men…put things away immediately after using them. The minute you put something down and say, I’ll put it away in a minute, it’s over.

  14. Great Tips Kelly! Thanks!

  15. Great tips! I love amazon, so much easier than loading up the kids and hauling them off to the store (that always turns out badly because it’s always somebodies naptime.) Thanks for the feature! I like how mine is one quick sentence, like “BAM, use some pencil holders for spices and your whole house will look amazing”. Booyah.

  16. Yessssssssss great timing -just tossed a whole lot of paper shopping bags, gift boxes, and extra tissue paper this morning!! It was a much needed re-org of a storage area in our basement. Attacking the rest of the basement on the weekend.

  17. I need to get organized so bad…can someone come and do it for me??

  18. I keep thinking that after 25 years of running a household and 20 years of parenting I would have this figured out. Unfortunately, I’m still a work in progress. Teenage slave labor might qualify? 😉
    xo Heidi

  19. Great tips!! I follow the tip about bags that are 10% full (of the little things…) and was always disappointed that I didn’t have the energy to fully ’empty’ a handbag when I was done using it for the day. Now I like the theory! We recently took on organizing our garage and, oh boy, it is so not fun to sort through old stuff. I need tips like this to keep me on top of it all!

  20. These are excellent tips! Seems like everyone has been bit by the organization bug this month! I definitely has!

  21. We have Amazon Prime and use it for lots of things but I never thought to buy grocery stuff there! I WILL be looking into this.

    ps–Love the new pretty watercolor theme of your blog! I almost thought I went to the wrong site. 😛

  22. Happy New Year, Kelly. I can’t think of a better way to start off 2013 than with some organization tips. Now I just have to follow through with them 🙂

  23. I heard that you can use a over-the-door (plastic-pocketed) shoe holder and put it in the pantry with cleaning suppies in the pockets.
    I haven’t been to the store to get one yet, but it sounds like a good idea (especially if there are little kids running around that don’t need to be getting in the cleaning supply cabinet.

    I aslo want to try to find a magnetic keychain for my keys so that when I come home after work, i can stick them to the fridge.

    Good Luck to everyone on your organizing!! I know how hard it can be cuz I live in an apartment right now…..

  24. Henry Lafleur says:

    Great basic tips.

    If you haven’t used an item in a year or two, sell it on Craig’s List or ebay.

  25. Well if you want to be organized, be married to someone who is NOT like my husband! 🙂 It was nice when he had a home office because I could just put all his stuff in there when I got tired of looking at it and close the door. Now that “his” space is an attached storeroom and workroom (think garage-like, but it was never intended to hold a car), I can’t exactly put his stuff in there to get it out of my way. And it is not a matter of giving him designated places to put things, he views all flat spaces as a place to put things! all the griping aside, I love him and he makes awesome things and having a spot to put everyone else’s stuff (the stuff that you don’t want to be responsible for putting away) for them to see they need to deal with is awesome!

  26. Thank you so much for all the great tips! I am having February as my month of organizing and I am super excited to getting organized and (hopefully!) lots of purging

  27. If you commit to getting rid of 1/3 to 1/2 of the stuff that clutters a house in the first place, your organizing will be easy 🙂

    Check out Zero Waste Home and Becoming Minimalist and The Gardener’s Cottage for inspiration.

    Hubby and I have committed to getting rid of half our stuff this year-and since we just moved ( OR-CA) it was easy to jump in…yesterday I did all my Christmas crap-from six boxes to three. It’s very freeing!

  28. Great article! This is the kind of information that are meant to be shared across the internet.
    Shame on the search engines for no longer positioning this put up upper!

    Come on over and talk over with my web site . Thank you =)


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