Tips and Guides

14 Organizing and Storage Tips for the Home

Is clutter taking over your home? Take inspiration from these three storage spaces to put an end to the mess and the madness

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So much stuff, so little space. With living spaces getting smaller and smaller, where does one find enough room to store the essentials of day-to-day living? Not everyone can have a walk-in closet or a kitchen pantry, but we can all pick up a few tips from these bigger storage spaces. 

Styling by Issa Villar and Gwyn GS Guanzon. Photographed by Miguel Nacianceno.

In the Kitchen

The kitchen is the heart of the home--it's where meals are lovingly prepared, and where families often gather to talk about how their day went. If canned goods and mixed-up spices are running rampant in your beloved kitchen, it's time to rein them in. While there isn't always enough space for a pantry, there is always room to get organized.

Use vertical space. With limited space, how can you fit a bulky shelf? The solution is to think vertical. Install as many levels of shelves as possible to hold all your kitchen essentials.

Group like items together. Even though supermarkets have aisles and aisles of merchandise, they hardly look cluttered. Putting the same products together achieves a unified look, so try it in your kitchen--group all canned fruits together on one shelf, canned meat on another, and so on. Make sure the bottom shelf is reserved for heavier items (big cans of cooking oil, for example).

Win, Lose, or Draw. Drawers should be located on the lower levels for easy access. We prefer deep ones because they have more room for items of varying sizes. Drawers are best for irregularly shaped items which may topple over on a shelf. Cushion the insides for breakables.

Hide the unsightly. Little kitchen gadgets tend to crowd kitchen counters. Keep the lightweight ones in cabinets or drawers when not in use.

Closet Storage

Have you ever felt like you had a closet full of nothing to wear? The problem may not be a lack of fashionable options but a disorganized space. Clear out your closet, sort through your stuff, and come up with a system to give everything its own place.

Edit and categorize. First, weed out the stuff you don't use anymore. Divide your remaining clothes by category (e.g., casual tops, office skirts, etc.), then by color (try going in the order of the colors of the rainbow--red, orange, yellow, green, blue, violet--then neutrals: white, gray, black, and brown). You can do the same for shoes. Putting like colors together makes your closet appear less cluttered, and will also help make things easier to find.

Use good quality hangers. Using the same hangers can also make your closet appear more organized. Replace the plastic ones with sturdier ones made of wood. Leave about an inch in between them to keep your clothes from wrinkling.

Use levels. Look into installing wall hooks and multi-level rods to maximize the space.

Take it to the floor! The floor is an overlooked spot in the closet. Use it to hold storage boxes for your bags and accessories.

In the Bathroom

The bathroom has the tendency to be one of the most cluttered areas in the home. Lotions, creams, ointments, cosmetics--all in their own bottles and tubes-take up precious space and add to the visual noise in a bathroom. A homeowner refurbished this old medicine cabinet to keep his bathroom clutter-free.

Store them right. Things to keep in hidden shelves: items that should be kept out of children's reach, items that should not be stored in direct sunlight, and breakable items that would slip out of wet hands.

Keep towels handy. A neat stack of towels is not only useful, but also aesthetically pleasing. It shows guests that you've anticipated their needs, and also provides simple, practical decor in the bathroom.

Use storage baskets. Baskets look so much prettier than plastic storage bins. Use them to hold slippers which would otherwise lie on the floor in disarray, or as clothes hampers.

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