organization

www. Wednesday

Blogger edition!! I’m suffering from major SAD, which is super quelling my writing. My solution has been a lot of reading, so I can cultivate ideas until the winter blues let up. These articles have also helped. Good luck, blogger fam! ❤

+ Chapter Friday’s advice on digging out of a blogging dip // finding motivation again.

+ TSC’s biz plan for those of you who are budding entrepreneurs like myself.

+ Hello Neverland’s recipe for creative productivity.

+ Queen of Jetlags speaks to my heart here with how to be an ORGANIZED blogger, probably the MOST vital key to succeeding. Organize first, then the writing will just come.

+ Couture Girl offers up some great advice about how to grow your audience positively.

+ Another Queen of Jetlags piece about how to invest in your blog without spending too much dough, something I need to learn because I will quickly drop money into this as it’s my passion. Learning to hold back will help.

+ Elle & Co. offers some quick advice on how to find your niche, which frankly, I still struggle with!

My advice? LOTS of french-pressed coffee!

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Master Bathroom Makeover: Phase 1

When we first moved in, the house was in pretty good condition. Buuuuut we couldn’t help but want to make it “us,” so there’s STILL a lot of painting we want to do and additions we want to make. After a ton of moving (think around 40 moves total) between us, we know we should take our time picking the perfect colors/furniture/etc. rather than just slapping a bunch of crap into our house and saying “GREAT!” We’re not 19 in our first college apartments anymore; this ain’t our first rodeo, ya know?

When I move, I move in stages – THREE to be exact. There is the preliminary unpacking/ cleaning/sorta organizing stage where I get it homey enough to not want to hide under a comforter all day. I will ONLY ever show you this stage as a BEFORE picture (see below), so phase 1 is actually step 2 (DURING), and phase 2 is actually the final step (AFTER). KEEP UP, OKAY?! The second stage, the stage I’ll show you today, is the “Alright, let’s get it TRULY organized and start brainstorming schemes.” Sometimes I even work on the schemes during this stage, but it’s a rarity.

Here’s where we were in step one aka BEFORE:IMG_4581.JPGNow we’re in phase 1 (step 2) of the moving in process. This is my “here, I baked you a cake, but I royally fucked up the icing, so come back for the real-deal next week” phase aka DURING:IMG_3971.JPGTo segue from our bedroom, we’re keeping it simple with adding white and black (our bedroom colors) to the already installed brownness of everything in this house (and every other rental house on the planet. Is this some horrific, unspoken rule!?). We kept the shower curtain-free to make the room seem bigger AND so the space wouldn’t feel fabric’ed down since we’d already added this amazing Ikea curtain to cover the large, but awkwardly placed and ugly, shelving space.IMG_3972.JPG

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Hopes for phase 2: white paint, organizational bins in the storage space, and {hopefully} a more bright and welcoming floor aka ANYTHING BUT BROWN/SWINE/TAN/WHAT IS IT WITH YOU AND YOUR HOUSES, AMERICA?!

For phase 2 aka “AFTER”, check back soon! There will even be… GASP!… quality photos from the DSLR.

Little DIY: Necklace Rack

I started making these necklace racks last year. I’ve since made a vertical one to join my horizontal one, but don’t have photos during the moving chaos that has exploded in my apartment.

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It’s as simple as finding your preferred tacks and hammering them into the burlap “canvases.” I prefer the classic metal tack, but I wouldn’t mind trying these Nate Berkus push pins I saw last time I was wandering aimlessly around Target (trying not to buy everything). I also want to give a shot at spray painting the top with some unique Atzec prints!

Unfortch, not everyone has the same love for the c-word as I do.

Unfortch, not everyone has the same love for the c-word as I do.

The burlap canvas is a whole other entry itself, but you can buy them pre-made if you’re low on time! I’ve done it myself, that’s for sure. These are great for displaying art (like in my gallery wall) or turning into frames (as I’ve done for gifts for my friends). Expect to see more detailed and better photographed versions of these little DIYs in the very-near future!!

How-To: Live Together

Cohabitation ain’t easy. It really brings out your inner control-freak diva (both of ya’s) and some tension can form. But if you love each other and you love the space, that eventually fades away. In fact, I think living with a man (and preparing to do so again) taught me a lot of important lessons on how to live in general.

1. You really don’t need all of those clothes.
I know it’s hard to imagine your closet less-than-overflowing or (GASP!) partially empty, but it’s really for the best. My man used to laugh at the sheer volume of clothing in my possession, but I would just retaliate by pointing out that I never, ever had to do laundry. Eventually I realized something about it really was funny, but maybe not in such a good way. Do I really need 5 dresses that don’t fit me anymore? Do I need 10 shirts that are just “okay?” No, no I don’t. I’d much rather launder my special, oft-used pieces than stare in disdain at a 50% lackluster wardrobe. Quality, not quantity. (And god bless the Goodwill trucks!)

2. Organization isn’t just about cleanliness, it’s about efficiency.
I love being organized. (If you’ve ever read this blog, you know I have an inner-voice that might, in reality, be OCD.) I love it because I like the way a space looks when it is in order. However, if aesthetics take precedence over functionality, there’s not much point to organizing at all. A kitchen might look amazing with stacks of rainbow ceramics stacked along the countertop, but what do you really need there? Probably something like a cutting board, not another cute vintage vase. At the end of the day, it’s wasted space if it doesn’t make sense for how you live in it.

3. Neutral isn’t bad.

In fact, neutral is amazing. You might start out with earth tones to please one another, but if you really put in the time, you can makes some beautiful spaces that never cross the color-war border. (I’m still of the school that all colors have at least one hue everyone can love, but that’s a whole other entry, y’all!)

(via flickr)
4. Woman caves are more important than man caves. (Or “Don’t Be Greedy”)

At the end of the day, I would rather have one room all to myself than fight over the rest of the house. Why? Because having one beautiful, perfect space is more important to me and certainly more than enough. Besides the sheer labor required when trying to cram two strong designs into a whole house full of rooms, it’s just greedy. Each person should get their own, independent space to decorate where they can be completely themselves. The rest of the shared house space can be that easy, clean, and beautiful neutral I mentioned a minute ago.

5. Compromise.

Contrary to a bad stereotype, not all men have poor taste. In fact, some of them have pretty amazing input. The only problem is when two people have strong opinions, sometimes things get messy or left undone in order to end the design debate. The tried and true art of compromising is really all you can do. I’ve learned that I don’t need to control as much of a design as I’d thought. I’ve learned that I don’t necessarily have the best ideas out of all the ideas all the time. I’ve learned that purging yourself of things is good and all it does is make way for better things. Compromising can teach you a lot about your partner, but most importantly, it teaches you about yourself.

Thanks to a headstrong partner, I’ve come to the table with a very clear vision of what I love, and a much better grasp on flexibility, simplicity, and form.

 
What did you do when you moved in with your partner? Any better tips out there?