client beforeS & afters
CAUTION: My photos are all authentic. Be mindful when looking at organizers' websites that many of their photos are obvious stock photos, or "beauty" shots. I have worked in multi-million dollar homes and do not often see the storage infrastructure that is often portrayed on some organizers' websites. Few people have closets/drawers that resemble those in magazines/online. The goal is to set up a space that works well for your needs and not one that looks like an ad for The Container Store.
Read below to find out more about each project!
This boutique investment bank is growing fast and
needed its office supplies and corporate events/promotions closets and mail station revamped to accommodate the growth.
Fortunately, the space was good and they already had some Metro shelving in place.
The primary objective of the 2-1/2 day organizing session was to purge, consolidate, label and archive, thereby making it easier and roomier for employees to access what they needed quickly.
Once organized, the closets were also a lot easier on the eye and removed the sense of dread when entering to look for something.
It was a fun place to work. Everybody was very nice to me and very grateful for the big improvements.
I hope to go back at some other time for another round.
This man is running his business and raising
two kids in a large studio. I had worked with
him a few weeks earlier setting up the living area.
This time, we concentrated on organizing
and setting up systems for his professional equipment and thereby clearing the table for eating and homework. It was New Year's Eve.
I had no idea we would go for 12 straight hours
and finish at exactly 5 minutes to midnight,
just in time for a toast to his new Zen-ed
Living Room Office
This client has two desks -- one for her business and one for her creative writing. Due to a thriving business, she had neglected her mail and filing for quite some time. Papers were in more piles than
the below photo shows.
In four hours, we managed to pull all the papers together and do the bulk of the sorting and tossing.
Both desks had clean surfaces and my client could now resume her creative writing at her desk in the window, and manage her business more efficiently from her other desk.
This client owns a high end women’s clothing boutique in Manhattan. She loves clothes. As expected, she walks the talk and wears lots of what she sells. She has beautiful California Closets which make it a real pleasure to work with. And she has the luxury of being able to store her off-season clothes with a friend. The challenge is to keep after her!! She is ALways bringing home new clothes! On this particular day, I set up her winter clothes closet for the season – sweaters by weight and color, t-shirts by sleeve length and color, et al. I capped it all off by creating a laminated color-coded diagram of her closet so that she would know exactly what to put back where.
This woman's 6'8" boyfriend moved into her studio apartment and his supersized clothes and shoes were taking over.
After purging the clothes, shoes and odd hangers, the smartest change was to remove the door from the hinges because it was causing blockage.
Instead of tossing the door, I put it up against the wall near the closet because it held the shoe bag and actually added a bit of character to the area.
This client had a black belt in linen shopping! Although it was just her and her husband in the house and occasional company, she had stocked up for an army. Besides what was in the closet, there was that much more downstairs and also in a large trunk.
In five hours, we purged about 75% from the inventory and made piles for the the Haiti Relief Fund at her husband's office, and for friends and relatives. I then prepared complete king vs. queen sheet sets (flat, fitted, cases, duvet cover) so my client can just grab and go. Same with the towel sets. Miscellaneous toiletries were moved out of the closet.
This same client (with the linen closet) wanted to make her temporary kitchen more user friendly until such time as it moved downstairs as part of an entire apartment renovation. She has no cabinets -- only two Metro shelving units and a large antique cabinet acting as the pantry.
There was zero counter space. To create some, we found an industrial metal table in another part of her apartment that fit purr-fectly to the left of her sink. She now has a surface to drain dishes and prep. We rolled the Metro shelving unit to the other side of the kitchen to join the unit already there. To make room, we moved the console out into another room. To create even more prep space, I covered the two stove burners on the right with a large cutting board.
We purged and with the new space we created, we were able to find homes for a small wine collection, kitchen towels, foils, wraps and baggies, paper goods, and cookware.
We emptied out the pantry then sorted, purged, consolidated, and labeled all containers.
I recommended she install two shelves above her sink (for easy access to dishes, glasses, cups, etc.) and a long strip light underneath. I also suggested she invest in a large clear lazy susan for her many cooking oils. Both items are available at Bed, Bath & Beyond.
The kitchen makeover took about 8 hours to complete.
Home Office Renewed!
This client's primary office is at home when he is not out in the field or traveling. It is a large closet which he has fashioned into an office. He had reached a stage where his productivity was suffering because he could not easily find important documents. He had a tiny desk with no surface to work on. He had set up a TV tray in the office for the spillover but it was a floor space hog and not helping.
The primary objective of this organizing session was to create surfaces for him to spread out on by purging and tweaking.
My goal was also to create more floor space. And overall, I wanted him to have a more harmonious and less claustrophobic place to work in.
Once we purged, consolidated (likes with likes) and tweaked, I was able to create a long surface within reach of his desk to put his active files on. To keep the floor space free, I suggested replacing the 2 floor lamps with something sleeker and less intrusive -- perhaps wall sconces or a pole lamp. And, of course, the TV tray had to go!
We worked frantically and got it all done in 5 hours!! Now his office is peaceful and under control.
NEW CLOSET CREATED
This client is a yoga instructor living in a medium-sized studio apartment in Midtown West. He initially asked for suggestions for filing cabinets in anticipation of a non-profit he was launching.
Once I saw his apartment, I knew he was a perfect candidate to "zen" his apartment.
I created a curtained closet along one long wall to contain not only his file cabinets (which I had him buy on sale from The Container Store) but books, TV, printer, and even clothing. I directed him to a sale on Elfa shelving which he purchased and installed himself. The initial result was spectacular! And his office space is now so much more spacious. He has more work to do on the interior of the closet but is now ready to open his doors for business and is enjoying the new peace and calm the decluttering has brought him.
New Closet Created Before
New Closet Created After #1
New Closet Created After #2
New Closet Created After #3
This client has two young boys who share a small room reflecting active lives and many bountiful birthday parties. Toys, games, books, costumes, sports equipment, trophies and art supplies were stashed everywhere.
We started with the large shelving unit and worked our way across the room -- sorting and purging. Six hours later, the room was inviting and the boys could now sit at their desks and do homework or arts and
crafts -- and probably sleep a lot better since clutter affects sleep quality in adults and children and even babies.