The adage, "a place for everything and everything in its place" could help all of us when it comes to keeping our homes, offices, and other spaces clean and organized. And with autumn upon us and the holidays not far behind, now is the time to use the brisk, breezy days to get some heavy cleaning done inside or wrap up your outdoor spaces for the winter.
"Some people don't have any idea how to get organized; others really are well organized but have an event in life that's really overwhelmed them," said Jeanne Hink, owner of The Right Sort, a professional organizing and move management business in Hermitage, Pa.
Hink began her business after helping a friend downsize and move; since then she has built a business helping people organize their cluttered offices, make order of their closets or move entire households.
Margie DeScenna and Danielle Foskie, owners of Tribune Chronicle photos / Melissa Miller
Orderly Fashion, show an organized closet using techniques they say will help make it easier to get dressed every day. Orderly Fashion is located in Hartford.
Lisa Dickson, owner of Decorating in A Day, looks over some fabric samples for a client in her home office.
Making what you have more accessible is the specialty of two local women who recently started a business called Orderly Fashion. Margie DeScenna and Danielle Foskie work with what you have and help you get your storage spaces in order.
"We organize what you have with products you can buy at any hardware store," said DeScenna. "Having things look organized and attractive makes it so much easier to get out the door in the morning."
The owners of Orderly Fashion believe that once you get your things in shape it's not such a job to keep them that way. Hink offers the same advice for other spaces.
Decorating in a Day, Lisa Dickson, 330-448-4330
The Right Sort, Jeanne Hink, 724-346-3630
Orderly Fashion, Margie DeScenna and Danielle Foskie, firstname.lastname@example.org, 330-772-0006
"Especially in this economy, when a number of people are operating a business out of their home, this brings about a new set of challenges for keeping organized," said Hink in emphasizing the need for office organization.
Hink says we need to re-think how to file, who needs access to files, and how to establish a filing or "finding" system. "Everyone thinks differently," said Hink. "So is that receipt filed under "car" or "automobile" or "Toyota?" She's currently advocating a numerical system for office filing using keyword attachments.
Organized closets, tidy garages and workbenches are awe-inspiring, but the process can be daunting for most of us.
"Go through every closet, drawer and cupboard and do something with the contents," advises Lisa Dickson, owner of Decorating in a Day located in Brookfield and serving the local Ohio and Pennsylvania areas. "Pack it up, donate it, give it away or throw it away."
Foskie says their service helps people "throw away that dress from the '80s they have in their closet." She emphasizes that knowing what you have keeps you from making purchases you don't really need and ends up saving money. "Our slogan at Orderly Fashion is 'you really do have something to wear!'" said Foskie.
Dickson's business offers moving and downsizing coordination, interior redesign services using your own furniture and accessories and real estate staging to prepare a property for sale.
"Talk to your kids to see if they want stuff," Dickson advises baby boomers looking to edit some of their possessions. "Ask yourself if someone else who really needs it could make use of it."
So many of us have too much furniture or inherited furniture we have difficulty finding a way to use. Too much furniture makes rooms look smaller, according to Dickson.
Dickson believes redesign services are popular now since fewer people can afford to build a new home and are spending more time at home rather than going out or going on vacations. "They are trying to make the space exactly what they want," said Dickson. "I can help a client take a room that has bogged them down and make it into a space they love to come home to."
So, as the weather cools off and we get ready to spend lots more time indoors, take some tips from these professionals to get and keep your home in the best possible condition.