Sunday, April 6, 2014
Small Space Organizing
A week after the email my copy arrived and I couldn’t wait to get into it. Kathryn’s style is that of an approachable and supportive friend, and the personal and pretty way in which her book is written reminds me a little of Alexandra Stoddard.
There are two ways to read this book. The first is to start at the beginning – Kathryn’s introduction immediately is warm and friendly and fun to read, it makes you want to carry on. The other way is to look up an area you need help with, for example the laundry or the master wardrobe.
I know I need to do something about my wardrobe but it seems overwhelming right now. Starting on the wardrobe chapter it is like Kathryn is there with me and helping me see where to start. I love that!
In fact, straight away I thought of an answer to a problem my husband was having with the belts he wore on a regular basis. We have a shared belt hanger that was rather full. And with us both using it, he would get frustrated at having to unearth a belt he wanted to use. Over the past months I noticed he was leaving his belts out on a chair to have easy access to. They looked messy but the other way wasn’t working.
It seems like such common sense now, but after reading some of the wardrobe chapter I thought about using hooks in the wardrobe for his belts. He has five belts so I bought two large-size 3M hooks from the supermarket and stuck them up inside his side of the wardrobe. They were an instant hit and the belts are always hanging there. It’s little things like this that make your life easier. My goal is to find all those spots in our house!
And of course I decluttered quite a few belts from both of us at the same time, so my belt hanger is looking rather swish too.
As you might have guessed, Small Space Organizing is very motivating. I can’t finish reading a chapter without getting up to go and put an idea into practice.
I decluttered more books and magazines, so that a tall and skinny cube shelving unit could be repurposed from my sewing room into our ensuite bathroom. It looks fabulous there and now I have towels, hand-towels, flannels and body products handy, rather than running downstairs. It looks so at home in its new spot that I can’t believe I didn’t do it before, but it was something in one of the chapters that made me start thinking about moving things around.
Thanks to this book I have finally gone through my sewing room and decided what crafts I really love. I’ve never thought of decluttering actual craft categories before, but whenever I went into my sewing room I felt overwhelmed at all the possibilities, and also guilt at not want to get stuck into any of them (when they used to be my greatest joy and comfort).
I chose to keep knitting and sewing, and decluttered all my embroidery goodies which my two young nieces are looking through. The eldest is seven, and is only a little younger than I am when I first started playing around with hand-sewing and embroidery.
My sewing room is now more streamlined and I actually want to go in there to potter which I am very happy about.
One thing I love about Small Space Organizing is that it has no pictures. Words always let me think about my house, my situation and my life. I can more easily visualize my solutions when there aren’t other (perfect) houses making me feel dissatisfied. And of course pictures date over time, whereas a book like this is timeless, because the ideas and principles are.
With any possible book purchase, I like to test-drive them first. If you think you would enjoy this book, you can either ‘have a look inside’ on Amazon, or order it from your library. If your library doesn’t have this title, request that they order it in.
Our library offers this service online, but if yours doesn’t, speak to a librarian next time you’re in. It’s a great way to preview a book and see if it would be helpful to you, and it introduces the book to other readers as well. One of our librarians told me they have a certain budget they have to spend on books each year and that they love it when people request titles be purchased.
So thank you to Kathryn Bechen for sending me your book, I know it will be well-used. In fact it is already looking a little 'ruffled' from frequent reference. I’m sure my chic readers will get plenty of inspiration and loads of ideas from it too.