My go-to tools for organizing any space!
A: Antibacterial soap
I keep a bottle clipped to my work bag, one in my car and one in my purse. Organizing some spaces in homes can be grimier than others so having my hand soap handy is a lifesaver. I gave this kind to my son's teachers this year as holiday gifts.
B: Binder clips
Look beyond paperwork for these guys. You can clip them to the front of a cubby or shelf and stick a label on the clip part. They can be helpful with keeping electronics chords untangled. Use them in the pantry as chip clips or to keep spice packets together.
In terms of time management you NEED a calendar. Whether electronic, a wall mounted or a paper planner, pick a tool that works for you and stick with it. I'm a paper-loving person myself so I have a week-at-a-glance planner that I keep in my bag.
D: Dividers for closets
I just ordered a set of these as a gift for a client as we were working on her closet during our last session. These dividers can be labeled with your various garments (shirts, pants, jeans), or by seasons (summer, spring, fall) or by sizes (3T, 4T, 5T), etc.
E: EZ Reacher
When working with people who struggle with mobility, having one of these grabbers is ideal for reaching up high or down low.
I love a good folder system when organizing paperwork. One of my favorite brands is Smead and they have these great vertical file folders. With the horizontal ones, documents typically fall out and aren't as secure in the folder. With these vertical ones paper tends to stay put and they give you the option to label on the top or side.
G: Garbage bags
Not very glamorous, I know, but garbage bags are your best friend. When working with clients I have a color coding system: clear or white ones are for items to be kept or donated and dark bags are for the trash and garbage. I tell my clients remember dark for debris! I'm partial to Hefty as they have tear and puncture resistant varieties.
Let me be more specific, Command hooks are the way to go! They're a dream and come in a multitude of sizes, finishes and varying degrees of strength in terms of weight they can hold. I've turned many a client on to these little gems.
I: iPod boxes
I was turned on to this tip by Marie Kondo of the Netflix series and well-known Konmari method. She states that the boxes that Apple products come in are the perfect size for using as drawer dividers. Not to mention they're a simple white color and very sturdy.
J: Junk drawer organizer
Let's be honest, we usually have that one drawer in the kitchen that's a little unruly shall we say? I prefer to call it a utility drawer as opposed to the junk drawer, but you know what I'm talking about. They actually make these drawer inserts with compartments and two-tiers to help you better organize all the junk drawer things. It's like magic!
K: Keepy app
I work with a lot of parents who treasure their kids' artwork, schoolwork, photos, awards, etc. But where to store all of it? That's where the Keepy app comes in. It works with both Apple and Android.
L: Labels/Label maker
Not everyone is a fan of label makers and I get it. I'm partial to my Brother P-Touch, but they're not for everybody. What I will say is that labels, in any form, can help you keep some semblance of organization and I highly recommend them. Even if it's just a piece of masking tape written on with marker, a mailing label, or a photograph of the contents taped to the side of the box - these all help in telling you where things go and what's inside.
M: Magazine files
Magazine holders, not just for magazines! I assure you, there are countless ways to use these document holders for everything from canned goods to cutting boards to craft supplies. They're inexpensive, come in an array of colors and materials, and can be used just about anywhere.
N: Nite Ize gear ties
These reusable, rubber twist ties have endless uses. They're durable, waterproof, and come in many sizes and colors. Use them for your garden hose, to keep your ski poles together, or to keep chords organized.
O: Over-the-door shoe organizers
I love the clear ones that can be used for shoes, socks, toiletries, yarn, school supplies, tools, toys, you name it. I'm always a fan of using vertical space and the space behind doors is prime real estate.
P: Painter's tape
There's no painting happening as a Pro Organizer, but I do use this tape. It's perfect for making temporary labels, to mark off where furniture should go in a room, or I've been known to make big x's on a cleared space as a visual reminder for folks not to clutter-up their newly cleared surface.
Q: Quaker chewy granola bars
Organizing makes me hungry and these are the perfect grab and go snack. I'm partial to the chocolate chip and peanut butter variety. I make sure to check in with clients on any food allergies before I start munching.
R: Retractable Sharpie Markers
I hate losing the covers to markers, but with retractable options, that's not possible. Sharpie makes these retractable versions in various colors.
S: Step stool
Out of all my favorite tools, this one I use the most. Often times I work in homes with extreme clutter with nowhere to sit. Having my trusty collapsible step stool provides me with a seat. Not to mention it helps when I'm working in kitchens with hard to reach cabinets.
T: Tape measure
It's always smart to have a tape measure with you to make sure containers will fit in drawers, closets and cubbies. I grabbed mine for 99-cents from Ikea and it's been holding strong. Of course, you could head to one of the home improvement stores to get a super sturdy one.
U: Underbed storage bags
I'm not a huge fan of storing things under the bed. My colleague who's a feng shui expert states it blocks the chi (energy flow) in a room and I tend to believe that. But if you're tight on storage, using an underbed bag is a good option for off-season clothing, extra bed linens, or shoes.
V: Velvet hangers
Slim, velvet hangers triple your closet space. They grip clothes better and can hang everything from suit jackets to delicate dresses.
W: Washi tape
This stretchy, re-positionable tape is great for labeling. You can also use it to dress up boring storage containers or stick it in your paper planner to have important dates and appointments pop out.
X: X-acto blade
These utility knives are perfect for cutting through cardboard. I've cut through many a stack of QVC and Amazon boxes cluttering up the entryway to break them down to fit in the recycling bin.
Y: Y-weave storage baskets
These stylish plastic containers are great to use in any room of the house. They come in different colors and look basket-like so you can leave them on display. They're made of plastic which makes them easy to clean and lightweight to lift.
Z: Ziploc bags
I keep a box of gallon size and a box of quart size in my work tote and I go through them! They're great for puzzle pieces and doll accessories in the toy room, travel size toiletries and cotton balls in the bathroom, and small office supplies in a work space.
What are some of your go-to tools for organizing a space?
Did any of my items surprise you?