While I’ve never claimed to be perfectly organized, I know that as Professional Organizer any type of disorganization on my part is often frowned upon. That’s why I recently shared the “dark” secret of my most disorganized space (my garage) and the story behind it. Now I’m revealing my second most disorganized space – my jewlery storage – and showing you exactly how I organized it, and spent less than $5 in the process!
My hidden jewelry
When we moved into our new house 2 1/2 years ago, one of my biggest issues was how to store my jewelry. In my old house my husband had built a pegboard storage system in my closet so I could easily choose which pieces of jewelry I wanted to accessorize my outfits with. Sadly, I didn’t get to bring that pegboard system with me to my new house.
I didn’t sulk over it too long because I assumed I would just go back to the hardware store and start over with a new pegboard. However, my new closet and bathroom configuration didn’t leave any wall space for a jewelry pegboard organizer. So rather than come up with an alternate solution, I simply stashed my jewelry in a cabinet and left it there.
A tangled mess
There were several problems with my lazy solution:
- The storage unit where I haphazardly threw my jewelry had doors on it so I never saw my jewelry. Out of sight meant out of mind, and because I never saw my pieces, I never wore them.
- Because I didn’t take the time to lay out my jewelry, it became a tangled mess, giving me another reason not to wear any of it.
- Clutter expands to the space you give it. Because I just threw my jewelry into the first available space I could find, it somehow took over more space than I had originally intended and seemed to be everywhere.
Here’s a picture of the chaos known as my jewelry storage:
Frustrated by all the mess, I knew it was time for me to do something.
A jewelry storage makeover
With my limited options I had to think of a solution that would work in the space I had, without breaking the bank.
As I surveyed both my closet and my bathroom space, I knew that the only real choice for me was to take advantage of any vertical space I could find. The bathroom had none available so the closet was my only hope for a solution.
The back of my closet door would have been the ideal location for an over-the-door organizer to hang my jewelry, but my closet doors are unusually tall and no commercial organizer from Elfa or Closetmaid would work for me. With the back of the doors no longer an option, I started looking at what other vertical space I had in my closet. My only other choices were the sides of the built-in shelving units.
When I told my husband about my idea to hang a pegboard system on the side of one of the built-in shelving units, he wasn’t fond of that idea. Although he wanted me to have an organized jewelry system, he didn’t really want me drilling holes into the units to make that happen.
Another plan shot down.
So I went back to the drawing board. I considered quite a few options until I realized that I was making it more complicated than it needed to be. After several days of looking online and just staring at the space I had, I came up with an idea that wouldn’t cost me much money and would allow me to repurpose some items I already had around my house!
From mess to magic: the process of getting organized
The answer to my messy jewelry problem came in the form of Command Hooks. I knew that they came in a variety of colors and sizes and would allow me to hang my jewelry on the side of the built-ins without causing any damage to the surface. So I decided to purchase a package of small, clear Command Hooks to start.
While I was at the grocery store I decided to pick up a package of the hooks there. The only package option that was available was a 6-count, so I grabbed two packages. Fortuntely for me, the Command Hooks were on sale that day – buy one, get one free! So I was able to spend $3 ($2.88 + tax) for 12 hooks.
With my purchases complete, I set out to restore order to my beautiful jewelry once again.
First I pulled all my jewelry out of it’s dark dungeon and placed it on a work space:
Next, I sorted all the pieces into like groups (by style and by color). Then I purged the pieces I no longer liked, used, or that were broken, and set them aside for either donation or the trash.
Once I knew the amount of jewelry I had left, I could then determine the best way to organize and store them on the wall. I laid everything out like it would be on the wall and measured to make sure I had everything spaced out properly. Once I was certain everything was the way I wanted it, I put the hooks in place on the side of the built-in:
Once I was sure the hooks were secure, I brought in my jewelry and hung up all my pieces:
Now that the necklaces were take care of, I needed to focus my attention on my bracelets and earrings. I remembered that my daughter had a bracelet holder in her bedroom that she left behind when she went to college. It hadn’t been used in over a year, so I dusted it off and decided to give it new life in my closet. For my earrings, I placed them in a small decorative bowl my daughter had made me.
The only problem was I didn’t have a flat surface in my closet to set the bracelet holder or the earring bowl. Then I remembered I had a small table outside that wasn’t getting much use and decided it would fit perfectly up against the built-ins. Thankfully it did, and this is how it looked:
And here’s one final picture of it all together:
I absolutely love my new jewelry storage! Not only does it look great, but I feel so much better having my jewelry out so I can see the pieces I have and actually wear them. Afer 2 1/2 years, my frustration has finally been alleviated.
In the end, I was able to create a jewelry storage system that only cost me a few bucks, I was able to use and repurpose items that weren’t getting much mileage in my house anyway, and I only spent about 30 minutes total on the entire project. I honestly don’t know why it took me so long to get my jewelry organized, I’m just glad that it is!
“It seems impossible until it’s done.” – Nelson Mandela
How could my jewelry storage makeover encourage or inspire you to deal
with one of your less-than-organized spaces?