Feng Shui Friday

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Well, its been over a month since my last Feng Shui Friday post. I think its because I haven't felt very inspired to get rid of my just-in-case items. Let's face it. I live over an hour from the nearest warehouse store and stocking up "just-in-case" is just a way of life for us.

So, moving on. I need to remember my own advice to Feng Shui "my way", as in make Feng Shui work for me rather than the other way around.

What I need the most and why I started this in the first place is ORGANIZATION. I have lots of organizing projects on my to-do list, so I will just share a little one with you today.

I have a cabinet in our living room that houses my piano, guitar, and flute music, as well as a few photo albums. It was looking a lot messy before (left) and it was hard to find anything when I wanted to play.



The solution was simple (After, right.) During our last visit to Utah I picked up some magazine files at IKEA. I organized my music by category and added labels. (Sorry about the glass glare. Not the best photos. And don't the curtains and carpet add so much??)


I also have several binders that house copies of my favorite songs. Every time I wanted to play from one I had to open each one to find the genre I was looking for.  I can't believe I lived without labels this long. I simply used Hodgepodge Hardware from Stampin' Up! that I had on hand, and glued them to the spine of each one.

I also had some linen albums in my stash, so I switched out a few miscellaneous photo albums for a more uniform look and added labels to these as well.

Simple things like this make me happy. Now it is so easy to find what I am looking for and the shelf looks much more put together in my living room. I have a few more magazine files on my shopping list as I was a little short—and I like to have room for overflow. I hope to raise 3 little musicians so I know there will be lots of additions to our music library!

If you have tackled any organization projects of your own lately, do share and leave a comment below. Happy Friday!

Feng Shui Friday—Challenge #1 Closet Cleanout

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Happy Friday, my friends! Last week I wrote about the first Feng Shui My Way Challenge—Cleaning out your closet. Any closet. I picked my bedroom closet. (And its a good thing I had a deadline for this project, because I waited until yesterday to start it. I think this challenge is going good motivation to tackle some projects that I would otherwise put off indefinitely!)

This is what I started with:

I had 2 bins of clothes on my bedroom floor that I hadn't completely emptied when we moved. Much of it was winter clothes, so I was often digging through it to find things. (Please try to ignore the white dog hair all over these clothes. It is driving me nutso!)

My closet itself wasn't terrible, but it was overfull and still contained a lot of summer clothes.

When I was done it was so much better; much less crowded, and seasonally appropriate. One little trick to share with you: see my boot collection up on top? This Christmas I collected all my empty wrapping paper rolls, cut them in half, and stuffed them inside my tall boots to help them stand up and keep their shape. Something beefier would work better, but for now, this helps tremendously.

Here is the cupboard next to my closet:

I also cleaned out the drawers below it and even emptied an extra drawer for Tom to use.

This project seemd like torture. Not the work itself—that was relatively easy—but the getting rid of things. I have to admit I wasn't as strict as I wish I would have been on purging. When I acquired most of these clothes I had a professional desk job that paid me well, and I wanted to look the part. I spent good money on them, so it made it harder to part with them—even though heels, dress pants, and fancy work clothes no longer fit my lifestyle. I cut myself some slack and will get rid of more things over time.

This is how I tackled the project:

I completely cleared the closet first. See? Here it is looking completely bare.

My intention was to replace those clip thingies with a traditional closet rod. But then I discovered the rods we bought were too long and would need to be cut down. So, the clips remain until my hubby has time to cut the bar and install it.

I sorted all the clothes into piles on my bed:

What didn't go in my closet ended up here:

The bin on the left is full of clothes that don't fit right now. I know you aren't supposed to do this, but I'm sorry—I paid good money for these and I intend to wear them again! My post-baby nursing-momma body can't wear them, but it isn't like I have to lose 50 pounds. Its attainable, and so I will store them until I accomplish this goal. At least they aren't taking space in my closet and making me feel bad every day whe I look at them.

The second bin is summer clothes to store in another closet. I have them all on hangers so they can be swapped out easily in warmer weather.

The bin on the right is clothes and shoes to donate. A good start!

And one more bonus. (Do I get extra credit?) I was on a roll so I organized Tom's closet too. (No before pictures, but trust me—it wasn't pretty.)

I didn't purge anything—I'll leave that up to him—but it is so much neater and hopefully will encourage him to put his clothes away instead of in piles in front of his closet. Yahoo!

The author of 27 Things To Feng Shui Your Home says "Clearing clutter creates space for something new to come in, and what is new can be empowering". Shopping, anyone????? I kid, but as I was going through this process I did reveal a few gaps in my wardrobe and made a list of things that I can concentrate on looking for when I do have a rare moment to shop.

I have so many closets in my home that need this treatment that I am thinking of tackling a different closet every other week (in between my other Feng Shui challenges). If I do I will share it with you.

I hope you will take the Feng Shui challenge and clean out a closet of your own! If you do, leave me a comment below. I will be back next Friday with a new challenge!

Feng Shui Friday

The new year is filled with magazine articles about organization, sales on storage containers of all shapes and sizes, and blogs about getting your life back in order after the holidays. January is a great time to clean out the cobwebs and start afresh. Or, if you're like me, Jaunary is for recovering from the holidays, and FEBRUARY is the time to dig your heels in and start the big clean-out.

Actually, I am a big organizer (at heart) year-round. I daydream about perfectly organized closets and cupboards. In reality, I struggle to acheive it. It takes time to go through everything and get rid of things. Especially after a move and with kids to clean up after on a daily basis.

I have always been intrigued with the concepts of Feng Shui, so I decided to buy an inexpensive little book I once read about on some long-forgotton source: 27 Things to Feng Shui Your Home.

I don't prescribe to the deeper philosophies and religion behind Feng Shui, but at a very basic level, I believe that having an organized space brings peace and positive energy to your home. Having too much clutter wears me down. When I lose track of something it nags at me until I relocate it. Searching through piles to find something is time consuming and frustrating. Thus, getting organized is a mission I will be on for a long time.

I decided it would be fun to use this book as a guide to tackle projects throughout the year. Organization is only part of Feng Shui, however, so many of the items have to do with space clearing and adding positive energy to your home. Some of the 27 things are practical (clean your windows), some a bit more absract (add pink to enhance your love life?). Some I may repeat and some I may skip. In any case, I will find a way to apply them to my home in a practical manner that works for me. That is why it is Feng Shui My Way. If you want to join in, you can apply the projects in a way that suits YOU.

Every other Friday I will post a new Feng Shui My Way assignment. Each Friday in between I will share the project I chose to tackle and invite you to leave a comment about your own experience. You can post the button below on your blog if you would like to follow this project and post about your projects each week!

Use the following URL (/feng-shui-my-way/) to link the button back to the permanent Feng Shui home page on my site (accessible in the menu at the top of this site or by clicking on the Feng Shui My Way button on the right.) There I will keep the information written above and a link to all projects added to date.


And now for the first assignment:


You can choose to clean out any closet, but you should start with the one that is most personal to you. In my case, this is my bedroom closet. That is enough for me to tackle in one week, but if you are particulary ambitious you can move on to other closets, cabinets, or drawers in your house. This is one assignment that is likely to repeated!

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful”

-William Morris

You have heard the saying above, and it is a great guideline to follow as you are cleaning out your closet. My bedroom closet is much smaller than it used to be, as I wrote about here. Half of my clothes are in bins still, and since I haven't completely swapped out my summer clothes for winter clothes, I am often digging through the bins to get what I need. What a mess. My wardrobe needs are also drastically different here on the farm than when I had a desk job. High heels and dress pants are suddenly highly impractical. I think I may have a hard time getting rid of some of the nice clothes from my past, but I certainly don't need them anymore. I am going to pull everything out of my closet and only put back the things that I really love and feel great in, and that fit my lifestyle now. I would love to pare it down enough to fit everything in my closet, but most likely I will store my summer clothes in another spot.

Here are a few links to get you started:

20 Ways to Organize Your Bedroom Closet

Organize Your Closet with 5 Simple Questions

and Dream Closets to Make you Drool!


I do hope you will join me and share your projects. I'll see you back here next Friday with the results!