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Organizing Tips From Our Professionals

Stop Buying Containers!

One of the first topics my clients and I often discuss is containers.  I have encountered countless clients who have stacks of tubs, sometimes filled with things and sometimes not.  I think we can all agree that there is a lure to the idea that "If I just get a few pretty containers- I can be organized!"  

While I love visiting The Container Store just as much as many of you, it's important not to purchase containers too early in the organizing process or you'll simply end up wasting your money.  Consider this basic idea: how could you possibly know what size container you will need when you have not identified the contents that need a home?    Clients who purchase containers too early in the process often have one of two problems:

1)The container they purchased for the space is ultimately too small for the contents.  Sometimes we come across other like items scattered across the home or space in other areas. By the time we put them together, the container is no longer suited for the objects.

2)The container purchased for the objects is too big.  Perhaps a client has 20 sweaters.  After we sort and purge, the client realizes that they only need to keep 10 of the sweaters.  Now we are potentially wasting valuable storage space that the oversized bin will occupy.

There are certainly other container related issues that can arise too.  A client might find a set of bins and purchase the set.  After working together, we might decide to expand the set and sometimes matching bins are no longer available.  

If I could offer one piece of advice around containers it would be this: Stop buying containers before you are ready!    Before advising clients to go out and purchase containers, we often "go shopping" in their homes using only containers we have emptied or found during our process.  Heeding this advice will certainly save you time and money.