We recently ran an article on organizing small spaces in our print edition, featuring tips from our amazing professional organizers Allison Weigensberg of Everything In Place and Mylène Houle Morency of FLO Organisation. Here are their suggestions for organizing kitchens and bathrooms in modest homes.
“I love the use of risers. Shelves are quite distanced in the kitchen, so imagine one shelf for dishes and one for glassware. Don’t stack too many things on top of each other. Use mini shelving units within one shelf. Take advantage of vertical space as much as possible on the inside of cabinets. Slide-out drawers will use a lot of horizontal space. Repurpose mesh magazine racks from IKEA – you can store onions vertically next to other dry goods, put potatoes in another. Think outside the box with the accessories you may have.” – Mylene
“Most kitchens are built with shelves that are adjustable! I’ve had a few clients who had been in their homes for quite some time and didn’t even realize they could adjust those shelves. Sometimes when you’re in your space for a really long time it’s hard to have a fresh perspective (which is why it’s great to have a professional organizer come in!). Another spot people often forget to use is inside of cupboard doors, like pantry doors. Use a command hook and binder clip to store dish gloves or post menus, or install magnetic strips for spice jars. You can also find built-in small item shelves right on the door that don’t interfere with the bigger shelves. Baskets make sense as well – you need to see what you have so you’re not buying more. Group food items or accessories into categories and have them in a contained space where you can see what you have and easily assess those items.” – Allison
“Question the number of products you actually need to use – maybe there are a kazillion bottles of shampoo that have not been used up but have been sitting there for many months – so if you’re not using it, pare things down and keep what you are actually using. Otherwise it’s just noise occupying the space without you planning on doing anything with it. I also love three-tier multipurpose carts – it can be a bar cart in the living room, a homework station in the dining room, etc.” – Mylene
“You want to maximize vertical space in the bathroom. I use a lot of shelving units above the toilet. In my bathroom it’s very open – we don’t have any closed storage but we have baskets instead. It forces me to keep only the essentials in there (I don’t store medication in the bathroom because, with the humidity and temperatures, it’s not recommended). It forces you to rethink what your priorities are. The only things that should be kept in the bathroom is the stuff you use every day. All I have on my counter is toothbrushes and toothpaste, and some shaving stuff underneath – everything else I keep in the linen closet and you take it as you need it. It forces yourself to finish the old one first before bringing something else in. Recently I bought an over-the-showerhead hanger for razors and soaps, and I make sure things are accessible at everyone’s heights, including my kids. Finally, hooks are such a big thing in the bathroom for towels and poofs. I use damage-free ones that work on any surface, including on the tiles. It gets things up and off the surfaces.” – Allison
As a Professional Organizer and owner of Everything In Place, Allison Weigensberg has a passion for a minimalistic approach to organization and decluttering. She loves to share the tips and tricks she has implemented in her own life, with her clients and Suburban readers.
Mylène Houle Morency is a professional organizer, speaker and owner of FLO Organisation, which specializes in organizing families with children ranging from newborn to the teenage years. She has the firm conviction that organized homes help parents become the parents they want to be, by freeing up time and diminishing stress. She has the privilege to lovingly test all her theories and organization inspirations on her husband and three children!