When you’ve gotta get your house organized - and fast! - you don’t want to lay hands on everything you own, or ask if those objects have brought you joy. You just want to clear clutter with a minimum of fuss and muss.
#1 Put Jewelry in Ice Cube Trays Stack a couple in a vanity drawer for a super cheap solution to your tangled heap of earrings and necklaces. You can
get a pack of three for less than your daily coffee fix (less than $3). Not only will your bling be tidy, you’ll also be prepared
if your icemaker dies.
#2 Hang Scarves With Shower Curtain Rings Stop neckwear chaos in your closet with a clothes hanger and a pack of cheap shower curtain rings. Pull your scarves out of the drawer (or corner) they’re stuffed in, and string them on the rings. Twelve plastic ones cost $4 to $8. For a sleeker look, go with metal rings. Ooo. Fancy.
#3 Suspend Shower Supplies From a Tension Rod They’re good for more than shower curtains. Use shower curtain rings to hang baskets for small stuff like razors or soap, and shower clip rings for larger items. Just make sure the rod is sturdy enough to hold the weight of the bottles.
#4 Tame the Freezer With Magazine Organizers Stop those pell-mell piles of frozen food from tumbling out on the kitchen floor. Pick up some magazine organizers from an office supply store, and put your pizzas, popsicles, and Eggos in them. Use plastic ones that can stand up to leaking cartons of Ben and Jerry’s and other gooey messes.
#5 Store Bobby Pins on a Magnetic Strip Corral your hair pins by sticking a magnetic strip inside your vanity drawer and putting your pins on it. A roll of 1-inch-wide, adhesive-backed magnet tape sells for about $7. You can also store barrettes and small tweezers this way.
#6 Slip a CD Holder Into a Cabinet to Organize Plastic Lids Arrange them from smallest to largest so you can grab the one you need, fast. If you can’t find a CD rack (which is possible because, iTunes), use a desktop letter organizer.
#7 Tame Cords and Cables With Toilet Paper Rolls How simple is this? Coil cable, put it into the roll, and write the type of cable on the roll. Then you can decorate with washi tape so it looks less toilet paper roll-y, and you’ve escaped cord chaos. The cost of this hack is zero, because you’re buying toilet paper anyway.
#8 Hang Measuring Cups, Spoons Inside a Cabinet Door Get your measuring utensils out of the drawer and at your fingertips. Coat the door with chalkboard paint so you can label them by size and scribble a handy-dandy measuring equivalent chart. Be sure your measuring utensils have holes in the handles so you can hang them.
#9 Stash Your Styling Tools in a Wire Basket Put it on the side of your vanity to keep your hair appliances and their cords contained and at the ready. Use hooks with suction cups so you won’t damage your cabinet with nails or adhesive. And be sure to use a metal holder so you can put your flat iron back while it’s cooling. Because plastic melts.
#10 Hang Shower Supplies With Suction Cup Hooks and Hair Bands Round up that sloppy gaggle of bottles and razors in your shower with this cheap-as-dirt-storage hack. Be sure to get hooks rated to hold at least a pound so you can hang a full-sized bottle of shampoo.
#11 Whip a Drawer Into Shape With an Egg Carton Use of all your eggs to make omelets, then fill the empty carton with the contents of your junk drawer. The carton’s biodegradable, so you won’t be adding to the planet’s glut of plastic. A dozen eggs is $2 to $4, and the carton’s free. If you’re a vegan with messy drawers, go with tip No. 1 above.
Leanne Potts is an Atlanta-based journalist and serial home remodeler. She's tackled five fixer-uppers and is working on a sixth. She's written about everything from forest fires to dog-friendly decor and spent a decade leading the digital staff of HGTV.