You, Me, The Dog and 360 square feet

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Cottage

Ever wonder how two professional organizers “make it work” in their very own home? You probably start to imagine thousands of square feet, peppered with beautiful storage spaces and fabulous decor (or at least we hope so!). But in reality, our Oakland home is a mere 360 square feet, and we share it with a little rascal named Sundae.

Who, me?

Who, me?

How do we squeeze it all in and keep sane? By using these simple tips… and remember, whether you have 360 square feet or 3,600 – you’ll find universal truths lurking in each one of these:

1. Consolidate functions. 

You can imagine our kitchen space is limited… and someone’s gotta make dinner for Sundae! Our solution: consolidate. We installed our cooktop on top of our dishwasher, eliminating our oven. Instead of a built-in oven we use a very sleek and modern convection counter top oven that does the trick just fine! Acknowledging what you need and what you can do without will help a space function that much better.

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2. Edit and weed out constantly. Books, paperwork, supplies, dishes, groceries… sigh… can you sense the piles starting to grow? In our home, we like to keep things streamlined – otherwise, the walls start to close in on us. If everything has a place, remember to return it there as often as you are able.

Pantry

Best to always make room for wine.

3. Make space for precious items to shine. We’ve talked about this before (remember those great niches?), but it can’t hurt to remind you. Making room for items that inspire you – like artwork, photographs, and cherished tchotchkes – is essential to turning a house into a home. But feel free to spice it up from time to time by switching out photos and rotating artwork. Make the space truly your own.

4. Have external storage. Beyond your outdoor shed or indoor Rubbermaid container system, consider investing in outside storage. It can certainly feel impossible to have all of your things in one place at one time – and lucky for you, you have options!  We love love love Makespace.com – a company that will actually deliver boxes for you to fill up and then picks those boxes up to store them. As the beloved Barefoot Contessa would say.. How easy is that?

OutsideStorage

5. Keep one space quiet. Quiet from noise, but also quiet from clutter. Even if it’s simply one counter, your bed, or the bathroom – one space should be sacrosanct. In 360 square feet, it is essential that we have a space to quiet our minds – otherwise we’d completely lose them. Before you begin to organize, or attempt a decluttering afternoon, go to this place and take a deep breath. It works wonders.

Sundae prefers under the couch

Sundae prefers under the couch

Got any other helpful tips for making the most of your space? Email us, tweet us @sylviashipshape or post on our facebook wall! We’d love to hear from you!

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