Clearing Closet Clutter
Will the Goldenberg family be overrun by their closets?
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Beth and Rick Goldenberg's house is filled with clutter, especially the closets, which are filled to overflowing. They are quite busy running their entertainment company and keeping up with two active children, so they don't have a lot of extra time to devote to organizing.
They're ready to close the door on their closet clutter, and professional organizer Ellen Faye is there to step up and lend a hand.
The plan is to make each member of the family's closets more organized and easier to use. With four closets to rebuild, she suggests that they do some of the work themselves to save money. Rick seems a bit skeptical at first, but Ellen says she can teach them everything they need to know.
The largest in the house at 80 inches long and 72 inches wide, the walk-in closet contains Beth's clothes, shoes and even a few of the kids' toys strewn about on the floor. Rick has been allotted a small area on the bottom rack, tucked underneath and behind Beth's things. Ellensuggests that this closet become Beth's alone and that a separate space is arranged for Rick.
It's easy to hide clutter behind closed closet doors, but once the door is opened chaos abounds. Everything is so packed in there, including some birthday ballons, there isn't room for another item. Since there isn't room on the racks, clothes are just piled on the floor with various pairs of shoes.
The space needs a complete overhaul, and Ellen plans to make it happen with a custom-designed closet system. She brings in shelving pro Mark Mann to help with the design and do the construction. Though it's pricey, it comes with a lifetime warranty.
Hours of massive sorting and installation time later, Beth's new custom closet is neat and organized.Double hanging bars on one side and additional shelves on the other provide plenty of room for her things, and a stepping stool helps her reach it all. Hatboxes hold items that aren't used often, while the shelves at right keep everyday sweaters at arm's length. There's even a built-in laundry basket and new shoe organizer to keep the floor clear. Beth can not only find her shoes now, but it is also easy to store them.
Across from the master closet is the smaller reach-in closet that has been used for more of Beth's clothes and as a catchall. Ellen suggests making this one Rick's closet, since he doesn't have as much clothing as Beth. His clothes are also more casual, so he will need more shelf than hanging space. At 59 inches long and 24 inches wide, that's plenty of room for a nice shelving system and can be a do-it-yourself project.
Though not as messy as Beth's closet, this one needs its share of work, too. Just $200 and a little elbow grease from Faye and Rick made all the difference for Rick's closet. He can easily see all of his shirts and sweaters and has pull-out wire racks for his socks and such.
Seven-year-old Rachel's closet is basically nonfunctional. The doors are too heavy for her to slide open and she can't reach her hanging racks and shelves. Measuring 67 inches long by 24 inches wide, there is plenty of room for all of her belongings, but a new system needs to be put in place to make it more user-friendly. Organizer Ellen and Rick decide they can do this project themselves.
The main problem with Rachel's closet is that she can't use it. Her clothes are hung too high, and her toys are in a jumbled mess on the floor. After, her closet has soft, feminine drapes that open up the room and provide easy access to her closet. The lower-hanging bar puts her everyday clothes at her level, and toys are easily within reach in the new labeled drawer system.
Last but certainly not least, is 4-year-old Adam's closet, which is 94 inches of wasted space. He too has the heavy doors that are hard for small hands to push and has to have help reaching his clothes — some of which he's outgrown. This job calls for the pros to step in and create a sectioned closet system that can be rearranged as Adam gets older. It also needs to be as dust free as possible so that it won't affect his asthma.
Just like the other closets in the Goldenberg house, this one needs major help. It's disorganized, messy and underutilized. The new closet has been divided into two areas--one for clothing and one for toys. There is lots of shelf space and even room for out-of-season items. The adjustable shelves and rolling wire-rack toy storage system prevent dust from collecting and enable Adam to put away his own toys.
Eight weeks later Mission: Organization makes a surprise visit to see if the Goldenbergs kept their end of the bargain and are still clutter free. Turns out, they are — mission accomplished.
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tan shoe tote
revolving belt rack
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tissue and toilet-brush holder
A couple who works from home gets help organizing their small living room/office.