In our last place, coming home was a streamlined process. Keys, shoes, mail, coats, bags, dog supplies — everything had its place. But in our new home, we've been using the entryway as the catch-all for items that need to be given a proper place. Things wait by the basement door to be ferried down, and things wait by the stairs to be ferried up. Coats rest on chairs, and there's a perpetual chorus of "Where's my wallet?" Well, my friends, no more.
First things first: I tackled the hall closet, which had become a lair for all sorts of motley junk, which would promptly form an anxiety-inducing avalanche every time the door was opened. The sorting only took a few minutes, but now there's a place for everything.
One bag on the floor holds my purses, computer bag, and unused iPad sleeve. The other holds our reusable shopping bags. An IKEA Variera holds extra plastic bags, and tennis rackets and softball bats neatly line the side wall. On top, there's a milk crate holding umbrellas, a lint roller, and the ever-handy IKEA bags, while another bag holds all the extra dog toys and supplies. Lightbulbs are easy to reach, and a final container holds gear for inclement weather: ponchos, ski goggles, extra gloves, and the like.
We also installed a shoe cabinet that we brought from our old home, and we gave our family calendar pride of place above it. The top drawer holds dog leashes and poop bags, while the rest is actually dedicated to shoes.
On the opposite wall, a demi-lune table holds a mail organizer and a basket for keys, and a trash can is tucked neatly under.
We still need to hang art and preferably a mirror (the one in the before photo migrated up to the bedroom), but after one night's work, I feel so much better about not having to wade through pools of our belongings to get to the living room.
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(Image credits: Carolyn Purnell)