Professional Organizer Lois King Can Transform Your Closets – And Your Life!4:00 am
I like to think of myself as organized, but with my guy and I living and working out of a one-bedroom apartment, it can be tough to try and keep everything in order (you can read about all the products behind the door, the press kits and menu piled on my desk and the general hilarity that ensues when you write from home in my forthcoming book from ECW Press due out February 2009).
So we sought out Ms. King to help us with our closet in the bedroom. Not only do we have to keep both of our wardrobes in there, but the air conditioner has gotta go in from September-June, along with our boxes of writing, luggage and carry-ons for 2 and various beauty and bathroom supplies.
Lois certainly had her hands full with us.
In fact, she told us that she had never seen such a challenging closet before.
There were many things that made it extremely difficult for Lois to circumvent – a permanent shelf that made it too low to make two rows for hanging clothes, a large water pipe that takes up a good chunk of space and then of course, the way my desk juts up against it makes it hard to use one side.
One thing I liked about Lois right away is that she asked if she could look through everything in there to get an inventory of what we had and what size things were so she could refigure our space.
She was in there for a good 10 minutes with pad and pen, and occasional popped her head out to ask me what something was.
She then went on to look through the rest of our place. After all, she had to see if there were other places we could put stuff.
She was pretty relentless, but I had been relentless about donating clothes as soon as I brought in something new and in terms of organization, I thought I had little room for improvement.
Lois was stern but nice in her assessment. She was not happy with how my products were stored (a shelf against the wall and a chest at the end of our bed) and thought we could better use our space where our music is stored and why did we have 3 beds for our cat?
A week later, she came with papers, pamphlets and diagrams in hand. She had been to a whole bunch of places looking for shelves shallow enough that it would fit into a small space in our bedroom and short enough that it wouldn’t block our light switch.
She had her work cut out for her with our space.
Lois had found some shelves that would work and gave me 3 pages of information of products she had found in her travels.
Not all of her suggestions would work, but some most definitely would. She had done a lot of leg work and homework and it had paid off.
We talked at length about the closet and what options we had – remove the shelf which was pretty solidly attached to the closet’s structure, work around that and the pipe, or change the shelving that we were currently using.
Lois left with dimensions in hand and said she would go to her shelving place and get us a quote.
By the time she returned on her 3rd visit, her words had stayed with me and what I had originally thought was the best that I could do, had been improved upon.
We had got rid of one of the cat beds, so that freed up a corner of the living room. 2 trunks that had previously been unused went there and were filled with things that had previously had no home. Where the trunks had been on top of a shelf, I filled boxes and put them up there. I organized my other boxes and some room in the closet by moving some stuff out of the closet and into the boxes.
I continued to go through my things and found that I was to get rid of more stuff. I really had gone through everything before we had called Lois, and even throughout the year, about once a month I cull my papers, clothes, etc. I don’t know. Maybe it was Lois and her expectations that I didn’t want to let down, but in a matter of a couple of weeks, I had gone through everything again and filled up bags and boxes to take for donation.
Lois gave me quotes and diagrams of what she thought we should do and a couple of other, less expensive options that we could also try. She is not out to make you spend lots of money this girl, and she does not charge for all of that legwork that she does in the time between her visits.
I have posted before and after pictures to give you an idea of what we did. It might not look like much, but actually it’s a big difference.
Transforming our whole closet would have been wonderful. Getting a builder in to rip out the shelf and put in a new system for about $600-800 would have been ideal.
But because we work from home, it would have been quite the thing and we couldn’t coordinate the removal of the shelf with the installation of shelves. Two days perhaps days apart would have been rough. Especially since my desk is right beside the closet.
So I got a rod for $5.99 (!!!!!!) that hangs from your original to make a WHOLE NEW SECOND ROD TO HANG CLOTHES! It takes one second of assembly with no tools and allows me a place to hang ALL of my tops, whereas most of them were in bins where I couldn’t see them and thus, almost never wore them. The bins now hold bulky sweaters, pants and skirts. I also was able to get rid of a drawer system that we were using for socks and underwear and place them in the empty bins. This allowed for space on the floor where we now have our linens and laundry basket.
Lois gave us some excellent suggestions for storing stuff, which I have yet to buy, but it’s on my list. We’re going to get rid of our CD cases and store them differently, thereby freeing up a whole new space. I will also change the shelving that I currently store my products on. She found a really great high narrow shelf that will hold everything without any overflow onto the floor or the chest at the end of the bed, clearing up yet another space we can store stuff in.
I now wear all the clothes I have because I can see them. We have created more space in our lives, which means easier living and breathing.
You know, Lois King does way more than closets.
You should contact her and finally live the life you’ve always wanted.
Lois’ words have stayed with me. Since her visits, I have revamped my desk and filing system and continue to ask myself whether I really need something or not.
My new mantra is, WWLD – What Would Lois Do?