Organizing and Storing Christmas Decorations {and a $300 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway}

I’ve spent the last few days taking down all the Christmas decorations and I’ve found some great tips around blogland.

Organizing and Storing Christmas Decoration

I really dislike having to take down all the holiday decorations but the idea of putting it all away in an organized manner makes it a little easier.

Organizing Ornaments

Tip #1:  Make an ornament holder with plastic cups.  Thanks Mom’s Party Cafe and The Vintage Modern Wife for sharing this awesome idea!

wrapping lights

Tip #2:  Wrap lights around cardboard by I Heart Organizing

storing wrapping paper and gift wrap

Tip #3:  Use a garment bag to store holiday wrapping paper.  How I have I never thought of this? Practically Martha – you’re a genius!!  This is also a great tip for all wrapping paper.

storing Christmas decorations

Tip #4:  It’s amazing what a little cardboard can do!  Ness from One Perfect Day shares her perfectly organized holiday bins.

Christmas Decorations_Free_LabelsTip #5:  And it’s always fun to have cute labels for all those bins.  Here are a few that I made.  Download HERE and print on full sheet label paper.  You can write what is in each bin or customize using Picmonkey.  Just save to your computer.  Then open in Picmonkey and add text.

Happy organizing!

Now it’s time for a fun giveaway.  I’ve teamed up with a great group of bloggers to give away a $300 Amazon Gift Card.

$300 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway

Thank you King of Christmas for sponsoring this awesome giveaway!  Shop Pre-lit Christmas trees, Unlit Christmas trees, and Giant Christmas trees at great prices.  This is also the best time to stock up on Christmas decorations for next year.  King of Christmas has some great deals on artificial trees.  We need a new Pre-lit Christmas tree.  I tried to get one this year at Target but waited until the last minute and couldn’t find one that I liked.  So now I will definitely be ordering one from King of Christmas.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!!

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Necklace Holder {Holiday Gift Ideas under $20 with My Favorite Bloggers}

I’m excited to be teaming up with my favorite bloggers again to share 12 handmade gifts under $20.

I must confess – I love handmade gifts!  I love making them and giving them to people and I love when people make them for me!

Necklace Holder with Glass Knobs

For my gift idea, I made something that I’ve personally wanted for the longest time.  And since I want it, I figured every other girl needs a necklace holder.

This was so much fun to make!  I started by picking out my knobs.  I was going to get a whole bunch of colored knobs but decided at the last minute that I liked the clear glass knobs better.  I bought all the knobs at Hobby Lobby on sale so they were each $1.99 or $2.99.

Then I cut a piece of scrap wood so it was 15 inches long and drilled 5 holes.  Each hole is 2.5 inches apart.

I sanded and painted it this pretty teal color. When the paint dried, I sanded and stained the edges of the wood.  The key to adding the stain is to rub it on with a cloth and then wipe it off.

After the stain dried, I added the knobs.  I did have to cut the ends of the knobs with a hacksaw which made me a little nervous at first.  I thought it was going to be difficult to do but it was actually pretty easy.

Once I attached all the knobs, I was ready to add my sawtooth hangers to the back and hang on the wall.

Finally I was ready to hang all my favorite necklaces and step back and admire my gorgeous new necklace holder.

This is going to be very hard to give as a gift.  I guess I better start making another one:)

Now meet all the lovely ladies and their AWESOME handmade gifts under $20!

MFB Nov 2013

Sky from Capital B, Melanie from It Happens in a Blink, ChiWei from One Dog Woof, Sarah from Repeat Crafter Me, Kadie from Seven Alive All Livin’ in a Doublewide, Bethany from  Pitter and Glink, Lauren from The Thinking Closet, Kirsten from One Tough Mother, Nancy from Do Small Things With Love, Kara from Petals to Picots and Nancy from 4 you with Love!

MFB $20 gifts

Sarah’s Handmade Hand Warmers

Lauren’s Painted Cork Coasters

Bethany’s Gold and Green Bracelet

Kara’s Crochet Pattern Roundup

Kirsten’s Glittery Utensil Gift Set

Sky’s Simple Fleece Face Guards

Marilyn’s Individual Peppermint Solid Sugar Scrubs

Kara’s DIY Necklace Holder

Kadie’s Easy Crochet’s Hot Pads

Melanie’s DIY Photo Desk Organizer Gift

Nancy’s DIY Wedding Photo Canvas Print

What is your favorite handmade gift to give?

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Getting Organized with Rubbermaid All Access

Disclosure:  This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Home Depot & Rubbermaid, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #AllAccessOrganizers  http://cmp.ly/3/8vNxcO
Operation Closet Makeover is complete!

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HGTV Fabric Covered Bins

This is a sponsored post by Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores, but all opinions are my own.

Guess what?!  HGTV has a new line of fabric exclusively found at Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft Stores that is both gorgeous and modern – my kind of fabric!!

I was recently asked to review the new line of HGTV Home Fabric and I’m so excited to share what I made.

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I received 1 yard of their Checkered Past Berry, 1 yard of their Urban Blossom Berry and some of their Wavy Gimp Red Pink Trim.  As I was thinking of what I should make with this gorgeous fabric and browsing Pinterest, I came across Laura Gunn’s AMESOME tutorial for crate covers.  And I immediately new what I was going to make.

I didn’t have any crates but I have six of these fabric bins in my laundry room (closet) where I store stuff.  I like to think it helps me stay organized:) 

I dug out some old fabric and started working on the covers.  I literally finished two in less than an hour.

And let me tell you two things -

  • Laura’s tutorial is fabulous!!  If you can sew a straight line, you can make these covers.  Plus, these bins have the insert to make the bins stay in place which covers all the imperfections.  
  • This fabric is amazing!!  The colors and texture are prefect!  And what a huge difference it made to these bins and my boring laundry room.

Since I made covers to fit 10 inch square bins, my measurements were:

  • Side A:  21 inches
  • Side B:  9 inches
  • Side C:  21 inches
  • Side D:  18 1/4 inches
  • Side E & F:  4 1/4

Then head on over to Laura Gunn’s tutorial and download her amazing directions.  She walks you through everything.

Now I want to cover a few 14 inch bins I have in my living room. I’m loving anything turquoise so I love these two fabrics in the HGTV collection.

Oh!  What tough decisions!!  I might just have to get both.

The HGTV line has an assortment of 30 fresh, colorful prints and patterns available in stores and 74 exclusive designs online.  Right now all HGTV Fabric and Trims are 50% off through May 4th and you can get an additional 10% off using the coupon below.

 Are you inspired to create something fabulous with HGTV’s gorgeous fabric line?  I know I am!!

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Create and Share – Laundry Room Decor & Organizing Tips

Welcome back to another week of Create & Share!
This week we want to be inspired by your laundry room decor and organizing tips.
Laundry Room Create & Share Link Party
 Here are a few that we found and liked:
Laundry Room Create & Share Link Party
1.  Check Your Pockets by Burton Avenue  2.  Laundry Board Hanger by The House of Smiths  3.  Laundry Room Signs by Simply Klassic  4.  Endless Love & Laundry Printable by A Pop of Pretty  5.  Laundry Room Reveal by Finding My Aloha  6.  Decorating and Organizing a Laundry Room by A Bowl Full of Lemons  7.  Lost Socks by A Diamond in the Stuff  8.  Laundry Basket Dresser by Ana White
  
Now it’s your turn!  Share your laundry room printables, decor, organizing tips, etc.
We want to be inspired by you!!


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Create and Share – Crafty Organizational Decor

Hi y’all and welcome back to another Create & Share Round Up and Link Party.  
Kara, Kate and I hope y’all had a wonderful Christmas and an awesome New Year!!
In true New Years theme, our round up and link party is all about Crafty Organizational Home Decor!
crafty organization decorating ideas
I don’t know about y’all but I could REALLY use some help and inspiration getting my home organized.
Here are some awesome home decor organizational ideas we found online:
Now, we would LOVE to see your crafty home decor organization ideas!!


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Jute Wrapped Toy Bin

Is it me or does everything seem to look better wrapped in jute?
Maybe I’m just obsessed with jute!

So even though Connor has a playroom, toys always seem to end up in our bedroom.  After months of taking them back downstairs, I decided that we needed something in our bedroom that Connor could just throw the toys in when he wasn’t playing with them.  Ok, let me rephrase that – I needed something that I could just throw the toys in when he wasn’t playing with them.

Since I’m obsessed with jute and seem to hoard it in my craft closet, I decided to take an old plastic storage container and wrap it in jute.

Jute Wrapped Toy Bin from Old Tote
Check out our new toy bin!  I’m so in love with the way it turned out!!

This is all you need:

Jute Wrapped Toy Bin - Supplies Needed
Pictures courtesy of Home DepotHobby Lobby and Fabric Depot
  • Plastic storage tote
  • Jute
  • four wheels
  • 16 bolts with nuts
  • fabric – I actually used an old sheet
  • glue gun and lots of glue sticks
  • Pieces of wood cut to the length of the tote
  • Drill

It’s actually quite simple!

Start by wrapping the entire bin in jute using the glue gun.  I started underneath since I new the wheels would keep the jute from rubbing the ground.  And since you are wrapping the rim of the tote with the fabric, you don’t even have to go all the way to the top.

Just keep wrapping!  This is the perfect project to work on when you need to catch up on your favorite recorded shows.  I was able to catch up on Glee and Army Wives:)

Turn the tote over and glue the wood pieces in place.

Use a marker to mark the holes on the wood.

Jute Wrapped Toy Bin Steps to Add Wheels

Drill your holes through the wood and tote.

Attach wheels using bolts and nuts.

Cut fabric and sew a seam along both edges.  Wrap fabric around the edge of the tote and overlap.  Attach with your glue gun.  Glue edges of the fabric to the inside of the tote along the bottom.

Then, fill with toys and admire your clean floors.  Woohoo!  No more stepping on toys!!

Jute Wrapped Toy Bin - Before & After

I had most of the supplies needed to turn this tote into our new toy bin but if you needed to buy everything, you could definitely do it for around $20.

So what do you think?  Have you made anything with jute recently?  How do you store your children’s toys?

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Pinterest Inspired Project – Organizing the Linen Closet

I came across these two pins on Pinterest and immediately felt motivated to organize my messy linen closet.

I so wish I had taken a before picture but I was too busy pulling out all my sheets, towels and blankets and throwing them everywhere.

 
Image Sources:  Martha Stewart and BHG
A few hours later my linen closet was neat and organized!!
How had I not read about this tip before?  Why hadn’t I thought of this??  Those darn fitted sheets always end up in a ball in the back of my linen closet!!

The first thing I did was match up the sheet sets and fold them.  Then I slid them into one matching pillowcase.  It was super easy and made a huge difference when I placed them on the shelf.  

Then I headed to the Dollar Store to find some cheap bins for all my wash clothes, hand towels, and extra toiletries.

The last thing I did was roll up my towels and blankets.  It’s amazing how much more space I have on each shelf bow.

I’m so glad Pinterest inspired me to organize my linen closet.  It really made a huge difference and I feel like I have so much more space in the closet now.

Don’t forget to submit your pinterest inspired projects to The Great Pinterest Challenge going on now!!

Visit thecsiproject.com

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DIY Bookshelves

For some reason our house had a wet bar tucked in the corner of our living room.  I guess they were popular in the 80′s when our house was built??

We never used this space for anything except to store junk and the counter only accumulated piles of paper and more junk.  It always looked messy so I decided to turn it into a built-in bookshelf.  I really wanted a place to display pictures and add some much needed storage with baskets and bins.  I also wanted an area to store my laptop and printer.

This was the wet bar before and then after we completed our built-in bookshelves:

Look at all that wasted space!  And, we did not need a sink in our living room.  So now we have some much needed storage that displays pictures and looks so much better than a wet bar:)

Do you want to know how we did it?  It was actually pretty easy and we did it in a weekend.

The first thing we did was rip out the sink and cabinet.  We also had to cap off the plumbing from the sink with a PVC cap.

Then we could begin the fun stuff – using power tools to build our shelves.

Materials and tools needed to build our shelves:

Pictures courtesy of Home Depot
  • MDF cut to the length and width of the shelves – we created 6 shelves and cut each piece of MDF to 20 x 36
  • 3 pieces of 3 x 1′s cut to the length and width of your shelves for each shelf and to frame around the top near the ceiling
  • 5 pieces of 2 x 1′s for the front of each shelf
  • 4 pieces of 3 x 1 to frame around the front of the bookshelf
  • 4 pieces of 4 x 1 to create the base of the bookshelf
  • Nail gun and nails
  • If you don’t have studs, you will need a drill, drywall anchors, and screws
  • Finishing nails
  • Paintable caulk to seal the edges and cracks
  • White paint and paint brush and/or roller

Step 1:  Creating the base of the bookshelf:

  • Cut two pieces of the 4 x 1 the length of your bookshelf.  Then cut two pieces the width of the book shelf minus two inches.
  • We cut two pieces of the 4 x 1 to 36 inches and two to 18 inches long.  We used our nail gun to attach the wood to the studs.  Then placed our first piece of MDF.  The MDF was cut to 36 x 20.

Step 2:  Creating the shelves:

  • Determine how many shelves you want and the width you would like between each shelf.  Our shelves are 15 inches apart.  To figure this out, divide the total number of inches of space divided by the number of shelves minus an inch for each shelf.
  • Cut 5 pieces of the 3 x 1 to the length of your bookshelf.  This is the back support of your shelves.
  • Cut 10 pieces of the 3 x 1 to the width of your bookshelf.  This will be the side supports of your shelf.  You will need two for each shelf
  • We cut 5 pieces 36 inches and 10 pieces 19 inches.
  • If you have studs in your wall you can use the nail gun to attach these pieces.  We had studs in the back wall but didn’t in the side walls.  So we had to use drywall anchers and screws to attach the pieces of wood to the walls.  To do this, we had to predrill holes in the wood and wall so we could drill the anchers and screws to attach the wood.
  • Attach the back supports and each side support.  Then place your piece of MDF on the supports.
  • Repeat for each shelf.
Not so pretty, but it’s coming along.

Step 3:  Top of Bookshelf:

  • To frame the top of the shelf so it matches and looks uniform, we attached 3 x 1′s around the ceiling.  This was also needed to attach the frame around the front of the entire book shelf.

Step 4:  Framing the front of the bookshelf:

  • To give the bookshelf a finished look, we attached a piece of 3 x 1 along each side of the bookshelf that was 8 feet long.
  • Then along the top and bottom, we attached a piece of 3 x 1.
  • Along each shelf, we attached strips of 2 x 1 to the MDF using the finishing nails.

Step 5:  Finishing touches:

  • Caulk around the seams of the bookshelf to seal any small gaps and smooth out any imprefections.
  • We also had to spackle parts of the wall where the cabinet was attached because it ripped pieces of drywall off.
  • Paint the entire bookshelf and inner walls.  We chose to paint it white but I might paint the inner walls a different color so they stand out more.

The final step is to decorate your shelves with all your favorite books, picture albums, and photos.  I’m so excited to have extra storage for all of Connor’s toys and books.  I’ve also decided to use one shelf as a little home office instead of having to go upstairs.

It’s amazing how a little extra storage space and organization can make such a big difference.

I promise this was not a hard project at all.  If I can build a bookshelf, you can definitely do it.  All together it cost a little over $100 for all the materials and I couldn’t have gotten an 8 ft bookshelf with 36 x 20 inch shelves for less than that.

I hope this inspires you to build something!!  If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

Visit thecsiproject.com

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Getting Organized

Last week was my first full week of summer vacation and since my goal is to clean out closets and get organized, I decided it was best not to procrastinate.

I started with the laundry room.  It is actually more like a closet so at least it isn’t a big area.  A few months ago I removed the one wood shelf and added two of the white wire shelves that can be adjusted.  This added some much needed storage.  But then I quickly found that I just filled these shelves with more junk and I still couldn’t find stuff when I needed it.

I decided to add some canisters to the shelf using shower hooks so I could drop stuff in and then easily reach in when I needed it.  I was originally going to reuse coffee cans but then my husband wanted to use them in our garage for something (who knows what for??).

I went to the Dollar Store and found the canisters and shower hooks so it was an inexpensive storage solution.  I drilled a hole through one side of the canister about 1 inch down from the rim.  Then I just put the shower hooks through the hole and around the wire shelf.  Super fast and easy!

I’ve already decided I can use one for loose change and stuff I find in our pockets.  The other one is empty for now but I’m sure I won’t have any problem filling it with stuff.

We have these shelves in all our closets so I’m definitely going to be adding more of these.   I have plenty of shower hooks left so I just need to save my empty coffee cans or go back to The Dollar Store.

I also bought some shoe organizers because I love the idea of using them to organize the small stuff.

I put one in my guest bedroom closet to organize all my craft stuff.  I had plenty ofpockets left over to store random junk I had in the closet.  Now I can easily find and grab stuff that I need.

I just wish I would’ve done this years ago.  It is such a quick and easy way to organize things.

I found this shoe organizer at The Dollar Store (can’t beat the price!) and decided to hang it from hooks in my kitchen pantry.  I now use it to store all my little packages like spices, popcorn, hot chocolate, etc.  This actually freed up so much space in my pantry because I was able to throw away all the boxes that held the individual packages.

So at least I can cross a few things off my summer to-do list.  Now we are off to relax at the beach!

What are some creative ways you stay organized?  I’d love to hear from you.

Visit thecsiproject.com

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