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Week 4 & 5: Foresee and avoid problems

Week 4 & 5: Foresee and avoid problems

Back to the series!  I'm combining last week {week 4} with this week because classes are getting crazy and time has been limited lately...

Habit 9 in the 10 Habits of Highly Organized People is to foresee and avoid problems.  The idea is to deal with a problem before disaster strikes. They say if you have a packed cabinet, "take a few minutes to short-circuit an avalanche before it happens".  In my home, there are several avalanches that are about to happen.  Most recently there was a spot under my farmhouse bar table that was about to strike and another in a kitchen cabinet.  I'm going to share what I did with the one under my table. The cabinet did get cleaned out though and it feels really good to not have things falling out every time I open it.

When we moved in, under this table we actually stored wine in the little cubbies {nope, haven't dusted under here in a long time}


After time, candles, jars, etc. piled up under there and I should have foreseen it being a problem...but I didn't. Mainly jars and candles take up the them both and I always have a good use for my jars {love scrabble too, and yes you see a dictionary too because we like to confirm legit words around here}.  Anyway, when I need to grab something in the center, everything else falls...and it's a disaster. Ugh.  I have to remind myself this is why I'm doing this series solve issues like this.  Do you have areas in your home like this?

I took everything out and found new homes for the bulk of the problem: jars & candles

I used two storage containers that I already had around the house.  Then, instead of putting the boxes back under the table to take up more space, I used the ikea storage unit that I painted and created a little skirted table.  We needed a tiny console table at our front door, so this worked out perfectly {it needs some serious styling right now...} 

So, so easy.  I used the no-sew idea from The Newlywed Diaries  

mine is not a continuous piece of fabric though...I wanted to be able to lift the skirt regularly, so I made 5 panels. One for each side, two for the front and one in the back.  This was also very cheap because I used drop cloths.

I added a tiny panel of floral fabric too...

Now the candles and jars have a new hiding spot and I'm not making messes trying to get to everything.  Again, the panels are so easy to lift because they are separate.  See the last two rows?

 I now have one less disaster zone in my home...

Tips on foreseeing and avoiding problems:

*make a date/time to do it and stick to tackling the problem
*take everything out before you begin 
*organize your items, make piles, see if you can toss or donate something 
*try to put less back in & find homes for the other items
*try your best to not add more after a week 
*aim for regular decluttering sessions

I have to say this habit really does help you get organized!  If you've stuck it out through this entire post, I hope you found something that you find inspirational! Only a few weeks left of the series...

Enjoy your weekend!  

*Storage Containers: white: ikea, charcoal: crate & barrel, stripes: ikea painted, polka dots: marshalls
*Drop cloths: finish factor
*Labels: Paper Source


  1. this is fabulous! you did a great job.

  2. i love how you arrange things!

  3. Just found you guys, and I share your love of organizing! Thanks for the tips. Have a good weekend :)

  4. You girls are the best! Keep up the good work :) xoxox from the Range

  5. Love the skirt and the peak of fabric!! Great job, I'm inspired to use drop cloths on some chairs...hum, I wonder.

  6. Great idea! There's your little owl peeping out aswell, love him!

    I'm going to look up this no sew method, as sewing is no-go area for me!

  7. Can you come to my house and do this too- I LOVE this little area of your house now- it is just perfect!!!!!

  8. I'm with Linds on this one! I love what you did with the cloth on your looks so clean and organized!

  9. why does your apartment look so bright and shiny compared to mine? I need to see this whole thing put together, in real life. Tell me when, I'll bring wine. Skip G-chatting for a day and use the saved up time to have us over for an hour.

  10. Excellent! I love how you adapted this rather abstract "habit" into something concrete. Great post!

  11. i love this! the labels are fantastic.

  12. Amazing! Every little thing you do it killer! Next serries: home tour!?

  13. you have really good advices! please come to my home too and organize! that table do and boxes look really fabuous.

    have a nice weekend girls!
    / Tiina

  14. I have been searching everywhere for a way to cover my dining room buffet. I love the look. Now I just need to find some fabric!k

  15. OMG - i love this blog!!! Must admit i have lots of areas like the one you've shown today.
    The idea from Newlywed ideas is just awesome - I have a space right next to the front door too and have been waiting (forever) to find the right console but haven't (is there an equivalent to West Elm/Craigs List in Greece???), so will try the DIY cloth idea - am armed with my sewing machine - just need some yummy fabric. Thanks so much for the inspiration!!!

  16. I found your blog via SabbeSpot . . . I absolutely love your console! It looks amazing and the styling is to die for. And the labeled organization underneath! Making things pretty is such good incentive to stay organized.

  17. where did you find those adorable storage boxes?


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