Mr. Vanderbilt’s Organized Moved


I love Biltmore, the largest home in America and just 2 hours from Knoxville.  It is a beautiful study of a different time, grand entertaining and gracious living.  The article below shares the struggles George Vanderbilt had in 1895 as he made his dream a home.

His struggles were the same as our moves are today.  What is going to the new home?  What room will the boxes be unpacked?  Where will things go, where to start?  How will the household run once completely moved and settled?

George Vanderbilt’s 250 room house had a large staff attending to every need of the family. Today, a professional organizer is available to help simplify the details of your move into your personal “Biltmore”.

Read “Moving Into Biltmore House, October 1895” from Biltmore.com

 

 

The Need to Organize for SNOW

Snow 4Snow is beautiful, but this week the east coast was reminded how treacherous the weather can be. Knoxville was lucky and missed the blizzard this time.  If you are not prepared, spend some time NOW and get organized for the next weather wave.

 

Organize the Car:

Have small bag stocked with blanket, extra shoes, flashlight, and snacks.

 

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Organize the Pantry:

This is one area that should always be organized.  Clear out-of-date foods, and buy only what you like and have room for.  Don’t let “bulk” buying clutter your space.

 

Create an Emergency Supply Area:

Have dedicated space for emergency supplies.  Light bulbs, batteries, flash lights, radio, and phone chargers.  Even have games ready should kids be without cable tv.

 

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Organize Toiletries & Linens:

Have blankets and towels clean and organized.  Stock toiletries and first aid supplies.  You never know when the neighbors heat may go out and you have company.

 

If your storage is limited and you need ideas for create organizing solutions, contact Closets by McKenry for custom closet design.  Be ready, and the next blizzard the only thing on the floor will be family gathering around the fire.

 

 

Tailgating Starts in a Organized Home

Football season is here (what happened to the summer?)!  That means fans from Neyland Stadium to the Rose Bowl are ready for Tailgate Parties.  Menus need planning,  supplies will be bought, but is your home field organized?

Here are some simple tips for successful Tailgating season:

1.  Team effort – get family involved and delegate tasks.
2.  Home field advantage – clean out and organized the refrigerator and pantry.

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3.  The field house (garage) – have space in garage to keep dry goods stored for each weeks game – paper goods, coolers, folding chairs, etc.

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4.  The pre-game Stadium (your car) – get that trunk cleared out and find containers that can go from garage to trunk for quick set-ups.

With just a little planning the Vols will not be the only ones running through the “T” this tailgating season.

Clear Your Clutter, Help A Cause – KARM

You have started the process of having an organized home.  Good and tough decisions have been made and you are ready to let go of the past, but what can you do with that unwanted stuff?

DSCN0331Donate unwanted, unused items that are in good condition to your favorite charity.  In Knoxville, a great place to consider is KARM – KnoxvilleArea Rescue Ministries.  Over 18 thrift stores in east Tennessee will turn your clutter in to treasures for the homeless in our area. They offering pick up services, even for businesses.

Don’t let your clutter stay piled up in the garage, get it out of the house.  And remember, this is a process.  In a few months do a quick check around the house and see what is in your way.

Keep it organized!

Elements for an Organized Closet

Sure there are basic things every closet should have…uniform hangers are the first to come to mind.  But there are other elements that will keep clutter under control.

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Belt Hooks – placed on end panel or side of closet
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Tie Rack – on an open wall space (ties sorted by color)

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Waste Basket and Laundry Hamper – will keep dirty laundry together and give place for waste from pockets at end of the day
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Velvet Lined Jewelry Drawers – necklaces can get tangled in a box and other jewelry is quick to find when organized
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Valet Rods – allows the next days wardrobe to be prepared early

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Many times these elements can be added to an existing closet.  If not, the principles discussed can still be included when organizing your space.  Getting organized is not about “things” as it is the way we think.

Keep your clutter under control and your closet can be your favorite boutique.

note:  this closet was organized by Knoxville organizing firm Well-Kept Spaces and designed by east Tennessee’s Closets by McKenry.

Keeping Outside Organzied

In Knoxville, the beauty of East Tennessee makes our homes so much larger in the summer as we love to spend time outside.  For all the activities that we have, the garage gets even busier this time of year.

An organized garage will give you more time for the fun.  Think of your garage as the store you love to shop and create zones.

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Tools and Automotive

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Slat Wall for Vertical Storage

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Outdoor Crafts and Projects

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Even Space for the Cars

Whether your garage was designed by Closets by McKenry or someone else, it won’t organized itself.  Clear out the things no longer needed and spend a few minutes putting things away when finished.

The result?  An organized garage and more time outside having fun.

Knoxville’s Professional Organizer
for Your Well-Kept Spaces

Well-Kept Spaces comes to Knoxville with 15 years experience organizing homes and being a leader in the professional organizing industry.  While in Los Angeles Chris McKenry was president of the LA chapter of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO). During that time he created the Los Angeles Organizing Awards and served on the national board of NAPO.Featured imageNow we are thrilled to return to Knoxville with a new name and a new sister business, Closets by McKenry – for custom closet & garage design.  Recently we work with a client of Interior Designer Todd Richesin.  The beautiful new home was nearing completion and Todd turned to Well-Kept Spaces to unpack and organize the new home for the family.  We even helped plan this beautiful play area for the kids.  Notice the cut-out containers in the desk top for crayons and even the seats are storage bins.

 

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Professional organizers never forget labels.  When using beautiful baskets, gift tags can help identify contents in the gift wrap closet.

To see our “brag book”, as one client called it, click here.  It might give you an idea for your Well-Kept Spaces.

Food, Glorious Food from a Professional Organizer

IMG_0956 - CopyCelebrity chefs, busy moms, and hungry single executives all have one thing in common when they cook…the need for an organized pantry.  Like any storage area make it an inviting space. Create your own personal market that is organized into food groups.

High shelves can hold decorative trays and other items not often used, creating a focal point. Heavy small appliances and cookware stored lower allows the handy, visible center of pantry for most needed items.

Wicker baskets container food groups and give the open air market feel.  Baking goods kept in clear, labeled containers allow easy inventories to be taken and keep supplies from running out.

thanks 5An important element of an organized pantry, is not to over buy.  When stocking for large events, keep overflow items in the garage.

Mark your calendar to review out of date foods every 6 months.  This will help to maintain your organized pantry.

 

 

 

Organized Entertaining

Often when entertaining it seems that “four letter” words include host and work.  An organized event can mean fun for all, especially you!  With the holidays here, these simple tips should make entertaining fun for everyone.

Create an event journal for each occasion.  Include the guest lists, menu, shopping list, tasks to delegate and check list of activities leading up to the party.  Start in the pantry and clear all out of date foods.  Organize into categories – think of it as your personal market.  Then once the menu is planned, inventory can be taken to create your shopping list.

Plan “concierge area” for over night guests.  Most likely this would be the laundry room.  Show guests where supplies are kept and invite them to make themselves at home,  This way you will not feel like an overworked housekeeper.

Find ways to expand the entertaining area.  If weather permits, add gas heaters outdoors and add lighting.

Prepare as much food ahead as possible and set the table a couple days ahead.  Don’t be afraid to delegate,  Guests want to help…they just need direction.

Food, friends, and organization…a combination for happiest of holidays.

Wishing you a very happy Thanksgiving…

Easier to Clear Clutter
Thanks to Waste Management

Have you been putting off getting an organizing project started because you did not want a large metal unit for the recycled waste in the front?  Waste Management has a new service called Bagster – Dumpster in a Bag.

You purchase a large bag at your local home improvement store that holds up to 3,300 pounds of unwanted, unusable clutter and waste.  Then schedule collection pickup on online or call for a time.

To see if the service is available in your area, click here.  This will work for small renovation projects as well.  The first and most difficult step in the organizing process is clearing out the excess, making hard decisions about things that are now clutter but seem to say in the way.  Looks like Waste Management is making the job a little easier.