Fall Organizing Essentials

Happy fall!

I realize I’m a few weeks late, but here in Maryland, it’s just now FEELING like fall. And it’s a good feeling!

What words come to mind when you think of  fall?
I think of leaves, cozy, camp fire, soccer, Thanksgiving, football, harvest, apple cider, apple crisp, pumpkins, cranberries, shopping and baking.
What tasks do you associate with fall?
Of course, I think of CLEANING the GARAGE and ORGANIZING the KITCHEN!

Cleaning the garage? Yes, this is the PERFECT time to conquer that task! The weather is cooperating, so it shouldn’t be too cold or too hot to get out there and work. The garage tends to be a strange animal, housing an assortment of our projects, our past and our present, and things that just may be needed “some day”. Because of it’s multitude of uses, and our “out of sight, out of mind ”attitude, the garage tends to get cluttered quickly. And organizing it can be a daunting task, but it doesn’t need to be. Follow along this month, as I guide you through 4 straightforward steps to organizing your garage in my articles “4 Simple Steps to Garage Organization” and “Clean Sweep in the Garage“.

Once you have your garage in order, it’s time to tackle your kitchen. The fall season tends to be the time that we Americans bake and cook more often. Simplify your life and your hours in your kitchen, by first organizing it. Once completed, you will be ready for the holiday cooking and baking to come. Check back, later in the month, as I guide you through simple steps to simplify and organize your kitchen.

Finally, take an afternoon and “DO the GREAT EXCHANGE”.

As the seasons change, do you find yourself rooting through back closets for jackets, gloves and hats? Through your attic for wreaths and gourds, or maybe through your bottom drawers for sweaters and jeans?
Make life easy on yourself and “Do the Great Exchange”. Take an afternoon to prepare for fall and winter, if you haven’t already. It is the time of year to pack away the spring and summer clothes and equipment, and unearth your fall and winter apparel and gear.

Begin with your clothes. While you’re at it, take a few extra minutes to sort and purge before you pack your spring and summer clothes away.

Do you remember the old 80/20 rule? It’s true! We do tend to wear 20% of our clothing 80% of the time. As you take the time to sort and purge you’re off season clothes, make it your goal to purge a higher percentage of your clothing so that you LOVE and KEEP what you will actually WEAR. Don’t you love it when you’re on vacation and you have a suitcase filled with all of your favorite clothes? It simplifies both your choices and your laundry.

If you’re having a difficult time figuring out if you should keep a specific item of clothing, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Is the item in good condition?
  • Does it have stains or tears or is it too worn?
  • Can it (or will it) be mended?
  • Is it still in style? Is it YOUR style?
  • Do I love it, or even like it?
  • Do I feel great when I wear it?
  • When was the last time I wore this? If you didn’t wear it last season, you probably won’t wear during the next season!
  • How many do I currently own of this type of item? How many do I realistically wear or need?
  • Does it fit? If not, is it within a reasonable number of size ranges of my current size to keep it?

Now that you have determined which spring and summer clothes you will be holding on to, it’s time to consider where to store them. If space allows, simply move the off season clothing to the back of the closet, bringing the fall and winter clothes to the front. Then, rotate them back as the season’s end. Alternatively, you can move off-season clothes from your closet to a spare closet. If you don’t have room within a closet, consider purchasing a freestanding closet to store in your finished basement, finished attic or guestroom. Finally, you can store your off season clothes in a bin labeled with your name and “Spring/Summer Clothes”.
Before storing away off-season clothes, take these 3 simple steps to protect them:  Clean, Contain, and Repel.

  • Clean – Moths and carpet beetles are the primary pests that can cause damage, and they are attracted to natural fibers like wool and cotton. They also feed on organic stains. Always clean clothes before storing them away.
  • Contain – Store in a clean, dark and dry location, such as a closet, freestanding closet, storage box or bin to deter pests
  • Repel – Use all natural cedar to repel pests

It’s also the perfect time to take note of any clothing needs for next fall and winter and take advantage of those last summer clearance sales.

Next, switch out the beach towels, goggles, and suntan lotions for the snow suits, gloves and hats. Find a home for these items near the front door, where you will be coming and going all fall and winter. Finally, clean off the volleyball nets, croquet, badminton set, and lawn chairs, and store them away for the fall and winter, while pulling out the snowboards, skis, and sleds.

Relax, build a fire, make some hot chocolate and enjoy!

Happy (and organized) fall!


1 Response to “Fall Organizing Essentials”

  1. 1 branchenbuch October 26, 2010 at 3:00 am

    Hey very nice blog!! Man .. Beautiful .. Amazing .. I will bookmark your blog and take the feeds

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