I was fortunate enough to be selected to review Small Space Organizing by Kathryn Bechen this month.
I am not sure about you, but it seems January is all about organizing, sorting and cleaning things out! It seems that this is more than just me since just about every blog I follow is posting articles on the same thing. I think with a new year we all just want things a bit more de-cluttered and organized!
I have enjoyed this book as I read through different rooms of the house and about various tips to help you get a handle on organizing. While 1800 square feet of space is not small, 6 people and all their stuff can make just about any place seem small! So I thought this would be a great book to help me get a handle on things.
One tip I enjoyed was Kathryn’s take on books. If you know me, read this blog, or have every visited my house, you know that books could take over if we let them! She mentioned 2 options : having a library, or putting books throughout your home. Like I said, we have 3 bedrooms and not an extra “library” room, so we opt for #2 – we have books throughout our home. Specifically, she suggested we are careful about the type of book or genre we store in each room. For instance in my room should not be school books, or young adult readers, instead inspirational books, devotions, or fiction I am reading. So for us, we have broken things up like that.
She also mentions the KISS acronym in many instances : Keep It Super Simple – and I love that reminder. I have tried to keep things simple throughout my house, but I realize this is more a journey than a destination. While I may get things simple today, I need to go back and check in a couple of months!
The part I really valued was her point that small places can be cozy and welcoming, much more than broad open, large homes. I agree. I love that my home feels lived in and small at times – but always warm, welcoming and cozy!
Kathryn has many stories sprinkled throughout the book which other people have shared with her. These gave you a first person perspective in many more areas than just Kathryn would have been able to speak on.
This time through this book was a quick go through it, but I hope to pick a chapter a month and really dive into the concepts she offers and try to really apply them in the rooms in our home.
I would highly recommend this book if you are at all like me and are just not sure how to simplify, or you are just wanting to get more organized throughout the house!
Bio for Author Kathryn Bechen
Kathryn Bechen is an award-winning professional writer whose articles have appeared in popular national and regional magazines and newspapers. She specializes in lifestyle feature articles and has also published several organizing and decorating e-books. The lifestyle companies she founded, Organized with Ease and Kathryn Bechen Designs, have served clients worldwide. Kathryn has organized and decorated 13 personal small space residences together with her husband Steve, and they currently live in their favorite small space ever: a 1,200-square-foot high-rise apartment in beautiful San Diego, California. She blogs about timely lifestyle topics at www.KathrynBechenINK.com.
Here are a few questions Kathryn answered:
Q: What are your two best small space organizing tips?
A: 1. Keep your gadgets and appliances simple by buying only what you'll truly use.
2. Use all-white dishes and clear glassware to cut down on how many dish sets you buy. If a dish breaks, you can easily find a new similar white piece and not have to get a whole new set.
Q: How in the world can you create a "spa-like" experience in a teeny-tiny bathroom, especially if the kids' rubber duckies have taken up residence?
A: In a small home, especially if there is only one bathroom, the bathroom should ideally be totally free of clutter and toys. You can achieve that by giving each family member a plastic basket or tote to hold their toiletries and toys. Instead of being stored in the bathroom, each family member keeps their basket in their bedroom and carries it to and from the bathroom. They also keep their own towel and washcloth in their bedroom--hang it on a hook in the closet. Many of us used this M.O. in college. Assign time slots for each family member to bathe for 30=45 minutes daily each so there is no squabbling about sis taking too long in the bathroom. Set a timer if need be. Make it a family rule that each member will respect others' time in the bathroom and not interrupt so each family member feels they can have their private bathroom "spa time." And last but not least, each family member cleans up after themselves immediately after their bathroom time so it's clean for the next person. No whiskers in the sink and no pantyhose dripping on the bathroom rod!
Q: What's your best organizing tip for kids sharing a bedroom?
A: Just like a home office shared by mates, kids should each have their own side that's personalized to them. Or at least their own bed if using bunk beds, for instance. I think each child should have their own desk for school studies as well, and their own dresser and side of the closet.
Q: What free download do you have today for our readers/listeners so they can get started right away in organizing their small space home?
A: Go to www.SmallSpaceOrganizing.com and sign up to get the free article I wrote, Small Space Savvy in a Big Stuff World. There's also another free home organizing and decorating article there as a bonus.
NOTE: I was provided a copy of this book at no cost, in exchange for an honest review by Revell Publishers.