Guess what time of year it is? Time for a seasonal swap of your clothes!

by , on
May 18, 2023

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here!
I hung out with my grandma a lot while growing up. Most of the time when the weather was warm we were all kicked outside to go play. We built forts in the forest, swang from vines and would catch tadpoles in the pond!! Gram was always up to something…. Working in her garden, patching the roof, or building something.

When the weather would change and the cold air would turn warm, she would get all of her winter clothes washed up, fold the winter clothes up nicely and store them away. She would pull out all the warm clothes and give them a fresh wash (as they typically smelled like mothballs after their hibernation), and place them in drawers or hang them up in the closet.

In my mind (at the time) it never made sense to me…. Why take all the time and effort to do that – when she could just leave everything in her drawers and closets? To me it was a waste of time. You know how you were as a kid, you thought you knew everything!!

Now here we are…many years later…. And I am writing about it… Thank god it didn’t take me that long to grasp what she was doing and why she was doing it.

Yes – I know that doing all that work can be time consuming and the weather is beautiful and you rather be playing outside… But, as with all things Organizing – if you take the time now to do it, it will save you extra time down the road!!

Swapping out your clothes can be very beneficial:
1. You save time – It puts what you will be wearing regularly out in front of you so you don’t have to sort through all the sweaters and cold weather clothes – which will save you time in that morning hustle and bustle!!
2. You save Closet space – PRIME real estate!! The winter clothes get stored away and the warm clothes get put away allowing room for your clothes instead of having everything squished in together. Again – the clothes you will be wearing more often will now be front and center and easy to access.
3. Allows you to analyze your clothes – Is it ripped? Stained? Does it fit properly? – now is your chance to toss/donate it and not have to wash/dry/put it away again (again, saving you some time in the long run!!)
4. You are giving your clothes a breather. Yes, I know they are just clothes – but doesn’t everyone deserve a break? Give them some time away from the washer and dryer, or from hanging in the closet. Think like Kondo – say thank you and carefully pack them away and let your winter wear rest for the season.
5. It gives you something to look forward to next year!! Surprise – look – it is that sweater you haven’t seen all year – have you forgotten how cozy it is!!

Sounds pretty good right? So set aside some time this weekend or one night after work and:Sort through your clothes
1. Separate cold clothes and warm clothes.
2. Separate clothes that don’t fit, are stained, are holy, or you don’t care for anymore from the clothes you are keeping and love (for both warm and cold clothes).
3. Carefully fold or hang the warm clothes.
4. Pick a favorite top, sweater, hoodie, jacket etc. to leave out for possible chilly days/evenings.
5. Carefully store away the winter clothes.

It really is that easy. It’s more time consuming than anything. But again – it’s all about the long run…

Till Next time!!

Architecturally Organized steps into a New Year!

by , on
Apr 19, 2023

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here! 

It has been a little while since we have posted.  Ok – a long while.  But guess what? That is life. It happens to everyone.  I am sure quite a bit has happened in your lives the past year.  We learn and grow from the changes.  And that is a beautiful thing.

Guess what today is? AO’s Birthday!!!  Architecturally Organized turned 2 today!! I have been organizing all of my life.  Seriously.  I would plan out how to rearrange my bedroom before I moved the furniture around, because I wanted to see if it would fit…. I have always loved to organize and I still can’t believe that here we are now…. 2 years in.  It’s a pretty wonderful thing!!

So for me – thinking about AO (what I call Architecturally Organized when talking to friends and family) and where I want it to go, and how I want to expand, where I want to take things….. It is an awesome (and scary) feeling…. But that leads me to my goals.  Big Goals… small goals… What I see and hope for the AO future.

Upcoming Goals

  • Zoom.  Architecturally Organized is branching out with Zoom.  For those of you who live far and wide, but still need help with accountability and motivation – we are here to help!!
  • Etsy.  Architecturally Organized will be available at Etsy.  With Digital Planners, Printable Labels, Notebooks, and fun Organizing themed shirts, totes and mugs…. “Organizing… it isn’t for the faint of heart” is my new favorite shirt!!
  • Patreon.  2024 is  going to start off with Patreon.  I am working hard to create great content for everyone!! Monthly and Weekly Organizing challenges including video tutorials of those challenges!! Meal Planning!!  There will be Digital downloads and Printables available, I am super excited!!  All things to help you have an organized home and lead an organized life.

What are your goals for this year?  Tell me about them!! Put them into motion!! 

Till Next time!!

7 Steps to decluttering your Inbox

by , on
Jun 1, 2022

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here!

I don’t know where some of you are from – but here in Jersey summer weather is here!!! The AC has been kickin… the pool is getting used… and we are soaking up the sun!!  But, not every day is going to be a beach or pool day…

Today is one of them.  It is gloomy looking outside, it wants to rain any minute.  The skies are gray and it is humid out…. It is not a day to be hanging out by the pool!

So on these days… or when it is rainy…or even on the days that it is just TOO hot to go outside – why not take a minute (or a few) and organize your email.

Yes – I said organize your email.
I know I am not the only one who lets their email get out of control.
I know there are more of you who have hundreds if not thousands of emails just sitting in the inbox.
I know there are half attempts at folders that never got used…. At things that have been sitting in your inbox for over a year… just hanging out…. Doing nothing except taking up space!!

So – take the time to clear it all out!!  Below are some steps you can take to help you organize your inbox!  Have fun!!


7 Steps to decluttering your Inbox

  1. Unsubscribe – Go through the random emails and take a minute to unsubscribe from their mailing list.  This will cut down on the amount of spam coming into your inbox!
    • If – you get a ton of emails for coupons and such and you feel you CAN NOT live without them – you can:
      • A – Set up a new separate email specifically to be used for coupons and fliers and any other things that you get when a website asks you to enter an email address – see what we are doing here? This will allow you to still receive all the coupons and crap you want – without it cluttering your regular email account.
      • B-Use automation – Set it up so that when these emails come in they are automatically sent directly to a specific folder so that it does not sit in your inbox.

  2. Use Labels and folders – Using Labels and/or folders is beneficial for items that you want to keep on hand/save.  Also, using labels will make things easier for you when you search for a particular email!!

  3. Automation – For unimportant things-have them automatically go to a specific folder.  I mentioned this above – but Automation is worth mentioning twice!  Automation allows you to receive an email and it will automatically put it in a specific folder you created.  It will not be in your inbox.  It will not pass go or collect $200.  It will go directly to the folder. Neat and Tidy!!

  4. Flag and Star – For Important items that you need for later – be sure to flag or star them! This will also help you find them much easier and at the same time give you a to-do list of sorts!!

  5. File items to keep – If you have emails from your mom of all the wonderful recipes you and her plan to create – make a folder for that (yes mom- every recipe you have sent me is in a folder – at least they should be). Seriously though – If it is important, create a folder for it to live.

  6. Trash items – Everything that is not in a folder, not flagged or starred… not a “to-do”…  go ahead and get rid of it!! There is no use keeping it.  Let it go!!!

  7. Maintenance – is KEY!!!!!! I would add a million exclamation marks to this if I could – as it is SOOO easy to let things get carried away and then before you know it you are drowning in a million emails again!!
    • For Future – when you get an email, take the time right then and there to read it and then decide what to do with it: Trash, Unsubscribe, Flag or Star as important, or label it and file it away for use at a later date!!!

See – now that wasn’t so bad was it?!?! Now-when the next rainy day comes…you will be ready to tackle your inbox!!

Till Next time!!

Perfecting your Pantry while helping others!

by , on
May 4, 2022

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here! May has arrived… flowers are blooming, bees are buzzing, it is warming up!! I love it!!  So – to keep in touch with the Springtime fun stuff… Last month we tackled spring cleaning and garages… Well today we are going to take a look at our pantries.  Why??? Well, it just so happens that May 14th is when the 30th Annual Stamp Out Hunger Food Drive will be held.

What is that?? In 1991 a small food drive was conducted by the National Association of Letter Carriers.  It did so well that they decided on making it a nationwide event.  In 1993 they chose the Second Saturday in May to hold the Food Drive, with one goal in mind – for at least 1 of the NALC branches in each of the 50 states to join in.  It was a big success and collected over 11 million pounds of food!  You can visit the NALC website to learn more about the history! And- Food Donations are tax-deductible (The food is given to non-profits) (Read more here).

What does the food drive have to do with Organizing?? Well – if that isn’t a kick in the butt to clean out and organize your pantry, I don’t know what is!!!

So let’s do it!!!

Ok… so “Pantry” is a loose term here… Not everyone has a pantry… So we are cleaning out pantries and cabinets and any other space where you keep bagged, boxed, and canned food.

Perfecting your Pantry

Tackle one area at a time… be it a cabinet, a shelf or what have you.  There is no reason to get ourselves overwhelmed (remember, baby steps!)!

We will start by removing the items from the space that they were stored in.
It is during this time that you will be reviewing the item.
Is it:

  1. Expired? Toss it
  2. Something you don’t really eat anymore or something someone gave to you that you will never use? Donate it!!
  3. Is it something you do use – but have a few extra of them and want to help out people? Donate it!!
  4. Is it something you are keeping? Then keep it.

See – that wasn’t so hard!!  Yes-you have a mess now, but you can’t organize your things without making a mess first – not if you are really diving in and doing a thorough job of purging and paying attention to what you have already.

Once we have emptied out our space we are going to clean the space out.  Wipe it down.  You do not want to put things back into a dirty/dusty/etc. Drawer, cabinet, closet, etc…

So-your space is cleared out and cleaned out.  You have purged out the things that you do not want/are expired/etc and you are surrounded by piles of your food items – now we can start the process of organizing!!

Start categorizing your food and separating them into separate piles.  Baking Goods, Canned goods, boxed goods, kids snacks…. You get the idea.  You can’t start organizing until you can actually see what you have and how much of it.  You can have as many categories as you want.  Have fun with this – have categories that suit your style of cooking and kitchen use!!

So now that you have the piles laid out before you – you can actually see what you have a lot of and what categories are small, this will:

  1. Allow you to know how much shelf/cabinet/drawer/etc space you will need to hold each specific category.
  2. Allow you to know what size storage containers you will need/see if storage containers you already have will fit.
  3. Allow you to make a simple inventory of your non-perishables (which you can then update on a regular basis)

Now you can start putting things away.  Some simple rules:

  1. Location, Location, Location!! This term not only applies to Real Estate-but to Organizing as well.  Think about your Room, Closet, Pantry, Shelf as Real Estate and decide what is prime real estate vs not.
    • Things that you use the most – should be the easiest for you to access.
    • The things you use the least-should be in less accessible areas.
  2. Don’t forget vertical storage possibilities.
  3. Put heavier items in lower level areas.

Remember – you are organizing for YOU.  Just because you saw something in a magazine/show/online/etc and fell in love with it-doesn’t always mean you need to do the same thing-as that may not work in your space, however-you can always use the concept and adapt it to your individual needs!!

Now that your pantry has been cleaned out and organized and you want to participate in the food drive….you have a box of donatable goods but are unsure what to do…simply place it near your mailbox and your mail carrier will pick it up and transport it!  It’s really that easy!!

Till Next time!!

Earth Day 2022

by , on
Apr 18, 2022

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here!
Spring has sprung and I love it!!! We already talked about spring cleaning… and we discussed cleaning out your garage…. What’s another thing that comes with Spring… Earth Day!

Earth Day is Friday April 22nd and was founded over 50 years ago!

I remember grade school – on Earth day our school would take a long walk to a park for a picnic. Before the walk took place we would each be handed garbage bags and gloves and along this walk we would all pick up as much trash as we could.

We would toss all our garbage and then go run and play on the monkey bars – as a kid – it made for an AWESOME day!!! And – on top of all that – we would usually be in some poster contest where we would color and make a poster with the famous words “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle”.

It really is a simple phrase isn’t it?? And, it is just as simple to say them – as it is to follow them!
How does this phrase coincide with being organized? I am glad you asked…

When we talk about Reducing – we are talking about reducing the trash we create. Reducing our footprint…. How do we do that? One way we achieve this is by not buying things that we don’t need/already have. So where does organizing come in??

Think about it…..When you are organized-everything has a home. And when everything has a home-this allows you to keep a better inventory of your items and you will know what you have on hand and won’t end up buying more than you need or multiples of items.

And-to take it a step further, you can always Borrow, Rent or Buy used instead!!

Reusing items is the next “R”. It is exactly that – Reusing things you have..
There are a lot of ways to reuse items, be it repurposing or repairing. What do I mean? Let me tell you!

Repurposing an item, which is using an item for a completely different purpose than it was initially intended. Reuse an old ratty t-shirt for a dusting rag. Reuse a lazy susan for your makeup, Reuse shoe boxes for Receipts, Organizing cords, crayons – the uses are endless! Honestly-you can go on to pinterest and find a million ways to reuse a toilet paper roll!!

Before throwing out an item try repairing it before buying a new one!

We all know we should recycle – but we definitely don’t all follow along. Find out how your town handles recycling and set up a system that makes recycling become second nature.

When we hear the words “recycle” what do we think of?? Paper…Cardboard boxes… Glass jars?? But there is more to it than just that. The definition is to “convert waste into reusable material” and “to use again”…. By donating your clothes – you are recycling them. You are giving them another chance at life – I know that sounds super cheesy – but it is true! When you have a garage sale, donate to a charity, list something for “curb pickup” on facebook groups – this is a form of recycling

Before you decide to just throw out an item-think about recycling it and allowing someone else to make use of it!

There are many ways to follow the 3 R’s. Some other websites to look into for selling and donating are:
Facebook marketplace
Consignment Shops
Salvation Army
Local area Church

So there you have it…Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle!! What do you do to follow those R’s? What have you repurposed that has made your life easier?
As the Quote says… Let’s make Earth Day – Everyday! Till Next time!!

4 Simple steps to Organizing your Garage

by , on
Apr 1, 2022

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here!

Well… March isn’t exactly going “out like a lamb” as these last few days have been frigid!! I do look forward to the April showers and all the May flowers!!

That being said – Now that the weather should be warming up – it is time to tackle your garage!! April is the Official Month for Organizing your Garage!! Yes -they really do have a designated day and month for everything!! But really-it does make sense… Think about it-there is usually still a little chill in the air (so you won’t be working out in the hot summer sun) -and possible showers- you are still outside but you are sheltered… April is the best month to do it!

So let’s do it? Where to begin?? Take a look around you. What is your garage filled with?

Is it already neat and tidy with your car parked in it and ample room to maneuver around your car? Totes or boxes neatly stacked? If so – good for you!! If not-well, that is where I come in!

Start by Separating
Start going through the items in your garage and separating them into piles. This is where the fun starts!! You will have a few piles- Keep, Toss, and Donate. However, the Keep pile will not just be one pile-while we are separating our items-we are also going to separate our items to keep.

You will break down your keep pile into different groups. What is your garage stored with? Camping/fishing items? Sports items? Tools? Gardening Tools? Leftover Pantry items? Pool supplies? The categories are endless-it all depends on what you keep in your garage (remember-every person and project is different!!).

Purge it all out
You made your piles… now what?? Now it is time to get rid of the items that you no longer need, use, and/or want. Now you can get all your garbage bags tied up, and your donation boxes itemized and set aside. Take a peek at your garage.. Does it feel more open? Do you have more space?? Unless you kept everything you went through – I bet you do!!

Now we get down to the real business.

Organizing all your stuff!!
How many keep piles do you have? Can some of them overlap or work together? How much storage space do you have in your garage? We are going to create work/storage zones within your garage. Take a minute and go grab a sketch pad-I’ll wait! We are going to lay out your garage zones….. it will make this a little easier-especially if you are a visual person! (I suggest grid paper if you have it-it will help you put a scale to your drawing)

Ask yourself these questions regarding your items and your garage:

  • How do I use my Garage?
  • How do I want to use my Garage? (Car, Storage, Man Cave, Workshop, etc?)
  • Do I need additional Storage for all of my items?
  • Which category do I have the MOST items in?
  • Which category do I use the most?
  • Which category do I use the least?
  • Which category needs to be out in the open for easy access?
  • Which category can be completely stored away in totes?

Once you have answered these questions it will help you layout your garage zones. You may have a workshop/bench area, a storage area, holiday decorations area…and that’s just to name a few.

By identifying the items you use the most vs the least – it will help you decide where to store them, obviously things that you use the most and need the easiest access to will be stored in an area that you can easily get to – while items that only get used 1 or 2 times a year can be stored on a top shelf or in another area that is out of the way.

See how this works?? Things you need/use the most will be in areas that are in your viewing and reaching space… and the less and less an item is used – the more out of reach it is in the storage.

By laying out the zones on a notepad – you can get an idea of how much stuff will be stored and where. Now if you are using that graph paper – you can use one square to equal 6” – and you can guesstimate the sizes of totes, boxes, bikes, etc to allow you to sketch out a layout and really understand the amount of items you have as well as the amount of space you have-which will help you to decide if you need additional storage totes, shelves, etc.

Put it all back

Once you have an understanding of how you are going to organize everything you can start putting everything back in their new homes!!  Get creative here!! Re-use your storage totes and shelving systems.  Don’t be afraid to think outside the box……Peg boards aren’t specifically made for tools – you can use them to hang up other items you have laying around, Go vertical with your storage totes, Magnets are your friends, hang bikes on the ceiling instead of the wall.. A few ideas to think about!! 

Have fun- and do what works best for you!

Hope this was helpful for you all and that it gives you the encouragement you need to tackle your own garage!! Until next time!

Say hello to Spring and to Spring Cleaning…

by , on
Mar 16, 2022

Hello Everyone, Angie from Architecturally Organized here!

In like a lion…out like a Lamb.. we’ll see!! It is the middle of March….The clocks have changed… and in just a few more days Spring will officially be here!

With Spring… comes Spring Cleaning!! Now I know that is not the same as “Organizing”… but the two really do go hand in hand with one another. Whether you are organizing or cleaning – start one room at a time… one task at a time… and don’t let it overwhelm you!

Now when it comes to cleaning there are a few different ways that you can attack it…. Start by room or by task….You could pick the Kitchen and just do all the cleaning for that room at one time, or you could choose the task – say Dusting. Go through the house and do all the dusting at one time.

Below is a room by room list of Spring Cleaning items to tackle!! Now open up those windows – let the cool breeze in and help air out your house… and don’t forget to have fun!!

Entry (Including hallways) 
Dusting: wipe down crown molding, window trim, cabinet trim, wipe down cabinets, cabinet doors, and cabinet hardware, and base trim.
Glass-Clean all windows, Doors and Glass Cabinets.
Linens-Wash linens (Curtains, etc)
Surfaces-Wipe down all surfaces (Walls, Wall Switches, Countertops, etc.).
Floors-Sweep/vacuum and mop floor.

Dusting: wipe down crown molding, window trim, cabinet trim, wipe down cabinets, cabinet doors, and cabinet hardware, and base trim.
Glass-Clean all windows, Doors and Glass Cabinets.
Linens-Wash linens (Towels, wash cloths, curtains, etc)
Appliances-Clean all Appliances (Microwave, Dishwasher, Stove/Oven, Refrigerator).
Surfaces-Wipe down all surfaces (Walls, Wall Switches, Countertops, etc.).
Floors-Sweep/vacuum and mop floor.
Toss out any old or expired food items in cabinets and fridge/freezer

Living Spaces (Dining Room, Living Room, Family Room, Den, etc)
Dusting: wipe down crown molding, window trim, cabinet trim, wipe down cabinets, cabinet doors, and cabinet hardware and Base trim.
Glass-Clean all windows, Doors and Glass Cabinets.
Soft Surfaces-Vacuum Seating arrangements and rugs
Linens-Wash Linens (blankets, throws, Curtains, etc)
Surfaces-Wipe down all surfaces (Walls, Wall Switches, etc.).
Floors-Sweep/vacuum and mop flooring.

Dusting: wipe down crown molding, Grab bars, towel bars, cabinet trim, wipe down cabinets, cabinet doors, and cabinet hardware, and base trim, etc.
Glass-Clean all Mirrors, windows, Doors and Glass Cabinets.
Accessories-Clean toilet, sink, tub, etc.
Linens-Wash linens (Towels, wash cloths, shower curtain, curtains, etc)
Surfaces-Wipe down all surfaces (Walls, Wall Switches, Countertops, etc.).
Floors-Sweep/vacuum and mop floor.

Dusting: wipe down crown molding, window trim, Base trim.
Glass-Clean all windows, mirrors, glass doors, etc.
Soft Surfaces-Vacuum Seating arrangements and rugs
Linens-Wash Linens (blankets, throws, Curtains, etc)
Clothes-Tidy up closets and drawers (fold/hang clothes, etc)
Surfaces-Wipe down all surfaces (Walls, Wall Switches, etc.).
Floors-Sweep/vacuum/mop flooring.

Keep in mind – this is a very broad list… It will get your house spick and span… but if you want to go a little deeper…try adding these items to your spring cleaning list:

Entry (Including hallways)
If you have an Entry Closet – go through it, empty it out and sort the items.
Apply specialty products to your flooring (if you have hard wood-polish, if you have porcelain or tile-check your grout, etc.)

Clean sink, faucet, garbage disposal
Set oven to “self clean”
Apply specialty products to your flooring (if you have hard wood-polish, if you have porcelain or tile-check your grout, etc.)

Living Spaces (Dining Room, Living Room, Family Room, Den, etc)
Clean window blinds/curtains
Shampoo rug/polish hardwood floors
Move heavy furniture and clean under it.

Check the expiration dates on items and toss what is expired.
Clean your showerhead
check your grout

Go through your clothes- donate/purge items that no longer fit/you don’t like.
Flip your mattress.
Shampoo rug/polish hardwood floors
Move heavy furniture and clean under it.

You can get as tough and gritty as you need to – it’s all up to you!! Take it a day at a time and you’ll get it done!!

What are your favorite spring cleaning tasks?
Tell me about them!!
I’ll talk to you later!!

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