Flat Surface Clutter – How to keep clutter away from flat surfaces in your home

Look at some of the flat surfaces in your home. Don’t we all have one or more of them that we just can’t keep free from clutter? It’s an ongoing battle – like laundry! Here are a few steps that you can take to keep these clutter magnets neat and clear.

First, identify the flat surfaces in your home that always seem to accumulate clutter. Here are a few common ones:

  • Kitchen counters
  • Dining room table
  • Coffee table
  • The foot of the bed
  • Random chairs around the house
  • Home office table
  • Top of dressers
  • Night stand

A temporary fix is to take at least 10-15 minutes a day to remove clutter from one or two of these surfaces. Put things back to where they belong or arrange the things that are supposed to be there but are in disarray. But really, what we’re looking for is how to make sure that random things don’t accumulate on these surfaces again, right? So the process continues with identifying what items are constantly accumulated as clutter. Most of these are items that don’t really have a home, so once you know what these are, make sure that they have a place for them to go to. Here are a few solutions.

Kitchen clutter – Put away small kitchen appliances that you don’t really use that often, like your panini press. These are some of the big ones that contribute the most in making your kitchen counters look like they’re cluttered when they’re not. Minimize the number of plates, bowls, glasses, mugs, and serving bowls and plates that are out for easy access. Unless you have a whole neighborhood dining in your home everyday, put the other ones away and just take them out when you’re ready to use them.

Dining room clutter – The dining room table is usually cluttered with grocery bags, school bags and purses, and sometimes have crayons and papers that kids leave out too. Make sure that groceries get put away as soon as you arrive home. This goes the same for purses and school bags. If you have kids who use the dining room table as their “art room”, look at this as an opportunity to decorate! Get decorative boxes that will house crayons, pencils and the like. You can put these boxes in the middle of the dining room table without giving away the fact that there are actually art supplies in them. Don’t forget to brief your kids about this change so they’ll know where to get their stuff and where to put them back.



Image Source: apartmenttherapy.com

Living room clutter –The living room is a magnet for stacks of mail and bills, shoes, keys and other stuff. A fool-proof way to keep this area organized is to have a command center in your entryway. Designate bins where you can organize important mail and bills, get a catchall for keys, have a shoe rack that will house at least 6 pairs of shoes to keep shoes away from the floor, put a small bin beside the shoe rack where used socks can go so they’re not balled up on the floor, put a coat rack and an umbrella rack in the corner – basically customize your entryway for it to be specific to your needs.

Bedroom clutter –This is where the most random stuff end up in. Tops of dressers, nightstands, the foot of the bed, and “the chair” – oh that chair! Here are some solutions to keep these surfaces clear. Designate small bins, organizers and hooks to house hair ties, jewelry, sunglasses and other random stuff that clutter the tops of your dresser. This goes the same for nightstands. It helps if the bins and organizers that you choose are a little more decorative too. As for those worn-once clothes that end up at the foot of the bed or in your “special chair”, consider having a separate hamper or basket for clothes that you’re still planning to wear one more time (or two – no judgement here) before laundering.

Finally, to prevent these clutter magnets from getting out of control again, it’s definitely necessary to build better habits. Make sure that everyone in the house is aware of where things should go and what the bins are for. These solutions are not useful after all if you’re the only one who knows about them.

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