Organizing your home doesn’t have to be a closet-only experience. There are baskets for every décor and prices to fit any budget. Woven natural fibers, nude or painted wicker, hot-colored plastics, wire and mesh, canvas and contemporary metals; these organizational vessels come in all materials, shapes and sizes. Tucked into benches and consoles, hung on walls, stacked on shelves – the possibilities are endless.

Containers are key in keeping organized, says Standolyn Robertson, president of the National Association of Professional Organizers, Glenview, Ill.

“When I approach a job, I always have containers in mind. I even think of a chair as a container for your bottom. Everything needs a home and baskets are just an extension of that; they contain clutter and actually ‘train’ the family to put things away,” Robertson says.
Giving everything a home is the secret, and labeling baskets helps reinforce their purpose.

Electronic-game paraphernalia. Keep all the games, cords and controllers in a large container with handles. Leather, canvas or metal (select material suitable to your décor) baskets can sit near the entertainment center without looking out of place.

If the family room doubles as a playroom, keep three or four baskets behind the couch (assuming it’s not flush to the wall). Different colored baskets make for easy sorting and turn picking up into a game.

Every home has a command center, usually in the kitchen. Hang baskets on the wall – one for mail, kids’ paperwork that needs your attention and bills, or one for each family member.

Robertson also sings the praises of basket kits. “Their beauty is it is one unit that can be pulled out and put away easily.” You can conceive totes for just about anything:

• Bill paying – include stamps, return-address labels, checks, envelopes, pens and a stapler

• Homework – note cards, paper, glue sticks, tape, markers, scissors and erasers

• Baking supplies – sprinkles, cutouts, frosting tips, food dye and decorating tubes

• Summer eats – paper plates and napkins, straws, popsicles molds, powdered-drink packs, citronella candles and matches

Want your kids to eat more fruit or healthy snacks? Set a fruit-filled basket on the kitchen counter or put a basket of hard-boiled eggs on the refrigerator shelf at eye level and watch them disappear
Use baskets with lids to expand your vertical space by stacking

A final note: Baskets define a boundary, thus helping control how much stuff is reasonable. When it begins to overflow, it’s time to purge – think magazines, newspapers, toys, plastic water bottles. Store them in baskets and when they reach the top, get tossing.

© CTW Features