Do your teens say they have “nothing to wear”! Does it seem like they always want you to buy them something their friends are wearing? Here’s a fun idea: Have a party and ask the teens to bring items they no longer want to wear (but are in good condition). Hang them on a wardrobe rack and let them have fun trying on eachother’s clothes as well as accessories. Anyone who wants to trade can “purchase” their new outfits without spending any money. TIP: Donate the items not traded to a church, shelter, etc.
Even young children can get involved in organizing “games”. It’s a great way to learn concepts such as naming, sorting and categorizing. There are lots of ways to reinforce positive behaviors including sharing, donating, rotating the number of toys available (versus in storage), and so on. TIP: sort, purge, donate, and organize toys and games in your house before the holidays.
Do your and your friends have a favorite cause or charity? Outside In Organizer & Makeovers recommends that in lieu of gifting more items, you consider giving one another donations to your preferred non-profit groups. Fund raising is critical to many important organizations and difficult in times of limited resources. The benefits? SAVE TIME – LESS TIME SHOPPING SAVE MONEY – USE LESS GAS, NO SHIPPING REQUIRED HELP OTHERS – SUPPORT THE CAUSE, SUPPORT YOUR FRIENDS What is your favorite cause or charity?
TIP #1: Remember to update your contact list. Note address, phone and email changes. If your information changed, consider enclosing a business card with the current information. TIP #2: Compile your list of holiday card/gift recipients and date it : “as of (year sent)”. Keep it on your computer and each year you can “save as”, and revise it accordingly. TIP #3: Get creative! You can send cards electronically. You can send postcards rather than greeting cards. Consider an email blast (no long newsletters).
Have you noticed that each year you receive fewer cards during the holidays? Do you know why? Outside In Organizer & Makeovers suggests that it doesn’t matter because you don’t send them in order to receive cards in return. What matters is that you organize your priorities and decide if it gives you satisfaction to send greetings to those you care about. If so, go ahead and send them. Enjoy the spirit of giving.
What’s worse: packing? Moving? Unpacking and moving in? A few tips to ease the pain: 1. Hire a Professional Organizer to help you declutter before the move. No sense moving items you don’t need anymore. 2. Be prepared. Pack an overnight bag with the essentials (medications, bottled water, toiletries, clean underwear) and put that in your car. Don’t stress about finding what you need the first morning. 3. Packing. Make sure that you label each of the boxes clearly in bold, waterproof lettering, on ALL sides of the boxes. It will reduce wasting time & energy looking for the one box that you need. 4. Moving in. Unload boxes into the intended rooms, against one wall on one side of the room. Allow room for furniture to be delivered obstruction-free. 5. Unpacking. Consider the rooms you will need or want to use first. Usually it’s the bathroom, kitchen and bedroom. Prioritize and expend your energy wisely.
Men want to look great during the holidays, too. The basics are no different for you guys: 1. FIT: The biggest mistake that men make is wearing clothes that don’t fit well. That means that pants should be comfortable around the waist and jackets can button without gapping. Find a good tailor and let them alter items as needed. 2. COLOR: Don’t be afraid of bold colors. Go into a great men’s department and let the salesperson choose colors that will complement your skin tone and hair color. Take mental notes and then leave (unless you can’t resist the item). After you absorb that change and are ready to purchase find a shirt, tie, or sweater in one of those colors and keep the rest of your outfit neutral. NOTE: Listen for compliments! 3. TEXTURE: If you’re not ready for bold colors you can experiment with textures. Add a tweed sports coat to a pair of jeans. Wear a cashmere vest with khaki pants. If you’re really bold, try shoes with a shine to spruce up a casual pair of pants.
Spend less and get more? Add the pizazz factor! Scarves and pashminas can change an outfit. You can wear them in various ways over almost any top. Don’t have time to buy new clothes? Try wearing trendy tights with zig zag or fish net lines. Wear a simple pencil skirt, classic blouse, put on those tights with heels or boots and watch that outfit pop. Accessories can change an outfit, don’t limit yourself, be creative. Wear a vintage satin evening bag with a casual outfit. Send me your ideas and questions…
Women, here are some simple ideas to update your holiday wardrobe: Add sparkle – You can find great jewelry and antique or retro pieces in consignment shops. Adding sparkle to something classic is a great way to make it pop! A large brooch on a jacket lapel will look great, but keep the earrings simple so that they’re not competing. Dress up a casual outfit – wear dark jeans with a white shirt with cuffs folded up. Add a belt with a jeweled buckle, several bangle and cuff bracelets on one arm, and heels. You’ll have that slimming, sophisticated look.
You may have a lot of “stuff” but the best thing that you can do even after sorting & purging is to contain it! Using containers such as baskets or bins has obvious benefits: you can find items more easily, are less likely to lose things, can keep horizontal surfaces clear, etc. There is a wide variety of containers so everyone can find the type that complements a space. Use the containers that you have before buying new ones. Here are some ideas for containing items: Kitchen: Place a beautiful pitcher to store frequently used utensils on your counter top. Entryway: Great location for a large basket or hamper to store outdoor shoes. Closets: Fill unused luggage with off season clothing or extra linens. Cooler: Store unopened beverages such as extra bottles of water in the cooler you aren’t using. I’m sure that you have some great ideas…please share them.