Are you one of those people who stockpiles gift wrap? Do you forget to use what you have and buy more? Before you know it your gift wrap takes up so much space, gets wrinkled, and isn’t even useful or attractive anymore! The answer? Hold onto your seats, I’ve got 6 sure-fire ways to conquer gift wrap hoarding: #1: Starting now, discard any gift wrap (including tissue paper) that is no longer usable. That means, if you would be offended by a gift wrapped in it, it goes! #2: Sort holiday and special occasion wrap from general wrap. #3: Raise your right hand and repeat after me: “I will use up all of the gift wrap that I have before I buy something new.” (Say it with meaning, please.) Out of Christmas wrap? Use that solid red, silver, or gold paper and decorate it with an ornament. #4: What do you do with those pieces that are too small for gifts? Use them to create gift tags, place cards at the dinner table, tie them around a candy kiss to decorate the package…be creative. Use it, or lose it! #5: Use only gift bags once your wrap is gone. If you are saving the bags from other shopping trips, use those (why else are you saving them?). #6: When you use a gift bag, don’t write on the bag itself. Write on a removable gift tag that you tie to the handle. That way it can be used again. Note: Sometimes you need to ship items and I know that wrapping is easier than sending them in bags. Consider using a reusable wrap such as a lovely linen towel, a piece of fabric, etc.
‘Tis the season for gifts and the need for gift ideas that don’t add to the clutter. I love the idea of toys with storage features. Check out this article: http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/22/garden/shopping-for-toy-storage-with-michael-aram.html
Despite the current heat wave I can’t help but begin to think about ideas for a holiday wardrobe. Keep it simple and use layering and accessorizing to expand your outfits. Color continues to be big this season. I love this silky print under the gorgeous hip length jacket. Dress it up with a vintage brooch, tuxedo pants, & heels. Next time you can wear it with a classic white shirt, pencil skirt, and boots. Remember to shop in your closet, first. Update something you own and love with a current trend. Need ideas? Send me photos!
Most kids are on vacation for at least 2 weeks. No matter what their ages that’s a long time and planning some activities is in everyone’s best interest. TIPS: Use a calendar that is visible to the family & write down scheduled activities. Schedule time for reading (let them select the books) & mark due dates. Schedule time for them to do projects of their choice: clean their closet (bring donations to a local shelter), donate their toys (visit a children’s hospital), etc.
TIP #1: Do you have a stash of old tissue, gift bags, wrapping paper & bows? Instead of buying more, create a staging area in your home, lay it all out, use it up this season. TIP #2: Do you have a collection of flower vases or glass jars you’re not using? Get them out, clean them, then fill them to create gits. You can fill them with: Sea shells and glass & tie a natural fiber around the gift wrapping. Small, colorful exotic fruits & berries. Vintage buttons. Penny collection (kids love this one). TIP #3: Here’s one that one of my clients shared…use the kids’ art that you’ve been saving to create an album or collage for a family member.
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.
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…