If you've ever organized a room at home, you know that the practice becomes almost addictive and kind of fun (at least, to us). Getting organized is not only helpful to find what you need quickly and easily, but it feels good, too. Research shows that an organized personal space even has a positive effect on our mental health — instead of being frazzled, you're calm and into whatever else you have going on in your day other than looking for those keys you keep misplacing. "Clutter is a nagging visual cue of all the things you have to do, which taxes your stress response system," as Darby Saxbe, PhD, director of the University of Southern California's Dornsife Center for the Changing Family, said to Vogue, explaining how clearing away the clutter in a visually-appealing way helps to keep our stress levels in check.
An organized home is all about keeping in mind that "everything needs a place," as Julie of The Design Twins told Parade, which means that once you're done using something, you put it back where it belongs. It's truly simple once you get in the habit. "This may seem basic and obvious," the professional organizer said, "but really this is the key to an organized home."
But, if the idea of organizing your personal space seems overwhelming, we're here to show you where to begin. Read on for helpful organizing ideas for every room.
Declutter with decorative traysDaria Minaeva/Shutterstock
We have seriously become obsessed with trays. From a valet or catchall tray in the bedroom, kitchen, or entryway as a place to keep your keys to a way to keep the bathroom toiletries you use daily all nice and tidy, trays have multiple uses. By bringing items together that you access on a regular basis, trays reduce clutter and give the placement of the items a purpose, as Apartment Therapy pointed out.
Trays can be both basic or beautiful — plus, they not only serve a purpose, but they also add a subtle dose of style, even serving as a decorative art piece in your home. Do you have an ottoman or coffee table in your living or entertaining space? A tray is the perfect addition to give yourself a place to put a drink or a plate. Speaking of drinks, Woman's Day noted that trays are perfect for keeping items together on a bar cart.
Another place we love for a tray is the bedroom or bathroom vanity area to display items like perfume, makeup brushes, hand lotion, and jewelry – it'll protect the surface and add a little bit of glam if you so wish. We especially love handmade trays made from natural stones, like rose quartz and onyx — and Etsy has plenty from which to choose.
Stack your shoes and keep them visiblePhotographee.eu/Shutterstock
There was a time when even we had no idea what to do with our growing shoe collection and were running out of floor space. Another problem? "If your shoes are scattered in a pile by the door, you won't be able to find what you need," as Perfect Fit Organizing's Brittany Daley told Real Simple. Then what? It's time to stack your shoes, as New York Magazine advised. If you're not fortunate enough to have a professionally organized closet — which most of us are not — you'll have to get a bit creative.
Fortunately, you don't have to try too hard. From containers to shoe racks, stacking your shoes is a great way to free up floor space, especially for small spaces — by "tak[ing] advantage of that vertical space," allowing you to see all your shoe options in front of you, as Ashley La Fond, professional organizer, shared with Architectural Digest. We especially love clear containers for storing your boots when the weather calls for sandals instead, while, at the same time, keeping them free from dust when they're not being used, as expert Michaela Katz shared with the publication.
Over-the-door shoe organizers can also help keep your shoes off the floor and in their own individual pockets, so you'll always be able to find them.
Get more bang for your buck with multi-functional furnitureKlem Mitch/Shutterstock
We don't know about you, but we love multi-functional furniture — it's like a win-win! There are all kinds of functional furniture items, though one of our favorites is the storage bench, which will solve your storage woes while giving you a convenient place to sit, whether used for the bedroom, placed in front of the bed, or situated in a mudroom or laundry room (if you have one and have the space), per Better Homes & Gardens. If you don't purchase one that already includes a cushion, try adding your own custom cushion to a wooden storage bench, or, if you're handy or undergoing renovations, consider a built-in storage bench and add a custom-made cushion, as Architectural Digest suggested.
For small apartments or studios, especially, a Murphy bed or desk is a major space saver, which Architectural Digest also pointed out. When needed, simply pull it down from the wall, and, when it's not, just fold it back up, keeping it hidden in the wall space and leaving loads more room. It's a total game changer.
Floating shelves are both functional and prettyjenhde/Shutterstock
Anything you can place on the wall frees up other areas, and floating shelves are a great way to do this. As professional organizer Christine Stone shared with Parade, wall space can create the extra storage space you need. "Use the vertical space in your home to add storage in a closet, under a sink, or on a shelf," she said. "Vertical space is often overlooked but can really add the extra storage you may need." Whether in the bedroom, the kitchen, or your home office, floating shelves can be used for things like books, pots, plants, and more.
In addition to the functional aspect, they are also decorative and serve as a way to decorate some of your blank wall space you don't know what to do with. If you're in need of more ideas, turn to HGTV to learn how to add floating shelves to literally any room.
Befriend baskets for all different purposesbrizmaker/Shutterstock
If you're new to home organizing, baskets are a good way to start. They're a great way to declutter and can hold a decent amount of stuff. Plus, they can be used in just about every room of the house, from living areas to laundry rooms.
You might use them to store books or magazines that you've kept out and have no idea where to put, maybe even in the bathroom. Another great use for baskets is for storing extra blankets and pillows, as HGTV's Jasmine Roth suggests in her blog. Since you only need maybe one to throw over the couch, a basket is an easy way to keep them tidy. Other creative uses for baskets, according to Roth, include using them as storage for toys and entryway items and as planters!
The Spruce suggests keeping a basket in the bathroom for placing extra toilet paper rolls. Of course, baskets are always helpful for the laundry room, both for laundry itself and to store laundry items like detergent — and they look pretty, too.
Handbag, belt, and scarf hangers do wonders for your closetThiti Sukapan/Shutterstock
No matter the size of your closet, hanging organizers are a must. Most of us aren't lucky enough to have a fully professionally organized closet. However, just because you don't, there's no reason you can't add more functional space to your closet while making it look tidy at the same time.
Handbag organizers, as recommend by Better Homes & Gardens, are one of our favorites. From thick acrylic hangers designed for individual handbags to hanging organizers for multiple handbags, they're a great way to get your bags up off the floor, since you can only wear one at a time anyway. Similar to handbag organizers are organizers for scarves and belts, which are basically hangers with multiple loops.
No clue where to hang your hat? There are hanging hat organizers, too, with clips to hang each (best for baseball caps). Hooks work just as well, too, if you can swing a hammer, but, if you're not handy, the hanging organizers are super simple.
Bedside pockets free up your nightstand spaceYouTube
If you're like us, you've got a lot on your nightstand, and each time you declutter, somehow the pile appears again. A solution? The bedside pocket organizer, per Apartment Therapy, which helps keep essential items handy while reducing the number of items on your nightstand. Yes, adding a bedside caddy is just one thing you can do to keep your bedroom clutter-free.
With multiple pockets, you're able to store the items you need within reach — things like your tablet, important papers, pens, glasses, headphones, etc. — but out of view. This leaves your nightstand free for just the essentials that can't be stored in a pocket, like your lamp, alarm clock, and diffuser. These bedside pocket organizers are also available in a range of colors, sizes, and styles, some of which offer other unique features like a charging station, pockets large enough to fit your favorite magazines, and one with a shelf (not exactly a bedside organizer but a totally unique spin on the idea), perfect for placing your nighttime glass of water — or wine.
Display jewelry in a pretty and creative wayNew Africa/Shutterstock
There was a time when most of us simply stored jewelry in a typical jewelry box, but laying your jewelry flat isn't always the best way to keep your necklaces from getting tangled together. Plus, there's only so much that jewelry boxes can hold, so, when you need more space, think creatively — or let us do the work for you. According to The Spruce, there are many jewelry storage ideas that look good without breaking the bank.
A cute ring dish is a great way to display your rings. If DIY is your thing, try hanging necklaces, bracelets, and earrings from hooks and chains. A driftwood jewelry display is another organizing idea — you can get one already assembled or make one yourself by using hooks along with the driftwood to hold necklaces and bracelets. Other ideas from The Spruce include repurposing a wooden box for rings and making a simple, sleek design with just a block of wood and a brass dowel.
If DIY isn't really your thing, then consider investing in an affordable hanging jewelry organizer with clear pockets so you can easily see all your items, as Parade suggested.
Toilet paper reserves are your bathroom lifelinePixel-Shot/Shutterstock
Have you ever been in someone's bathroom and you run out of toilet paper, leaving you to search for more in their cabinet under the sink? Not fun. This is where toilet paper reserves come in handy. These simple storage solutions keep extra rolls on hand and visible, so both you and your guests will never have to search for more rolls in those cabinets — and come up empty.
The Spruce suggested keeping a few rolls on hand in a simple basket on the back of the toilet, since you definitely don't want to keep the rolls naked on the floor or on the toilet — they'll get dusty. Or, remember those floating shelves? You can add some shelves to the wall, where your toilet paper can sit, either by itself or in a basket.
Possibly our favorite toilet paper solution that's both functional and stylish (bet you didn't think you'd ever see the words "toilet paper" and "stylish" in the same sentence): metal vertical toilet paper reserve holders that can be placed on the floor. Bed, Bath & Beyond carries a bunch of different styles, some of which conceal the rolls, while others keep them within view.
Drawer organizers are a mustKostikova Natalia/Shutterstock
If you think that drawer organizers aren't all that important because you don't actually see what's inside once the drawer is closed, think again: Keeping your things organized within your drawers helps you to see everything easily, and it'll also cut down the time you spend looking for that one particular pair of undies, for example.
Organizers for bedroom drawers often are made of fabric, and some enable you to adjust the size of the inserts to best fit your items. Try an acrylic drawer organizer for organizing your desk items, like paper clips, pencils, and pens, as Good Housekeeping advised. Drawer organizers for the kitchen can help you to more easily find items you shove in your "junk" drawer. A utensil tray can also help keep the many items you stock in your bathroom drawers nice and organized in various sections, as noted by Real Simple. Try placing an organizer in every bathroom drawer you use, grouping like items together so you can easily find what you're looking for.
You can easily find organizers like these to purchase or, if you prefer, make your own out of small cardboard boxes, as Real Simple recommended.
Keep track of important items so you never lose them againKostikova Natalia/Shutterstock
You know those really important items, such as your social security card, passport, a meaningful photo, or a letter you've saved forever (back when people actually wrote letters)? It's easy to put them in a safe place where they won't get lost, but when that place is so hidden that even you can't find it again — well, that's a problem. Don't just put your important keepsakes in a random drawer. Give everything a specific home so you know exactly where everything is whenever you need it.
We especially love Good Housekeeping's tip to keep a notebook with an envelope insert for important papers or small pieces of paper, like receipts, for example. Make one yourself by simply gluing in a manila envelope or purchase one from Etsy. There are many to choose from — everything from a simple document organizer to a comprehensive filing system. If your items are super small, such as craft supplies, pick up a plastic container with section dividers to keep all items separate in their own spot.
"Find a home for every single thing in your home," Cathryn Linn, owner of The Organizing Organization, told Parade, and stick to it. If you don't, she shared, "Before you know, you have a pile of items without a home." And nobody wants that.