Closed September 2017

Clutter Video Tip: Organizing Products that Solve Everything! (Or Not…)

With a wave of your wand and an “alakazam”, all of your clutter will disappear! That would be awesome, but… It takes more than hocus pocus to organize your closet and keep it that way. Watch this video to get a little shazam from your organizing tools. That’s not just bippity boppity boo.

(Click here to watch on YouTube if you can’t see the embedded player. Or watch the video at


Hi. I’m Lorie Marrero, creator of the Clutter Diet book and on-line program, and today, we’re going to talk about the organizing products that solve all of your problems. Well, unfortunately, there is no such thing. And the truth is, that a product alone is never the answer. And I mean, never. If you buy something as obvious as a tie rack and you do not hang your ties on the rack, it doesn’t work. That product is completely dependent, as all products are, on your behavior and your systems. So, I’d like you to focus more on what you’re doing with the product as a tool rather than thinking of the product as the solution itself. And when you’re buying these very good tools to use in your organizing systems, I have five questions that you can ask to make sure that you are purchasing these products intelligently.

First, how sturdy is it? If you’re in the store and you’re able to take the product out of the box and inspect it, I would definitely recommend doing that, especially if there are wheels or other kinds of moving parts. You can see how flimsy it might be or not, and if it is flimsy, I would think twice about investing in that product.

Second question, how will I really use this? I think this is a very interesting example. There are these jewelry organizers as I’ve shown here on the screen. They have little holes punched in them for you for put earrings in. At the end of the day, when you’re tired, are you really going to take that earring off and re-assemble it into one of those holes? Probably not. And in practice, this is what I see. So, think through exactly how the product will be used before you buy it.

Third question, how will this product improve the visibility I have to my stuff? If you’ve watched my other videos, you know that the goal of any organizing project is visibility. You’ve got to be able to see what you have to know that you have it and access it when you need it. So, if you have something like this vertical pants hanger that I’m showing here, it may make it difficult for you to actually see all of the pairs of pants that you own. When you’re choosing an outfit, it’s really important to be able to see all of your choices. So, that may not work for you if the visibility is going to be impaired. Think through that.

Number four, will it fit? Before you go out shopping for organizing products, make sure that you measure the space that you need to fill, whether it’s a shelf or some other kind of cabinet, and then take those measurements out, and have a small tape measure with you to measure the product itself before you buy it. This is a little three foot keychain measuring tape that I carry around with me, and this helps me avoid a lot of purchasing mistakes and save money and time.

And the fifth question is, will this product be easy to clean? So, think about the environment of the product. Are children going to be using it? Is there going to be food around this product? If there’s fabric on this basket or whatever it is, is that fabric washable? Does it need to be? If there are lots of grooves and crevices, how hard are those going to be to wipe down or keep clean? Think through all of that before you buy something that’s going to be frustrating.

And finally, I want to make another point about organizing products. And that is, last week we talked about undesignated space in terms of flat surfaces. The other place that the concept of undesignated space comes into play is with cubbies like this. So often a trap that people fall into is thinking that cubbies and compartments are going to be the solution to all their organizing problems, and unless those cubbies and compartments are designated with a label, like you see here, those are going to end up as a nest of delayed decisions and delayed actions. So what I see, a few months down the road after something like this gets put into a space, is that those cubbies are stuffed with random things. They become a nest of catalogs and magazines and unsorted mail and things people don’t know what to do with. So when you buy one of these, buy it with a plan to put a label on each shelf. So maybe it says “Bills,” “Unsorted Mail,” “Catalogs,” “Magazines,” however you want to use those compartments the smartest way, but unless you designate those compartments, they’re going to end up as a nest. So think about that when you go shopping.

If you need help choosing an organizing product to use as a tool in your system, our team does this every week, among many other things that we do in consulting with our members. We help people seven days a week in our Member Message Board area, unlimited, for about the price of a pizza. You can find out more about that at

See you next time, and may you always be happy and grateful for having more than enough.

You may have been searching for most useful products for functional organization.

Click here for FREE decluttering help NOW!

Leave a Reply

ParadeRachael RayInStyleCNBCFast CompanyThe Boston GlobeWomen's DayWGNToday