Thursday, September 16, 2010

Kitchen counter Launch Pad

I have a counter just to the left of my refrigerator that is used as a "launch pad". This is a term I picked up from Cynthia Townley Ewer's book House Works. (See for more info from this fabulous author.) I will just have to do a separate post to tell you about this great resource. Anyway, I have a counter that has all the "stuff" I use a lot in the kitchen/living room - pencils, paper, kids clutter, etc. And it has turned into just that, clutter. So, this was my next project. Cynthia suggests a method called STOP for tackling small areas. I used it here, you will have to get the book or go to the website if you want all the details. I used it to clean all the stuff that didn't go here or have a distinct home here, and this is what I was left with.
Neat, but not functional. I still had all this - that need to be usably stored in the area. A bunch of empty baskets on a counter that looks neat doesn't really count as organization. So, I started on the hunt for some kind of small boxes to divide the available space in the baskets I currently have. Wow! Talk about expensive! I wanted small boxes to hold things like paperclips, stamps, magnets, and then some larger ones to hold scissors, paper punches, and tape. There is nothing I could find locally or on the Internet that would give me the quantity I wanted for a price that I was even willing to consider paying. $0.89 per box was the cheapest I could find! And, there was no way to get close the sizes I was really looking for.

I found myself in the depths of despair. Were my efforts at organization really going to be thwarted so easily and early? NO! Inspiration hit! I had an epiphany! I remembered folding some paper boxes at a friend's stamping party a year or two ago, so I started the hunt again. A quick search for "origami boxes" returned this site - Easy Origami Instructions! I zipped down to Walmart for some cute card stock paper, and the result was -

The fabulous thing about these babies is three fold: 1 - you can make them whatever size you want, so you can fill whatever space you have to capacity. 2 - you get to include your own style in your organization, use whatever kind of paper you want for your own look. This is one of my favorite parts, because I get bogged down without some artistic outlet. These boxes helped the organization be fun. 3 - CHEAP! I bought 30 pieces of card stock for $5 because I was so excited to get started. However, this weekend I am going to JoAnn's where they have their scrapbook pads on sale and will purchase a 100-piece pad of paer for $10. That comes out to $0.10 per box, much better than anything else you can find out there.

So, once all my boxes were assembled, my empty, useless baskets turned into this -

Now, I have a truly functional, cute area that works the way it should.

I can't wait to get to JoAnn's this weekend. Just wait until you see the top of my refrigerator when I am done!

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