Clothes, shoes, papers, craft supplies; sorting out the mess never seems to end, say Family Circle staffers and members of our social network, Momster.com. Here, organizing experts tackle their problems and share their best tips for cutting clutter.
By Kimberly Fusaro
"I'm short, so keeping the kitchen cabinets in order is tough. When it's time to put dishes or groceries away, I just place them wherever I can!" —slushmom
A kitchen cabinet overhaul is a big job—but if done right, it will pay off in spades. Begin by sorting through it all and tossing food that's past its prime. No expiration date? Platt uses StillTasty.com to help determine whether something's spoiled. Next rearrange each cabinet so the things you rarely need—baking goods (cookie decorating supplies and big bags of flour and sugar) and fancy serving dishes (hors d'oeuvre platters and chips-and-dip dishes)—are in the highest spaces. Designate the lower shelves for things you reach for daily, such as dinner plates and dried spices. If a little extra height would give you a better view of the next shelf up, stow a flat folding stool in a kitchen cabinet. Use countertop canisters to keep things you use regularly, like coffee beans or cereal, close at hand.