Creative Ways to Tame the Mess in Kids’ Bedrooms

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 1.22.04 PMThese cool storage features will keep your children’s rooms tidier — no threats or bribes required

While cupboards and drawers will always have their place as a storage solution, when it comes to kids’ bedrooms, why not think outside the box? Or in the box? Or attach the box to the wall? These original, vibrant and effective ways to keep kids’ bedrooms tidier will take the headache away for you and make it far easier for your kids to keep their things in order. And, with a little forethought, kids will discover that tidying up the mess can be just as fun as making it!

8 Laundry Room Ideas to Watch For This Year

Screen Shot 2015-01-13 at 2.30.15 PMThe Hardworking Home: A look at the most popular laundry photos in 2014 hints that dog beds, drying racks and stackable units will be key

The laundry room is one of those spaces that, if you’re lucky enough to have one, is always in use. If you have a large family, your laundry machines are likely running every day — sometimes even every night. With so much time being spent in these hardworking spaces, it’s worth taking the time to make them as functional and efficient as possible. Pullout drying racks, expansive folding counters and plenty of storage are sure to help you get the job done, but don’t overlook pet-washing stations or wine refrigerators. As you prepare for your laundry room remodel or new build in 2015, consider these most popular laundry rooms on Houzz in 2014 for inspiration and design tips.

Home Staging on a Budget


How to Turn Almost Any Space Into a Guest Room

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 1.18.56 PMThe Hardworking Home: Murphy beds, bunk compartments and more can provide sleeping quarters for visitors in rooms you use every day

dedicated guest room is a luxury that not all can afford. But even if you need to use every inch of your home for your own living space, a guest room may still be in the cards. From combination home office–guest rooms to living rooms that do a disappearing act, these ideas are here to help.

Hardworking space: The guest room.
The challenge: Hosting occasional overnight guests is a fact of life for many … but not so many of us have the square footage to spare for a guest room that rarely gets used. Make your guest room work just as hard for you as it does for your guests by combining it with another space.
Good to know: A ceiling-mounted curtain is an easy and budget-friendly way to give your guests privacy in a shared space.

6 Smart Ways to Work Your Square Footage

Screen Shot 2015-01-07 at 3.50.30 PMThe Hardworking Home: From Juliet balconies to movable walls, here’s how to make a home of any size feel more open, flexible and fun

New homes are getting bigger. The size of the average American home built in 2013 was 2,600 square feet, which is bigger than ever, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. While it can be nice to have such a spacious dwelling, many of us live in much older homes, built early in the previous century, with smaller floor plans that reflect the routines of a different era. Many people are continuing to flock to urban environments, too, where living spaces are generally smaller. So how do you make a smaller home feel bigger? If you have limited space, consider these design solutions to improve the livability of your home.

A Hidden Charging Cabinet Corrals and Juices Family’s Electronics

Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 7.40.58 AMThe Hardworking Home: Laptops, phones and tablets now have a safe space in this kitchen, keeping the countertops uncluttered

“Everything tends to wind up on the kitchen counters,” says interior designer Harmony Weihs. While working on a breakfast nook in Jeff and Amy Miller’s Mercer Island, Washington, kitchen, she couldn’t help but notice all of the phones, tablets and laptops that had overtaken this couple’s kitchen counters. “They had wires everywhere, even dragged across a gas range,” Weihs says. “I said, ‘Yeah … so … this is a safety hazard!’” In addition to safety concerns and keeping the electronics sheltered from spills and grease, the designer wanted to help the couple free up their cooking and prep space. She designed a freestanding cabinet with built-in power strips that not only cleared up their countertop space but also added to it.

Small Steps for Keeping Your Housekeeping Resolutions

Screen Shot 2015-01-05 at 7.37.30 AMTake a different approach this year, making simple, positive changes that add up before you know it

It’s January. Oh, the humanity. Perhaps you live in the Southern Hemisphere or some other warm and sunny place where those two words don’t bring a sense of doom so profound it propels one back into bed with a plate of cookies.

Maybe you are Naturally Organized and, now that all the holiday decor is put away, you just can’t wait to get the place cleaned up! You’ve dusted the lightbulbs and — honestly, I don’t have the strength to try to imagine what else you’re doing.

For some of us, the mere thought of the new year opens up a 55-gallon drum of worry and stress. How can it even be January again? Last year we were going to simplify and declutter. We were going to lose a bunch of weight and become profoundly spiritual or flat-out profound. We were going to meditate and plant an organic garden and read a ton of books, become more grateful and get super in shape — which is not the same thing as losing weight, let me tell you — and we were going to give up gluten, or was it sugar? We were going to go paleo! That’s it, except we couldn’t figure out how to make noodles out of squash. Were we going to give up meat? Dairy?

I know we were going to entertain more, practice hospitality and open our homes, make deeper connections and all that — you know, build community; but before we could have anyone over, we absolutely had to clean the place up and get totally organized! It was going to be the best, most productive, spiritually aware year ever, and here it is January again and we’re having a spot of trouble getting out of bed with or without the cookies.

Do you feel me?

The Life Expectancy of a Home


Your Total Home Organizing and Decluttering Guide

Screen Shot 2014-12-29 at 8.24.33 AMTake it slow or be a speed demon — this room-by-room approach to organizing and storage will get your home in shape no matter how you roll

Party’s over, folks. It’s that time of year — now that the stockings have been taken down and the confetti has been swept away, any excuse to hold off on decluttering your home is long gone. Take advantage of the new year and give your home a fresh start. We’ve compiled some of the best cleaning and organizing guides from Houzz, room by room, to help you start off the year with a clean slate.