I hope you are all doing fine.
I've been doing a little of this and that over the past 5 days or so.
First, I've been busy "window shopping" for various home decor accents, mainly throw cushions. Covers for throw cushions to be exact. I couldn't find what I want and certainly not at the prices I want to pay. Most cushion covers are priced at anywhere from $7.99 for a small lumber pillow to about $89 or so for a nicely patterned cover with cushion inside.
Instead I decided to make cushion covers using some of my Japanese indigo fabric purchased over the summer at a sale price of $12. Canadian. The remaining cushion covers will be made using some inexpensive solid burgundy pillow cases and burgundy/beige/white pillow cases with elephant pattern. Both sets were purchased earlier in the week at $1.99 (+ tax) Canadian for each set. Now I just need to find some deep gold coloured fabric (cost unknown) to make a few lumbar support cushions. For closures, I will use buttons I have on hand instead of zippers. All cushions are for a friend who doesn't read this blog. Grand total cost for 8 cushion covers will be around $20 (including tax) Canadian. The cushion inserts will cost extra.
|An idea of what the cushion covers will look like when done. I need to find fabric in gold/mustard colour.|
|This is the Persian inspired carpet in the living area. Current sofa and chair are a mustard colour.|
At home I've started on another major decluttering exercise which usually gets combined with home organization. Each time I get rid of a lot of things, I also end up moving things, storing them in different locations and sometimes buying more storage containers. Those of you who purge and organize on a regular basis know that the task is never really done. I try to implement a major declutter once or twice each year. But it has probably been a bit longer than that since I last tackled this task. In this go around, I've decided one of my key tasks will be to organize my dresser drawers (and closet shelves) better so clothing is visible to the wearer. I also plan to empty all the bags I've been storing under my dining table. Bags of fabric and clothing that need to find a home, go to the thrift or get thrown out. I also have bags in my bedroom that need sorting. I am still trying to pare down what I inherited from my sister and my mother (mostly my mother). The storage room is filled to capacity so whatever I have in my home needs to be pared down. The kitchen will also be given a once over. I have at least one appliance to give away and a lot of cookbooks I need to pare down. Ideally I'd like to get rid of al cookbooks since I basically only use online recipes. But that is a pipe dream. I love books too much.
So to help with getting my dresser organized, I stopped at a Japanese variety store earlier this week. The store is sort of like a dollar store though most goods cost at least $2.00 and go marginally upward in price. I was looking for drawer dividers. Not the basket or container type, but the kind that partitions the drawers.
I found two types of dividers to try and have since organized the small dresser drawers where socks and undergarments are kept. The total cost was $10. but I need to buy one more sock container at another $2. for a grand total of $12. Canadian. Perhaps I will upload a photo or two when done with this project.
I also need to purchase some inexpensive fabric or plastic boxes suitable for larger clothing items. These are for the larger dresser drawers and for the open grid shelves in my closets. For the moment, I've used several shoe boxes and a cardboard box in one large drawer. I've rolled up the t-shirts and put them side by side so they are clearly identifiable when the drawer is opened. If I had more boxes I would simply use them instead.
There are fabric boxes and various kinds of plastic storage containers widely available in my city and in a very wide range of prices. I live in a large city but if you live in a smaller city or town, the best place to check for organizational items would be the local dollar store. If you don't have one of these, then Amazon is a good place to buy them and Wal-Mart also has these kinds of items. Personally, I prefer to buy these types of items in a brick and mortar store so I can examine them and buy them on the spot if they will suit the purpose.
Dollarama and the Dollar Tree are the next stores I will check out. I never get to the latter but will make a point of going there soon to check out what they have since all items are priced at no more than $1.25 Canadian whereas items at Dollarama can go up to $3.00 and the Japanese variety store prices are also $2. or more.
None of these prices sound so expensive. But when you are purchasing a lot of items it is best to spend the least amount possible on each item. The total can really add up even at small prices per item. For example, to separate socks and undergarments the spend is a grand total of $12 (+ tax ) Canadian. But there are still 3 large dresser drawers (estimated cost to organize each drawer is at least 3 times more for each drawer ($36 each or subtotal $108 + tax). There are also up to 8 closet shelves to organize. Depending on what kind of containers one buys it can be anywhere from $6 to $20 per shelf (estimated subtotal $ 48 to - $160 total for the shelves). That means I potentially have another $158 to $268 (+ tax) total Canadian to spend on organizers dresser drawers and closet shelves. This is still a high cost when you consider that all items are going to be purchased in dollar stores or inexpensive variety stores rather than the high end container stores.
There is no way I am going to spend this amount to organize clothing.
I simply cannot fathom spending that kind of money when there are so many needs in Kenya and here at home.
Now you see why I haven't already organized these spaces.
In the past I've just folded everything nicely and tried to keep it organized as best I can by colour and garment type. But my system just hasn't been working too well. It is also too much work to keep clothing from getting all jumbled and messy because my closet shelves are open grid. I need an economical way to organize the clothing.
Perhaps the solution is to make my own out of foam board. Here is a good YouTube tutorial if any of you are also interested. You could even cover cardboard pieces with Mac Tac contact paper or wrapping paper. Personally this is too much work for me. But it might work for you if you have time and especially if you already have all the required items around your home. Foam boards are available at Staples for about $14. (+ tax) for 3 sheets. I will need at least 9 sheets for a total of $42 (+ tax). I already have the cutter. Wal-mart Canada also sells the foam board in store at 2 sheets for about $6 (+ tax) so this is a better deal. Perhaps they also sell it at the dollar stores for even less. I also like the idea of just using boxes so you can use different size boxes that will fit into your space. If you don't like the look of boxes you can cover them with wall paper, Mac Tac, wrapping paper or colourful tape from the dollar store. I'm not 100 percent sure yet what solution I will use but I will do what is quickest and cheapest for me to get the job done soon.
While I was out looking for organizing aids I was also finally able to find a suitable phone for my mother. My brother and I have both been looking for a set for over a month both on line and in store. He was even going to go across the border to buy the phone we need. But on Thursday evening I found a suitable phone on a sale price of $69.99 (+ tax) marked down from $99.99 (+ tax). I was happy.
Some time ago I started reading a biography on Charles Dickens and while I have been enjoying it I simply haven't had too much time for reading. I've renewed the book several times already and it can't be renewed any more so I've decided I'm prepared to pay a small over due find of about $1.50 for one week so I can finish the book. After posting about this, I called the library and was able to get an extension to the loan period for one additional week. That's great and a savings of $1.50.
Besides shopping and organizing, I've been knitting a stash of dishcloths for home use and for small gifts. I've also been giving some thought to what to get for Christmas gifts this year and have a lot of ideas for economical and sentimental gifts that will be suitable for my family members.
|This is a beautiful buck from the land of Kenya.|
And here are two beautiful exotic birds living at the Bloedel Conservatory in Vancouver.
|Pied Imperial Pigeon|
|An Electus Parrot. I think his name is Kiwi.|
I hope your week has been a good one.
Joining with our host Eileen at Saturday's Critters.
Enjoy the weekend and the week ahead!