Organizing Project: Display Shelves

Today's set of reorganized shelves is to the side of my client's kitchen. With the original owners, this section housed two giant sculptures. That just isn't my client's style so she had shelving installed. She was never totally sure what to put here or how to arrange it. Over time, the shelving took on a life of its own and became home to things she wasn't sure what to do with.


We started by removing everything and categorizing the items. Some items got pitched entirely (outdated phone books that never get touched) while others were moved to where their new homes will be (random office supplies, children's items and keepsake cards.) From there, I determined a layout to balance books with decoration and adjusted some of the shelving to make things easier to see and reach.


The decorative items remaining are things my client really loves - including tea cups from her collection and gifts from her daughter. By spacing these items out, she can better see and appreciate them. My client is also trying to regain her love for cooking and cook healthier meals for her family. With this in mind, I separated the books by diet vs. non, then placed the cookbooks she wanted easiest access to on the ends. The upper shelves are a schosh high so those are cookbooks and some home books that she doesn't revisit too often.

I did give her the homework of further purging some of these cookbooks because she won't realistically be able to use all of them and having fewer on the shelves will make the books she does use easier to get to and put away when she's done. We'll also create a binder for recipes from the books that only have one or two recipes she is interested in. There is absolutely no need to have an entire book taking up valuable real estate when you only want a page or two from it.

Total time: 1 hour.

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