Hide Your Clutter In Plain Sight

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By Amy Howell Hirt and © Copyright 2016 NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS®

Get inspired to declutter your home with these clever solutions that turn everyday items andlocations into sneaky storage spots right under your nose.

Curate Your Clutter–Sometimesthe difference between “clutter” and “collection” is all in the presentation.After falling in love with film photography as a student, Nicholas Hendrickxamassed an expansive assortment of cameras — from $1 thrift-shop finds tohigh-end brands like Hasselblad — scattered throughout his home.

To give his treasures the respect they deserve, he invested in asimple display case from Ikea — white to match the other cabinetry in his workspace. Through Hendrickx’s careful spacing and grouping, even old flashbulbsand film holders are now part of an artful installation.

Conceal an Eyesore, CreateStorage–Whodoesn’t love a double-duty fix? For a mere $10, this yard-sale armoire enabledhandy homeowner Melodye Farrar to conceal her home’s electric and cable boxesand create built-in storage for a garden hose and cleaning supplies.

Situated next to the back door, the space was a longtimeeyesore, but it took just one day to remedy. Farrar and her husband removed thetop and back of the armoire and built a concrete-stone foundation to keep thecabinetry out of any standing water. Two L-brackets and concrete anchors securethe top of the armoire to the wall, and a coat of marine varnish protects thewood from the elements.

Store in the Stairs–In a500-square-foot home, Brooklyn-based architect Jordan Parnass took efficiencyto a new level, crafting stairs that serve as drawers.

“It seemed criminal to waste that volume,” Parnass says of thespace underfoot.

Given the dual functionality, a project like this requirescustom construction. Parnass used low-profile drawer pulls that limit trippinghazards, and high-end materials that will hold tight under shifting weight. Ofcourse, homes with children (or absent-minded adults) might consider the riskof left-open drawers!

Beef Up Bed Storage–Beds withbuilt-in drawers are convenient for in-season clothing, while lift-upmattresses like this Ikea model offer a box-spring-size storage area for itemsyou don’t reach for every day.

Prefer to DIY your way to clever bed storage? Atlanta-basedorganizing expert Gigi Miller suggests going the old-school route. Those risersyou relied on in your cramped college dorm room will lift your bed from 3 to 6inches off the ground, providing enough space to slide storage containersunderneath. Miller recommends clear containers on wheels for maximum ease, andcanvas bins lined with cedar planks for keeping clothing fresh.

Pegboard Pots and Pans–JuliaChild knew how to cook. She also knew how to keep her kitchen organized. One ofits most renowned features? A floor-to-ceiling pegboard for her French copperpots and pans. It’s an ideal way to gain storage by using vertical surfaces.And it’s affordable. A basic 2-by-4-foot pegboard made of plastic or pressedwood will run you less than $10, and a starter kit with mounting hardware andhooks costs less than $20.

As forthe aesthetics, “A kitchen pegboard can be both functional and beautiful ifdone right,” Miller says. Paint, frame, or cover it with fabric for a pop ofpersonality and color