She was brave enough to send her pics for review last month ...and I am sorry it took me a bit to get this one out. She actually has a lovely space and here are the shots she sent in and my comments on each. Bravo Dawn! I hope I can offer a few helpful tips.
I love, love, love the fact that you have family member portraits in your work area. I hope they are your inspiration pieces and motivators for all your albums and projects. :) The ceiling border is a nice touch and the live plant is a terrific touch. You do have a natural wood furnishings style so it is nice that you have put the white plastic boxes inside a wooden case at far right of the above photo. I tend to say that if you have plastics, keep them all one color. Most drawer and storage boxes are sold either as white or black. Because the entire rest of your plastics in this room are black, consider switching these 8 white boxes to black.
Terrific that the pretty green photo boxes are labeled. You are off to a great start here. I take it that the Santa's are not a year around element and that they will "dash-a-way-all" after the holidays. :)
In this close up (above) of the same area, I see on the wall at the far right that you have a nice collage of photos in a frame. Those also look labeled. TERRIFIC! This is a great tip for others reading here. These collage pieces often get handed down and the recipient 10-20 years from now may not know who is who or when things happened. Labeling is not only important in our albums but in our other photo projects. Good work!
OK now for the below photo. (Wink) I see some refreshments in the cabinet. Normally with doors closed they are out of sight, I know. But I am not sure I would want to move those bottles every time I had to get to my supplies. Make sure whatever is in the lower left cabinet is something you almost never use. I see lots of magazines and Idea Books to the lower right. This is OK for storage--but out of sight is often out of mind--and out of use. Perhaps take out about 4 or 5 idea magazines a week. Place them in a more visible spot in your desk area so that you look at them and USE them that week. Then you can feel OK about gifting them away when done.
It also looks like there is a tool sack of some kind in the lower right in a black bag. Make sure this is as handy as it needs to be --for whatever it holds. If it is an every-layout kind of item/tool, then do consider placing it in an easier to reach spot.
Your computer desk area below looks spotless. WOW. (Better than mine!) Bravo.
I like the file folder method you have here for your geneology. I love it. The secret to keeping a small space like your organized and usable (note I did not say clean) is that you put things away and file them WHERE YOU CAN FIND THEM AGAIN. The secret to an organized person is not how much or how little they have. It is not how long they spend a day putting things away. It is whether they can FIND and USE their items quickly. This usually means a system is needed --and maintaining that system for every item you use is crucial. This is especially true for paper arts and for geneology. Good job.
Mama used to say, "Put it away. Put it back. Keep your train on the right track."
Photo below: I am not sure what is in this file cabinet. It looks like photo storage. Looks pretty organized. Plants are good. Doilies are fine. I think you do share this space with a family room. But if I had a horizontal surface at seated/arm height in my work area, I would probably take away the plant and have attractive photo boxes, finished altered projects, a big tool, or a pen caddy on it. :) But I realise plants do need light so I won't tell you to move the plant. :)
Our next photo is an overview of the room and it shows your black storage tower at right. If possible, take a few of the units off the tallest tower and place them under or on the shorter tower. This will be safer and more uniform looking as well as easier to reach. It will make the black units look like a unified bureau instead of a tower and a short stack. You can always add another black drawer unit later if you need it.
However, I was very impressed with a casual, simple statement in your email to me. You mentioned you have been on NO BUY for a year and a half already! Amazing and awesome....what an achievement! You have been using up your stash non-stop! So really, you may eventually be getting RID of some of the drawer units if this keeps up and you use your stash down even further! Good job. The more you can consolidate furnishings in a small workspace the better. :)
Glad the brown wood tone cabinet is all sorted into themes and that alike items are together throughout the whole room. Once the Santa's go away for the season, do you use that horizontal space above the glass front hutch to store your green photo boxes? Or perhaps the shoeboxes can move over there and you can lose that wood frame case they are in now. This would give the room a more streamlined look. Keeping lines clean visually is a good thing. I love that comfy-looking leather office chair too. Good ergonomics always help us work longer and healthier.
Bravo Dawn H! All in all I love your compact space and it is a great example for us. I think this is one of the tidiest room reviews we have had yet! :)
Hurray for Dawn!