We asked pro organizers for strategies that help them conquer chaos in their own lives. The result: secrets that will streamline your day and restore your peace of mind (promise!)
Take inspiration from Jenkins, who uses a Victorian-era dresser to organize her entry. "The drawers hold gloves, hats, and other outdoor accessories, and the mirror on top gives us a place to do a spot check before we leave," she says. Another popular option: cube storage systems with fabric bins for each family member's gear.
Make organization a no-brainer with thoughtful placement. Put sports equipment or school bags on the way to the car or very nearby. Then kids can grab them as they're headed out the door and put them right back as they return. "The farther away you put those things, the harder kids have to work and the less likely it is that things will get back to where they belong," says Tokos.
Get the most out of entry storage by giving each group of items its own designated space. Labels can help. Says Morgenstern: "If a shelf or a cabinet or a drawer is marked miscellaneous, it's easy to put things into but impossible to retrieve things from."
Shaker-style wood pegs hung by the door make it easy to hang hats, scarves, and even leashes on your way in or grab on the way out.
About $25; landofnod.com
Create a neat place to power up phones and tablets. Make one, as we did, by drilling holes in the bottom of a wood mail sorter, to thread cords through, then give it a coat of color.
Life Before Equal Pay Day: Portrait of a Working Mother in the 1950s
Grey Villet—The LIFE Picture Collection/Getty Images
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