Articles written in the category : Organization

The ABC’s of Playroom Organization

Toys everywhere, pieces of crayons on the floor, missing game parts: that’s the image that comes to mind when we think of playrooms. With the following advice, you won’t have to resist the urge to run away from home the next time you have to clean this kiddy haven.

A playroom

A playroom

Start by sorting

This is a crucial prelude to the process. Determine which toys will stay and which will go. If your child refuses to let go of any itemsthat you know are no longer played with, place them in a box and store this “treasure chest” elsewhere. Over time, you will eventually be able to bring the toys to their final rest. While you’re at it, you might as well throw out the old worn down sofa to free up some room.

Create distinct play areas

Divide the space into 2 or 3 different activity zones and store the objects in their corresponding area. For example:

Playroom Olympics

This is where all the noise happens! Start by defining floor surface on which your little athletes can run, jump, dance and roll their trucks. If you have a closet near this area, use it to store bulky items. Bins on wheels are useful for storing different sizes of balls.

Minimalism – Sheer Simplicity in an Ultra-Modern Trend!

Creating an inspired décor isn’t always easy – especially if you have to make do with what you have on hand… flooring and a bookcase in two different shades of brown, walls painted in eggshell, accessories in lime green and sky blue, armoires in charcoal… Yikes!

I have, in fact, had to rack my brain when coming up with ideas for decorating my condo, until I came up with this stroke of genius: Go minimalist!

As illustrated by the name, this style (rooted in zen philosophy) is based on a simple principle: Return to the essentials and discard the superfluous. The watchwords are purity and restraint. Minimalism is now increasingly a feature of website architecture, fashion and – of course – design and decoration.

Here are some benefits of minimalist décor: a relaxing atmosphere, a beautiful look and housekeeping made easy (no need to move objects when it’s time to dust the counter!). So choosing this style is in your best interest!

A minimalist bedroom

A minimalist bedroom

How to recognize a minimalist décor

The walls are often done in a neutral colour such as white, grey or black. And the room is never “overloaded”: The placement of every item – including tables, lamps and vases – appears to have been planned with a view to achieving perfect balance.

Design tools

My girlfriend and I have been making some major changes in our home lately: we added a living room, built a new room for our eldest child in the basement, and redesigned my daughter’s existing room.

Just like with any family project, we all want to let our individual tastes and needs be known: compromising is a must. For example, in our new living room, my girlfriend would like to have an office space, my daughter would like an arts and crafts table, and I would like to have nice big armchairs for when we have friends over. So we were faced with a dilemma about how best to use our new space: how do we get the look we want, plus make sure we buy the furniture that will meet all of our needs perfectly, without overloading the space? We used a few tricks that I thought you might find interesting.

Scrapbook your ideas

Collect all of the magazine clippings, pictures of furniture and decorations, and samples of the paint and materials you intend to use in your new design. Just as in a scrapbook of your most memorable vacations, glue all of these items onto a large cardboard sheet.

For fall, there’s no place like home

Fall is now upon us. As nice as the sunny days and nature’s colourful displays are, we must also accept the inevitable cooler temperatures and nights that are so cold they make you want to declare hibernation and not come out until spring.

After such a busy summer season, taking some downtime this fall is well deserved. Are you familiar with cocooning? Some call it “stay-at-home syndrome.” My definition includes cold, rainy weather, pyjamas or old sweats and a warm blanket.



The list of indoor activities can sometimes seem redundant, and you may want to do something more than watch a movie or read a book. Whether you’re home alone or with a group, if you are looking for original ideas for indoor activities, consider these suggestions for a fun day of cocooning:

  • The harvest this time of year provides an abundance of apples, squash and pumpkins. Now is the time to make soup, cookies, muffins, crumbles, pies and other delicious goodies. Follow your imagination and create new recipes using winter squash and then share the fruits of your labour with family and friends.
  • Do you have an upcoming project in mind? Use this time to start planning. Read some magazines and browse websites for renovation or decorating ideas.

Stuck with a small bedroom?

There are many reasons why you may find yourself stuck with a small bedroom. For me, it was because I found the apartment of my dreams: good neighbourhood, lots of closets and storage space, large balcony, great location! That said, not everything was perfect: the bedroom was probably half the size of my previous room.

In my case, the old trick of making a scale floor plan to help decide where to put the furniture didn’t work. I had a bigger problem: there wasn’t enough space in my room to put all of my furniture. That’s OK, I was prepared to compromise and do away with some pieces. Particularly because I tend to feel claustrophobic in small spaces, overfilling the room and feeling cramped was not an option. The problem now is that I have the same amount of clothes, shoes and accessories as before, and this time compromising is out of the question—I WANT to keep everything. And therein lies the problem.

Here are a few tricks that I found helped me:

  • Because furniture must be kept to a minimum, choose pieces that are tall and narrow. Mate’s beds are also great; the drawers underneath are the perfect place to store bulky sweaters.