A Tisket a Tasket –Cleaning up Your Home Office

June 20, 2008

mainimage The basic principles of organization and clutter control are (1) purge (2) sort and (3) contain. Baskets are a great way to contain things you need to get to easily.

I especially like to use baskets as “in and out” containers in a home office area. Use one to contain things that come into the house and another to place items you need to take with you when you leave. Baskets are also great containers for things like paper, computer disks/CDs, and misc. office supplies. You can even find baskets that hold hanging files.

As far as what type to choose, it depends on the items you need to contain – and your budget.

· Cloth
I like to use cloth baskets for things like clothes that might snag but usually avoid them for other purposes because they’re hard to keep clean.

· Wicker
Wicker baskets are great. It’s important to make sure they are sturdy. Baskets with lids hide unsightly items and add decorative appeal. The downside is the high cost of quality baskets.

· Plastic
The advantages of using plastic are the low cost and ability (in most cases) to see the contents. The downside is visual appeal.

· Wire Mesh
These are favorites because of their durability, cost and the ability to see the contents. Wire mesh baskets are also available as wall-mounted systems which help to keep surfaces clear.

All this said… my favorite type of office containers (other than for an in/out box) are document and photo boxes with a lids. Here’s why…

· They are sturdy and stackable – saving space while maintaining organization.

· They can be labeled, making it a snap to find needed items. (Also labels can be easily changed.)

· They look neat and can be blended into any type of décor.

· They are relatively inexpensive. This makes it easier to contain like items in separate boxes.

Document boxes can be found at a variety of places but my favorite source is The Container Store http://www.containerstore.com/browse/Product.jhtml?CATID=74541&PRODID=70431&searchId=8566107&itemIndex=1 . You can also find lots of other ideas for home office storage here. Photo boxes always seem to be on sale at Hobby Lobby or Michaels.

Regardless of what you choose as a container, a basket is a great way to keep what you need close at hand and make your space look great!