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Congratulations — you made it. Christmas is over and your house is a wreck. Even if it’s not a total mess, it might feel a little crowded with all of those extra decorations and ornaments hanging around. It’s time to clean house and start fresh. Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you to invest in a custom closet or archive your shoes with museum quality acid-free tissue paper. Here are some of my fave, time-honoured organizing ideas that are simple and easy on the eyes to boot.

First up, this adorable bathroom cart filled with everything you could want or need to pamper yourself at home. What I love about this is that you can tuck a cart next to your pedestal sink for added storage. To make those everyday items look pretty enough to display, why not hold them in various vintage flowerpots like these ones here? A consistent colour palette never hurt either… just sayin’.

If you want to try this idea at home, check some of the great and simple carts available at Ikea. This one has a cool lab-like feel, but you could go for a wooden one and even paint it out in your favourite colour!

Keeping to the bathroom theme, how about this idea? Look up for additional storage space. If you’ve got the room, you can always install a simple wooden shelf with brackets from The Home Depot (below) and paint the whole thing out the same colour as your woodwork. It’s a great way to get the clutter off your counter and make more room under the sink.

Brackets like these are available at most hardware stores for under $10 and paint up beautifully.

This idea is so clever and is a great example of upcycling. Use old dresser drawers fitted with casters for under-the-bed storage! These ones have been painted out and have a small fabric (or ribbon) tab attached. I love this idea (and I love that quilt!).

Casters are another hardware staple and you can find attractive ones like these at Home Hardware. They’re really easy to screw in and totally affordable. Look out dust bunnies — here comes clever storage!

This idea is pure pretty. Okay, it might be mostly about style here, but who says organizing has to be ugly? Small necklaces, bracelets and earrings can easily become a tangled mess. Why not use vintage teacups and saucers to separate and organize your crown jewels? And if you think dedicating a drawer to this purpose is silly, you can always place these decorative holders on top of a dresser or vanity. They look so adorable you will smile each time you pass by.

To get this look all you have to do is visit any thrift shop or Goodwill — they are brimming with dainty examples begging to be taken home and used. But big companies like Royal Albert are getting on the bandwagon, too, and reproducing classic designs from their archives like these teacups and saucers above. I guess being ladylike is back in fashion!

In the closet, you can tackle those toppling towers by installing even more wooden brackets. Attached right to the shelf and wall, these brackets keep shelves neat and organized and allow you to stack sweaters, towels and blankets much higher because of their support.

I also recommend you pick up a few of these attractive cloth-covered boxes from Ikea for your closets. For not much money, you can transform your little closet into a mini boutique and add polished flair to your organization. These boxes are perfect for small and easy-to-lose items and even photos and memorabilia. You can even decorate them with a grosgrain ribbon trim and pretty labels if you want.

So now that 2010 has screeched to a halt and that urge to start fresh kicks in, do it your way. Roll up those sleeves and take on the whole house, or simply do one small project as time permits. Either way, you’ll feel satisfied and just a little more together if you do.

See our Storage & Organizing section for tips, photo galleries, articles and more.

Photo credits:
1. Martha Stewart, from Apartment Therapy blog
2. Flytta cart, Ikea
3. Martha Stewart, from Peach and Pearl blog
4. Maple shelf bracket, The Home Depot
5, 7. Martha Stewart, from The Decorologist blog
6. 2” caster, Home Hardware
8. Royal Doulton
9. Martha Stewart, from About.com
10. Strikt box, Ikea

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