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Originally published Friday, December 7, 2012 at 8:01 PM

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7 ideas to organize tight spaces

Sanity Fair blogger Skyla Freeman offers tips.

The Washington Post

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Skyla Freeman makes the most of every inch of her bright 425-square-foot studio apartment. Here are some of the ways she keeps her stylish home organized without spending a fortune.

1. Edit, edit, edit

There are no storage units in Freeman’s building so, as she says, “if I own it, I love it.” She advises small-space dwellers to keep only what they really like and be ruthless about the rest. She’s had good luck selling on Craigslist.

To get the most for your furniture or accessories, style the piece to its best advantage before photographing it. Craigslist shoppers are sophisticated and picky. Post early Thursday morning, when people are thinking about weekend shopping.

2. Mine retail vignettes for ideas

Grab a friend and spend a morning or afternoon at a place such as Ikea. Spend time studying organizing closet vignettes, which have clever ideas for saving space.

3. Tape it out

Don’t buy any furniture before taping out its dimensions with masking tape in the exact place you plan to put it.

4. Explore the world of apps

In a small room there is less space to make mistakes, so keep information such as measurements and paint chips with you at all times. Freeman is a huge fan of the app Evernote to store decorating information, including photos of her floor plan with room dimensions and furniture sizes. It also contains photos of her china patterns, linens and collections in case she wants to match them.

5. Stay organized

A small space is even more reason to go digital: Instead of writing lists or cutting photos out of catalogs or magazines, pin decorating and shopping needs on a Pinterest board. Right now, Freeman’s list includes chinoiserie prints, a West Elm green throw and a sunburst mirror from Ballard Designs.

6. Have a place for everything

Out-of-place items will make your home feel cluttered and even smaller. Give all your belongings a home and keep them there. Freeman uses her grandmother’s vintage glass butter dish to corral her three remotes in the living room.


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