How to Get Your Hall Closet Havoc Under Control

By Kerrie Kelly, ASID

Everyone knows that the humble hallway closet is a workhorse. From being used as a trash bin, stowage spot, and then tossed and turned when a certain pillowcase is nowhere to be found, the closet gets more than its share of abuse—and it shows. Are you ready to get that chaos under control? We’ve taken the liberty of rounding up a few of our favorite ways to organize the space using a system customized just for you and your needs.

Curate and Control

Possibly the most freeing exercise in all of closet cleaning is the purging. Grab a trash bag (or 10) and head to your closet to look closely at each individual item within. If it has sentimental or monetary value, stow it somewhere else. If you didn’t even realize you owned it, you probably don’t need it, and you can take it to your local thrift store. Do this with every item and we promise you’ll already notice a difference. And avoid taking breaks—we’ve learned that it’s easiest and most efficient to complete this step in one fell swoop.

Planning is Key

Now that you have a fresh, clean space, it’s time to decide what the closet is going to be used for. Is it for linens and towels? Do you need a second closet for your clothes and shoes? What about knick-knacks and arts and crafts? If you’re still unsure about what you’re using the space for, start grouping similar items together and you’ll inevitably see what makes the most sense for you. Group and regroup the selected items to organize everything as neatly as possible before you even think about putting anything back in the closet.

Very Vertical

For whatever reason, most of us try to stuff all that we can in the shelving we’re given. Usually that shelving isn’t very deep and doesn’t give us as much room as we’d like. By installing higher shelving or an extra rod or two, you can take advantage of unused space. This allows for you to store more items than you had originally planned, resulting in a more thoroughly organized unit overall.

Baskets vs. Boxes

Once you’ve gotten all of your shelving in place, it’s time to take a look at the subgroups you’ve created in the previous steps. If your closet is for extra shoe storage, group your shoes similarly and put them in baskets. Baskets are best for items you use regularly because they don’t usually have tops, and they’re woven and opaque—meaning it’ll be easier for you to spot the specific style you’re searching for. If your closet is for art supplies, opt for boxes or bins. Smaller items that can get lost more easily are best stowed in well-labeled plastic or cardboard boxes and bins because they won’t fall through any cracks or ruin fabric. Also, make sure the bins and boxes have lids so that you can stack them on top of each other, with the most rarely used items being at the bottom.

Doors and Floors

If you’ve finished curating, editing, and stowing, and you’re still left with a pile of stuff, look to the door and the floor. Try hanging an over-the-door plastic organization system to free up some space in your shelving. This is great for small items like toiletries and craft materials. If your space allows for it, add a few small boxes to the floor level of your closet that can be stacked or moved easily in case you need extra reach. Select a style that you don’t mind being on display, because you might have to move these smaller boxes around a bit.

Maintenance is a Must

Now that you’ve successfully maneuvered through the chaos and created a closet you want to keep on display, maintenance is crucial. We recommend going in monthly and checking to make sure items are in their correctly labeled bins and boxes, and maybe adding more if you’ve accumulated anything else. By maintaining the results of your hard work, you can rest assured that everything’s in its proper place—at least in your hall closet.

Professional interior designer Kerrie Kelly has been helping homeowners achieve beautiful closet designs while also providing wonderful storage capabilities. Kerrie writes about her blended design and organization expertise for The Home Depot. To view a selection of Home Depot's closet storage accessories, you can visit the company's website.

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The 21 Best Sandwiches & Wraps You'll Ever Eat.

Take a break from the boring ham & cheese sandwich and try out these mouthwatering recipes.

Strawberry & Cream Cheese Sandwich {recipe}

Smorgastarta - It's a sandwich cake and boy does it look delicious. {recipe}

BLT Wrap {recipe}

Grilled Peanut Butter Honey Banana Waffle Sandwich {recipe}

Monte Cristo Sandwich {recipe}

Crock Pot Chicken Caesar Wraps {recipe}

Three Cheese Broccoli Rabe, Prosciutto and Roasted Red Pepper Stromboli {recipe}

Bacon Ranch Turkey Wrap {recipe}

Best Vegan Sandwich {recipe}

Greek Yogurt Egg Salad Sandwich {recipe}

Grilled Lemon Chicken Flatbread Wrap {recipe}

Tuna Delux {recipe}

Fried Chicken and Waffle Sandwich {recipe}

Slow Cooker Shredded Buffalo Chicken Sandwiches {recipe}

Baked Buffalo Chicken Wraps {recipe}

Salmon Sandwich with Spicy Dill Yogurt Sauce {recipe}

Bacon Guacamole Grilled Sandwich {recipe}

Grilled Peanut Butter & Jelly {recipe}

Chicken, Spinach & Cream Cheese Wrap {recipe}

Breakfast Energy Wrap {recipe}

Grilled Fontina + Blackberry Basil Smash Sandwich {recipe}

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Conquer The Laundry

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tide® HE Turbo Clean™. All opinions are 100% mine.
When my oldest was born seven years ago, I never imagined how much laundry one child would add to the load. I went from doing laundry once a week to several times during the week. Since then we have added a second child to the mix and now it seems as though every day is laundry day. As parents the laundry cycle is a never ending cycle.

I would like to introduce you to What’s Up Moms. They are the #1 parenting channel on YouTube. P&G Tide has partnered up with What’s Up Moms to show moms like us how Tide® HE Turbo Clean can help “conquers the laundry”. They have created this hilarious video showing the struggles moms have with laundry.

I had no idea that SUDS could be the culprit in slowing down the laundry process!! Thankfully Tide has come up with a first-of-its-kind, the HE Turbo Clean™ formula that is the #1 recommended detergent by leading HE washer manufacturers. It is available in Tide® liquid detergent, Tide Pods® pacs and Tide® powder formula.

By using proprietary, quick-dissolving Smart Suds technology Tide® HE Turbo Clean™ detergents save time and water helping prevent HE Machines from running additional rinse cycles. Tide® HE Turbo Clean™ will save you up to 25 minutes of your time and create a more efficient laundry process.

Many HE washing machines have 40% larger drums (vs. traditional machines) and can wash up to 32 pounds of laundry. This also means that a load can contain 40%+ more dirt. EEW!!!! However, when using Tide® HE Turbo Clean™, by following their recommended dosing instructions and adding the proper amount of detergent with your load and soil level you can expect nothing less than clean.


Would you like to see my laundry routine? This routine is not for everyone but it is what works for me and my family.
  • Monday – White t-shirts and towels
  • Tuesday - Socks, underwear, and rags
  • Wednesday – Shirt and dresses
  • Thursday – Shorts and pants
  • Friday – Sheets
  • Saturday – Hubby’s work clothes
  • Sunday – NO LAUNDRY!!!
Not every week follows this schedule perfectly and some days I do more than one load but for the most part this is it.
Here are a couple rules I follow.
Sort by type not color. Other than the white t-shirts and towels (which are also white), I don’t sort any other laundry by color. Doing laundry this way makes it so much easier to fold and put away the clothes. For example, Tuesdays require no folding. I just sort socks and underwear into three piles (mine, hubby’s, and kids) then all the rags get tossed into a box that goes in the hall closet.
Not everything needs to be folded. I used to fold everything. And I mean EVERYTHING!! I never realized how unnecessary it was and how much time I was wasting by folding every little thing. Now the only things I fold are pants, towels, and the occasional spare sheet or blanket. Socks and underwear all get tossed into a drawer. Rags are stuffed into a box that hides behind a closet door. All tops and dresses get hung up.

Do you have any laundry tips you would like to share? Please leave them in the comments below.

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30 Brilliant Cleaning Tips

This is an update to a post I made a couple years ago. While spring may be coming to an end, the cleaning never stops. Here are a couple cleaning hacks to make your daily cleaning chores a little easier so that you have more time to do the things that you really enjoy.  

1. Swifter Dust Sock 
Quit wasting money on expensive swifter replacement pads and make your own reusable duster pad from an old sock. {via}

2. Remove Mildew Smell From Towels 
Follow these few simple steps to keep your towels smelling fresh and mildew free. {via}

3. Clean Fireplace Glass
Use this simple trick to easily clean your fireplace glass with only a wet paper towel. {via}

4. Shower cleaning Hack
Fill a dish wand with vinegar and dish soap. Keep the wand in your shower. Before taking a shower, scrub the walls with the wand then rinse off. {via}

5. Clean fan blades with a pillow case 
To clean fan blades, toss a pillowcase over the blade then slowly pull off. All of the dust and dirt will stay contained inside the pillowcase. {via}

6. No scrub way to clean your burners 
Clean your burners without scrubbing. Place in a sealed Ziploc bag with a 1/4 cup of ammonia. Leave overnight then wipe clean with a sponge. {via}

7. Spend less time cleaning by using turtle wax
Spend less time shining your faucets, sinks, and tiles by polishing them with turtle wax . The wax acts as a protective barrier preventing water and soap buildup. {source not found}

8. Diy Citrus Cleaner
Make your own citrus vinegar cleaner. Place citrus peels in a jar and cover with vinegar and let the solution sit for 2 weeks. After 2 weeks, strain and dilute 1:1 with water. {via

9. How to properly clean a mattress
Mix a few drops of essential oil with one cup baking soda. Sprinkle on your mattress and let sit for one hour before vacuuming. The baking soda will absorb any dirt, moisture and odors while the essential oil will leave the mattress smelling fresh. {via}

10. Shine your sink
Make your sink shine by mixing borax with lemon juice to make a paste. Rub it on, then rinse it and wipe clean. {via}

11. Remove hard water stains
Scrub your tub faucet with a lemon and it will shine like new! {source not found}

12. Easily clean pet hair.
Use a rubber glove to pick up pet hair. {via}

13. Garbage disposal cleaning trick
Fill ice cub trays with vinegar then drop a lemon slice into each one. Drop a couple cubes in your garbage disposal with some water to clean it. {via

14. Air dry sponges
Use a binder clip to air dry your sponges and keep them smelling fresh longer. {via

15. Clean sheet pans
Clean your pans with tea tree oil. {via}

16. Deep clean windows.
Use a q-tip to cleat tight spaces in your window tracks then wipe with a clean paper towel. {via}

17. Carpet stains

Clean stubborn stains by spraying with a water and vinegar solution and then use an iron to lift the stain. {via}

18. Microwave cleaning hack
Pour vinegar and water into a bowl and heat it in the microwave for a few minutes. The steam will help loosen any grime for easy clean up. {via

19. Clean vents less often
After cleaning your vents, apply a layer of wax to them to help repel dust. {via}

20. Get the gunk off kitchen cabinets
Clean cabinets by mixing 1 part vegetable oil with 2 parts baking soda then scrubbing with a toothbrush. {via}

21. Grout cleaner
Make your floors look new again. Spay on a mixture of 7 cups water, 1/2 cup baking soda, 1/3 cup ammonia (or lemon juice) and 1/4 cup vinegar. Let sit for an hour then scrub off. {via}

22. Rusty Knives
Remove rust spots from your kitchen knives by soaking them in lemon juice. {source not found}

23.  Collar and underarm stains

Sprinkle baby powder on shirt underarms and collars to help prevent sweat spots. {via}

24. Lemony fresh microwave
Similar to above except add lemon wedges and water in a bowl. Microwave for 4 minutes and let sit for 10 minutes. The steam will cause the gunk to wipe right off. {via}

25. Use a lint roller to dust.
 Grab a lint roller and roll it around your furniture, lampshades, and shelves to rid your home of dust. {source not found}

26. Store cleaners on tension rod
Create more storage under you sink by using a Tension Rod to store all of your cleaners on. {via}

27. Bleach Gel
Make a bottle of Diy bleach gel to keep in your laundry. Make a second one to keep in your bathroom to fix yucky grout. {via}

28. Use rubbing alcohol to clean the kitchen
Rubbing alcohol gets rid of grease and soap scum. {via}

29. Diy disinfectant wipes
You can make your own cleaning wipes with vinegar and a role of paper towels. {via}

30. Disinfect your toilet brush.
Pour cleaner into your toilet brush storage container to disinfect it between uses. {via}

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