Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Organizing my gift center

I've mentioned before that I pick up gifts year-round on clearance and at thrift stores for about 5-10% of their original price. While I enjoy the savings and getting people things they have asked for, I don't enjoy a mess and losing that perfect gift until the gift-giving occasion is past. So I had to do something to organize my gift center. This is what I came up with, and I like it quite a bit:

These are the newly-emptied bankers boxes that used to hold baby clothes. (There are more of them, but I'm using the rest elsewhere.)

I designated one box for each of my siblings' families, one for my parents, one for my husband's family (we only exchange Christmas gifts) and two each for my own children. There's also a box for baby shower gifts and a few wedding gifts are sitting on top of that since they're not very conducive to being boxed up (and I rarely have occasion to use wedding or baby shower gifts).

One of my favorite improvements is that I can actually walk into the closet now and stand right in front of these boxes. That makes selecting and putting things away so much easier. I'm no longer trying to reach the heavy box at the bottom of the stack.

If you could see what this space looked like before, you would not believe your eyes. And no, I will not be posting "before" pictures because you couldn't pay me enough money to show you just how bad it looked. I was embarrassed to show it to my own mother when she was here!

Now I'm sure I have your curiosity aroused. Let's just say that I could never get to the big box I put all the gifts in (it was on the bottom of an intimidating stack), so they were pretty much stacked in this space. And as the stacks got taller and taller, they started to fall over. And then it was really a mess because it blended in with the boxes of crafts, holiday decorations, home decor, and games that were in this same closet.

This is a huge improvement, and I feel great about it already!


Anonymous said...

That's a great idea. Keeping an organized gift center and shopping year round makes gift-giving fun instead of stressful. Other categories might be hostess, get well and thinking-of-you gifts. One of the things I like to do is pick up "general" gifts that link to stories and legends, like in my book, Giving with Meaning, and then personalizing those gifts to the recipient. For instance, a cat is considered a symbol of generousity, so you can pick up anything with a cat on it, from napkins to photo holder and then give it to someone as a thank you, or in appreciation for this hospitality; linking it to the legend about cats takes it beyond "ordinary" to something meaningful. So, what about organizing your wrapping center? Any ideas? - Patricia Sheehy, author

Sophia said...

Patricia - What a cute idea! About my wrapping center ... I bought a hanging organizer that holds most of my rolled paper. I have a lot of gift bags (given to me and still in like-new condition), and my husband came up with the idea of storing them in large gift bags that are themed for each occasion (birthday, baby, Christmas, etc.). Make sense? I'll have to post a picture soon!