Week Three: A Bowl Full Of Lemons “14-Week Organization Challenge”
For the third week of the organization challenge, participants organized their kitchens! My kitchen is not huge, but has a lot of storage. The ceilings in my apartment are very high, allowing for the cupboards to span up more than a regular kitchen.
I recently re-organizaed my kitchen storage and the systems work well for me. Instead of re-organizaing my entire kitchen, I decided to focus on my problem area …. under the sink.
My under the sink space was extremely neglected, filled with nearly empty cleaning products, random clutter and over all just needed a good clean.
I started by clearing everything out from under the sink. I cleaned the inside of the cabinet and got rid of the old cabinet liners. Next I went through each item and decided if it needed to be tossed, kept, or moved to another spot in my home.
I ended up moving some bathroom cleaning and floor cleaning products to a different space and got rid of old cleaners that were almost empty.
The end result is much more streamlined and functional for everyday use. I put all cleaners in one bin together that is easy to grab and use as needed. I found stacking bins to store my most used items – dishwasher tabs, sponges as well as trash and recycling bags. I also found a bin to store my plastic shopping bags (I always try and use reusable shopping bags, but once in a while I end up with plastic ones).
Incase you are curious, here are some of the things in my sink storage pictured above!
As an avid consumer of Youtube, Blogs, IG, Pinterest for many years – I have created an idea in my head of what my dream home office would be. A giant sun-filled room, perhaps in South Hampton, surrounded by book cases and substantial furniture. Closets filled with perfectly organized paper, pens …. you get where I am going with this vision.
If you are from the same corner of the internet as I am, you know Jen Ross of Pretty Neat Living (formerly Organized Jen). Over the years Jen has shared her AMAZING Office/ Craft Room and it’s evolution. This is where my obsession with the Pottery Barn Daily System kicked into gear. I knew I wanted to have this look and organization.
Jen has shared many detailed videos of the space on her channel. For a start – here is an overall tour:
Reality Check …
When I began the process of creating my home office I had a few hurdles. Firstly, space. Living in a moderately sized apartment, I didn’t have a ton of space to work with. The “den” I was working with also had to accommodate a pull out couch to sleep guests – so I was working with about a ten foot span of wall …. that’s it. Don’t get me wrong, I am very thankful to even HAVE a space to house an office just for me – but this was a far cry from my Pinterest dream space.
The next obstacle was budget. Again – grateful to have any extra cash to put towards this project that was very much a “want” and not a “need”. I was alarmed when I went onto the Pottery Barn website to learn that to create my dream space with all the bells and whistles I would be out THOUSANDS of dollars. This was not in the cards. So – I had to get crafty!
After I came to the quick realization that I would have to get creative to achieve my “dream” office I began researching. I scoured the internet for similar furniture and organizers I was left disappointed – I couldn’t get the vision out of my head!
image courtesy of Facebook
I had never used Facebook Marketplace before, but have heard friends, family and influencers rave about the deals and finds they had scored on the platform. I went on and began searching. I tried keywords like “Pottery Barn”, “Pottery Barn Office”, “Pottery Barn Organizers” …. you get the idea. Eventually after doing this for a few days A MIRACLE HAPPENED! Someone in my city was selling two pieces of the Daily System, in the right colour and everything!
Facebook Market Place Buyer Tips:
Make sure listing photos show ALL aspects of the item for sale, don’t be afraid to ask the seller to share more photos so you can avoid buying chipped, dented or heavily used items without knowing it
Research pricing of the item at retail value, as well as what other people are re-selling it for to know if you are getting a good deal
Message the seller about the item! I have had awful experiences with sellers not being friendly over messages, which makes me uncomfortable with the prospect of potentially meeting them to obtain the item. You have to be careful! I always like to get a feel for them via how the communicate over messages as an extra safety precaution
Ask questions about the item and inclusions. For example, when I was buying the daily system on FB Marketplace, I double checked with the seller that she was also including the mounting rods and necessary hardware that was pictured
As mentioned, I got lucky and found mint condition Daily System pieces in my desired colour, creamy white. I lovely lady was selling both the linen pin board and mail sorter with accompanying mounting rods – all of which is usually sold separately. After acquiring these pieces I was determined to find another deal. Eventually, I found a seller who was offering two, mint condition, white, Pottery Barn Kids shelves (you would never know they are kids furniture, they are simple/ classic white shelves).
The SAVINGS !!!
For pictured, the retail value would be $440 (plus tax).
Letter Bin, Linen Pin Board, 12″ Display Rod and 24″ Display rod $45
Two Shelves $25
I saved $370 ! I don’t know about you, but I love a good bargain so putting in the extra time to find the items being sold and driving time/ gas to pick up the items was way worth it.
In the end it all came together nicely. I was very pleased with the way the Pottery Barn pieces were able to fit into the space. I paired my new daily system and shelves with an antique pine table I already had, as well as a lamp to add warmth to the space. The final touch was adding books and personal items. I will be sharing more on my office space in posts to come. I spend a lot of time in my little office nook and I love it a lot.
I hope this inspired you to checkout Facebook Marketplace for your dream “out of reach” items. Happy searching!