As soon as the warm weather of summer arrives, most people eagerly do a seasonal clothing swap, busting out the shorts, bathing suits, and flip flops, and stowing away bulky sweaters and boots. But unless you’re an uber-organized person, you probably don’t think about swapping out seasonal items in other parts of your home.
Summer is all about having things be easy-breezy, cool and relaxing. When it’s a perfect beach day, you don’t want to have to dig through blankets in the linen closet to find your beach towels, or climb over sleds and skis to get to the beach chairs in the basement. A seasonal stuff swap makes it easier to get to the things that make summer fun.
Store what’s in the hall closet, linen closet, and even the kitchen to make your space ready for summer. Good-bye turkey roasting pan, hello ice cream maker!
1. Scout out seasonal items.
Be a seasonal detective and check each area of your house—rooms, closets, storage spaces—looking for items you’ll use this summer and for off-season stuff that can be stored away. See the chart below for suggestions for every space in your home.
2.Make the most of your space.
Store things so it’s easy to access the stuff you use most often. This sounds obvious, but it’s an oft-overlooked detail. Apply the professional organizers’ principle of “prime real estate” and use spaces that are easiest to see and reach for your most-used items. Think shelves between eye and hip level, and spaces near the front of closets and storage areas. For seasonal items, use a full-service storage solution like MakeSpace that does all the heavy lifting for you, so you can effortlessly expand your home’s square footage.
3. Label what you store away.
Out of sight *is* out of mind. Label the sides of boxes so you don’t forget what’s stored inside. Tape a note inside cabinet and closet doors to remind you of items stored on high and low shelves.
4. Use outside storage strategically.
Sometimes, all the re-organizing in the world won’t give you enough space to easily access your summer stuff. If your place is filled to the gills or if your home will be especially crowded in the summer (friends and relatives visiting, kids home from college), use outside storage for things you won’t need for the next few months.
5. Remind yourself to swap back.
Make a note in your calendar for some time after Labor Day to put away summer items and swap back things that you’ve stored so you’re ready for the arrival of fall.
Summertime storage swap: a room-by-room guide