THE x LAUREN CONRAD

Let's get real here. Do you know how intimidating it is to walk into the home of someone that's, in our opinion, the crafting and entertaining version of OPRAH?! 

Well, it happened to us. We are talking about Lauren Conrad (a.k.a LC). Yes...she's the walking Pinterest board you imagine. And since Joanna and I are only good at one thing (organizing), we had the opportunity to help make her life even more Pinterest-worthy than it already is. 

Our primary goal for Lauren was to de-clutter and pare down (she's a self-professed collector). Not only did we organize her kitchen, office, closet, and bathroom--she even taught us some tricks in the process (I mean, of course. It's Lauren Conrad). Thanks to her crafty skills, she let us try out her Cricut machine, and we ended up labeling her office cabinets with gold vinyl. WE. WERE. FREAKING. OUT. 

Here is a look at our finished project + the tips and products we used for each space:

[ THE ] CLOSET

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TIP #1: Stack Your Shoes

Stackable shoe storage is a great way to optimize your closet shelves. You can not only increase the amount of shoes each shelf can hold, but you also keep them protected from scuff marks and dust.

TIP #2: Bring on the Baskets

If your closet doesn’t have drawers, create your own by using baskets! We suggest folding shorts, work-out clothes, pajamas, t-shirts, and even socks and underwear.

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TIP #3: Swap with the Seasons

Create seasonal closet bins for summer and winter. Place one on a high shelf, and one within reach, and rotate them as the weather changes.

TIP #4: Abide by the One-Year Rule

We abide by the one year rule, and we suggest everyone else do the same. If you haven’t worn something in the past year, there’s a good chance you never will. Donate it, give it away, or store it in a sentimental box for safekeeping - but never let an item you DON’T wear, take space away from the items you DO wear.

SHOP [ THE ] LOOK:

LC Pantry.jpg

TIP #1: Divide and Conquer

Almost every single pantry can be divided into Breakfast, Dinner, Snacks, Sweet Snacks, Baking, and Cooking.

For Lauren’s pantry, we made oversized labels for her pull-out shelves instead of labeling the bins themselves.  

TIP #2: Embrace Open Bins

Be realistic with your time and lifestyle. If you’re a busy parent, or have a time consuming job, you’re not going to want to come home from the grocery store and empty everything into canisters. Open bins are much easier to manage, and require no extra work.  

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TIP #3: Spend 15 Minutes a Month

A quick 15 minute pass through each month to weed out expired or nearly finished items goes a long way in long term maintenance.

SHOP [ THE ] LOOK:

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TIP #1: Pare Down Your Products

People tend to over-collect makeup and beauty products, so it’s essential to go through your cabinets and drawers and remove the ones you don’t like and won’t use.
 

TIP #2: Create Categories

Sort your items into general categories to account for ALL your items. Try not to get overly specific since you want everything to have a home. For instance: Nails, Hair, Face, and Body.

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TIP #3: Have a Daily Drawer

Create a daily drawer or bin that holds all of your everyday items. It will save you time in the morning since everything will be at your fingertips.

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TIP #1: Go for Easy Access

Consider which items you need within your immediate reach and make sure they remain visible and accessible. Items that you need to hold on to, but don’t need constant access to, can be stored.

TIP #2: Highlight Your Happy Items

Highlight the items that make you happy on a daily basis. Whether it’s a jar of colored pencils on your desk, your sewing supplies, or in Lauren’s case - her balls of yarn! Keeping them in clear view helps inspire creativity and adds a personal touch.

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TIP #3: Have a Specific Spot

Create a spot for current, on-going, or pending projects. Having a specific spot will decrease piles of clutter that can otherwise accumulate.

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SHOP [ THE ] LOOK:

[ THE ] GIFT GUIDE: SURVIVING NOT THRIVING VALENTINE EDITION

January has been a busy and exciting month for us. We've been traveling non-stop and working on projects with clients we are basically obsessed with. Oh, and our Target project launched...AND I'm getting further with our book. 

Is it possible that we are thriving as much as we are surviving? Eh, always debatable. I'm exhausted and so is Joanna. We are both looking forward to Valentines Day so we can relax in honor of ourselves. 

Here's an example of what the perfect Valentines Day looks like to each of us: 

Joanna: Alone, on her couch, with a cup of warm tea and wrapped in a blanket. She's reading a book and no one is calling her name or needing anything. 

Me (Clea): Alone, in my bathroom, with a bottle of champagne. No one is calling my name because my husband took the kids out to dinner. Don't worry, they promised to bring me home my to-go order! 

Speaking of...

I just found out that Queen Elizabeth ALSO enjoys drinking champagne every day. My whole outlook on life has changed. Have I been living like a royal this entire time?  

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Due to this recent discovery, our Valentines Day gift guide is dedicated to treating yourself...just like my royal counterpart. 

So let's raise a glass and start with the basics...

[ THE ] CHAMPAGNE IS BASICALLY SPARKLING WATER GIFT GUIDE 

Do you think there is a "Press For Champagne" button at Buckingham Palace? Just wondering. 

1. Rose Prosecco Candle | Voluspa

2. The Art of the Bar Cart Book

3. Champagne for Breakfast Tote | ShopBop

4. Press for Champagne Keychain | Anthropologie

5. Piper-Heidsieck Brut NV

[ THE ] LOWBAR LIFESTYLE GIFT GUIDE

Because nothing says self-love like accomplishing the bare minimal and celebrating it. 

[ THE ] x TARGET: GET ORGANIZED FOR 2018

As Target’s home organizing experts, we are here to help you keep your organizing resolutions. The good news, is that everything you need for your home (and life?) is at Target. The other good news, is that shopping at Target counts as cardio. Pushing a cart AND lifting containers is kind of like two resolutions in one - YOU’RE WELCOME.

For our organizing tutorial, we picked our favorite items to style a variety of spaces: The pantry, linen closet, and toy closet. Our goal was to create stylish and functional systems with product that is versatile for the entire home. You can mix and match, and move the pieces from one space to the next. 

Here's a look at the THREE spaces we organized + our product suggestions and tips for each! 

OH...before we begin, here's a quick peek behind-the-scenes. We thought you would like to see how calm, cool, and collected Joanna and I look on the surface.

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See? We are trying. It also helps that we are doing the only thing that we effectively do as a pair. 

And, here I am...living my best label life. 

Can we make that a thing? Living our best label lives? I'm all for it. But we can get back to that later...

[ THE ] PANTRY 

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TIP #1: Set-up your pantry based on the needs of your household and your lifestyle. Busy people tend to prefer open bins to closed canisters because they are easier to maintain and food is readily accessible.

TIP #2: Keep your food categories as general as possible to ensure that every item will be accounted for. We suggest broad groupings that consist of Breakfast, Dinner, Snacks, Sweets, Cooking, and Baking.

TIP #3: Carve out a few minutes once a week to touch-up each bin, see what you have in stock, and what needs to be replaced. This will not only help you maintain your pantry for the long term, but it will save you time and money at the grocery store.

TIP #4: Whether it’s entertaining supplies, extra appliances, or paper towels - consider which items can be placed on higher shelves to help free-up your most valuable pantry real estate.

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SHOP [ THE ] LOOK: 

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TIP #1: Pick storage solutions that are durable, easily accessible, and easy for little hands to hold.

TIP #2: Make sure you select bins that can accommodate the entire category. For oversized or bulky items like stuffed animals, we recommend using a hamper!

TIP #3: Color-coordinate toys and books to create an intuitive system for children to find what they’re looking for! As a bonus, it turns the clean-up process into a game of color sorting.

Toy 2 tight.jpg

SHOP [ THE ] LOOK: 

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TIP #1: Roll towels instead of folding them to save space! If you don’t have a linen closet, you can always stack rolled towels on a bench or upright in a basket.

TIP #2: To best organize various sets of sheets, we recommend storing each set inside a corresponding pillow case. They stay neatly contained on the shelf and the pillowcase helps you easily identify the set you’re looking for.

TIP #3: Linen closets often double as storage for bath products, medicines, and extra toilet paper. Utilizing bins will help separate your categories and keep your shelves neat and organized.

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SHOP [ THE ] LOOK: 

Sequin Throw Pillow

Pink and Gray Bath Rug

Pink and Gray Wool Rug

P.S: Don't forget the markers and dry erase tape for labeling. ALWAYS an essential! 

Xo Clea + Joanna

[ THE ] TIPS: SMALL HABITS TO EDIT IN THE NEW YEAR

January feels like a lot of pressure, especially for people like us...the type of people who congratulate themselves on doing the bare minimum.

Basically, we have committed to the #LowBarLifestyle and it's not something we are embarrassed about. It's what gets us through our day. So it should go without saying that we kept our resolutions extremely realistic. 

This month, we are focused on finishing our book which is due in March. Within that period, I'm also going to try NOT quitting pilates and Joanna said she is going to give up glitter for me. Like I said, the bar is low. 

If your resolution was to become more organized...feel free to start just as small. Don't feel like you need to tackle an entire room to feel accomplished. The faster you see your progress, and how life-changing it is, you will be more likely to move on to the next project. 

The good news is any project, big or small, requires the exact same steps. Here's a quick rundown before we get more specific: 

STEP 1: Remove Everything

The space should be completely empty when you are done. It might look messy at first (and you might have a panic attack) but trust us, this is where the magic happens.  

STEP 2: Create Groupings

Start by arranging ALL of the items in front of you into categories. You may be tempted to skip this step but IT'S IMPORTANT. Categorizing makes editing visually easier when deciding what you keep, toss, or repurpose, especially if you have any duplicates. 

STEP 3: Pare Down

Take a look at the grouped items in front of you. It's judgement day. The harsh truth is that you do not need everything that was in that space. To pare down, ask yourself these questions: 1) Do you NEED it? 2) Do you ever USE it? 3) Do you ever WANT to use it? If the answer is “no” to any of the above, it’s time to ditch or donate. Keep two labeled bins or trash bags close by to keep everything in order.

Drawers and cabinets are a manageable and life-changing place to start. In most cases, this is where clutter begins...and then spills out. To break this habit, it all comes down to creating a system that you can maintain.

Here are some common culprits: 

#1: [ THE ] JUNK DRAWER 

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If a cluttered space is a cluttered mind...then this drawer is going INSANE. A junk drawer is a slippery slope. Most of the time, it only contains items you don't need or have completely forgotten about. 

Clearing out your junk drawer gives you an opportunity to make the space functional. Even if the items are random, it makes a huge difference if everything is edited and categorized. 

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De-cluttering your makeup drawer or vanity cuts precious time out of your morning routine. Plus, some of your products might be expired. I'm not a beauty blogger so here's a link with those details. 

*We never advise to add products ASAP after an edit but this is a little different. We give you our permission for a Sephora Shame Spiral. You deserve it. 

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A well organized medicine cabinet is SO IMPORTANT. During the edit, you are able to toss out expired bottles and take an inventory of what you have or need. It's a win win: a de-cluttered space and the security of knowing you are covered in case of an emergency. 

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Or anywhere that you keep cleaning supplies. This is often the most forgotten area of the house. Adding some bins and categories makes it it just as pretty as any other cabinet. Plus, it can make doing the dishes a little more tolerable. 

Clear Drawer Organizer

Wire Basket

Under Sink Organizer

Acrylic Tray

Handled Storage Basket

P.S. Make sure to visit  [ THE ] SHOP for more of our favorite organization items.

Xo Clea + Joanna