Wednesday, February 9, 2011

A Place for Everything - Our Solution for Too Much Hair Stuff

Two weeks ago I completely gutted my two daughters shared bedroom.  In probably not the most glamorous method of cleaning, I decided that nothing short of an entire purge was going to make a dent on the room.  Now in my beloved offspring's' defense, they share a room that is 8' by 10' and not entirely square with one wonky wall that has a protrusion about 3' up from from the floor that comes 1' out into the room.  Oh, and there is no closet.  As a result, I really don't like them to have anything in the room that doesn't absolutely have to be there.  Unfortunately, if it's not a toy, a book, or something that makes sense in the living room, it really does have to go in the room with them.  And that means it needs a place to go.

While this is not a child solvable problem, that means my husband and I have been forced to get very creative.  We still need to find a solution for the everyday dresses that they now insist on wearing, we have tackled quite a few challenges.  Today we hopefully defeated the ever growing beast that is girl hair things!
About a month ago I was shopping and there was a bead organzier box on clearance for $5.  I showed it to my husband and being ever practical husband and he immediately asked what I would use it for.  Not being in the midst of this organization project I knew the box would be useful for any number of things, but none of them came to mind and as a result I put it back on the shelf.  Within 24 hours I was kicking myself, because I was sure it would help sort out the massive mound of disarrayed hair stuff that never gets used because we can never find what we are looking for.

I don't have a true before picture, but after I removed everything from the room and placed the little box, and the chaos into a larger box I took a few pictures.

The little box that the headbands are in is the actually box that they were being stored in appropriately.  A bunch of the other things also got mixed in that box for a while and some of it was getting damaged.  So then it was a huge heap on one of the dressers.  The middle box shows the baby hair bow storage that we all too quickly outgrew.  I tried to go back and get the box I'd found, but it was too late, it was gone and there was nothing I could find in our limited shopping area that was compatible.  I started to dream up designs.

First I wanted to have something to hang the extensive headband collection on.  I thought of getting a small clothes rod like 18" maybe 2' and mounting a central dowel to the middle of the horizontal rod to a base surrounded by baskets that could hold all the clips and ribbons and ties.  I'm sure it would be perfectly functional, but space is a premium and those baskets were going to be hard to find (think veggie tray type thing) and I'd need to make the custom rack.  Yeah, we all know I've got just tons of free time right now.  I thought of drawing up this plan, but I'll just hope you can translate my thoughts.

When I was a kid I know my sister and I had hair things, but we also had a big closet and an extra large dresser, plus we had a bathroom with extra space for storing stuff like hair things.  I distinctly remember keeping pony holders and other tiebacks in the drawer opposite from the tooth brush stuff.  My daughters, alas, have neither of these options and as I finished putting together other parts of their room, the albatross of the hair things loomed.

So this afternoon I was out shopping at our most interesting local store.   I was there to get some 3M hooks to use with a coat hanger and a solution for hanging belts.  I found some great solutions and I'll probably be back to get a couple more hooks.  Since we were out and the baby was up we of course decided to look around.  While wandering my husband spotted this wine rack.

Cello by Oenophilia
Except he didn't just see a wine rack, he saw hooks that would hold a head band and that you could put hair things on.  He really wished the bottom wasn't hooks, but instead was a small basket, but hey, it has lots of possibility and we just might be able to find a wine bottle shaped basket or something later.  Since the plan was immediately to use it for the hair things now taking up residence in the living room it was purchased on site.

Now that it's home I got straight to work.  I got out my ribbons and decided to add some ribbon to the back so that I can hang the clips on it.  That way they are readily visible and neatly organized by group.  I found a bunch of blue tulle.  At one point I thought about selling diaper/wedding bath gift cakes on the internet.  During that time I bought any ribbons and decorative material that I thought would be helpful from yard sales, so that is probably where it came from.  I also found lots of different colors and widths of ribbon.  I know some of them were bought when Walmart closed to be used for hair, and unfortunately, the final design does not incorporate these ribbons, but maybe someday?

I originally intended to start by decorating the back decorative pattern with ribbon and then hang ribbons from the back for the clips.  However, we have A LOT of stuff to put on this thing.  Plus my husbands original idea of having the two hooks hold a single headband wasn't going to be an efficient use of space nor would it really work practically.  So I started by placing all of the headbands on the top two hooks.  They barely held them all, hmmm.  I guess that makes sense, two girls wear headbands almost every day.  After those were on I decided I should see if I could get all the round hair decorations on there.  So I put on the pony ties and scrunchies and all of that stuff hanging from the other hooks.  It's pretty full.

When I got that done I still had a ton of stuff left to hang off of the ribbons.  I decided to start with the barrettes as those needed to clip all the way around the ribbon and I actually wasn't sure if they were going to stay on the ribbon.  I took the blue tulle and tied one end to the top S curve on the back work and the bottom to the hoop on the feet.  I did this on both sides making an upside down "V" in blue.  This got quite a few clips on, but there were tons and tons more.  I then took some fun blue and green spotted wire ribbon and looped it through the top S and tied it with both ends hanging out on the sides.

On this second ribbon I paired all the paired barrettes and all the little clips and clipped them on, cramming as many as I could get onto this ribbon.  The one mistake is that I didn't get it attached very well to the wine rack and I did have to add a rubber band to hold it in place as it kept sliding.  With all the stuff on the front and all the clips already on the ribbon it was not worth it to redo the ribbon (plus at this point my steak dinner was getting cold - I just don't know when to pause.)  I still looked down into the old three square holder that used to be used when we had only one daughter with only a few hair things and it was still overflowing as I'd used it to sort clips, so I added a red ribbon from the top to the bottom brace between the feet and added small barrette style clips to it (where it had to go completely around the ribbon.)  I still had a few more clippies and while I might have been able to cram them on the tulle, I decided to add one more ribbon (with plans to add a matching on the other side if ever needed).  I found some cow print I had in the box and ran it form a slightly lower S to the right side of middle on the back brace.  I loaded it with the last of the clips.
Looks pretty good, doesn't it?
This left just one more problem.  What to do with all those little one time elastics that are essential to all those cute little hairstyles on sites like Princess Hairstyles.  Once upon a time they all fit in one of those week long medication sorters.  So I put as many as I could in the sorter that had been re-found in the clean out.  At first I thought I'd put the container on the bottom two hooks, but I decided it works better under the arch in the base.  Unfortunately, there is half a tube of these things somewhere else.  I'm not exactly sure where it is at the moment, but I know I had it on the 4th because I used it then.  I think it will sit nicely behind all the ribbon clips standing by the back of the wine rack.  The opposite side of where the medicine storage is in the below photo.

I'm so relieved not to have all this as a clutter pile on the dresser spilling out onto the floor.  Nor is it all in cardboard boxes where it can't be found.  There are a couple of the nicer clips that are still MIA and I do hope to remove some of the "baby" clips in exchange for some more mature ribbons and flowers.  I hope that the girls are able to maintain at least a rudementary level of the organization here.  I mean it's not like I color coded it (although if it was for me, I would have - plus I had to eat cold steak as it was).

Yay!  One task down to organizing their stuff.  Now if we can just solve what to do with the dresses they want to wear daily, without a closet, hanging space is at a premium.


  1. Very cool! As for closet space, ParentHacks shared a great one yesterday using an Ikea bookshelf :)

  2. Thanks! I'll have to look into something like that. I really wish we had a nearby Ikea, I'm looking for a better bed solution as well.


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