Struggling with Jewelry Storage? Go Vertical

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See…I have this thing for jewelry. It started off with just earrings when I went natural with my hair a few years back, but as my passion for dressing up has skyrocketed, so has my passion for all other kinds of jewelry and adornments.

And I have a lot of it. Like a LOT lot. And my husband, sister, nieces and mother all gave me more of it for Christmas.

I love that they know me so well, but I was really running out of space to store and organize it all. So the top of my dresser looked like this:

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OK, that’s not just because of the jewelry, but it certainly didn’t help.

The crazy thing is, a few months ago, I posted a few pictures on Instagram about my previous attempt to organize my jewelry. It involved a Caboodles case with lots of compartments. If you’re a 70s or 80s child, yes, it’s the same Caboodles brand you remember. And the case did the job, sort of. Take a look:

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Technically, everything fit, but for a couple of mismatched pieces that I never wear anyway. But that was before Christmas. And before I realized how much of a pain it is to have to open the case every time I want to find something and every time I want to put something back. So when Walmart challenged me to declutter something — anything — in my home and document it, my jewelry was the obvious choice.

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First, the tools for the job: A fancy jewelry box with inspiring words inscribed on the top, along with a cork board and some wooden thumbtacks, all from Walmart.

I started by dumping out ALL my jewelry so I could see what I really had to work with.

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It’s somehow both awesome and sad how much I have.

First, I organized my rings, earrings and brooches into the silver jewelry box. They actually fit nicely, and since I go through earrings more than anything else, it will be nice to have them so easily accessible on top of my dresser.

Next, the vertical part. The yellow mirror on my dresser had been there since we moved into this apartment a year and a half ago, but I never use it. So I decided that I’d replace it with a vertical cork board so I could easily see the jewelry that I wear most often, or that’s just really pretty to look at :)

First, I laid out the jewelry on the board to find the way they’d best fit.

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Once I had a layout I liked, I added the wooden pushpins. Some of the pieces will hang on the pins, but for a few, I pushed the pin through a loop or link for a more secure hold. I realized too late that it would’ve been really helpful to have some hooks, but I made it work.

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But I still had a pile of jewelry left to organize. So I went back to the Caboodle case, this time with a better organizational plan. It now contains only bracelets, bangles and a couple necklaces, rather than a little bit of everything.

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With the organizing work done, I got busy redecorating my dresser, starting with my new jewelry display smack dab in the middle.

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I took a “less is more” approach to my decor this time, getting rid of all the clutter and adding back only the essentials: An old photo of my hubby and I from back when we were dating, a photo of my daddy holding me as a baby, and one of my dad as a toddler. The latter two were given to me by my mother last Christmas.

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Next to my dad’s picture, I added my favorite white ceramic owl, a gift from my hubby a few birthdays ago, and a small decorative bowl for those things I know I’ll still be tempted to drop on the dresser, like keys and my FitBit activity tracker.

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I feel like I’ve achieved the impossible: Jewelry storage that’s well organized and really pretty to boot. The Caboodles case lives on the floor next to the dresser, so it’s still easily accessible, but not in the way. And since my favorite pieces are always visible, I won’t have to open it as much, thereby saving myself a lot of hassle.

What organizing projects have you tackled lately?

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DISCLOSURE: I am a member of the Walmart Moms program. Walmart has provided me with compensation for sharing my organizing project with you. Participation is voluntary and, as usual, all opinions are my own.

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