1 The winter house basement storage room was the first place I started organizing. Everything that I use for setting tables for parties, as well as all the stuff I use for cooking and baking at home, is stored in this area. (This room is also used to store the storm windows and screens for the many winter house windows and doors.) The wonderful aluminum and steel rolling shelves are custom-ordered online.
2 The shelves are still a work in progress. Not only did I reorient the shelving itself, I decided to edit all the stuff and redistribute some of it to my Long Island home, as well as to my house in Maine. Some of the stuff I am giving away, too.
3 I used to use all the colored glassware for dinner parties. Now, it is used less frequently, but I still love it enough to keep it in the collection.
4 I do have a tremendous amount of the collectible FireKing glass tableware. Alexis collected thousands of pieces for her diner project, which never materialized. She sent most of it to Maine where we use it for lobster boils. I keep lots in Bedford for outdoor parties.
5 Many sets of fine china are stored in this space. This is monogrammed French porcelain that I bought years ago at a tag sale. We used it for a Christmas dinner.
6 This is the anteroom outside the big storage room. I use it normally for gift wrapping and sorting, but now it is being used for staging, and I am going to rearrange everything here.
7 At one home, I cooked only in copper, which was hung on a great big ceiling rack in my Turkey Hill kitchen. I switched to stainless when I started making beautiful pots and pans for Macy's. This collection is really very large, and I'll keep it intact until I build another kitchen.
8 We moved the big boxes from one side of the room to the more accessible other side.
9 These giant storage containers for the screens and storm windows are a real problem, because they consume a tremendous amount of space. I sometimes dream about "combination" windows...not really.
10 More shelves that are in dire need of reorganizing. At one time, everything was neat and orderly, but years have passed and now it is an almost an overly daunting project
11 I have lots of disposable bamboo plates and cups for large cocktail parties and paper products and utensils that are best stored in plastic tubs.
12 We decided to polish each and every piece of copper, and I will display it on the shelving in the storage room.
13 The tubs got more and more numerous as we divided and emptied all the old tubs, which were in a bad state of disarray, and rearranged the jars in new, clean tubs all the same size.
14 All the newly arranged tubs are now stacked in an anteroom. We are about to reorganize all the shelves and their contents in the next week—what a chore!!
15 We have an assortment of tubs from years past—I really don't care for the curvy tubs, or those with handles that "lock." Clamp tops are fine for most jobs, they look nice, they don't have colored trim, and they are see-through, so even if mislabeled, you can find what you are searching for more easily than in opaque tubs.
16 Some day, I will have just one type of tub, but for now, I am using, and reusing, what I have. By the way, plastic tubs are great in basements where floods do occur—none of the contents will be damaged. A very good thing!
17 We have also started to organize the party glasses I use for entertaining. We store these in tubs, also, with accurate counts on the outside of the contents. When throwing a party it is so great to have large numbers of nice glasses right in the basement.
18 The big job now is to rearrange the shelving neatly, and then find a good way to stack the tubs for easy access. I will be happy to continue this process in future blogs.
19 The second "rats' nest" that needs total reorganization is the summer house library. I own many, many books, and I love to keep them in an organized and useful place. So now we are editing the book collection and rearranging the way the books are stored and organized.
20 There are many stacks of books on the floors, arranged by subject.
21 Many books have to be sent to other houses, or given away. This library house really does not have enough shelves for my art books, garden books and cookbooks so they must be reduced in number.
22 There are actually "stacks" in the center of this room for books, just like in a real library. Oversized books can be stored there, and the counters can be used for browsing through books. I am now installing library lighting in the upper portions of the bookcases—I will show you that when we are all finished with the reorg.
23 This is another view of the stacks—two of them are permanent fixtures in the center of the room.
24 Our third project for reorganization is the headhouse of the big greenhouse. Everything is being rearranged and cleaned there.
25 We moved an old bakers' rack into the headhouse which is perfect for storing all the hand tools the gardeners use daily: sprinklers, etc.
26 The old rack came from Ellsworth Maine—it is very sturdy and has about a dozen wire shelves for storage and easy access.
27 Trowels, cultivators, dibbers, etc., are all very accessible and easy to locate on the new shelf unit.
28 This would be a very good product to reproduce—it would be great in kitchens, in bakeries, and in greenhouses like mine.
29 These beautiful galvanized gutter spouts are stored carefully for future use.
30 I don't know why I had SO MANY of these custom gutter/leader heads made—we must have overestimated the necessary number.
31 These beautiful Japanese hedge shears need sharpening, but they are great for shaping the boxwood.
32 Wilmer uses oil and a stone for sharpening the blades.
33 Ryan is happier gardening, but even he felt the ill effects of the deep freeze and cleaned the headhouse happily.
34 The old French Postal desks are being moved into the garden library room. Taking two out of the headhouse allowed us to move in a big potting table.
35 The galvanized shelving on the headhouse walls is now very organized.
36 This is the other shelf, neatly arranged with soil blocking tools and watering cans.
37 Making more room for a large potting table.
38 The galvanized top table was a perfect fit.
39 The rolling casters and the drawers are added features—very welcomed by Ryan.
40 The scissors and clippers and knives now have a very good space to be stored in full view.
41 The drawers in the newly installed center table are lined with drawer liner and fitted carefully with items that the gardeners use on a regular basis.
42 The greenhouses are also candidates for reorganization. As this cold weather progresses, we are finding that moving some of the plants is beneficial to their health.
43 The fourth area we are redoing in a major way is the basement of the Maple Avenue House. Betsy Perreten lives in this house, and one portion is for guests. The basement is very large and has been used as a "catchall" for lots of stuff. Because of the proximity to my tennis court, everything related to the court has been stored here. Now there is a dedicated area just of tennis equipment.
44 If you are wondering where the ball jars and other canning jars went, wonder no longer—they are here on these shelves.
45 This space now looks amazing—clean, orderly, everything pristine and ordered.
46 Chhiring and Chewang worked very hard to clean and organzize this space.
47 These plastic tubs are full of Ball jar and party glassware.
48 Wouldn't you love your basement storage to be this neat!
49 This year, I am definitely doing more canning and preserving—I certainly have enough jars!!!
50 We have never had such a good safe storage place for all our garden sprinklers. Now they are visible, and I love these Gilmour sprinklers—they water evenly and in large arcs.
51 The loft of the stable garage had not been organized since the building was completed 12 years ago. At that time, everything was put into the loft and onto the floor of the ground floor area and everything seemed to have its place. But after so many years, many items have been mixed and are out of place.