February has arrived and with it comes the next organizational space challenge! This month, we’re focusing on the guest bath. This can be an extra bath, a half bath, a hall bath, your kids’ bath, whatever! We’ll have another month focused specifically on the master bath, so don’t head there just yet. February is all about getting that space that your guests frequent in tip-top organizational shape. I know there’s a lot of people out there that like to snoop when they’re in someone’s bathroom (seriously?! I don’t understand this urge, so I’d love to hear why you do it!), and if someone’s going to be snooping in my bathroom, I at least want it to be pretty and organized. It’ll make it that much easier for them to find what they’re looking for. What exactly are you looking for, by the way?
This year I’m hosting a giveaway every month for those that participate in the monthly space!
Just to recap how it will work for those that are new to this challenge or need a reminder:
- Each month will be focused on a particular room or area of the home
- Week 1: Room/Area is announced, the link to my Pinterest board of ideas is given to follow along and get ideas from – I’ll also show you my “Before” pictures
- Week 2: Tips, tricks, and suggestions will be posted on the blog for getting the maximum organization out of your space
- Week 3: I will post my “Before” and “After” photos of my space and run through the methods I used
- Week 4: Head over to my Facebook page, find the post for the giveaway, comment with a photo of your favorite organized space in your guest bath and let me know
- On the last day of the month, I will randomly draw a winner from those that linked up their photos, and that winner will be mailed a gift card to The Home Depot courtesy of store #2205! That way, you have a head start on any purchases you might want to make in the coming months to get organized!
*If there are five weeks in any given month, the giveaway will extend through the fifth week. Contest is open to US residents only.*
**Also, you can follow along with me on Instagram and share your progress along the way using the hashtag #operationyearoforganization**
We have two bathrooms in our house – the master, and the hall aka kids’ bathroom. Naturally, when guests come over, they use the hall bath. Before we remodeled, our hall bath was exactly half the size it is now. Because we added a basement, we were able to steal the room right next to it that housed the water heater since it was headed downstairs. That really allowed us to get some breathing room in here! It was a tight as tight could be before!
At the time, we had two kiddos and thought it would be neat to give them separate sinks. Now, of course, we have three kids, so someone always thinks it’s unfair they have to share. Go figure. The two sinks are great, except for the odd spaces around them that are broken up, making it more difficult to get the most out of the space.
In between the two sinks, we store the potty chair/step stool. We’re getting ready to start potty training, so it’s great having this handy, but it also is how our 5 year old can get up to the sink high enough to brush his teeth, check his hair, etc. While I love the dual-functionality of this item, it is an eye sore, and it’s constantly being left out to trip over. I’m not sure whether I’ll replace it with a traditional step stool or just leave it be for the time being, but I’m definitely going to be thinking hard on that one. Do you see those toys on the sink? Those are just the latest pieces that were played with in the tub and put on the sink to dry. It’s not the best method by any means because it usually ends up being weeks before they’re put away.
On the far side of the room is the laundry hamper. I love that it’s tucked away and not easily visible to guests coming in. However, now that there are three kids and way more laundry, it’s getting nearly impossible to keep this area from overflowing onto the floor. My goal is to put hampers into each of the kids’ bedrooms and do some kind of storage in this space. The irony of moving the hamper out of the bathroom is that before the sinks were put in place, I specifically made the plumber hold on long enough for me to measure the width of the hamper to ensure I had enough space to place it there. Great planning on my part, but alas, it’s just doesn’t work with the additional child since I don’t do laundry seven days a week.
As you can tell, things get set on the sink daily. It’s because there’s no real storage organization going on under the sink. There’s plenty of room for it, but it’s just all tossed in there with no rhyme or reason to it. So either things are cluttering the top of the sinks or cluttering under them.
Next to the other sink is this small shelving unit that houses the toilet paper and magazines. Let me just get this off my chest: I hate this shelf. It’s not attractive, it was put there for a quick fix, and it’s never left. The magazines usually get transferred from the bottom shelf to the bottom drawer of that sink (which also drives me absolutely nuts), and while I’d like to get rid of them all together, everyone else in my house thinks they need to read while they’re in here instead of just get done with their business and read on the couch. I would love to pull this shelf out entirely and put something a little more decorative in it’s space that doesn’t serve a purpose other than to pretty-up the room. I’ve got an idea brewing in my head for the magazine storage, but having it stacking up on a shelf or in a drawer is not in that plan.
Because we doubled the room size, we ended up with this extra chunk of room space. It’s 4′ x 3′ of empty space that we’ve been waiting to find the perfect piece to put in it. This is where I’d love to have a piece of furniture that stores all of the essentials. We currently don’t have any extra towels in the room, and I’d love to have a place to store some. I’d also like to use this space for things like toilet paper, extra soap, etc so that whenever we have company, everything is at their finger tips. It’s quite a pain when you get undressed, jump in the shower, and realize you’re missing something you need, but it’s not even in the same room. That’s especially inconvenient for guests who don’t want to go streaking down your hallway!
Also, I’d love to hide that trashcan. It was a simple trashcan that came with a pop-up lid from Walmart, but after three kids, guests, and us using it, it wore out extremely quickly. So, now what’s in the trashcan is always on display. We try to keep a larger trashcan than the standard tiny ones you find under sinks because we go through a lot of tissue with runny noses and allergies. We’d have to clean out the smaller ones every day! So for us, a larger trashcan is better. It’s not quite the size of a kitchen can (13 gallons), but it’s much bigger than the standard bathroom size (4 gallons).
Now that you’ve gotten a good look at the space I’m working with, let’s get you going on your own!
- If you store any books or magazines in your guest bath, narrow them down to your top 5, and get rid of the rest.
- Go through your medicine cabinet, sink vanity, or any other storage cabinets you have in your guest bath and clear out anything that you haven’t used in the last 6 months. Better yet, if you can narrow it down to only the things you’ve used in the last 3 months, you’ll be golden. This includes medications, hair products, bath salts, anything you’re storing that isn’t towels or toilet paper.
- Don’t keep any more than 4 extra sets of towels. The reality is, if you have guests over, you’re generally talking about 2-4 extra. But by all means, if your brother with seven kids visits on a regular basis, keep more. What you want is to have only what you need, nothing more. Having an extra towel in there because your Aunt Ida comes once every other year is not a reason to take up space with an extra towel. Be reasonable with the amount you keep, not lofty-dreamed.
- Be thinking of ideas for storage and organization in your space. Follow my Pinterest board for more ideas and ways to maximize your storage. The board is constantly being updated, so keep checking back for inspiration!
That’s it for this week! Check back here next week for tips and tricks to get the most organization out of your guest bath, and be sure to tune in the following weeks to see my “After” reveal along with your chance to WIN a Home Depot gift card courtesy of store #2205!