31 Days of Organizing Tips: Day 28 (Multi-purpose rooms)

Welcome to Day Twenty Eight of the 31 Days of Organizing Tips series!  Throughout this series I’m been sharing organizing tips that will help you on your journey from overwhelmed to organized.

Today’s tips are about organizing rooms that have more than one purpose. Those rooms that do double (or triple!) duty. The ones with a “slash” in their name.  Here are some examples:

  • Office / Craft Room
  • Guest Room / Playroom
  • Bedroom / Office
  • Family Room / Exercise Room

If you have a large house, you may not have combined rooms. That’s great! Think of someone else who may need help with their shared-purpose rooms and forward this to them. Then enjoy a coffee in one of your single purpose rooms.

For many of us though, our space or living arrangements require that we have double-duty rooms. These rooms can be overwhelming because they often have twice as much “stuff” packed into them. They can be tricky to keep organized.

Here are some tips to help you out:

  • Set up zones for each purpose
  • Establish a vision for each zone
  • Keep all items associated with each purpose in the correct zone
  • Have separate storage options for each zone
  • Find creative furniture options that will also function as storage or that can be hidden or made smaller when needed
  • Once you’ve established your zones, stick to them!

Check out these pictures for inspiration!

1.  One of my favourite organizers, Peter Walsh, has a guest room / TV room / office. His couch is a pullout couch for guests. His office is a closet with the doors taken off and Venetian blinds hung in front so it can be hidden when guests are over. And his ottoman holds DVDs. It’s a very organized room! Not that I would expect anything less from him.

Peter Walsh Organizing Secrets

2.  If you have a dining room that functions as an office some of the time, make sure you have storage for all your office items. That way when you have guests at your dining table it doesn’t feel like they’re eating in an office.  A buffet/hutch is useful for storing office supplies (utensil drawers make great office supply drawers). Pretty boxes on shelves can hide paperwork, projects, and office supplies. Or you can use a portable cart for your office items and roll it out of the dining room when you’re using it as a dining room.

Portable Office Cart

3.  This room is a craft room / office.  One end of the room has a craft worktable and storage for all the craft supplies.  The other end of the room has a desk and shelves for office supplies.

Craft room office combination.

Craft Room / Office

Craft room office combination.

Craft Room / Office

4.  Not everyone has a separate room for an office but a lot of people have used their part of their bedroom for an office. Be creative with storage such as under bed bins for extra office supplies or archive paperwork and try to put things away so your bedroom doesn’t become cluttered with office items. You can use a closet for an office and then close the door at the end of the day.

Cloffice (Closet Office)

5.  Here’s a kitchen / office that makes great use of a small space.  Everything needed for paying bills, sending greeting cards, and writing notes is organized and accessible.

Kitchen and office space combination.

Kitchen Cabinet Office Storage

Please remember to pin from the original source for all of these lovely pictures!

For Day Twenty Eight, take a fresh look at a double-duty room in your house.  Choose one of these tips or photos to make your room function better for you.

How do you organize your multi-purpose rooms?  What’s the best organizing tip you’ve implemented?

If you need help decluttering or organizing, contact me for in-person organizing services in the Mississauga area, or virtual organizing services anywhere else. 

Happy organizing!