Using Room Dividers to Maximize Your Space
Well planned storage can save you time and energy. Put your most frequently used things in the most convenient locations (live storage). Put less frequently used items in less accessible locations (semi-live storage). Put infrequently used items out of the way (dead storage).
Certain types of space dividers can double as storage pieces. These are storage walls, cabinets, and shelves. Other decorative devices used to create separations in an open-plan area are paint, wall coverings, fabric walls, screens, area carpets, furniture groupings, musical instruments, illumination, and the use of plants.
Well-planned storage is the basis of finding the things easily when you need them. If you have to run down a long hall for bath towels (which should be kept near the bathroom), or walk across the kitchen for pots (which should be near the stove), or stand on a chair to reach a new game for the kids then you are wasting time and effort. Today’s home designers appreciate the necessity for well-planned and well-placed storage so your job should be easier than it was 20 years ago.
In deciding on your storage plan, list those items which you use every day. Next, list those items which you use infrequently. And last, list those which you rarely use – you might even think about getting rid of them but that’s another discussion. Next, calculate the length, width, and depth of the items to be stored, so that you will know how much and what kind of space to allow (tall space for bottles, short space for baby foods, and so forth). You don’t have to be exact, just estimate how big a box would have to be to hold all you things.
Put those things which you use daily in the most accessible locations (live storage); the less frequently used items in less accessible locations (semilive storage); and items hardly ever used out of the way (dead storage).
Live storage space is needed for the clothes you wear every day; for the foods you most frequently eat and the pans you most often use, video games the kids play with, that type of thing.
Semi-live storage space is needed for things like bed linens and bath linens, for sports gear and party items, for foods seldom used and for clothes you don’t wear very often – like your ski jackets.
Dead storage space should be reserved for Christmas tree ornaments, or any other items used once or twice a year. Drawers and boxes with plastic fronts are a great help. Labels are a great idea for workable storage. Too many people are never able to remember where they have stored what. Once you have set up your storage plan, it is mostly a matter of self-discipline to keep everything in its proper place.