Home Office Organized and Simplified

Okay, for those of you who know me … you are allowed to laugh that I’m writing about Home Organization. I’m not a naturally organized person, and most people who know me, know that. Things in my house are generally clean, but a general feeling of clutter seems to abound.

My biggest clutter struggle is PAPER! Oh, my it drives me CRAZY! Magazines, bills, homework, report cards, kids schedules … everything is paper … and it gets everywhere.

So when BlogHer contacted me about reviewing the new Martha Stewart Home Office™ with Avery™ and offered to provide me with a bunch of products to try out I jumped at the chance. I love the clean look of all of the Martha Stewart Family of products, and there is something about office supplies that makes me giddy The line is sold exclusively at Staples™, and for more information you can visit the Avery website or the Avery Facebook Page.

I decided to tackle the task of organizing and simplifying my home office. It’s the first room you see when you walk into our house, and it very well used. As you can see in the before photos, it had good bones, but the bookcase was a mess of boxes, loose paper and stuff I didn’t even use anymore. The desk was equally disorganized with paper everywhere!

Avery was kind enough to send me a big box of supplies to get me started.

I dove in and started with the bookcase.

I assembled some IKEA storage boxes that I had sitting around and began by taking everything off of the bookcase. I then sorted what was on the bookcase into categories to get an idea of what I needed to store.

I then used my VERY FAVORITE product in the line, the Chalkboard Labels, to label and organize my storage containers.

They are removable labels with a chalkboard coating. You just peel and stick them to the outside of your storage container. The best part is when you change what you store in there, you can just wipe off the chalk and use them for something new.

I decided to cut my labels in half lengthwise so that they would fit on my storage drawers.

I ended up with drawers for tools (scissors, hole punches, letter openers), tape (always a shortage in our house), paper clips etc.

With the Holidays coming up, I tried to think of what I would need in the days ahead and organized it with that in mind (i.e. packing tape, gift tags etc).

The labels are also great on plastic. I am going to use the larger size ones to label my holiday storage plastic tubs.

In a basket in front of the bookcase, I put some gift bags, wrapping paper and shipping paper. The shipping paper from the line is red and fancy enough that you can wrap your WHOLE box, and ship it … already wrapped! Genius! The holiday wrapping and shipping products are available in-store at Staples.

Next I moved to the desk. After a thorough wipe down and dusting, I began to organize the mess of papers that were strewn all over. I used the Stack+Fit™ organizer to hold stamps, return address labels, pencils and notebooks.

Most of that mess of paper got organized and put into the Martha Stewart with Avery Accordion File. It works great because it’s portable, yet it stands up by itself on the desk.

Planning space for future paper I used the Vertical File folders and Magazine files.

The folders fit in vertically, to make them easy to grab and easy to thumb through to find what you need.

The X-Bands were great to contain a stack of manila file folder and bills that need to be paid immediately.

I had plans to use the Corner Lock™ High Capacity Document Sleeves next, but my 11 year old quickly confiscated them. She said they’d be perfect to transport her homework to and from school safely.

I am sooo happy with how our home office turned out. This is the view of it from our front door now. As you can tell it’s very visible to anyone who comes over.

I added a few finishing touches when I was done. A few treasures I picked up in South Africa this year had been sitting in a box.

They look so much better in our office. I also added a collection of globes and an antique sewing machine to the top of our bookcase.

The circus print above the sofa has sentimental meaning to me. We found it in my grandpa’s garage after he passed away. It’s the real deal; a few years ago I had it framed professionally to preserve it.

Okay now, I would not have you read though such a GIANT post without a little something for you at the end!

I’m giving away a $100 Gift Card to Staples!!

To be entered for a chance to win, just tell me, what is your biggest organizing challenge???


No duplicate comments. You may receive (2) total entries by selecting from the following entry methods:

a) Leave a comment in response to the sweepstakes prompt on this post

b) Tweet (public message) about this promotion; including exactly the following unique term in your tweet message: “#SweepstakesEntry”; and leave the URL to that tweet in a comment on this post

c) Blog about this promotion, including a disclosure that you are receiving a sweepstakes entry in exchange for writing the blog post, and leave the URL to that post in a comment on this post

d) For those with no Twitter or blog, read the official rules to learn about an alternate form of entry.

This giveaway is open to US Residents age 18 or older. Winners will be selected via random draw, and will be notified by e-mail. You have 72 hours to get back to me, otherwise a new winner will be selected.

The Official Rules are available here.

This sweepstakes runs from 11/14/1212/14/12.

Be sure to visit the Martha Stewart Home Office with Avery page on BlogHer.com where you can read other bloggersí reviews and find more chances to win!

Melissa Mortenson is the author of the Polka Dot Chair blog which is in its 7th year of sharing fresh and creative ideas with readers. She is the author of “Project Teen, Handmade Gifts your Teen will Actually Love”. Her first fabric line “Derby Style” debuted in January 2015 through Riley Blake Designs. A mom of 3, she considers herself lucky to be living in Kentucky.


  1. BEth says

    Mine is the stuff that ends up in a junk drawer; little flash lights, measuring tapes, pens, stamps, lip glosses, picture hangers, wire, little felt things to go on furniture, on and on and on

  2. Lynn Francisco says

    My biggest organization snafu is all the bills, projects my 5 year old brings home, anrts and craft supplies- Paperwork for the new home we just bought- what a headache! I wouldnt trade it for anything but it would be amazing to get my life more organized, everyone in our home would benefit- I have so many ideas for projects to complete.. My abition far exceeds my talent until I get myself organized!

  3. Jamie Honley says

    my biggest problem is I organize something then I see something better and can’t decide which to do so it get left not organized, then everything starts backing up and then I become so overwelmed that I forgot what I was going to organize..bet your confused now huh?? LOL thanks for the ideas on your websight I just found you and love your sight already.



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