Tuesday, March 5, 2013

How To Give Him a Drawer And Keep Your Apartment Organized

(A peak into my tiny East Village studio closet)

When the closet in your Manhattan studio barely fits your shoe collection, you may find yourselves asking, “Am I so in love that I’ll give this man space for some of his belongings?”

At the start of a relationship, staying over your lover’s apartment means packing an overnight bag, armed with an outfit for work and a collection of essential makeup necessities for each morning, while guys are known to stuff their laptop case or gym duffel with at least deodorant and a clean button down when crashing at your place. But, once you’ve gotten comfortable with your man, infrequent sleepovers become consecutive night stays.

When your guy sleeps at your place, it makes his day-to-day schedule easier if he can keep some basics in a drawer or (gasp) your closet. An extra pair of weekend jeans, a sweater for a cool fall day and a blazer for last minute work trips may soon find a hanger in your small apartment. Eventually, it will make his life even easier to store more than just staples at your place. How will you keep his stuff organized in your already cramped space?

These easy tips will help you keep the peace in your under 500 square feet New York City apartment by harmonizing some of his belongings with your clothes and toiletries, before taking the next big step to officially move in together.

Bathroom Basics. Your guy has probably left a toothbrush in your medicine cabinet since week one, but as you spend more of your nights and weekends together, he’ll need more than just oral hygiene products to keep himself looking and smelling fresh. If you don’t already have one, add a shower caddy to your tub to store his personal products. Sure, he can share some of your basics, like shaving cream, but not your precious Kiehl’s Creme de Corps Soy Milk and Honey Body Polish, right? Encourage him to purchase his own shampoo and body wash to keep in your shower and of course, his own razor for safety.

Prescription and Over-The-Counter Medications. If your boyfriend has a daily prescription or happens to catch a nasty bug, file his medications in a cool dry place, like the top drawer in your nightstand, along with your pills. Make sure to label anything without a prescription or doctor’s note, so that you don’t confuse any of his meds with yours.

Coat Check. Closet space is precious in New York City. Many of us only have one closet for a whole apartment, leading us to splurge on expensive armoires or budgeting with plastic zip-up units just to hang our everyday wardrobe. With the lack of racks, it’s hard to imagine any of his clothes on hangers. Hand select his items that must be hung up to keep from wrinkling, like dress pants and collard shirts for the office, and hang those items in your coat closet. Also store any coats he keeps at your place in this hallway closet, unless you have a wall mounted coat rack to display seasonal jackets.

Lug It To The Laundromat. Your maternal instincts may find you tossing in a load of his laundry when doing your own, but make sure this doesn’t become a habit. Sure, it’s nice of you to help out with his chores from time to time, but make sure he does his own laundry – and pitches in with towels, sheets and other shared items – each week. Bonus: He’ll feel pretty manly lugging your heavy laundry bags down the four flights of your walk-up and you’ll save yourself a back injury.

Fuff N’ Fold. Once you’ve decided what must be hung up to keep wrinkle-free in your tiny closet, work together to neatly fold his jeans, t-shirts, sweaters and pajama pants in a designated drawer. If you can’t give up a full drawer for his use, find a creative way to store his folded clothes. A large wicker basket or modern crates are inexpensive ways to store his clothes in your bedroom without losing any of your dresser space. The key to keeping his clothing on display is to ask that he keep this area neat and folded at all times, so that you don’t end up with an overflowing pile of clean clothes cluttering your bedroom.

Secret Storage Space. Go dorm room style with plastic boxes under your bed for storing items that are out of season and any of his clothes or accessories that he isn’t currently using, like scarfs or gloves during the warmer months. Guests won’t notice the stacks of boxes under your bed when hidden by a pretty bed skirt that matches your duvet cover.

What are your tips when giving your boyfriend a drawer in your apartment? xo

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