let’s get organized

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I don’t know about you, but for me, January always brings with it the need to get my life together. I want to clean closets and de-clutter a la Konmari, I want to meal plan and book appointments and generally organize everything around me.

I dreamed up this planner as a solution to a few organizational holes in our apartment. We have annexed part of our oddly L-shaped living room to function as Ezra’s office, and he makes great use of that space, but I don’t have a desk or office in our apartment. This is OK most of the time – I’m rarely working from home and when I am, laptop on the couch is a treat – but I end up with a bunch of paper piled up on our coffee table, my never ending “to deal with” pile. I really wanted a small pinboard where I can display the most pressing of those items.

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Umbra Puzzler Cork Board from The Container Store

I also wanted a big calendar so that Ezra and I can keep track of what’s coming up in the month to come. I’d seen this amazing calendar on Oh Happy Day and followed their link to a wonderful step-by-step tutorial on A Beautiful Mess. I wanted to see if I could create something similar, but have it be moveable without drilling more holes in the wall. It also occurred to me that I could combine both of these desires and create one control center, including hooks for our house keys.

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Plywood, spray paint, electrical paint, vinyl letters, bolts, hooks and nuts, all from Home Depot.

I got most everything at Home Depot. I had them cut a piece of thick plywood to the right size (24″ x 30″). When I got home, I sanded it and sprayed it with 2 coats of Rust-Oleum Hammered Paint & Primer in White (note – I didn’t buy a whole case!) and let it dry. While it was drying, I created the calendar. I followed the Beautiful Mess tutorial to drill holes through the acrylic sheet and then used black electrical tape and a tape measure and level to create the calendar grid on the acrylic. I wish I’d been able to find thinner tape but this was the best I could find.

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I found these Hillman Group Vinyl Letters and bought them in both 1-inch and 2-inch sizes, deciding ultimately that the 1-inch looked best. I realized too late that they were actually square stickers with a white background, so I painstakingly cut the letters out and stuck them down.

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Then it was time to put it together! I used the Everbilt 1/4 inch Connecting Bolt and 3 Everbilt 1/4 inch Brass Machine Screw Nuts for each corner of the calendar. I then drilled the calendar into place on the plywood and secured it on the back with another nut.

Adding the cork board was simple, since it came with attached sticky strips on the back. I just peeled them and stuck it on! The last thing I did was measure spacing for 3 hooks and screw them in. I used a tiny drill bit to make a small hole in the plywood to get them started, then screwed them in by hand, using pliers when I needed to.

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Ready to hang!

To hang my command station, I just drilled some screws into the back in 4 places, since we wanted to hang it from the side of our shelving unit which has a lot of holes. Add a plant above and some pretty fabric and I must say, I’m pretty pleased with it! Now I just need some better whiteboard markers to use on my new calendar!

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Posted in diy

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