Conceal or Reveal – Find Your Organizing Style

Laine Hardman can be reached at, 703-401-4829 or


As you try to conquer your clutter, it may help to think about your organizing style as a concealer – someone who likes items out-of-sight – or a revealer – someone who likes to keep their items in view. Finding your preference will help you decide where to keep items and what kind of storage containers and systems you should use.

How do I find my style?

Ask yourself these yes or no questions:

  1. If I put something away do I forget where I put it or I forget that I have to take action on it?
  2. Do I find that out-of-sight means out-of mind?
  3. Do I gravitate toward clear bins so that I can see what is inside them?
  4. Can I live with seeing toys, files, mail, etc., out in the open?
  5. Do I prefer to use labels so that I can tell exactly where each item belongs?

If you answer YES to three or more of these questions, you may be a revealer. You are probably going to be happier and more successful in your organization if you leave items out in the open. We recommend open shelves, clear or mesh bins, desk-top file storage, and labels.


If you answered NO to three or more of these questions, you may be a concealer. You are going to succeed in staying organized by having items put away, behind closed doors. We recommend storage furniture with doors, baskets that you can’t see through, filing cabinets, and portable storage containers that you can put away when you are done.










Whatever your organizing style, we recommend that everything has a home and that you stay on top of your organizing by putting items away every night. That way, you should be able to keep everything nice and tidy!

Laine Hardman can be reached at, 703-401-4829 or


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