Tuesday 09.27.16

Step Inside Co-Founder, Ashley Murphy's Renovated Home

Back in July we shared a glimpse into the behind the scenes "design" that filled many spaces of Ashley Murphy's home! Believe it or not, being organized isn't the only thing that she has a passion for. She's sharing with us today a fun tour of much more than just organized spaces of her home....

* all photos c/o Courtney Cimo

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Ashley :: It's no secret that I'm a Type A perfectionist! Hence starting a Professional Organizing company. The desire for everything to be perfect though, can definitely bite you in the you know what though when it comes to decorating your home. With a house that was built in 1873, I had to throw all desires to be perfect out the window and learn to embrace old character and imperfections. I quickly learned that I love the challenge of transforming something that's a bit out of date into something that tells a story. Our whole house definitely needs a little face lift, but my husband keeps telling me that it doesn't need to happen over night.  

My only rule was that we had to keep the original hardwood floors. After much trial with ideal stain/color and proper application to old creeky floors, we finally found someone willing to help us maintain the integrity of the old, but allow for the fresh update that I desired. My next challenge was coming up with  a design aesthic that I felt was exactly what I wanted in this old house. So, I enlisted the help of a local Chicago designer, Jeff Jones and one of Neat's girls, Lauren Combs and quickly discovered that I had a thing with Modern meeting Traditonal design. I knew I wanted it to be fun and playful, but also polished and simplistic. I just didn't know how to pull it off without being boring!

We will save the before pics for another post, but trust me when I say...it was bad! The walls were literally lime green and brown (no joke), so it definitley took much imagination to see that the house had much potential! There will be many more stories to tell down the road, but for now...here's a peek into some of the main rooms of our house!

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traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas

     

    

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas

     

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas

     

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas

     

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas

     

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas

     

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas, nursery design ideas, little boys room

     

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I was more than happy with the first chapter of our renovation and couldn't have done it without Jeff and Lauren. Thanks to both of you for convincing me to let my hair down and trust that color and patterns are a good thing! Ha! As mentioned, there will be many more stories to tell in this home of ours, but for now...back to playing with these two boys who are busy destroying my polished and perfected plan!

xx

Ashley Murphy

traditional homes, old farm house, fixer upper home, white farm house, ashley murphy, modern home decor, green design ideas, modern furniture, vintage ideas, play room ideas

     

Wednesday 09.21.16

How To Pick the Perfect Basket

Since many of us are still in shock over the whole Brangelina break up and likely trying to decide if we are sad over it or still #teamJen, we figured it was a good time for a little distraction. So...why not shop for some baskets, right???

Many of you ask how we get our spaces looking so polished and perfected. It actually requries a step by step process that any of you can follow in order to find the perfect basket for your home. 

1. First and foremost, you need to organize the items in a space that you think needs to be contained. Remove everything from your entire space, then sort and categorize all of it. The key is to not over categorize! For example, if your space only allows for one basket of "workout clothes" then you may have to decide what your favorites are and find a basket that fits everything. If you are able to fit a few different categories (ie. pic below), then just make sure they all get sorted and placed accordingly.

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2. Then, you will want to make sure you measure the shelf/space that the basket and items are then going to live on. We even take it a step further and measure all of the items grouped together on the floor to make sure they will actually fit in the basket before you purchase. 

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3. You are now to the fun part! Time to decide what type of basket person you are. Are you more traditional or modern? What does the rest of your home aesthic look like? We love to mix and match, but find that it definitely takes some trial and error when puttling together the puzzle. We often have to over purchase a little in order to play with different looks that fit a particular home and space. 

Here are a few of our favorite baskets out there right now...

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1. Danish Design Store- Perfect for toys, stuffed animals, blankets or anything else that may work in this bin that can sit out it's so cute. 

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2. Serena and Lily- Also a favorite in a kids room. However, they could work really great for adult things, too. Magazines, books, dvd's (and yes, people still have those), a kitchen pantry for food, etc. The combo of all three could be really fun to play with! 

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3. Pottery Barn Kids- Another great one for a kids room/playroom. This could even be fun in a mudroom for umbrellas or your dog's stuff! 

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4. Pottery Barn- We are kind of obsessed with the white one! The amount of ways you could use this one are actually endless. Playrooms, pantries, closets, media area...you name it. Our pro tip on this one is to place some of the small felt pads you put on furniture under each corner to protect it from scratch the surface you place it on. 

The list could go on and on, but for now we hope that we distracted you for just a moment from the world breaking news. Maybe next time Brad will learn to keep his eggs in one basket!! 

xx

the NEAT girls

Tuesday 09.06.16

Fall Fashion Week Prep :: The Fastest Way to Make Room In Your Closet

This week we will be kicking off one of our favorite times of the year - Fashion Week! As you may remember, we used to love to relate fashion to organizing any way we could! This year, our friends over at The Real Real are making it that much easier for us. Let's start with the basics - have you heard of The Real Real? We have been working with them to consign our client's clothing and jewlery for years and you should know them too!  

If you are trying to make room in your wardrobe for the latest trends this season, consider consigning pieces that you no longer wear. You will add room to your closet and money in your wallet. The Real Real makes it quite simple (especially for friends of NEAT!) Collect the pieces you are interested in consigning and give our friend, Kiara a call (see contact information below).  

Once your items have been sold, you will receive a check in the mail. Feel free to use it towards this season's must have piece. OR, check out a timeless classic that someone else was ready to part ways with on The Real Real's site.

Still not sure? The Real Real is offering all NEAT readers a $100 gift card to MatchesFashion.com when you consign 10 pieces for the first time. Do you know how easy it is to consign 10 pieces?! Now stop procrastinating and get to it!

xx

the NEAT girls + TRR

Thursday 09.01.16

#BTS - love to the teams that make NEAT work

You know how they say to raise a child, "it takes a village"? Well at NEAT we say, to perfect a space, it takes amazing contractors. We are constantly posting images of spaces that make us want to cry color coded tears of joy. Today we wanted to share just a few people who are behind our perfectly appointed spaces. In South Florida, Kris and Jody make Marissa's world go 'round. She says she doesn't know what she would do without these two to make organizing each space just a bit more fun! 

In San Diego, it's more than just the organizing that happens, it's fun times in the In-N-Out drivethru! Katie says, " Allison (who is in the front seat with me) is a great addition to my team because of her amazing personality. She is the kind of person you want around you. It doesn't hurt that she thinks I am pretty funny and is always willing to laugh at my jokes and encourage my dancing/driving skills!"

Over in Naples, Joyce had some amazing things to say about her girls:: "This is Kelly and Brooke.... These girls have been so helpful with launching my business!  They are giving me the all the details on Naples....and spending lots of time promoting NEAT everywhere they go.  Brooke is a new mommy and a very talented artist, she even had her own furniture painting business - the best label writer out there!  Kelly is my right hand WO-man, her drive and passion motivates me everyday!  And she is the best TCS road trip companion!"

In Milwaukee, Liz says, "This is me and amazing Milwaukee contractor Elizabeth Bisswurm. Elizabeth always brings her type-A pragmatic sense to every job but sprinkles it with her dry sense of humor and extensive knowledge of natural eating for entertainment while we sort and color code."

In Scottsdale, Mika couldn't do it without her amazing team and when asked, she said, "Why are they great? They are all positive, super talented, hard workers, and our clients love them and so do I! We also have a mom and daughter duo (can you spot them?)" **Their names are (from top left across and going down) :: Kassie, Holly, Lisa, Me, Becky, Carle, Emmaley, Molly, and Connie!
 

Finally, these two women work side by side with Lisa to tackle NEAT's largest city - Meet Haley and Kathrin. Haley has been with NEAT since 2014 and Kathrin more recently joined but Lisa said, "SF's leads, Haley and Kathrin are the backbone of our team. Their dedication to the job and eye for stellar product have converted many people into lifelong NEAT clients this summer. We've had a hectic schedule the past few months and they've rolled with it like champs!" 

We are so lucky to be working with you all to help our client's live the NEAT life! 

xx

the NEAT girls

Thursday 08.25.16

NEAT Expands to a New Market!

We are officially in 19 NEAT cities and could not be more excited to share our latest one with you! Not only is it lucky number 19, but it's also the third city in the state of Illinois to start living the NEAT life. We are so happy to introduce you to Laura Defalco, our newest NEAT organizer in Naperville, Illinois! We sat down to chat with her about life and all things Naperville today on the blog! 

NM:: Hi Laura! We are so excited to have you! Let's start with all the basics, tell us your name, where you are from, where you went to school... etc etc.
 
LD:: Hi! I'm Laura DeFalco, born in Raleigh, North Carolina, and raised in Naperville,IL. I went to school at Naperville North H.S. and college at University of Iowa (B.A. Elementary Education), Grad school at Concordia University (M.A. Curriculum and Instruction). I am so excited to be back in my hometown and helping people in the area start to live the NEAT life!
NM:: We're so happy, too! Now, we are assuming you moved back to Naperville to grow that adorable family of yours. Give us the good stuff...how did you meet your husband and when did Charlotte become a twinkle in your eye?
 
LD:: I met Tony in Lake Geneva while visiting his lake house with mutual friends. It was pretty immediately after that that we went on our first date and that was that!!  Charlotte was born June 13, 2015 and is THE BEST BABY EVER! Except for the fact that she is only 14 months and already starting to get sassy :)
NM:: Now... we know you were always an organized person but give us your LBN (life before NEAT) what were you up to? How did you make the transition over? What attracted you to NEAT in the first place?
 
LD:: Okay...LBN... I taught Kindergarten for 6 years in Chicago Public Schools. After that, I became an Instructional Coach for first year teachers for 3 years at AUSL (Academy for Urban School Leadership).  I have always admired NEAT and being that I have always been OCD when it comes to getting organized, I knew it would be a perfect fit!
NM:: Now that you are back in your hometown, what are some of your "old favorites" and what are some "new finds" that you are loving?  
 
LD:: Oh! I love this part - my old favs include:: Anderson Bookstore, Lou Malnati's Pizzera, and Naper Nuts and Sweets.
My favorite new finds include: Room 363 and Little Luxuries.
 
NM:: Okay, time to talk organizing! What's your most organized space?
 
LD:: Since moving back to Naperville, I would have to say the most organized space in my home is my daughter's closet.  She comes before everyone else....and she knows it!!!
 
NM:: Okay, so you knew it was coming...what's your least organized space?
 
LD:: Yikes! Probably our basement. We had our parents storing a lot of our stuff while we were moving and now we have it all in our basement....I have lots of work to do!
 
NM:: You will have to get us a before and after when you are finished - you know how much we love that!
 
NM:: Last question, why do you think Naperville is going to love living the NEAT life?
 
LD:: Naperville has always been a very charming, cute town. Every time I would come back to visit from the city, there was always something happening, new stores opening up, and people everywhere!! I know that Naperville is going to love living the NEAT life because it already radiates functional and beautiful all at the same time!
 
NM:: Welcome to the team, Laura. We are thrilled to have you!
xx
the NEAT Girls
Wednesday 08.17.16

Have you Entered?

If you didn't get the memo, NEAT Method has teamed up with two of our favorite brands, State Bags and The Laundress to do a Fall Refresh Giveaway! Here are three reasons you should enter to win NOW!

Reason #1:: The Laundress was doing "Eco Friendly" before it was even cool. Who doesn't want to use a product that is good for the environment, beautifully packaged and most importantly, tough on stains?! This giveaway includes a $125 voucher for their products!

Reason #2:: State Bags are the "it bag" for back to school. The design alone puts other backpacks to shame but can we talk about the perfect pockets? The pack is made to keep you nice and NEAT at work or school. This giveaway includes $125 towards their backpacks as well!

Reason #3:: Have you always wanted to work with NEAT but can't because we are not in your area? We have launched, "NEAT it Now" our online organizing services and are excited to offer $200 toward our services in this giveaway as well!

Are you ready for a Fall Refresh? Remember, you only have until Friday to enter for your chance to win!

 

xx

the NEAT girls

Thursday 08.04.16

3 Must Haves For Your Kitchen Rehab

One of the best parts of our job is getting to see the latest in kitchen design trends! Of course, our tendency is to favor those spaces where you can tell that the designer has a knack for organization. Or better yet, we love to be invovled in the design process so we can ensure our client will have no problem keeping things NEAT. 

Here are 3 of our recommended must haves for your next kitchen rehab project ... 

If you are one who insists on having your toaster out on the counter, an appliance garage should be added to your 'must have' list. We love a clean countertop and these sure help make that possible!

If you are designing a space and know that you will have more than enough drawer space, we love incorporating a custom spice drawer insert. This one was designed by Studio Dearborn and is truly a chef's dream come true.

No matter who you are, you have experienced the dreadful cord war in your kitchen. Having a drawer with an outlet to hide pesky cords and keep your essentials charged, is definitely on our 'must have list'. This one was made by a company called Docking Drawer.

If you are lucky enough to be rehabing a kitchen, take note of our advice here and let us know what other trends you are loving right now! 

xx
the NEAT girls

Wednesday 07.27.16

Top 5 Interior Hashtags

No one loves using Instagram for inspiration more than a NEAT girl. Here is a list of our 5 favorite hashtags to use when searching for home #inspiration ....

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#DESIGN - (link to image source) The minimalism of this photo is certainly very inspiring.

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#HOMEDECOR - (link to image source) Clean countertops always make our heart sing.

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#INSPIRATION - (link to image source) As an entrepreneur sometimes you need a good quote to remind you to keep pursuing your dreams!

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#LUXURY - (link to image source) We love looking at all of the clean lines in this image.

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#INTERIORDESIGN - (link to image source) This is one NEAT playroom.

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Oh and our personal favorites … #THENEATLIFE and #BENEAT! We love nothing more than using these to help inspire our followers or anyone interested in organization.

xx
the NEAT girls

top hashtags, inspiration, design, home, luxury, interior, neat method, home organizing
Wednesday 07.20.16

Our First NEAT Guy!!

For years you have heard us refer to ourselves as The NEAT Girls! Well times they are a changing and we could not be more excited to have our first male member of The NEAT Team.

Meet Terapan Lilittham! He is San Francisco's newest organizer and an amazing addition to the team. We knew you would need to know more, so here is an interview with this NEAT guy ...

 

Terapan Lilittham, San Francisco Organizer, NEAT Method

NM :: Where are you from originally? 
TL :: San Francisco. Born & raised in the Mission district. & things have really changed in the neighborhood. 

NM :: How did you find NEAT?
TL :: Through exhaustive internet searching as I began my journey to become the most amazing organizing professional. I reached out to Lisa for an apprenticeship via LinkedIn after thoroughly ogling NEAT's IG account.

NM :: Where did your love for organizing begin?
TL :: The moment I got my own room as a kid I became obsessed with arranging & rearranging my things, the beginning of my OCD for creating optimal and thoughtfully designed spaces.

Terapan Lilittham, San Francisco Organizer, NEAT Method

NM :: What is your favorite space to organize? 
TL :: The bedroom room! Consulting with clients on cool duvet covers and the contents of their nightstand is an added plus to these jobs.

NM :: What is your least favorite space?
TL :: Haven't found a space yet I don't love getting my hands on.

NM :: Do you have a favorite organizing hack or product?
TL :: Ikea Kallax Shelf Unit in 2x8 & 1x4. Super affordable & exceptionally versatile for any room. But ALSO acrylic trays are everything for me right now!

Terapan Lilittham, San Francisco Organizer, NEAT Method, Closet, Ikea Kallax Shelf Unit

NM :: What is the most organized space in your own home?
TL :: My closet. The simple pleasure of sliding it open and seeing all my clothes put away and perfectly displayed is one I could not live without.

NM :: What area in your home can you just not get it together?
TL :: My dining room table. It's doubling as an eat station & office desk. Currently researching better ways to create the distinction between the two to easily organize my paperwork for mealtimes.

NM :: What is it like working for NEAT?
TL :: The most amazing adventure each day with every project and client I meet. It has been a true treat :D

Terapan Lilittham, San Francisco Organizer, NEAT Method, Closet

NM :: How do you feel about being our first male organizer?!
TL :: I didn't realize until recently that I am kind-of a minority/unicorn at NEAT & in the organizing industry. Can't wait to show the world my unique sense for spacial planning & personal aesthetic as I grow into a stronger organizer.

Well Terapan we sure are glad you found us and were willing to take a leap of faith to transform this female focused industry. We are lucky to have you!

xx
the Neat TEAM!!!

Thursday 07.14.16

NEAT IT NOW :: Virtual Organizing

For over 5 years, we have been providing home organizing services across the Country. First, San Francisco got a taste of The NEAT Life and when they couldn't get enough of it we started launching in other cities (18 to be exact). During this time we have been perfecting our craft, or Method if you will, and are beyond excited to announce that we are ready to bring it to the masses.

What does that mean exactly? Well, for now we can only tell you a small part of what it means because we have something even bigger in the works. However, what we can tell you is that we are officially offering virtual organizing services. So, if you are (a) not in a city where we have a location, or (b) prefer a DIY project to tackle on your own, you can learn to live the NEAT life virtually!

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Excited?! So are we! Have questions? We figured ....

Here is an overview of how it works ... 

1. Submit our NEAT IT NOW Intake Form – we will be in touch about your project within 48 hours

2. Schedule a 30 minute phone/video conversation about your particular space and what you want to accomplish

3. Receive your personal shopping list as well as instructions on how to complete your space

4. Complete the project with a 30 minute follow up call/video to ensure the space gets the NEAT stamp of approval

5. Admire and enjoy your NEAT space(s) every day and be sure to share it using the hashtag #NEATitNOW

Sound fun?! We can't wait to share the ins and outs of our well developed Method with you! For more information head over to our NEAT IT NOW page. 

xx
the NEAT girls

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