Ever take a serious look at your nightstand? You may never have given it much thought, but since it is the last space you look at each night (and the first you see each morning), it is worthy of attention. If you have been wanting to tackle clutter in your home, this little project might be a great place to start.
To improve this area’s functionality and appeal:
- Clear everything off the surface, empty any drawers, remove any items that are piled nearby on the floor, and wipe everything clean.
- Sort out the contents and put similar items together (e.g. books, change, pencils, paper, clothing, personal supplies, etc.)
- Be thoughtful about what you want to put back! The key to a soothing bedroom is to keep it as simplified as possible. A nightstand can easily become a dumping ground, so remove anything that doesn’t need to be here:
- Throw away trash (empty bottles, broken items, etc.)
- Remove books you’ve read or have given up reading
- Recycle old magazines
- File any paperwork you’ve let pile up
- Fold or launder clothing
- Return jewelry or cuff links to a storage container on a dresser
In addition, relocate any items that can possibly live in another space in your home. For example, instead of piling change on your nightstand, designate a collection jar near your main entry door. Be aggressive in clearing away anything extraneous.
- Reload the space. The goal is to return only the items that suit your needs while in bed. A well stocked nightstand should have:
- A pleasing visual, such as a small painting, photo, plant/vase of flowers, or a favorite verse or thought.
- Task lighting, in the form of a low-wattage table lamp or wall-mounted swivel lamp.
- A clock that you can easily read. Large displays are nice if you have impaired vision, as is this one that projects the time onto the ceiling. Try and have one with a battery back-up so you won’t be late if the power should fail.
- “Hidden” storage for personal items such as eye drops, medication, and intimacy supplies. Drawers work well, but if you have a table with no drawers, you can use a basket or bin, or a bedside organizer that hooks under your mattress. Another option is to gather small necessities on a tray.
- A box of tissues, especially if you suffer from allergies or are fighting a cold.
- A notepad and pen. If you get a call in the middle of the night, you want to be able to record the pertinent details you might not remember in the morning.
- A phone. If you use your cell phone, it is handy to have an extra charger that you can leave plugged in next to your bed.
- A designated space for your glasses. This can be an eyeglass holder like this one, or just a space on the nightstand where you put your glasses when you take them off. Always put your glasses in the same spot so you can find them quickly.
- Book, kindle or reading material, if you enjoy reading in bed.
For a bit of inspiration, here are a few visuals of soothing bedside layouts.
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The place where you lie your head at night should be tranquil and refreshing. What ideas do you have for making this space work well?