When it comes to organization, there are no better experts than the Shakers. Though their knack for orderliness bordered on fanatical, their clever inventions and storage solutions are still brilliant today, so many years after their heyday. We thought we’d seen it all (peg rails, small-space drying racks), until we visited the Canterbury Shaker Village in Canterbury, New Hampshire and found unexpected solutions around every corner. Here are a few lessons from our visit:
3. If there’s a wall, there’s a storage opportunity.
4. There’s a place for everything.
5. Essentials can be built in.
6. Murphy beds aren’t the only collapsible furniture.
7. Less mess means less cleanup.
8. It’s okay when things disappear.
Above: Think beyond front-facing cabinets. A top-opening cabinet in a Shaker bedroom, shown here, stores a mirror and washbasin and opens to become a simple vanity, but transforms into useable surface when closed.
9. Storage boxes don’t need to be unsightly.
10. Labels are your friends.
11. Accidental storage opportunities can be the best.
12. There’s no such thing as too many peg rails.
For more lessons from the Shakers, indoors and out, see: