We have a command center in our kitchen. I’ll leave that there for a second. Generally, when I say the words command center, most people look a little confused. I’m sure they are thinking that I’m planning on going into battle, searching for missing children or taking over the world!
This my friend, could not be further from the truth. Basically, a command center is a fancy way of saying all important family information is located in one easy to find location. Having a designated spot for daily lists, documents, schedules etc. means that mom, pack leader, keeper of all essential (and not so essential) family information aka me, can find everything without having to dig through piles of papers and junk drawers to locate what I need
Help I can’t see the kitchen counter!
Having a command center also helps to alleviate the toppling Mount Everest of papers and household “junk” that magically appears on my kitchen island each day. Our kitchen island is a dumping ground to everything from the mail, homework, recipes, slime, colouring books, you name it it’s there. This daily
Our first family command center
I created our first command center wall last year. My first command wall was based on two things. One, pretty images I found online, and yes there are oh so many pretty images. All so colourful and coordinated without a file folder or pen out of place. Secondly, products that I found at the local Winners and Walmart or that I already had in my basement that looked cool, and that looked like the ones on Pinterest. Only later to discover they weren’t practical to our families needs.
I’m not saying I didn’t think about functionality, and what we needed the command wall for. However, regrettably, that appears to have come as an afterthought. Sadly our command center wall as we knew it was by no means functional. Honestly, you would think that after years as a designer I would have learnt my lesson, and do things right the first time. Spaces may look cool and stylish like the ones in Style at Home magazine, but if they aren’t functional what’s the point?
You can find countless images of command centers online and in magazine articles but I thought it would be fun to share my real life command centre journey with you. I hope you enjoy the before and after images as well as what I changed and why.
What wasn’t working and what I changed
Wall magazine rack
I must admit I cleaned this up for the photo – hey I didn’t want to look like a complete slob!! This organizer is generally overflowing. Magazines, bills, school forms, coupons, artwork the list goes on. I decided that I would remove the simple two-compartment unit and exchange it for a five-compartment unit. This way the papers we needed to store could be better organized per family, member etc. and therefore
Our original calendar was WAY too small! When I made the calendar I thought the coloured circles looked cool, which they do, but they really limited the space we had to write. I decided that instead of buying a new one ready made I’d make a new one, and this time learn from past mistakes. I’ll posting a tutorial on how you can make your own family calendar soon.
As you can see in the before pictures they are empty. Originally I had plants in them which looked great but this area of my kitchen gets a lot of natural sunlight and my attention to plant maintenance isn’t the best so they soon wilted away. I still love the idea of plants so these baskets stayed but with more resilient plants which I’ll remember to water this time!
The baskets also have hooks under them
I loved the rustic look of this trio of clipboards but they always ended up looking super messy. I used scraps of paper for our kitchen notes and grocery lists so there was generally a mixture of sizes and colours. Plus having three separate boards was hard to keep tidy. Time to say goodbye to this cute item, add it to the yard sale pile.
This shelf is great for kleenex, dog treats, pens etc. but tends to get cluttered with other items too. I debated getting rid of it but would then have nowhere to keep these items. I decided it would stay but gave it a couple of coats of white paint to freshen it up and match it to the other items on the wall.
The phrases are cute and I absolutely love our family picture drawn by mini-me but they lacked pizzaz! I admit the framed quotes were just added as space fillers and the frames are what I already had on hand.
I replaced the existing art pieces with our family name art. Sadly this piece has been sitting in our basement for about six years. Why you ask because I needed to get a piece of glass for the frame. I still need to get the piece of glass but I figure if I see it every day it may give me the push I need to get it done! I love how it looks on this wall, don’t you?
This was on the wall and pretty much ignored for over two years! Definitely, time to revisit this piece so why not an amazing quote using one of my Chalk Couture transfers! The great thing is that I can easily change the quote by simply washing this one off with water and re-chalking. Visit my facebook page Our turquoise door to watch the video of how quick and easy it was to chalk this quote.
A couple of items I added
“Our week” board
This DIY whiteboard (made from our old calendar – oh how I love up-cycling!) includes our weekly menu, to do list and area for a grocery list. I find having a menu board works great. There’s generally less grumbling over what was for dinner, less discussions over I don’t like or want that! Plus it’s easier to get help when everyone can see what’s on the schedule and know what needs to be prepped.
Having the grocery area on the same board seemed to make sense. When we plan the meals for the week we write a list of groceries we need as well as the
I added the to do area to the same board to not only capture items that need to be done on a daily basis. We always have scraps of paper with lists of to do’s laying around so h
I love having a circular object among all the square and rectangle frames to soften the aesthetic. We do have clocks on the stove and microwave but I still love the look of a traditional clock and think it’s important for kids to use a traditional clock rather than just digital, don’t you?
Okay so before you start hammering nails into the wall – yes my husband loves it when I do that!! Make sure you have measured and figured out placement of each piece. Once again my trusty graph paper comes in super handy for this. Once I have a layout on paper I lay the items out on the floor. If your layout is super complicated or you really want to see how it’s going to look before you start to hang you can cut out paper templates of each piece and stick to the wall first.
Our new command center
Our new functional family command centre is installed and we love it! Let me know what you think in the comments below.
Also, please check out my Pinterest board dedicated to storage and organization to give you some great idea starters for your home.https://www.pinterest.ca/alli68/home-storage-organization/
Until next time!