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2013 Top Shelf Design Honors

For the fourth consecutive year, we are honored to have our designs selected for the annual Closets Top Shelf Design contest. We are thrilled to be acknowledged in the industry for our original closet and creative home organizational designs. 

multi-function office coat room  sleek white office storage room with island  

In the category  for "Home Office of 150 square feet or less", Tom Mayfield of Closet Organization Systems, received an honorable mention for his "Multifaceted Office Space" design. 

   mudroom docking station storage mudroom vaccumm cleaning product storage Laundry Room Mudroom Combination

Also, pictured above, Donna Siben of Closet Organizing Systems, received  an honorable mention in the "Specialty Rooms" category for her "5 in 1 Mudroom" design.

Congratulations to all the winners, especially our incredible designers. We will continue to grow and perfect the execution of our brilliant designs for closets and home storage solutions. As always, we will be working hard and looking forward to the 2013 Top Shelf Design competition. 

View our Top Shelf Design winners from previous competitions.

2012 Top Shelf Design Winners!!!!

Closet Organizing Systems (COS) was selected for two Top Shelf Design Awards to be announced at the 2012 Closet and Home Organizing Expo at the Austin Convention Center on February 15th in Austin, TX.  COS was selected for a melamine office system design and solid/wood veneer closet system. This is the 9th time that COS has been awarded a Top Shelf Design award by Closet Magazine over the last 7 years since its inception.

In the home office category Carey Ekstrom received a Top Shelf Award for her unique office solutions for a sitting/sun room adjacent to the client’s kitchen and living room. The client worked from home and required a functional, yet attractive workspace that blends with the family entertainment activities and compliments the visibility from both the kitchen and living room areas. Transforming a dated, non-functional area into an attractive, warm and inviting multi-purpose area in the home in which the family now looks forward to spending time together.  

In the Wood Veneer category Bill Curran received a Top Shelf Award a cherry stained master closet system simulated leather inserts in the door panels, thicker vertical side panels, full backing, and matching top and bottom moulding throughout the room. The closet was designed with a peninsula island cabinet with his/hers hampers, jewelry drawers, viewing mirror, and granite countertop which doubled for folding and packing clothes. The space also included a window seat bench with drawer storage and an upper lighting valance which is flanked by more hanging storage.

Awards were presented by TV personality Amanda LeBlanc of The Style Networks show “The Amada’s” at the 2012 Top Shelf Design Awards in Austin Texas.

How To Get the Best Results from your Built-In Home Improvement Project

The decision to have a custom storage solution designed and built in your home can bring you long lasting results and satisfaction.

It can also be a daunting process because you’re working with someone to “create a one of a kind original from nothing”, so to speak.

You’ve got the designated space where you want this storage solution to “live” – and you likely have an idea of the kinds of things you need stored there (files, books, clothes, electronic equipment, etc.).

Now you need a design/build professional to work with to make this all happen.

The most important variables to consider as you’re working on this project are form, fit and function.


This is the “look” and “feel” you want your project to have.

- Do you want it to blend in with the rest of your décor, or stand out and make a dramatic statement?

- Do you like a rustic, knotted wood or a smooth, high-gloss, lacquered finish?

- Do you want open storage, closed storage, or both?

- And what about shelves, drawers and doors?

An experienced design consultant can guide you through this part and will be sure to ask you all the questions that you didn’t even know you had to answer!


Making sure a built-in fits the space is crucial – otherwise – it’s no longer a built in – it’s a mistake.

All obstacles need to be considered in terms of allowing access and making sure the pieces are manufactured so they work and fit correctly. This includes outlets and vents as well as sprinkler heads and anything else that resides in that space.

Any special AV or office equipment that will be stored within the units need to be measured and incorporated into the design – so there’s no such thing as “it’s just a standard printer” or “40” flat screen” when communicating with your designer. We need to know the precise measurements of any special equipment that you plan to incorporate into the design.


Function is the place where a skilled designer can really take your project to the next level. Any woodworker can make a box and add shelves or drawers. It takes experience to know that 24” deep shelves aren’t good for much in a closet space unless they pull out. And that shallow shelving as well as deep shelving increase functionality in areas like pantries and home offices. And that corner shelves in lower cabinets end up becoming “big, black holes”.

Having an experienced design consultant, like one of the team members at Closet Organizing Systems, that can work with you to make your dreams come true – is – well – quite frankly – a dream come true.

So how can we make your dreams come true?

Make A Grand Entrance with a Closet Storage System

Whenever you’re entering a space – whether it’s a room, a building or even a town – the initial impression has a big impact on your experience.

So don’t let piles of keys, phones, gym shoes and wallets make you feel unorganized when you enter your home.

Incorporate a closet organization system and these ideas to make it look and feel better:

1) Consider a closet storage system with doors and drawers. Then you can hide all the things people dump when company calls closet storage systemsimply by closing things up. And if you plan wisely (or get lucky) you’ll have an accessible electric outlet so those gadgets can be plugged in and charging while in hiding.

But if that’s not an option, try a recharging pad. Duracell, Philips and Powermat offer options.

2) Incorporate space for hooks – preferably staggered at two different heights. It’s the easiest way to get family members to stop throwing things on the floor.

3) Build in shelves for shoes. Shoes are notorious clutter bugs. Shelves provide an easy space to stash them and make life less stressful.

4) Reflect Beautifully! Adding a wall mirror – or some mirrored doors to your closet storage system – can be a nice touch of elegance and give you that “last look” as you dash out the door to face the day ahead.

Keep Your Closet Organization Resolution – 5 Tips

Chances are, if you are like most Americans, you made a New Year’s Resolution on the first of the year. One of the most popular resolutions is to get organized – closet organization, home office organization, etc. But if you’re going to stick to your organization resolution, you’re going to need a plan.

In fact, according to Bill Curran, president of Closet Organizing Systems™, your project could be doomed before you even start. “With the holidays behind us and our new resolutions upon us there is a sense among many of being disorganized. [We know we need to get organized] but too often it is without a real plan to make it happen. A written down organization plan with a set of priorities is a must these days; otherwise, the task is daunting for many. New projects with a custom home organization system can be taken in steps as well in order to be done economically.”

Here are five tips to help you get - and stay - organized in 2011:

1. Assess – Before you can organize the things you own, you need to figure out exactly how much that is. We all have things buried at the back of closets or in the bottom or drawers that we forgot we had. If it’s been forgotten for over six months, you don’t need it. Ditto anything that doesn’t fit or is in poor condition.

2. Group – Now that you have weeded out items that you no longer need, it is time to separate the things you do need so that they are easy to store and locate in the future.

3. Invest – You’ve gone through your things and organized them, it’s time to invest in home office organization and/or closet organization systems. This is the most important tip, and it can make or break your resolution. With a custom closet or home office organization system, everything will have its place, making it effortless to keep your home office and closet organization resolutions.

4. Organize – Whether you do it yourself or opt for professional assistance, this is the step where you literally “get organized.”

5. Reassess – As with most resolutions, organization is an ongoing process. Resolve to go through your closet organization and home office organization systems every once in a while. Weed out things that are old or no longer serve a purpose. Revise systems that aren’t working as well as they should. Reorganize items by season. You get the idea.

Getting your home office organization or closet organization project underway doesn’t have to be overwhelming, and it doesn’t have to be “just a resolution.” If you follow the above steps, you can easily stick to your resolution and finally get organized in 2011. There are a variety of closet organization systems and home office organization systems available that can help you realize your dreams of “getting organized” – and staying that way through 2011 and beyond.


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