PHOTOGRAPHY by Andrew Stinson

Organize the Chaos

Next up in our series for Elle.com, Bernadette Pascua shows us how it's done with her top 10 tips

Organize the Chaos is all about finding out how awesome and cool women keep their sh#t together!

Meet Bernadette, an incredible fashion illustrator and the voice behind Decade Diary. Bernadette has an innate sense of style but what’s most facinating (to me, anyway) is how she stays so goddamn organized! I had her show me how it’s done with her top 10 tips – check it out

Tip 1 The method to my madness

With my job, presentation is everything and that overlaps a lot with how I like to keep things organized. The trick is to be creative with organizing. I look for cute vintage jars and boxes at the flea market for alternative ways of storing things. We charge our vacuum cleaner under the bed. Put a beautiful table in your bathroom. Use a label maker or a signature color for all of your storage so it appears to be uniform and neat.

Tip 2 Balance your fridge

We do one big weekly grocery shop and buy things in pairs to make a meal; that way we only buy what we need. I always keep a supply of staples like quinoa or ingredients for a quick side salad such as greens, avocado, tomato and always a little stash of dark chocolate covered peanut butter cups.

Tip 3 Keep frozen veggies handy

They are a great backup when you don’t have anything fresh on hand. We always keep packs of frozen peas, corn, carrots and baby onions- they are great to throw into a quick stew or risotto.

Tip 4 My can’t live without it cleaning product

Mr. Clean Magic Erasers – I keep boxes of them with disinfecting wipes in the cabinet under each sink in the apartment. Just add water and do a quick wipe down.

Tip 5 The life changing gadget

My Breville Juicer. Otherwise I’d never consume as much kale as I do now.

Tip 6 Apps to keep you on top of your schedule

I used to be strictly paper and pen for my schedule but because I always have my iPhone on me it’s better to have everything on it. There is just about an app for everything now and with iCloud it’s so easy to have everything synced together. I also love the big calendar on my iPad. My favorite calendar apps are Teux Deux and Notefile.

Tip 7 Rotate your rooms

I don’t binge clean but I keep on top of small habits like making the bed every morning and wiping the bathroom sink down at the end of the day. I designate one day of the week for each room in the apartment, that way the whole apartment is cleaned on a rotating basis.

Tip 8 Listen to your mother

I grew up with a clothesline in our backyard, so I loved doing laundry outside with my mom. She taught me how to fold clothes neatly and hang them properly after they’d dried so that they don’t wrinkle.

Tip 9 Stash your change

I put spare change in the inside pocket of my bag. Then when I get home I throw it into the big change jar we have. When the jar is full we trade it in and then go get fancy burgers somewhere.

Tip 10 Keep it together

Having one place where you can put your mail, keys, sunglasses and bags when you come home goes a long way and really helps keep you organized. I keep these things on my entry table right by the front door.

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