With September comes a shift for many families as kids head back to the classroom. We can all take a cue from their list of school supplies to refresh the inventory in our homes.

The kitchen is a good place to begin by stocking the pantry and fridge while ridding them of expired items. In addition, you can examine the pieces you need each day like potholders and dish towels to see what can be replaced.

If your cabinets are becoming a bit overcrowded, consider selling or donating the dishware you no longer use. Shelf organizers can double or triple your storage space for the pieces you intend to keep.

This might also be a good time to add a little something that makes life easier like a paper towel holder that attaches to the wall or a spice rack that keeps your seasonings within reach.

Bathrooms are another hardworking area of the home where supplies like hand towels can become worn over time. Stock up on toiletries for family members and guests and replace any of the basics that have seen better days like an old shower curtain, bath mat or rug.

You might want to add a magnifying mirror or an acrylic tray for products that are part of your daily routine.

When we see something every day we often stop noticing its condition. Take a closer look around your rooms to see what can be updated while doing some editing in the process to see what can go.

In my case, a little organization often leads to supplies that have been tucked away for some reason like notepads and pens. By sorting through the pieces you already have, you may discover you have more than you thought. Keeping these in a convenient place makes more sense.

Then, there are those staples that you never seem to have when you need them, such as light bulbs and batteries. You might want to check and see what you have on hand.

For your home office, it could be as simple as stocking up on printer paper or investing in a label maker. You might also check your current supply of envelopes and stamps. 

At this time of year, you can also refresh your pillows and throws and update your bedding. 

Collect all that loose change tucked inside your sofa cushions and place it in a glass container to fund family activities.  

It might be time to finally create that emergency kit with provisions like bottled water and non-perishables in the event of a power outage.

Entertaining staples like tablecloths and paper plates are good to have on hand when guests arrive.

A few extra storage totes and other containers, especially those designated for seasonal décor, can always be put to good use.

At the very least, going room by room to assess your supplies and refresh other items will save you a last minute trip at some point in the future, while making your home a little prettier in the process.

Jeanine Matlow is a Metro Detroit interior decorator turned freelance writer specializing in stories about interior design. You can reach her at



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