Many homeowners, especially those in Chicago, depend on their entertainment centers to keep stuff, such as TVs, stereo equipment, game consoles, DVDs and other electronics organized. An entertainment center can be set up in any room, but is usually found in the living room of apartments or the family room of homes. Regardless of where your entertainment center is located, it is important to make sure it is organized in a way that makes things convenient and easy for you. Here are five steps to make life at home with your entertainment center much more enjoyable.
Step 1: Clear out the center. Do not junk up your center with unnecessary items, allowing it to collect dust and dirt. At least once a week, it is a good habit to remove everything on top of the center and dust with a damp cloth. To ensure that the center gets thoroughly cleaned, use a dry, clean cloth to help dry off all remaining wet surfaces. Lastly, coat the center with a restoring cleaner for an extra shine.
Step 2: Discard unnecessary electronics. When considering those electronics that can be parted with, set them aside and consider selling them in a garage sale. Think about whether you know a deserving family with young children that would appreciate these items. Donating old VCRs or video games to charity is another great way to remove unwanted clutter. The more you remove, the more space will free up.
Step 3: Organize your DVDs/CDs. CD and DVD collections tend to grow rapidly over the years. How many do you still watch or listen to? Go through your collection and decide which are worth keeping. Take these and organize them in such a way that it will be easy for you to locate at a moment’s notice. One method for this is by arranging them according to genre, alphabetically or in any order suitable to your taste. Here’s a hint, before stacking them in one of the cabinets of your entertainment center, arrange them on the floor first.
Step 4: Remove extraneous clutter. Entertainment centers can also be used for displaying ornaments like figurines, photo frames and memorabilia. Discard of those that you no longer find attractive and just keep a few special pieces that go well with the rest of your decor. These pieces should serve as decorations that highlight the best features of your entertainment center, not as eye sore and clutter.
Step 5: Put everything back. After removing all items, only replace those that are most important. You will realize that much of the clutter will disappear with some simple prioritization. Make sure these remaining items are displayed in an aesthetically pleasing manner. Less is more in this step of the process.
The following local businesses may be able to help:
Bobcat Wood Refinishing
7745 S Halsted St
Chicago, IL 60620
Hours: Mon to Fri – 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Sat – 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sun – Closed
If after cleaning your wooden entertainment center out, you realize it has suffered some damage, then call Bobcat Wood Refinishing to see if restoration is an option. These guys will have it looking like new again in no time.
Classic Oak Designs
955 E Rand Road
Arlington Heights, IL 60005
Hours: Mon to Fri – 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., Sat – 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Sun – 11 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
If looking for a new entertainment center altogether, stop in at Classic Oak Designs to see some of the classiest options in town.
2659 Gardner Road
Broadview, IL 60155
Hours: Mon to Fri – 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Sa t- 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Sun – Closed
Some entertainment centers can span the length of an entire wall. If you want to explore your options with full wall centers, go to Crooked Oak as a starting point.
For more great tricks, tips and advice about your home, visit CBSChicago.com/YourHome.
Wendell Hutson is an award-winning journalist based in Chicago with 20 years experience covering the Chicago market. Hutson, a 2009 and 2010 A. Philip Randolph award recipient, which is sponsored annually by the National Newspapers Publishers Association, is a senior contributing writer for the Chicago Crusader, a 71 year-old weekly, community newspaper. His work can be found at Examiner.com.