How to Organize Your Geeky Stuff and Make Your Home Feel More "Grown Up"
A while back I decided my apartment looked like a teenager lived there. Video games were front and center, comic books were lying all over the place, and there were toys strewn about for no reason. So I made my place look a little more sleek, organized, and "grown up"-without sacrificing the things I loved.
Pare Down First, If You Can
Now, before we get into this, please keep in mind that I'm not saying you have to get rid of or hide all of your nerd stuff in order to be considered an adult. That said, if you're interested in making your place look a little more "geek chic" and a little less "nerd dungeon," the first thing you should do is get rid of some things you don't
I don't want to get too Marie Kondo on you here, but if you have a bunch of toys, posters, figures, and other stuff that doesn't truly bring you joy in some way, get rid of it (sell it, give it away, etc.). It's all taking up space and will make organizing it all harder later on. Maybe you only really want a couple of those movie posters and the rest just kind of accumulated somehow. Or maybe just keep your favorite toy of that character you love instead of the entire collection. Let go of all your "nerd cred" here and focus on keeping the things that actually make you happy.
Put Only a Few Exceptional Items On Proper Display
Part of having a "grown up" looking
And if you're going to display something, do it right. Get a nice display case for those collectible figurines, frame your movie posters, and organize your graphic novels on a nice bookshelf. Part of making a place seem more mature is about showing you can take great care of your things. So, if your geeky stuff means so much to you that you absolutely must display it to everyone, you should do it right and show how much you care about it.
Go Digital With Your Comics and Manga
Comics and manga can take up a ton of space, and let's face it, they just scream "nerd alert!" This is especially true when you have a whole wall dedicated to them. Again, if that's the aesthetic you want, there's no need to change! Me? I don't like to wear my hobbies on my sleeve and I didn't want to get pigeonholed as a "comics guy" or a "manga guy" by every person that walked in my door. That might sound insecure, but I wanted people to ask me what I'm into, not make a snap judgement from a single glance. So, I went digital with everything.
Now, I love the feel of comic books, but unless I feel like an issue is going to be a special collectible in some way down the line, I just read it on a tablet. Same goes for manga. I don't read a lot of them, but I buy most of my manga for my Kindle Paperwhite (which is actually pretty great for it). I still have a place where I keep all my collectible comics and whatnot, but they're safe and stored away. It's not like I'm going to take them out of their sleeves and read them again anyway.
Ditch Original Movie and Video Game Boxes
This might seem like blasphemy to some, but I rarely keep movie or game boxes anymore. They take up a ton of space and, unless you're a collector, there's no reason to keep them. Besides, they don't make cool instruction booklets anymore anyway. So why keep them?
Buy one of those massive CD binders and keep all your games and movies in there. They keep things organized, they look nice, and nobody needs to know that you own hundreds of games unless you want them to. Remember, the goal here isn't to lie about your hobbies (I don't, ask my girlfriend). It's about having more control over the aesthetic of your place. I want my entertainment center to look sleek and clean, but I can't achieve that if I have dozens of game cases lying around.
Embrace Cabinet Space
Did you know cabinets make great storage space? Use them. If you don't have any, get some cheap ones at IKEA, and use those. They're the easiest way to hold onto all your cool nerd gear and not have it all out to see, acting like a geeky lighthouse that may or may not attract ships on the endless sea.
So, say for example, you have a substantial board game collection. Me too. They're great. I keep them all in a nice-looking cabinet dedicated to those types of games. They're organized well, they don't get dusty, and, again, nobody knows I have every Arkham Horror expansion unless I choose to show them. Plus, nothing wows other board game enthusiasts like swinging open your cabinet doors with a flourish to reveal an awesome selection for game night. Come on, people. Have some theatricality.
Don't Give Up Anything You Don't Want to
Don't get me wrong-I'm a huge nerd, and I love nerdy things. But I felt there was more to me than the geeky things I had on display, and I wanted to show it. Plus, dating can sometimes get more awkward when your place is drowning in the kind of stuff you might find in a Loot Crate box. So I changed things.
These tips worked for me and the look I wanted to achieve, but you may differ, and that's totally okay! Don't change your likes or style just because someone else tells you to. But if you feel the way I felt, and think your place is starting to look a little less "grown up" for your tastes, give these suggestions a try. And if you have any suggestions of your own, share them in the comments below!