Product Review: Hanging Accordian Filing System Makes Keeping Track of Paperwork Fun and Easy
Updated: Feb 16
ThinkTex Plastic Expanding Hanging File Folders: 7 Innovative 1.2" Accordian Pockets, Large Capacity, Multi-Color Tabs, Letter Size for Filing Cabinet - 6 Packs
“Miscellaneous’ and ‘Other’ are not file names.”
― Cynthia Kyriazis
No matter how you look at it, paperwork is the nemesis of all households. Even Professional Organizers are plagued by paperwork. For all the digital age has provided, having a hard copy in hand of certain forms, receipts, documents, and bills can bring peace of mind and security to our lives.
The best part about dealing with paperwork is that you are in charge. You get to decide what style, type, design and categories you will use to make the process of finding what you need when you need it. Perhaps you use a filing cabinet to hold your files? Perhaps you use a large basket to manage files that are in everyday use, and you don't need to fancy of a filing system? Perhaps keeping your files in the kitchen where you pay bills is a good system for you? Whatever makes the filing easy and neat is what is right for your style.
I enjoy a small filing cabinet and my printer sits on top of the cabinet. I like the idea of an all-in-one area. It makes finding and reaching for things simple and neat. If you are thinking about creating a small home office area, Groom Your Room can help you with that.
A mixture of a new year and old habits finally came together. I knew I had to find a solution to my filing issues, so I spent a week looking at different options. I looked through my files and all the systems I was currently using, emptying what I could and homing in on what a new system could do for me. I knew I wanted to use colors and I knew I needed to combine files per person, per job, per category. Don't be afraid to take as much time as you need to find the right system for you. It will absolutely be worth the time you put in. Frustration doesn't have to be the norm.
My First Impressions
The different file folders and sizes was getting too much to manage. I needed something way more streamlined that met my visual need as well as my organizational need.
My first impression of this filing system I found was the color that drew my eye right in. It immediately checked off the first "must have" requirement. The next thing that worked for me was something I didn't even know I needed, which was the idea of files all in one. This system offers 6 file slots in one main folder. This would allow great separation and breakdown of details for my per person need. Check! I can label each file slot and the labels are easy stickers that can be removed just as easily if I need to readjust placement. The tabs won't get frayed or dirty because the entire unit is plastic. Check!
The best part about this system is that the hanging tabs can adjust to the size of your file cabinet by sliding forward and back.
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When the product arrived, only 3 days after I ordered it, I ripped open the bag and pulled out the first 3-pack of files. It is a smooth, clean feeling file folder and those colors!! I first slid the hanging tabs all the way to the left and right to make sure the files would hang easily and not impede the opening and closing of the drawer. It worked!! I like the way it looks hanging so neatly and orderly in my cabinet drawer.
Immediately I pulled out all the old file folders that I wanted to start combining. In less than 2 hours I had 3 whole file units complete. I love how I was able to create the folders to my own way of labeling. I had file slots unused but ready to be used when the need arises. The best part is that now I can start seeing and thinking in new ways about how I file, and I know it will be so much more organized going forward.
What I appreciate about this file system is that, if my children were still in school, this system would make their schoolwork so much more organized for me and for them. It is a great compliment to any command center by keeping paperwork neat and this would make a great family mail station. I am seriously thinking about using this system to replace my zip closure bags that hold all of my printed recipes. Imagine how much neater my pantry shelf would be.
Pros and Cons
Although we might not ever be able to escape the need to use paper, store paper, be friends with paper, we can create systems that make it easier to deal with all the paper. I wish I could be more biased and tell you what the cons are. I suppose the plastic could break at some point. The interior slots could become too full and then you would have to rearrange the folders to include a part A and part B configuration. I suppose not being expandable is a drawback.
“Files are like contracts. No one really needs them until there’s a problem!”
― Cynthia Kyriazis
File systems have existed for centuries. The doctors' office has a filing system that hugs the walls behind the front desk and are horizontal along the walls. We have expanded now to digital options for filing. In most cases, the cost of these multi-filing options and the expense of hiring a digital service to help keep your files out of your hands and off your desk is expensive. There is also a high cost of keeping all of your passwords and usernames safe when using on-line filing of any kind. My option, for now, is housing office and home files and is happily managed by me alone. For around $40 I was able to solve my filing issues.
If your manila file folders are working well for you then stick with what is easier and less expensive. Simple in all things is always best. Peace of mind is determined by you alone.
“The librarian was explaining the benefits of the Dewey decimal system to her junior--benefits that extended to every area of life. It was orderly, like the universe. It had logic. It was dependable. Using it allowed a kind of moral uplift, as one's own chaos was also brought under control. - Jeanette Winterson, Why Be Happy When You Could Be Normal?
The Grand Finale:
As a professional organizer I take to heart the needs of my clients and listen carefully to their struggles and empathize with their challenges. As frustrating as it is to deal with paperwork on a daily basis, making friends with it as a species of its own is the first step to never letting it remain your enemy. Find what works for you or work with me and together we will find what is best for your needs.
The way I feel now, having found a solution for the foreseeable future, is all I need to not feel the weight of paperwork struggle. I love using my new file system and look forward to learning what more it can do for me. I actually feel light waiting for the next time I have to file something or more importantly, find something I know is filed away.
Here is a link to the filing system I am using:
I invite you to share your thoughts about paperwork, filing systems, pieces of paper all over the house or home office, command centers and getting organized in general. Let's help each other feel better about the things we deal with daily.