Archive for the ‘Storage Solutions’ Category

How to Create an Inviting Space For Summer Guests

By CSC - May 18th, 2016

Guest Room Closet & Storage Concepts

Summer is primetime for houseguests, and that travel season is almost upon us. Whether you’re expecting intimate friends or distant acquaintances, preparing a special place for guests in your home will help everyone enjoy the visit.

At Closet and Storage Concepts, we believe it isn’t the size of your space that matters. It’s how you utilize that space that will really count when guests come to call.

Put Away Your Clutter

The most important thing you can offer guests is hospitality. But a well-organized space doesn’t hurt either. If you have a dedicated guest room this can be as simple as making sure the closet is clear of any winter clothes or craft projects you may have stored there. Multi-purpose closet space is a breeze when you have the right storage solutions, such as adjustable shelving, built in drawers, or even bins from your local home goods store to clear away the clutter.

If guests will be staying in a shared space, there are creative solutions to help make them feel at home. A murphy bed can be an excellent way to make a room do double duty. Providing a luggage rack for suitcases will allow your guests to access their things off the floor. This can be easily folded up and stored in a closet when not in use. Clearing a shelf on a bookcase can be useful, or providing bins that can be stored in a closet or under the bed. Even if you can’t clear a whole closet, giving your guests some space and plenty of hangers will be much appreciated.

Pay Attention to Detail

Once your guests have unpacked their bags, it’s the small details that will take their stay from good to great. Make sure there is a nightstand near their bed and stock it with all the essentials for a restful night, such as a water carafe, new earplugs and an eye shade, a clock, and some reading material.

Give guests a tour of your home and make sure they know where all the essentials are located. Set out travel size toiletries, extra towels, blankets, and pillows. Thoughtful details such as nightlights to brighten dark corners and a power strip to charge all their devices will ensure everyone has a peaceful night and a great start to the day. And nothing says welcome home like fresh cut flowers. Keep a vase of some simple blooms or greenery near the bed to bring a fresh and natural air to the room.

Thoughtfulness and hospitality go a long way when hosting houseguests. Of course, a clean and organized space will help guests settle right in. Give your local Closet and Storage Concepts a call for a free design consultation. Our intelligent storage solutions will ensure your guests feel at home.

Photo by Erika Wittlieb, under Public Domain (CC0 1.0).

How to Visually Declutter a Room

By csc-admin - March 1st, 2016

Modern living room by Emily Go Haus Go.

Although we usually bring you tips to declutter your home and create more storage space, visual clutter can negatively impact your home, too. That’s why our team has compiled some of the best tips to help you visually declutter your space! Read on for more information.

Take One Item Out

One of the easiest ways to make a room appear less busy is to remove one item. Even if you’ve pared down, thinking if there’s one more item you can take away can give a lighter look. This can be as easy as simply finding a new place to keep the item or by putting it into the donation pile. Finding a new place for the item can help you save money on unwanted purchases all while giving your space a new look!

Upgrade Storage

If you do decide to keep the item in storage, make sure it’s properly stored. If you’re no longer able to store all of your items and it’s causing visual clutter, consider this a sign to upgrade. Go with a built-in storage solution. You’ll be able to solve your storage problems in a practical and stylish way. Call in your local organizing professional today! From custom closets, kitchen pantries, or murphy beds – our team is ready to assist you.

Group Items

Narrow down groupings either by completing the steps above or simply by grouping items closer together. By making it obvious that you are grouping like-items, you may find that vignettes look better to the eye. If you haven’t grouped your items, consider doing so to give a streamlined look. Keeping similar items next to each other will make things look less hectic in your space.

Groupings can be done in a variety of ways, but the most common are by type and by color. With types you’ll want to keep books with books, plants with plants, and so on.

Clean!

Clutter comes in all shapes and sizes and dust is one of those culprits. Give your home a good clean. You may find that this simple solution is all that you need to give your space a refresh. Don’t be afraid to get into the tough nooks and crannies. Give your carpets a good shake and vacuum. For more time consuming cleaning projects, clear away countertops of clutter both the visual and physical. This includes small kitchen appliances, mountains of miscellaneous items on your nightstand, and of course, the junk mail.

Consider Colors and Patterns

While adding in different elements and patterns can help to make a room more lived-in, there’s a fine line before you go overboard. If you feel suffocated by the amount of patterns and textures in a room, take it down a notch by removing one of the patterns or colors. When thinking about colors, keeping the color count to three can be a good way to bring things to more tolerable viewing levels. Same goes with patterns; start off small and add things back in if you feel like it’s needed.

Give our designers a call today to seamlessly blend your storage systems with your existing décor for a clutter free space both physically and visually!

Photo by Emily May of Go Haus Go, used under Creative Commons Attributions License (CC BY 2.0).

Tasks to Do Today For A Stress Free Holiday Season

By csc-admin - December 17th, 2015

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With the holidays almost here (did it sneak up on you, too?), here are some tasks we encourage you to complete today for a stress-free day of festivities. And don’t forget to call your local Closet and Storage Concepts when you’re ready to make your home more storage efficient.

  1. Get the Gift Wrap In Order

Take inventory of your wrapping supplies. If you’re running low on ribbons, gift tags, or simply want a new wrapping paper design, make a note of what colors you need, and how much you need. For wrapping paper, if you’re replenishing your stash, be sure you have extra for those gifts that you may have forgotten. Getting the gift wrapping supplies today makes it one less thing to purchase a day before Christmas.

Clear out or set aside space in your spare bedroom or office for a gift wrapping station. Having a pre-designated area will make wrapping everything a breeze. Plus you can be sure that you have all the room you need ahead of time.

  1. Clean The House

Cleaning generally falls down the list of priorities during the holidays, but cleaning up now can make things easier for you, especially if you’re hosting a gathering. Even if you’re not hosting this year, getting the cleaning done before you go on vacation or before the major swing of holiday parties can help you feel more relaxed when things die down. You’ll definitely be ready to ring in the New Year with a clean home!

Even taking only 15 minutes here or there everyday can help to reduce the stress rather than completing one major cleanup while you’re multitasking on the day of your gathering.

  1. Get Enough Rest

Before you have to pull an all-nighter for last minute presents or baking the cookies for Santa’s trip down the chimney, be sure to get in your sleep. A proper night’s rest can keep you and your body feeling it’s best. You’ll say goodbye to any wintertime blue’s in time for the festivities.

  1. Make Your List and Check it Twice

If it’s time to do one last push for gifts or to stock up on snacks and ingredients for that roast, make like Santa and check it twice. Check in the pantry, fridge, and freezer to make sure you don’t have the items on your list already and cross-reference ingredients to your recipes. If you’re worried about gifts, get some gender-neutral gifts or general gifts on the off chance that you did in fact miss a gift. Flowers for hosts, or a good bottle of wine with a certificate to a restaurant can be a good option.

Create a stress-free holiday by staying organized with proper planning. Then get your home storage nightmares resolved by giving Closet and Storage Concepts a call today for your free in-home consultation!

Photo by Jill Wellington, under Public Domain (CC0 1.0).

Craft Room Organization Tips

By csc-admin - November 17th, 2015

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It’s time to get the craft room organized before you need the wrapping paper for all of those gifts. The team at Closet and Storage Concepts is here to help you find the best solutions for your crafts no matter if you have a dedicated room or a simple closet area.

Baskets

Keeping all of your supplies and baubles in one spot is a go-to solution for organizers and designers. Baskets can keep like items grouped together all while keeping them concealed when guests are over. They also make moving items a breeze. Simply store your items in the basket and move them between shelves, or even different rooms if you need to. Choose from a variety of options including the standard wicker basket, modern metal crates, and anything in between.

See Me If You Can

You should be able to see through your baskets, bins, or other units. This makes finding your crafts easy and efficient. If you want to conceal things a bit more, try a frosted glass insert on your cabinets or drawers. A sheer window panel can help save space if you have a crafts closet while giving you the option to keep things hidden once company comes through. While baskets can be used to completely conceal your items, having a set of transparent drawer units, especially for items you frequently use may be more efficient.

Pegboard, Always

When organizing your craft room, or even your garage, pegboards almost always should be used. They help to free up valuable working areas by keeping your tools and materials off of the table. Using your walls, by installing a pegboard insures that you’re maximizing your space. Pegboards are very handy in a craft room as hooks and baskets can be moved around very easily, so they can flex to whatever project you’re working on. Plus they can be decorated and painted to fit your room’s décor so it’s not an eyesore.

Group Like Items

Baskets and containers are great for housing items. To make the best use of them, take some time to group items together. Keeping all of your buttons, thread, scissors, or wrapping paper grouped together can help when creating storage space. Once you’ve made piles, putting them away in designated containers will be a breeze. Taking time to organize all of your craft supplies can be a lot of work, but the outcome is worth it!

Still need help implementing these tips in your craft room? Bring in the experts at Closet and Storage Concepts. Our designers will work with you to find a solution, giving you room for more craft projects, and more importantly a space to wrap all of those presents!

The Goodbye Summer, Hello Autumn Purge

By csc-admin - September 30th, 2015

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Autumn can feel like the start of a new year as it coincides with schools heading back in session. Use the momentum of heading back to school to purge throughout your home. Here are some top picks from the team at Closet and Storage Concepts as you welcome in fall.

  • Makeup and Medicine

Start in the bathroom and clear out old makeup and medicine. A new season often brings new looks, so clear out the old to prepare for the new. Work with your local pharmacist or health specialist to properly dispose of expired medicines. Pro Tip: If you have a lot of lipsticks, try decanting them into travel storage pots. Simply use a small scoop to get all of the color into the storage containers. This allows you to convert your lipsticks into a uniform container (freeing up space), while using up the entire lipstick.

  • Food Containers

Assess your food storage containers and dispose of any limp or yellowed ones. Try Pyrex containers for any older kids or your significant other to save money in the long run. Glass containers tend to be easier to clean and look great in your cabinets.

  • Spices and Food

New seasons often bring seasonal delicacies. Be sure to purge through any expired spices or foods in your kitchen pantry to make room for new treats. Utilize proper storage organizers or try custom built-ins to maximize your space with clever organizers.

  • Plastic Bags

Store a stash of them neatly in a container to take when you walk the dog and recycle extras. Many stores take back used plastic bags, which are then reused and repurposed. If you have a lot of them, try weaving them together to make a super sturdy grocery tote.

  • Air Conditioning and HVAC Filters

While it’s not necessarily an item to purge, it’s a great time to think about changing your air filters. Changing your air filter can help to reduce allergens in your home and keep your home cleaner. A clean home can make a home feel larger and more organized.

  • Clothes and Shoes

Sorry shoe divas, your items don’t get to escape either. New fall fashions likely mean that your closet will see an influx of new items. Purge now before you shop for new items. If you use the post-it trick (where you stick a note on any item that you’re unsure of purging), and haven’t worn the item since two summers ago it’s time to say goodbye. If you haven’t worn the item it’s likely that you don’t need the item. Clear out your closet to create more space for things you will use.

  • Kid’s Stuff Too

Kid’s stuff shouldn’t be excluded either. Give away or donate clothes that no longer fit your kids. Be sure to include them in the process so they can learn how to declutter too. If you’re swimming in toys it may be a good time to purge them. Say goodbye to broken beach pails and try on sports gear to see if they need to be replaced after the summer growth spurts.

  • Gift Stations

The holiday season will be here soon enough. Get ready by clearing out the wedding wrapping paper and any old scraps that can’t be salvaged in favor of new holiday paper.

Autumn is great for cider donuts, pumpkin spice lattes, and of course a shift in weather. Be sure to embrace and prepare for the autumn by purging through items. Call your local Closet and Storage Concepts designer for help to get your closet and other organization systems into gear.

Photo by tpsdave, under Public Domain through Creative Commons License Zero (CC0 1.0).

How to Create Maintainable Storage Systems

By csc-admin - September 18th, 2015

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At Closet and Storage Concepts we love helping our customers create storage systems and units that work for them that will serve them well over time. This can be tougher than you think, but our designers carefully assess and try to plan for future purchases and behavior. Combined with systems that are created in our own factories, we can provide a storage solution for even the toughest of areas. Here’s how you can create a storage unit that works for you long-term whether you’re looking to create a new closet, kitchen pantry, laundry room storage, or home office system.

Invest the Time

First, you should give yourself ample amount of time. Creating a storage system when you’re rushed probably won’t help your organization problems in the long run. You will want to put in the appropriate amount of time to deliver a good payoff. The time doesn’t have to be put in one group either. Feel free to split up the time and invest in chunks – we know that life can be busy and get in the way.

Purge Before you Plan

Before you start ripping out your old system, or planning a new elaborate storage system, do yourself a favor and purge. Remove items that are expired, damaged, no longer appeal to you, and so on. You want to create an organizer that helps you keep things you love in order, not your junk too. Marie Kondo’s way of discarding items can be helpful in this situation.

Plan and Hire Pros

Once you’ve purged you can start to assess and plan what you need to store. Be sure to hire the professionals, like the team at Closet and Storage Concepts, if you need to. Our designers will carefully measure your space, and listen to your needs and requirements to translate your dream into a viable solution that maximizes your space. Customizing your storage system is a dependable way to make sure that your storage system will be used for years to come.

Follow-Through

Be sure to follow through once you’ve determined an organization system that works for you. Whether it’s completing your new storage units, or getting all the labels onto your shoeboxes, don’t leave your project incomplete. Leaving your project incomplete will decrease the odds that you will use your storage system and thus increase the chances of you accumulating clutter once again.

Complete the Cycle

With your new storage and organization system in place you’ll want to get in the habit of completing the cycle. For example, each time you do laundry, be sure to put your clothes away completely, or make sure that you put food items into the right container or on the right shelf. This takes time to build as a habit, especially if you’re not used to it, but with the proper planning and follow-through you’ll have better odds of maintaining your home storage system.

Long-term storage systems are manageable with the right people to help you, as well as the desire to maintain your home. Be sure to give your local team at Closet and Storage Concepts a call today to schedule a complimentary consultation when you’re ready to create an organized home!

To Toss or Not to Toss

By csc-admin - June 12th, 2015

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Cleaning out our homes is a normal activity to keep our homes maintained and to make the most of our space. At Closet and Storage Concepts, we are committed to helping you create a home that you love, with custom organization solutions. Periodically purging through your items is a great way to maintain the function of your organizers. Here are five questions to ask as you are deciding if you should toss or keep an item.

  • Who are you saving an item for?

We understand that sometimes we save items for others, whether they are heirlooms or other sentimental belongings. Before you keep items for another person, be sure to verify that the person does in fact want the item, and will cherish it just as much. If you are unsure whom you are saving an item for, don’t feel bad for saying goodbye to it.

  • Do I own something similar?

It is amazing what we amass in our homes, and how many of these items are similar or serve an identical purpose. The degree of similarity will be subject to each person, but items that perform the same job should be considered for a toss, especially if you’re having problems closing storage units. Obviously you wouldn’t consider giving away everything that performs similar tasks, but carefully considering if one item can do the job of many can help you cut down on the clutter.

  • Does it fit?

This can be applied to any item in your home, but is mostly related to clothing. Don’t feel bad about giving items away that no longer fit, unless you are saving the item for a sentimental reason (e.g. a wedding or prom dress). Clothes that do not fit can often make you feel worse about yourself. Make a clean cut from those negative feelings and start new in your home and life.

If an item, like a furniture piece, doesn’t fit into your home no matter where you put it, and you can’t use it to create a piece that fits, it may be time to toss the item. Try a garage sale or donating to thrift stores in order to cut down on waste.

  • Does it make me happy?

This is the main question posed by Marie Kondo in her New York Times bestselling book on organizing. If an item does not make you happy and bring you joy, it may be time to say goodbye to it. Every item in your home should bring you joy, in order to increase your productivity and love of your home.

  • How often will it be used?

This question is a great one to ask yourself, especially if you’ve unearthed something you haven’t used in a while, but aren’t sure whether or not to keep it. If you plan to keep the item, it should fulfill a role in your home and life. If an item is not going to be used very often, consider tossing the item, particularly if it doesn’t fit with the questions above.

Once you’ve cleared items from your home and need a custom storage and organization makeover throughout your home, give Closet and Storage Concepts a call today.

Photo by Kaboompics, under Public Domain through Creative Commons License Zero (CC0 1.0).

Tips to Organize Your Photos

By csc-admin - April 21st, 2015

memories-407021_1280Although we live in a digital world, many of us are still attached to physical mementos that bring to mind cherished memories. Photos are just one of the common items that this is true for. Whether you’ve put off organizing your photos, or have recently uncovered some from relatives, we hope this post will help you out! An organized life can increase productivity and reduce stress.

Identify Goals

First let’s identify the main goals that you have. For example, you will need to decide if you just want to sort through the hardcopies, or if you also intend to digitize them so they can be saved and shared online. The quantity of photos that you have will also impact your decision, and should help in time management expectations. A couple hundred photos might easily be done in a weekend, while a couple of thousand might take quite a few of your weekends.

Set a Game Plan

Once you’ve set your goals, it’s time to start developing a game plan. This strategy will be personalized and may develop as you dive into it. However, many plans will feature similar processes, such as the three-‘S’ plan: Sort, Scan, and Share. The order will probably change as you see fit, but it’s a good way to dive in.

Sort

This can be applied when dealing with both hardcopies and digital images. You’ll want to create a filing system that makes it easy to find images you are looking for, rather than simply having them all dumped in various places.

The most common sorting techniques are by year, by category (food, people, nature, etc.), or by person. If you sort by person, you can create folders for who is in each image then create sub-categories such as dates, events, and so on.

When sorting through your photos, don’t be afraid to toss out photos that are blurry or that conjure unpleasant memories. It’s okay to say goodbye to them and make room for new memories.

Once they are sorted be sure to have a space for them to stay nice and neat. Custom solutions are a great idea, and you can add creative custom photo displays to any room in your house.

Scan

Scanning will help to create a digital inventory of your photos. In addition, it will make the sharing aspect easier if you are planning to share the photos electronically. Don’t forget to backup your photos, just in case something might happen to them. It would be heart breaking to lose all of your work! Choose photo sharing websites to store them, a cloud service such as Dropbox or Google Drive, or an external hard drive. Some photo scanning apps also include the ability to tag people or create tags to help you keep the photos organized. You can use the sorting tips above to help keep them organized.

Share

Another problem that many people face is finding out the best ways to share their images. There are various photo sharing sites and methods. Flickr is one great photo-sharing platform. A basic membership is free, but you also have the option to pay for an ad-free version with double the storage space. With 1TB of space available (500,000 photos), this should be enough for even the most avid photographer! Facebook is another great way to share your photos, especially since you can notify people in the images by tagging them. You can also email links to the photos you post, and allow those in the photo to download them to their own computers or devices. Then there’s the old fashioned ways of sharing hard copies through the mail or in person. This is especially useful if you’re trying to clear out the collections in your home.

Photos are a great way to keep cherished memories. Keep them organized to easily find the ones you’re looking for. Closet and Storage Concepts hopes that with these tips you’ll be able to make the most of your memories!

Photo by Life of Pix, under Public Domain by Creative Commons License Zero (CCO 1.0).

Storage Solutions for the Shoe Obsessed

By csc-admin - April 14th, 2015

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For the shoe lovers among us, sometimes it seems like there’s simply never enough room to house our whole collections. From stilettos to sneakers, pumps to Pumas, finding places to store your shoes is no mean feat when you’re a passionate shoe lover. Fortunately, Closet and Storage Concepts has your back! Try any one of these options for a unique and clever way to store your shoes. It might even allow you to add a few more pairs to the collection without driving your significant other crazy, and that’s a win-win in our books!

Chair Rail

Using a chair rail is a clever way to store your stilettos, plus they’ll always be within reach. You can put chair rails at different levels for even more shoe storage. Unfortunately, this method only works for high-heeled shoes, sorry flat lovers. Another note about this storage method is that while it might be creative, it can also scuff your walls. To combat this, try a semi-gloss paint. The shine and finish can make cleaning a bit easier. Of course, the most passionate shoe lovers among us won’t have any problems in this regard, since of course we treat our shoes with the utmost care!

Shelving

Shelving is useful in just about every area of your home, and your closet should be no exception. Shelving should be customized for your shoes, so if you have more flats, you can get the most of your space with shorter shelving units than the friend who is all about her heels, and who’ll require taller shelves. This means that no vertical space is lost.

Alternate the shoes so you fit more into your space. You can even try open shelving for a more minimal and modern look. Open shelving can help you see the full picture of your shoe story. Maybe with all that extra room you can even start a bag collection!

Pedestal

Try this option for that Holy Grail pair of designer shoes that are just begging to be shown off. This can help to make your closet look like a boutique and offers a chic focal point, which will work especially well in walk-in closets. You can try short pedestals on top of a dresser in order to be more space conscious as well.

Hidden

You can try clever storage units for your shoes particularly if you’re short on space. Try treasure trunks or ottomans with hidden shoe pockets, or create your own in a DIY project! These are particularly great for flats, depending on how large the trunk or ottoman is. Use this option if you want shoe storage that protects your shoes, while also allowing them be concealed if you’re not one to flaunt your collection. Look for containers with interesting patterns and textures to really jazz up your space.

All of these options can help to customize your shoes and your home. For a truly customized closet, you’ll want to work with experts like those at Closet and Storage Concepts, so give us a call today!

Photo by beart-presets, under Public Domain through Creative Commons License Zero (CC0 1.0).

Strike a Cord

By csc-admin - March 30th, 2015

 

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In today’s modern age, cables are a daily part of life. Whether it’s for your ear buds, your charger, or other electronics cables, most chances are that you’ve been frustrated by the tangle of cords. This can impact your productivity and mood. Trying to tackle the cord situation can be difficult, but it can make a big difference in your productivity, but how do you get a personalized solution for your needs? Here are some tips from Closet and Storage Concepts.

Label

Cords can often get tangled because they get entangled with other cords. When you’re searching for a specific cord, you want to get it the first time, without yanking out another cord. The first step to controlling this would be to label. You can either create your own, or buy them. There are a variety of options, whether they’re stickers with an image or words, or snap versions that go around your cord and you can change out the labels and reuse them. For a DIY and budget friendly option, try bread clips. Just use a marker to write what the cord is for or use a label maker. You can choose to label on both ends of the cord or, just one. We usually recommend both ends to make it easy no matter where you are plugging your cord, but use whatever system is best for you.

Bulk

The next step would be to bulk the cords. This can help them in the next step when you start to hide them. While not necessary if you only have a few cords that won’t really show or clutter up your workspace, it can be useful to group like cables together. Try grouping cables that won’t need to be unplugged often. So printers, phones (not cells), and lamps or lights are good options. Keeping laptop, tablet, or phone chargers out of the bundle will mean they can go mobile with you. If you have multiple chargers you can probably keep all of the cables bundled together.

Hide

This might be the trickiest part when getting your cords under control, as you have to get the most creative. There are organizational systems that go behind a desk that can act as a pocket to catch and hide the unsightly cords, and even systems that guide your cords and create organized loops under your desk. Making the cords a focal point by creating loops and patterns along the wall allow you to find the cord you need without disruption to the entire system. Plus they create a pretty unique look.

Custom storage units, whether it’s an entertainment center, office unit, or cupboard charging stations, can provide a seamless look that meets your charging needs while being aesthetically pleasing.

Try hiding cords behind frames that may sit on top of a desk. There are wooden boxes that cover a power strip, but sometimes these look just as much out of place.

Get Creative

No worthwhile storage project is without the benefit of creating a solution that works for you. This can involve any amount of creativity, as the system will be just for you. In an office, this could mean having cords that are completely hidden and ready to be unplugged at a moment’s notice. Or it could mean featuring the cords so that they become a part of the design of your space.

If you crave a photo like the one above that has a minimal amount of cords, look for keyboards, mice, and other gadgets that can connect wirelessly to reduce the amount of cords you have. It can create a minimalist approach that makes your desk and space look larger.

You will also probably get creative with what you group together. You’ll probably have to group your cords around an outlet. If you can, you can get wall outlets behind monitors, or even on the floors. This can help to lessen the visual impact of clutter.

Create a place of productivity and peace by reducing the visual impact of the cords in your life. Need some help creating a cord solution? Give Closet and Storage Concepts a call today for a free consultation!

Photo by SplitShire, under Public Domain by Creative Commons License Zero (CC0 1.0).

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