One of the fundamental rules of organizing is keep all like things together (and preferably near where you use them). If you do this, there is only one place your car keys will be: with the other keys by the front door. It's a simple idea and one that in practice can save you tons of time looking for things.
Another advantage of this method of organizing is when looking for display opportunities in your home. A bunch of similar objects grouped together can create a simple and stylish decoration. These items can be functional, sentimental or neither.
An example of the functional: glassware displayed in a glass case. It's all together, it's easily accessible when you want to use it, and in the meantime it looks nice. An example of the sentimental: a few select vintage toys from your childhood grouped on a shelf in a guest room or a window sill. Even a few items can be considered a collection: display your three digital cameras or favorite colorful nail polishes on a bathroom shelf to brighten it up.
Why go out and buy knickknacks when you can decorate with your own stuff?
Creative Commons photo posted to flickr by Jennifer Martinez
Lelah Baker-Rabe is a Los Angeles-based professional organizer. To discuss your organizing needs, call her at 818.269.6671 or email firstname.lastname@example.org