Clutter is the enemy of interior design so I like to live & work by the 19th century designer William Morris’s famed quote:
“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”
This doesn’t come naturally to everyone so here’s some of the advice I share with my clients who are seeking to rid their homes of clutter…
Do a little bit every day
Just sorting out one small space, cleaning out one cupboard or parting with one item each day will help you work towards decluttering your home without being overwhelmed.
Get yourself some storage tubs
Storage tubs are a invaluable way to store & organise all manner of “stuff” be it toys, photo’s, craft, kitchenware or decorations.
Find your “stuff” a home & always put it back in the same place once you finish using it.
Discard, recycle, donate or sell
Throw out anything that is broken or missing parts & anything that is worn out or past its use by date.
Recycle anything that can be recycled such as glass, papers, CD’s, computer & electronic equipment etc.
Donate anything that could be useful to others. There are countless charitable organisations throughout Geelong that will take your no longer needed clothes, linen, cookware & furniture.
Make yourself some money buy selling anything of value on Gumtree or eBay then reward yourself for parting with something buy using some of the money you make to see a movie or have a manicure rather than buying anything tangible.
Keep one space toy free
If you have children. Keep at least one room in your home a “toy free” space. If you have a smaller home this may only be the master bedroom but if you are fortunate enough to have two living spaces then keep one toy free.
Also teach your children to clean up one mess before they start another. Learning to pack away toys when you’ve finished playing with them is a life long lesson that will see them into adulthood & also help you to keep on top of things.
You do not need more storage space, you need less stuff
Do not buy anything new unless you are prepared to part with an existing item. Part of decluttering is minimising the multiples. You only need one cheese grater, one shower cap, one stapler, one wash basket etc.
Don’t be overly sentimental
Just because a friend gave it to you or because it belonged to your Nana doesn’t mean you have to keep it for the rest of your life! Especially if you were never fond of it.
Possessions only have the meaning we give to them. Throwing away the item is not throwing away the memory. Memories are in us not in things.
Stop & think before you acquire more
Take the time to stop & think before buy something. Ask yourself “Do I really need this?” or “Will this item enhance my life?” You can like it just because its pretty but don’t just buy it because it’s on sale or because you saw it on TV.