Japanese decluttering expert Marie Kondo has been sweeping the nation with her new Netflix show, which helps people organise their homes using her specific techniques.
Marie visits all kinds of couples, families and individuals across the USA whose cluttered houses are affecting their relationships and lives. By adopting her “KonMari” method, they all master the art of tidying and organising their homes, which helps them take more pleasure in their properties and free up time to spend with their loved ones.
Here’s a 5-step breakdown of how to adopt the KonMari method to organise your home.
1. Spark joy
The KonMari method starts with discarding (tidying comes later). This process begins by piling everything (for example, clothes) up and picking up and assessing whether each item sparks joy. If it no longer does so, then it’s time to respectfully thank it for its service and say goodbye. If it still sparks joy – keep it and store it neatly in its new home.
2. Work in categories
Rather than tackling a room at a time, Marie Kondo suggests planning your decluttering mission in categories. There are five main categories – clothes, books, papers, komono (miscellaneous) and sentimental. From there, each category can be divided into sub-categories to help make the tidying process as logical and as simple as possible.
3. Store the smart way
Marie Kondo always recommends storing similar sized items together and using as many small boxes as possible to separate everything into its own storage space. So, in your kitchen utensil drawer, for example, you would group utensils into size order and find boxes or containers to house them in their individual homes within the drawer. This way, things stay neat as everything has its own specific place.
In larger spaces, for example, linen cupboards, larger boxes or baskets can be used to separate everything into its own space. In this instance, there could be a basket each for fitted sheets, double duvet sets, children’s bed sheets, guest linen and each size of towel.
4. Learn to fold
Think you’ve been folding things correctly? Think again. A quick visit to Marie Kondo’s YouTube channel will reveal a world of folding techniques which will change the way you think about storage. We could try and explain them here, but they really are a visual work of art, so it’s best to check out the videos for yourself.
Once folded, Marie loves to store items vertically so everything can be seen from a drawer, box or cupboard. And, of course, find plenty of storage boxes and baskets you can use within each storage space to keep items in perfect order you can admire (with a process you can easily stick to).
5. Showcase your favourite things
Unlike other decluttering experts or TV shows, Marie Kondo isn’t ruthless about forcing people to get rid of everything they no longer use. She is a lover of all things sentimental, and loves people to hold onto item which hold special memories. However, she isn’t a fan of stashing it all away in the attic or garage. Instead, Kondo encourages us to store sentimental items respectfully and prominently, so we can enjoy them in our daily lives. So, instead of chucking all your old photos into a bin bag under the bed, display them proudly in frames or photo albums in your living space. Similarly, if you have a box of old letters you cherish, find or make a beautiful storage box to keep them close by so you can regularly flick through them with a smile.