The Declutter Darling's top tips for organising your home
Here are some top tips for decluttering and organising your home, courtesy of Rachel Burditt, known as 'The Declutter Darling'.
1. Make sure you have a good storage systemI personally love to use baskets, but whatever you do use, make sure that you are not cluttering up this storage. It is so easy to fill baskets and boxes of ‘stuff.’ Ensure each storage solution is fit for purpose.
What I will say is don’t purchase storage until you have decluttered, otherwise you will just end up filling storage with items you don’t need. There are so many high street stores that sell extremely affordable storage options from perspex containers to woven baskets.
2. Be imaginative with storageStorage doesn’t have to be boring – there are some really innovative ways to declutter a room and still keep what you truly want.
Work with what budget you have and as long as the results make you happy, that’s all that matters. Plastic baskets, shoe boxes and jam jars, all make excellent storage solutions.
I personally tidy all my children’s toys away in soft storage baskets under my sofa in my front room. When my children aren’t around, my living room is an immaculate, toy free, grown-up space with no chunky plastic toy baskets in sight. I also have my bookcases in the bottom of my children wardrobes. It is wasted space for them, but perfect for keeping books tidy, organised and out of sight.
3. Fold, don’t hangI vertically fold items into drawers or baskets, so that they are much easier to locate. (rather than rifling through a pile of tops in a drawer). It is also an amazing space saver – just try it and see the amount of room you will have in your drawers afterwards. Items I do hang are dresses, coats, shirts, suits and jumpsuits.
4. Set aside time to declutterIf you don't do a little bit of decluttering every day, you will never get the job done. Life has too many interruptions (and I should know what with having two young children and running my own business). If you haven’t decluttered and stayed tidy so far, you may find it impossible to develop this habit a little at a time. One room may take more than a day – but the results will be worth it!
5. AffordabilityAs much as some of the houses and rooms we see online seem beautiful, they are not always attainable. Yes, it would be lovely to have matching felt hangers in all my wardrobes, a walk in wardrobe, or a beautiful titanium spice rack. Unfortunately, this isn’t always attainable and can be extremely costly. Work with what budget you have and as long as the results make you happy, that’s all that matters.
6. Reusing boxesI use a lot of shoe boxes to fold scarves in and plastic baskets in my kitchen cupboards to keep like for like products together, this is an affordable solution to tidying and decluttering, rather than splurging on something I love but can’t really justify the spend.
7. PerfectionYes, you can strive towards perfection, but are you being honest with yourself about attaining this? There are many decluttering professionals that will focus on this, and I do too – but do give yourself a break. I will spend time folding clothes into drawers and ensuring that all items are tidied away, but they may not always be ironed. As long as my belongings are tidy and decluttered, I am a happy lady.
8. Respect your belongingsThis is a tip I have learnt from Marie Kondo. Don’t leave your clothes squashed together in a heap in your wardrobe. Don’t shove your books underneath your bed. You have spent money on these items, look after them and place them where they need to be.
9. Have regular clear outsIt makes it much easier to organise what you have and gives you more space. This is essential for items such as make-up, toiletries, and kitchen products such as herbs, spices, oils - these tend to hang around in cupboards long after their use by dates.
10. Be ruthlessDon’t be afraid to let it go! If you haven’t used an item in 6 months (and it isn’t seasonal), question yourself as to whether you really and truly require this item in your home.