Thrift stores are experiencing a rise in donations as people discard things that no longer “spark joy.” There are more photos of organized sock drawers on Instagram than ever before. The U.S. has caught the “tidying” bug thanks to Marie Kondo!
There’s much Marie and I agree on when it comes to organizing, or as she calls it “tidying up.” Perhaps the most important being that “Tidying is just a tool, not the final destination.” We all desire homes that promote a peaceful and productive environment. A home in which we can rest, enjoy the company of others, and easily access our belongings.
In Thanks Marie Kondo (Part 1), I shared about the Mindset for Change and Action #1 – Purging. That’s always the place to start.
Today's Timely Tips include some of the KonMari (Marie Kondo) and OBC (Organized By Choice) methods for Action #2 – Storing.
Timely Tips for Storing
The principle element of Action #2 is CREATE A HOME FOR EVERYTHING.
“I have only two rules,” says Marie, “store all items of the same type in the same place and don’t scatter storage space. Forget about flow planning and frequency of use.” Her book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, was originally released in Japan. In it she says, “Considering the average size of a Japanese dwelling, a storage layout that follows the flow plan is not going to make that much difference. If it only takes twenty seconds to walk from one end of your home to the other, do you really need to worry about the flow plan?”
Keep like things together with some exceptions. Store the majority of your belongings— like things together. That way, when you need a light bulb, vase, battery, etc. you’re sure to find it on your first try because there’s only one place to look. Exceptions include things you use frequently in multiple areas of your home—scissors, reading glasses, cleaning products, pens, etc. It’s more convenient and you’re more apt to put these things away if there’s a designated home for them where they’re used.
Keep close what you use most. This is the “flow plan” that Marie deems unnecessary. In her book she proposes daily drying and placing the soap and shampoo from the shower back in their home with other soaps in the cupboard. Call me lazy, but the home for the shampoo and soap I’m currently using is in the shower. I’m an advocate of placing a holder near the stove for frequently used utensils, and having hooks near the door for coats, purses, and backpacks. In other words, create homes for things where they fit with the flow of how and where they’re used.
“Once they [clients] finish my course, all of them, without exception, have told me, ‘Folding is fun!’” Really? Wow. Marie promotes folding almost everything, but not just for the fun of it. “When we take our clothes in our hands and fold them neatly,” says Marie, “we are, I believe, transmitting energy, which has a positive effect on our clothes.” Everything is folded so it can stand on end and is stored vertically in drawers or bins. “By neatly folding your clothes,” she says, “you can solve almost every problem related to storage.”
Priority to me is ease of access and getting the clean laundry put away. Personally, that means hanging most things on slimline hangers and open-ended easy slide pant hangers. I’d much rather walk in and see my clothes at eye level, than have them stored in different drawers. Some of my folded things, like camis, I store vertically so I can easily choose the color I want. Other things, like underwear, I stack horizontally and pull from the top. Regardless of how you fold, don't overstuff your drawers. Create homes, whether hanging or folded, that are sustainable for you and provide easy access to what you need, use, and love.
My goal is to promote whatever tidying/organizing method works for you. Marie’s methods might be perfect for you. But, if you can’t picture doing a KonMari fold for every pair of socks, don’t despair! You can still create order and enjoy a peaceful and productive home. I’d love to hear what’s worked for you!