Happy April, Cowes!
We love the beginning of a new month, but even more than that April reminds us of the transitional beauty Spring brings. We know we can’t be alone in saying that Spring cleaning is v necessary right now, as our go-to pro organizer, Shelley Malik of Merchandised Maison likes to say, some major Spring clearing (out).
Shelley likes to refer to spring cleaning as spring clearing (a term coined by a fellow KonMari consultant) since it covers not just the cleaning part but also the decluttering that makes this activity and time of year feel lighter and brighter. Amen to that! Read on for Shelley’s top five Spring clearing tips.
Tip #1: Block off the time and make a plan. If you jump in without a plan and schedule, your spring clearing attempt can get overwhelming very quickly. Depending on your project list you may need to block off multiple days since I find 5 hrs is a good guideline for the length of time to spend spring clearing in a day.
Your plan should start with the spaces that make the most impact on your current day to day life and also those spaces that need to change with the seasons. For example, your WFH space is a good one to tackle and likely one that’s just been left to do its own thing for almost a year now. Your entry closet is another one that is perfect to address at this time of year since it needs to transition with the seasons. Kitchens are great to address when spring clearing too. If your kitchen is large, be sure to break it down to avoid getting overwhelmed. Do “food” one day (pantry and fridge) and the remainder another day.
Tip #2: the first step of your project is to take it all out! Clear everything from the area you are working on. For example, if you are doing your entry closet, you need to empty it completely. Sort the contents into categories as you empty it. Once it is empty, give it a really good clean from top to bottom. Dust, vacuum and clean the space before returning what you will be keeping.
Tip #3: now the declutter takes place. Review each category and discard what no longer serves you. When discarding, look for items that can be repaired and may be used another season. Items may be in good condition and easily donated. Others may be in great shape and good candidates to sell on a site like Poshmark. The same approach can be taken for household items, donate what’s in good condition and sell on a platform like Facebook Marketplace what’s in great shape. The secret with items that you don’t want to keep is to get them out of your space asap. The longer they stay around, the less likely they are to leave.
Tip #4: now load it back in and see what may be needed to make the space work better. Do not buy anything to organize or store items until you first clear, clean and declutter. Always measure when buying storage pieces!! Make sure they fit not just your needs and style but also your actual space. My fave places to source from are; Ikea, Amazon, Canadian Tire for The Home Edit collection, and Dymon (my secret store that has been a lockdown lifesaver).
Tip #5: the last step is to evaluate how your spring cleared space works for you day-to-day. No organized space is self-maintaining, but a well-organized space is one where things are easy to return to their homes. Revisit it if it’s still not working for you. It could be an issue with how things are organized or it could a volume issue and another round of decluttering might be in order.
Who is feeling inspired to tackle day one of Spring clearing with us? Are there any tips that have really helped your process? Let us know down below and tag us in your Spring clearing progress here. Stay tuned for some of our favourite organizers over the next few weeks as we begin our Spring clear out.