Parents, singles, professionals, students... It doesn't matter who you are, household clutter is something that we all face. With a little bit of elbow grease and some clever storage solutions, you can say good bye to clutter forever.
The hardest part of decluttering is getting started; namely, where do you start? If your whole house needs a makeover, work room by room. Armed with garbage bags and boxes, start by going through cupboards and drawers and make three piles – keep, donate and throw away. You need to be absolutely brutal. If you find yourself pausing over an item, it goes in the donation pile. You may find it helps to have a friend assist with this part.
By the time you're finished, you should have cleared the junk from the room. Now you need to come up with a storage system for whatever is left. Ever heard the expression, a place for everything and everything in its place? This applies now. Keep similar items together and put them in a logical place so that next time you're looking for something, you know where to find it.
Storage boxes are now your best friend. Stock up on square and rectangular boxes (these store better than round ones) and use them to store smaller items. Remember to label each box.
If you don't have a lot of storage space, you will need to get creative. First of all, invest in some vacuum storage bags. These can be used to store blankets, out of season clothing and a whole range of other items.
Utilise every space in your house, like under the bed or couch and on top of your cupboards. If you can't use your floor space, use your wall space; purchase some bookshelves or nail some hanging shelves to the walls. Over-the-door hangers are another great space saving idea.
Finally, remember that you don't need to store everything. Attractive items like vases, china ware, old books and some clothes can be displayed as decorations, while your every day crockery, battered paperbacks and tracksuit pants are hidden in cupboards and wardrobes.
Some quick and easy declutter exercises:
Go through your bathroom cabinet and throw away any old makeup and out of date medication.
Go through your Tupperware, jars, lunch boxes, etc and throw away anything that doesn't have a lid.
Put things away as soon as you are finished with them.
Institute a new rule; every time you bring home something new, you will throw away or donate something old.