Have you fallen into Netflix’s new series on The Home Edit like I have? I didn’t mean to completely binge the show, but I’m not upset I did. I did the same thing when Marie Kondo’s show came out last year, and I’m guess that if you’ve ended up on this post you did too.
All three of these women are interesting to watch for many reasons, but I think one reason for their success is how inspiring it is to see someone else with a mess like you. Even if you’re saying “thank goodness I’m not as bad as those people,” watching Clea, Joanna, or Marie, invigorates a desire in all of us to be feel like we have our sh** together.
Both The Home Edit and Marie Kondo recognize that while getting rid of things is only the beginning of the battle, it’s a huge part. More stuff is more stuff to organize, keep tidy, and take up space.
There are a few other steps to being the perfect blend of Clea, Joanna, and Marie – namely folding techniques and color coding – but today I’m just going to go through a few of my top tips for editing like The Home Edit and Marie Kondo.
Tip #1: Keep a “Come Back Later” Pile and List
I have a box with a lid in my closet that I call my “come back later” box. Any time I find something around my closet, house, or drawers that I decide I don’t want, I put it in my box. At the end of about a month or so, I compile everything into a bag and take to donate.
The key here is that if you actually want something back or find a need for it, you still have it for a little while longer.
I recommend a lid, though, so that you can’t see what’s inside and cheat!
Conversely, keep a list of items you want to purchase. Give yourself a month (unless it’s an item that you actually have a time limit on) to think and then see if you actually need the items you’ve put on your list. This helps avoid impulse purchases on the back end, reducing the things you’d need to edit back out of your life.
For example, do you reach into your closet each day thinking about how this item and that item and these shoes would go perfectly with a black leather jacket? Do you keep thinking about that purse a month after you saw it in a storefront?
I’ll do this too with groceries! If I’m at the store and find an item that’s not on my list, I add it to my “Next Time” grocery list (want to see how I organize my grocery list? Leave a comment below) so that I’m not impulse purchasing things that I don’t know how to make or don’t cohesively make meals.
Tip #2: Be Realistic, Not Idealistic
I can easily fall into thinking as “Idealized Allison,” if I’m not being true to myself. Do you keep items in your closet that A) don’t fit and/or B) you don’t have the occasion to wear? Or do you have a bike and helmet that you keep staring at and saying, “one day…”? Maybe you’re like me. I want to be the person who rides my bike, I really do. However, Texas is too hot 80% of the year and my butt always hurts when I ride my bike.
Idea: Throw a “wear what you never have the occasion to wear” party where people are supposed to wear that random Halloween costume, prom dress, etc.
You don’t have to be completely ruthless, but you also don’t want to keep more than you actually need. Be realistic about what you wear/use.
Tip: Turn all of your hangers backwards. When you wear something, hang it back up on the hanger with it facing normally. At the end of a month, donate everything that wasn’t used (keeping seasonality and occasion in mind, of course).
This isn’t just limited to clothes. Are there plates you have but you absolutely hate to clean but make you look like a person who uses fancy plates? Books you’re never going to read but want to keep on your bookshelf to look well-read? You can get rid of them – I’ll keep them our little secret.
Tip #3: Take Pictures of Everything Instead of Keeping Everything
I have a folder in my Google Photos called “Important Momentos” where I store pictures of all of my vaguely sentimental items.
This isn’t for important documents I need to keep or my most prized memorabilia, this is for that random Christmas card you sent me three years ago and encouraging notes my roommates left me after hard days. Of course these are treasured items, but the value is in their memory – not their physical presence.
I like being able to have them all in one space so I know that they’re easily accessible, but also easily shareable.
Tip #4: Figure Out (Now) Where You’re Donating
While this seems like something both easy and low in priority, I’ve found that if you don’t know where you’re planning on taking things you’re more likely to procrastinate and hoard items you want to get rid of.
Do some research on local organizations, what they take, and their availability. When you know it’s going to a cause you really back, it’s also easier to commit to donating something you know will have a better home elsewhere.
You don’t have to buy fancy “product” or fold things a certain way to be organized! You don’t need to follow a specific order or decluttering! Be proud of yourself for any positive change!
Think I missed anything (I’m sure I did!)? Leave any of your tips in the comments below!
Side note: if you’re looking for more The Home Edit content, they did a series on YouTube last year (see below).
This post is not sponsored. All opinions are my own. Want to see more organization tips? Check them out here.