Cleaning Up Your Act - Page 3

Professional organizers share strategies for home decluttering that lighten the load on mood and health
Cleaning Up Your Act
Going vertical (in boxes) is key to organizing, and eliminating the untidy.
Cleaning Up Your Act
Silicon Valley start-up Clutter comes to the rescue by hauling away your mess.
Cleaning Up Your Act
Cleaning Up Your Act
Hideaway cabinets and cabinets that double as other things (countertop, bar, seating) help to clear away unsightly clutter.

For spiritual clients, Poulos goes through a ritual of leading them through blessings and prayers—especially when she is working with clients who are purging items that belonged to their deceased loved ones. "By releasing those items to charity, they can pay homage to their love ones and see the beauty of how the deceased is still helping others even though they have crossed over," she says.

Sometimes just choosing the right furniture to store items will get homeowners on their way to good organization rituals. To get rid of kitchen clutter if you're short on cabinetry, you can use a hideaway sliding cabinet to hide all of kitchen gadgets, according to Shay Collazo of Nadeau Furniture, a national furniture retailer.

A cabinet can act as a focal point piece that doubles as a countertop or bar. In a kitchen or living room, a multi-door cabinet is a great place to tuck away the remotes, sound system boxes, and hardware that's necessary but unsightly.

Buffet cabinets are always good clutter busters. "I always recommend using buffets for my clients—they don't just have to go in a dining room," Collazo says. "You can use them to serve as tables behind couches, accents in a hall, or TV stands in bedrooms. It gives you the ability to organize tons of items, papers and hardware, in one easy-to-reach place while giving your home the clean, minimalistic modern."

By giving away what you don't need and no longer serves you, you create a place for things that do matter. Having a place for everything perpetuates positive rituals to stay organized. And, you enhance someone else's life by donating unused or excess items.

But what if you're just in transition and just not ready to let go of everything? Silicon Valley start-up Clutter can come to the rescue. The company sends professional movers to your home, where they pack, move away, and then store your belongings in a nearby storage facility. At a click of a button, any of your items can be returned within 48 hours.

"Seasonal items are huge for our service," say Emma Gordon, organizing and storage specialist at Clutter. "Things like Christmas trees, holiday lights, Halloween décor—all the seasonal things you don't use all the time. We have clients who have blow-up air mattresses they use when they expect guests, and they just have it delivered to their home when they need it."

Remodeling projects are another popular use for Clutter's service. "If you have light fixtures you aren't using but want to save, or outdoor tile you plan to use for a patio but didn't finish, you can store it with us until you're ready," Gordon says.



Dr. Regina Lark

Thalia Poulos

Nadeau Furniture

Clutter Storage



Uncluttered Truth

• The average American spends one year of his or her life looking for lost or misplaced items.

• Eighty percent of what we keep we never use.

• Getting rid of clutter would eliminate 40 percent of the housework in the average home.

• We wear 20 percent of the clothes we own 80 percent of the time. The rest hangs there, just in case.

• Twenty-five percent of homeowners polled with two-car garages fill it with so much stuff, they can't park even one car inside; and 32 percent can fit one, but not two cars inside.

• Twenty-three percent of adults pay bills late and incur late fees because they can't find their bills.

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