Does it Bring You Joy to Declutter?

Does it Bring You Joy to Declutter?

Posted by Amy HARTMAN on

We see you girl, overturned laundry baskets full of unpaired socks, re-wrinkled t-shirts that you need to “toss back into the dryer," jeans on the ground that require the “sniff test” to see if they are clean or dirty. Well, we have found your guardian angel and her name is Marie Kondo. We know, we know...stick with us, we have Amy + Meredith’d your KonMari Method to fit the everyday Home Girl who maybe doesn’t have time to tackle ALL the overflowing sock drawers or closets just yet.

So unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last few weeks, you’ve heard of the marvelous Marie Kondo and her new series on Netflix called Tidying Up with Marie Kondo wherein our heroine introduces folks -- who are a little bit clutter-challenged we’ll say -- to the joy of decluttering or the KonMari Method first made famous in her 2014 best-selling book: "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up."


Cloth + Cabin Marie Kondo

Commit yourself to tidying up.

Okay, now this may be one day out of thirty or heck, even one hundred, but you should take some time to tidy. We don’t think you need to look at this like an all or nothing activity (which is going to directly contradict rule 4 below - but dang it we are trying Marie, cut us some slack!). Even ONE DRAWER of tidying up will be satisfying. Just last week we conquered one drawer of jeans with the konmari method and it felt like winning a gold medal at the Olympics, or at least what we think that feels like. So we choose to go a little at a time - progress not perfection.


Imagine your ideal lifestyle.

We sometimes stress eat over the very idea of having everything in one place perfectly decluttered; I mean, how do the kids play if they don’t pull out everything from the bins? You know, like if a parent can’t step on a Lego every once in a while is it real life? We don’t think so. So our ideal lifestyle is one of compromise, where we are able to make small changes over time, maybe even involve our kids in the “magic of tidying up” - just kidding our kids will probably run from this challenge - no joy. No. Joy.

Cloth + Cabin Marie Kondo

Finish discarding first.

Tidy moms unite. Man, we love taking a heap to Goodwill or repurposing something to recycle it, but dang, getting through all the stuff is a job of its own. Getting through the piles does take some persistence, but what we have found is that once it is done, it’s like we have moved a MOUNTAIN. So this "discard it, before you organize it" philosophy does have its ups and downs, but overall, it’s worth it to make a clear discard pile and get that out of your life. Because if you throw it away, you NEVER HAVE TO PICK IT UP AGAIN. Boom.

Tidy by category, not by location.

Okay Marie, we have tried this and have a hard time making it happen. To grab ALL the clothes and dump them in our living rooms to sort would take us probably weeks, so while we will follow you to the ends of the Earth with your legendary t-shirt folding technique, we do violate your rules when it comes to this one, and we tidy by location, not category. We will work toward category moving forward, but our initial purge admittedly hasn’t happened by category. 


Cloth + Cabin joy of tidying


Follow the right order.

We understand that committing to tidying up is the largest hurdle. I mean truly committing to this type of lifestyle is deep change. We daydream of a tidy always Instagram worthy house and maybe this is the way to get to it, maybe not, who knows? We are willing to try for a little life-changing magic. Are you?

Ask yourself if it sparks joy.

This is the most brilliant step we’ve used to declutter. Never before have we stopped to ask if something brings us joy after it’s been in our homes for years [sometimes many, many years]. So we totally understand and appreciate this rule. Upon purchasing something initially, we definitely feel the joy...but does it bring us joy TODAY? That is where we feel the real MariKon genius lies. How often do you stop to consider if an item is still useful? Probably never. Or maybe you do, but indirectly, like how frequently you use the item. That’s where we are right now - our faves, those sparking joy, are used a lot. Those that do not spark joy, not so much - and get shoved to the back of the closet. How many shirts in your closet do you actually wear? We’re thinking we wear about 15% of all of our clothes and that does NOT bring us joy. So our focus next is our own clothes [gasp]. Purging clothes [do not forget to thank the items!] for kids is so much easier...they outgrow the clothes before we need to ask if it sparks joy!!!

How about you? Has the KonMari method taken over your house? Tell us all about your decluttering and missions to being a Tidy Mom. We’ll reward success or even TOTAL FAILURE with a set of Copper Canisters and a Home Girl t-shirt to KonMari in - we KNOW these items will bring you joy. ;)

Copper Canisters

To enter, leave a comment below with your KonMari success OR failure story AND sign up for our C+C newsletter here. A winner will be chosen at random and announced on Friday, February 15th!


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  • This is part success and part failure. I have a problem letting go of my children’s things. I know keeping their daily daycare reports stacked high, torn old clothes and broken toys doesn’t make sense but I’ve attached a sentimental value to anything involving them. First I started tackling the daily daycare reports by only keeping the ones that marked milestones (going from 300 to about 10 pages)! I moved onto the broken toys throwing anything that is totally unfixable. Now if I can part ways with those stained infant onesies then I’ll really be getting somewhere!

    Jessica Rives on
  • Well, I started the tidying up because we were having our home appraised. I was feeling the beginning stirrings of joy. While at work,my sweet husband thought he was being helpful and took a pile of my clothes (that I hadn’t finished sorting) to the goodwill…without my knowledge! Joy was temporarily lost, in addition to a couple of my favorite pieces! I’m not discouraged. I’m still seeking that KonMari joy, and a couple new items!

    Robin Brooks-Johnson on
  • To be honest, I had a tough time getting through one episode of Marie Kondo. Maybe it’s because organization is not only natural but also enjoyable to me?? With that said, I have many, MANY areas in my home still needing attention. I am glad I watched an entire episode because I am surprised to say I LOVE her folding techniques! Not so much the part about thanking the item. I started working on my dresser and was surprised at how much extra room I had without purchasing additional organization containers. I have a nice pile for donation and/or consignment. One philosophy I try to adhere to is for every item that comes in, something the same size must go out.

    Jill Hall on
  • I absolutely learned the hard way that there is another rule: under no circumstances should my husband be allowed to declutter on his own. I had apprehensions going in, but a sudden move made the option of letting him wrap up our previous house look less of a bad idea… All I can say is, Never. Again.

    Melissa Moore on
  • I recently lost over 100lbs and donated a bunch of clothes to a local womens shelter and while doing this I went through every single item and I didnt want it use or need it I gave it away. Now I hear about the Marie Kondo trend and realized I had already done it😁

    Samantha Knowles on
  • Thank you for validating my own Marie Kondo tidying up method, which, like yours, is by location. We don’t keep all of our clothes or books or whatever in one room in our house… we have stuff everywhere! So tidying by space seemed to make a bigger impact for me. I was able to tidy up the hall closet, the bathroom shelves, two dresser drawers and the cabinet under the kitchen sink – all spots that needed attention. I feel good because I’ve made a few changes that made a big difference.

    Joan Kane on
  • Tidying Up came out at the perfect time while I was on maternity leave. I got rid of everything in the house that didn’t spark joy during baby’s naptime each day!

    Katie Cates on
  • For me the tidying up, gave me a little more than just decluttering, I found myself in my closet asking if this or that gave me joy or not. As I was throwning clothes in a pile it made me think of all the things that do give me joy in life and how easily we get busy and forget..walked away with a clean closet and clean heart and was happy..sometimes it’s not just things that need tidying up but our attitude and thoughts..

    Joy Daulton on
  • So who really needs Marie Kondo? I can rent my husband out to anyone….. he’s been really good with decluttering my life – loves to throw things away that he doesn’t see me using (behind my back of course). I just found out about Marie Kondo (I know, I know – I’m sheltered). I will open up and look into her so that I can keep some of my precious (Spark Joy) items. I think my husband will let me if it looks neatly organized. I actually have already started with my spice cabinet and 2 closets. Next…. some totes in my garage that have been in there since we moved in a year ago. Maybe a Home Girl t-shirt will get me moving ;)

    Josina VanEss on
  • I have been decluttering my home since January 1 and everything is getting folded Kon Mari style. It makes it so easy to find things!

    Debbie on

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