The Five D's

{Gary DeMar}


Have you been reading all the latest posts about the new year and how everyone is de-cluttering and organizing their homes as a resolution? Pfft. Why? I like clutter. I like dirty laundry in the hallway. I like not having a place for my keys, misplacing my wedding ring, and always wondering where I last left my cell phone. I like the piles of paper - bills, magazines, coupons, to-do lists. I like looking through my closet stuffed to the gills with clothes and truly having nothing to wear. I like it. It's fun.

Okay, I'm totally lying.
I hate it! And I know I'm not alone. A Better Homes and Gardens poll in the January issue stated that 53% of readers said that if all they did this next year was organize their homes they would feel accomplished. Wow. So I'm thinking we all need a little purging and organizing...or at least 53% of us do.

Here's my list:

Step 1 - DECLUTTER

Step 2 - DONATE

Step 3 - DEVISE & ORGANIZE

Step 4 - DEEP CLEAN

Step 5 - DECORATE


This is your mantra for the next five weeks-ish. Here's a quick breakdown of what I mean by each step:


Step 1 - DECLUTTER


{via apartmentthearapy}


This is, in my opinion, probably the most essential of all the steps, but possibly the most difficult. You must be willing to part with unnecessary items in order to create a calm, inviting atmosphere. This may include, but not limited to: clothing, shoes & accessories (does it fit? do you like it? does it make you look fabulous?); new and old toys, games, etc. (old = doesn't get played with, broken/missing parts; new = unopened items that can be returned, re-gifted, or donated); make-up and personal items (expired? icky fragrance? wrong color?); anything with unnecessary multiples (four cylindrical glass vases? two brown corduroy jackets? three spatulas?); you get the idea.


Step 2 - DONATE



{via fotobank}


No need to feel like you're just throwing useful things away. Make three different piles as you go. One to keep, one to sell, and one to donate or toss. Depending on what you're working on, you can use large storage bins or trash bags to do you dirty work. Things to keep get immediately put where they belong, or at minimum, put into a bin/bag that you will sort later after Design Star or Vampire Diaries (hey, don't judge). Items to sell can stay in a bin but need to be assessed, photographed and listed on Craigslist, ebay, or sold at a garage sale. Make a plan and execute as soon as possible so you don't end up with a garage full of bins. Finally, items that aren't useful, are broken or missing parts can probably go straight into the trash. Other items that you really don't need and won't sell can be bagged up and taken straight to your local donation center or charitable organization.


Step 3 - DEVISE & ORGANIZE


{via dollarstorecrafts}


Devise a plan and organize your belongings. This can be fun! Now that your rooms, closets, cabinets and drawers are free of unnecessary items, consider each space and what will work for you to keep it clutter free. Do shoes and coats always seem to clog up the front entry or mud room? Try adding a small shoe rack and shelf with nobs a la pottery barn. Maybe you find that your mail stacks up in piles on the kitchen counter or dining table. Try adding a pretty basket or paper organizer in that area. Point being, analyze how and where clutter builds up and devise a plan to organize the chaos!



Step 4 - DEEP CLEAN
Now that your home is de-cluttered and organized you have the space and breathing room to do some serious cleaning. I'll be offering a few of my favorite tips along with some snazzy eco-friendly and do-it-yourself cleaning products (vinegar, lemon juice and baking powder, anyone?). Once this step is complete you're going to feel the biggest sigh of relief. Your home is now a breath of fresh air and I guarantee that you'll feel less stressed on a daily basis.


Step 5 - DECORATE



{via countryliving / crossdecoranddesign}


Okay, this is the fun one! I had to include this because after all that tossing, sorting, organizing and cleaning you totally deserve to decorate! When you begin this entire process, start thinking of things that you really want for your new space. Do you need a new chocolate lattice rug for the living room? Or a framed mirror for the guest room? How about that set of dinnerware you've been eyeing for months? Think about what items you'd really love to have and start saving now. Also, as you're de-cluttering and cleaning be thinking what things you'll need to make the space more appealing and functional? New sorting baskets for laundry? Inserts for the kitchen or bathroom drawers? Pretty contact paper for your pantry shelves? If you're like me, make a list. Or a few lists. Heck, buy a notebook and fill it with your ideas!

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There you go! A little synopsis of my upcoming mini-series on how to enjoy an organized, clutter free new year! Thank you for giving me a reason to be held accountable in doing this for my own space!