You may think that refers to the new year: Out with ’15 and in with ’16. Perhaps. But you can adopt that mantra for decluttering, making space for the influx of holiday gifts, too.
“One in, one out” is the most basic organizing concept I use. While it’s typically something employed on wardrobes – buy a new shirt, get rid of an old one – it can be utilized all over the house.
The most difficult place to apply this strategy is in the kids’ room. A little salesmanship will be needed on your part to explain the benefits of a more manageable bedroom without toys they weren’t really using and how donating those toys to less fortunate children will put them on Santa’s “nice list” for 2016.
The one in, one out is a great way to start the year, but it may not be enough for some rooms. Namely, the kitchen.
Decluttering a focal point room like the kitchen can set the tone for the entire year. It’s also one of the easier rooms to declutter.
Start with kitchenware. Decluttering kitchenware requires you to understand your needs. These are different for everyone, dependent on who lives in your house, how often you entertain, if you have kids, the ages of the kids and your storage space.
For eliminating items, you might want to consider the following:
– Do you need an everyday crockery set as well as good china? Opt to keep the most practical, beautiful & useful and donate the remainder.
– You need one style of cutlery, not two or three different sets.
– A few salad bowls, serving platters and dishes is enough– if you are entertaining a large crowd, borrow serving platters from friends or family.
– Wine glasses and champagne flutes are lovely to have and necessary if you entertain – but ensure you keep enough, not too many (6-8 of each should be ample for most homes). Again, you can borrow additional glasses if needed.
– Shot glasses? If you’re an adult, get rid of ’em. Really.
– Keeping a neutral palette (e.g. white) for all the major kitchenware (crockery, serving platters, etc) means you will never have the worry of items that don’t match.
– Next, you can take on your kitchen drawers, a magnet for clutter. You will need some empty counter space for this effort. Essentially, you’re going to empty out each drawer one at a time. As you take items out, make a decision about whether the item stays or goes before putting it down. Outs go in one pile, stays in another.
Don’t know what to get rid of? Here are some guidelines:
Do you still use it?
Do you have duplicates? How many of any one thing do you really need?
Is it in good condition? Broken or chipped? Toss it.
Prior to putting what stays away, clean the drawer with some white vinegar and a cloth to disinfect the surface. Dry with a clean, dry cloth and wipe it all over. Before putting things back, see if you can pair like things together (e.g. cookie cutters) in a plastic container. This will make things easier to find in the future.
Rome certainly wasn’t built in a day and it will probably take a bit longer than that to apply the one in, one out to your entire home. But taking on this first task in the kitchen is a great way to get your home organized in 2016.
If you need some help in creating a decluttering plan for 2016, give us a call at 508-246-6120 and we’ll help you put a stop to all that clutter is costing you.
read how decluttering and organizing can help you get the most out of life