Top Tips from the KonMari method
March 3, 2019
Everyone is talking about Mari Kondo (again). I remember years ago when her book had just seen the light of day and a lot of the youtubers I follow were mentioning it in their videos, and talking about the KonMari method.
Now, after Netflix aired her own show – Tidying up with Marie Kondo, the world is obsessed about Marie Kondo and her life-changing ways. It feels like everyone knows about her (memes make people famous, don’t they?) and everyone is currently downsizing their possessions (me included; I win the basic bitch award).
The last 6 months I have been trying to downsize everything at home. I live in a small rented apartment and I can’t make any major changes, and the space I have is very limited. I don’t have storage, no garage, nothing. It feels a little suffocating having all of the things I don’t use. But I will be writing about my own experience later.
Let's talk about Marie Kondo's way.
The KonMari Method
The KonMari method is basically organizing by category, not by location. So instead of starting from your kitchen, then bathroom, then living room, or whatever your method is, you start by category, beginning with clothes, then moving on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and, finally, sentimental items. You only leave the things that bring you joy and for the things that don’t – you thank them for the service and let go of them.
The KonMari method really stresses the importance of mindfulness (you even greet your home) and being introspective and forward-looking. You need to focus on what you want to achieve and your ideal lifestyle at the end of this journey.
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- When you start working on each category, gather all of the things you have in that category and pile them up in one big mountain. This way you can see exactly what you have, how much it is and it will be easier to find out what no longer sparks joy when it is around the things that do spark joy. Not only that, but it will be easier to organize them into further categories (shoes, underwear, tops, bottoms, coats, etc.)
- Find the pieces that spark joy – ask yourself if this is an item you want to have in your future. If yes, then proceed with folding/organizing it. Recycle/donate everything else.
- Make use of boxes. Marie Kondo utilises shoeboxes as storage in all categories.
- If it becomes too overwhelming, change the air by opening a window or lighting a candle. Or maybe step away and start over again the next day. The best part of the KonMari method is that you don’t have to finish everything in one day.
- When folding any clothing item, aim for a small rectangle. Fold sleeves in first, leave a little bit of room at the bottom, and then, fold into thirds.
- Stack clothes upwards, so you can see everything and keep things tidy, instead of rummaging through your drawers.
- Fold ankle socks in half and long socks in thirds and place them at an upright position so you can see every pair you own. Try not to fold a pair of socks into a ball — this can stretch the elastic and ruin them.
- Each person should have a their own closet space. You should separate items by who they belong to and not by type.
- Fold soft bras halfway, hide the straps and place on top of each other. Padded bras should be placed on top of one another so you don’t ruin their shape.
- Papers should be organized into three categories: pending, important, and miscellaneous.
- Recycle the papers that no longer serve you.
- Organize your papers into boxes that fall into the three categories and keep them all in one place.
- Keep electronics in boxes so you can see everything at once. Separate the wires by putting them into smaller boxes.
- It is best to store holiday decorations in clear containers so you can see every item you have.
- Organize the items in your garage with large, clear bins and keep all the items upright so you can visually see the quantity of everything you have.
- Go through every single photo you have and ask if it sparks joy. If you have similar photos, find out which one sparks the most joy.
- Try to figure out the dates of when the photos were taken and organize them chronologically.
- It is great to keep your photos in photo albums that can be placed on a coffee table or on a bookshelf so you can revisit them more often.