Make this the year you get your house in order and create a calm, stress-free space to enjoy. Start with these game-changing tips for sorting and storing your stuff
Choose clean-lined cabinets in natural wood for a serenely simple look
1 Change your mindset
Think of decluttering as a way to rediscover and reclaim your home, rather than a chore. Envision all the benefits of your new, well-ordered surroundings: time saved hunting for things, space to display and appreciate the objects you love, and a place you can enjoy living in, stress-free.
2 Make an action plan
Come up with a system to make decluttering more manageable. You could tackle one room at a time, or approach things category by category – going through clothes first, then books, for instance.
3 Set your criteria
Whether you resolve to get rid of anything you haven’t used for a year, or make like organising guru Marie Kondo and ask yourself “Does it spark joy?”, working out how you’ll decide what to keep is half the battle. If in doubt, designer William Morris’s famous maxim is a good rule of thumb: “Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”
4 Reuse or recycle
Find a good home for the things you no longer need. Sell your used items online – people are often happy to collect them – or donate them to charity.
Alternatively, take used clothes to your local M&S and we’ll make sure they’re resold, reused or recycled as part of our Shwopping initiative in partnership with Oxfam.
5 Choose storage wisely
Make the best use of the space you have. Limited floor space? Install wall shelves. Sloping ceilings? Choose a low, streamlined sideboard. For narrow nooks beside a chimney breast, go for a tall, slim shelving unit. Furniture with built-in storage is an easy win, from sofas to beds and footstools. Finally, make use of dead space on top of wardrobes or under beds: use boxes or lidded baskets to keep things tidy and dust free.
6 Store smartly
Put anything that looks good out on display, from crockery and glassware stacked on open shelves to pasta in smart storage containers. That should free up space in your cupboards for anything you want to hide away. Things you don’t often use, like guest towels and bedding, are best kept in less easy-to-access places like high cupboard shelves. Then you can keep what you use most frequently close to hand, giving you more time to enjoy your new calm, clutter-free home.
Editor: Jo Caulkett