Make this the year you get your house in order and create a clutter-free space to enjoy. Start with these tried-and-tested tips for sorting and storing your stuff
1 Change your mindset
Think of decluttering as a way to rediscover and reclaim your home, rather than a chore. Envision the benefits of your new, well-ordered surroundings: time saved hunting for things, space to display objects you love, and a place you enjoy living in.
2 Make an action plan
Come up with a system to make decluttering more manageable. Tackle one room at a time, or go shelf by shelf, drawer by drawer, cupboard by cupboard, 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, Marie Kondo style, ask yourself, “Does it spark joy?”, working out how you’ll decide what to keep is half the battle. If in doubt, remember William Morris’s maxim: “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 online, donate to charity or give to a friend or relative who will appreciate them.
5 Choose storage wisely
Make the best use of the space you have. Limited floor space? Install wall shelves. Sloping ceilings? Choose a low sideboard. For narrow nooks beside a chimney breast, go for a slim shelving unit. Furniture with built-in storage is an easy win, from sofas to beds and footstools. Make use of dead space on top of wardrobes or under beds with storage boxes or baskets.
6 Store smartly
Put anything that looks good on display, from crockery and glassware stacked on open shelves to pasta in storage containers, freeing up cupboard space for anything you want to hide away. Keep things you don’t use often, like guest towels and bedding, in less easy-to-access places like high cupboard shelves.
Words: Jo Caulkett