Unless you’ve been totally off-grid the last few years you would have heard of Marie Kondo; she’s propelled in to everyone’s space with her bookThe Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Marie’s book has a basic underlying principle – your items should spark joy, keep the everyday necessities and everything else can be discarded. Sounds good. Simple living. I’ve personally found using a little of Marie’s ideology and combing that with Unf*ck Your Habitat: You’re Better than Your Mess, which is a kick to get moving and staying on top of the mess for those of us who don’t have the time/energy/inclination to do a cleaning marathons, to be the answer to an uncluttered, tidy home.
So in today’s post, we’re going to talk about how we can declutter a kitchen.
Remember, when you’re decluttering, you have to stay focussed. Seriously. You’re not emptying the kitchen on to the worktops, or reorganising, you’re just decluttering – you’re focussing on what you have and what you need. They’re very different things.
So with all that in mind, here’s our tips on how to declutter.
Set a time limit. How about 20 mins? Need longer? Move it to 30. It shouldn’t take too much longer to declutter. If it does, have a timed break, 10 minutes, and then get back to it for another 20 minutes.
Get bags/boxes ready. One for items you can donate, one for items to sell, one for the bin and one for the recycling. You may need a fifth bag – this one is for things you want but belong elsewhere in your home. Remember, we’re not doing one-touch-tidying right now, we’re focussing just on the clutter!
Decide your starting point. I work at the door and move round in a clockwise motion. Be systematic. Work around the room and get rid of whatever isn’t bringing you joy or serving a purpose.
Ask yourself if you love it or use it. If the answer is no to both. It needs to go. Don’t save for “one day”. If you have more than one of an item, do you really need it? Coffee mugs, yes. Spatulas, probably not.
Now to item specifics…
Cook Books. Donate cook books that you no longer use. If you have some where you only use a page or two, photograph that page and create a file. This can be digital. Cook books take up too much space.
Tea Towels, Cloths and Rags. Get rid of the tatty ones, the old ones and the stained ones. You’ll probably find your local school or animal rescue centre will take them off your hands. Else, but them in the textiles bank. Just don’t get sentimental about a tatty old tea towel.
Cooking Utensils. I hoard these. I have no idea why. Declutter them and take the spares to your local nursery / preschool for their mud garden. They will be thrilled!
Pans, Tubs & Baking Items. Get rid of everything you don’t use. Do you really need 10 saucepans? Or 3 muffin trays? Anything damaged needs to go. Tubs with no lids need to go. Again, your preschool will love these for their mud kitchen.
Under The Sink. If your house is like mine this is where all the cleaning stuff is kept and is a bit of an embarrassing space. It needs to be addressed! Ditch anything you don’t use. Get it in order. Note what you have and don’t buy anything until you’ve used what you have.
Worktops. A decluttered kitchen needs to have clear worktops – cluttered worktops make for a messy kitchen and it also makes it a lot harder to clean. Those pesky crumbs get everywhere!
Small & Large Appliances/Gadgets. Do you need them? Or were they brought on a whim? If you’re not using, get rid. I have a real fancy wine bottle opener. It’s massive and I never use it – basically, it’s clutter. These are perfect to be donated.
Food. Know what you have and plan how you will use it – this is a job for another day, but as part of your declutter, ditch anything out of date or never going to be used. If they’re not expired, pop them down to your food bank. Else, wild animals will eat most things!
Crockery. Take stock of what you really need. Anything chipped or broken can go. Extras can be donated. Be ruthless.
The Junk Drawer. We all have a sin drawer where we ditch all the odds and sods. Ours is full of candles, matches, batteries etc – all much-needed bits BUT on top of that goes takeaway menus we will never use, receipts and warranties we’re too lazy to file. Declutter!
So there you have it. Let us know how you got on when you declutter and do share your tips in the comments.