Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

Let’s Sit Comfortably!

Melodie lives in a senior housing apartment. She recently moved from a big house, so is very much aware of using limited space well. Where to start? She chose the living room. I suggested first clearing the couch, as it looked like an easy first step to take together.

As always when working with a new De-clutter Me! client, I asked lots of questions. How often did she use the cozy, warm wraps on the couch? Where could she store them for easy access? There was space in her bedroom closet. I rolled her very favorite one and placed it behind one of the back cushions on the couch “shelf.” How handy!

What about the books? There was room for them on the furniture piece across from the couch, which also holds the television. The boxed trash bags? We likely would use them. A better spot might be in the kitchen, which might also be another session’s focus.

Quite easily done, we cleared the couch.

A cluttered couch before care from De-clutter Me!
Before
A comfy-looking couch after care from De-clutter Me!
After

 
We turned our attention to the corner upholstered chair between two windows. It held some spiral notebooks. Melodie has a number of them, for separate topics. (Excellent! I heartily approve(d), since that’s how I operate, too. There’s one for my business, De-clutter Me!, and one for my personal life. It’s easy, eliminating the “need” for lots of little, random pieces of paper. There’s a record of tasks to be done and/or completed.) I placed them in a drawer of the furniture piece already holding the television. We added more books below.

Next, we “explored” papers in the small black plastic bin on the floor. Some could be filed, in the plastic bin nearby. Other items could be recycled or shredded. We discussed the files, and how she might add a few, new specific ones to help with household organization.

A cluttered chair before we cleared it
Before
A cleared chair after care from De-clutter Me!
After

With our remaining time, we organized the side table, adding books to the across-the-room furniture piece.

Melodie was pleased. What would be next? We weren’t exactly sure, but we scheduled a second session together. Success!

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced, and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Closet, Dining Room, Living Room, Success Stories

A Sweep Around the Room

How had three months passed since Willow and I were last together? Busy-ness, travel, COVID, and other delays got in the way. Finally together again, I asked where she would like to start. She walked over to the storage cubes, inset like a closet on the side of the living room. First, we discussed the cast iron pot holder, hanging in front of them. Why not use it in the kitchen for its intended purpose? She and her husband both thought it looked awkward in the available spaces, and used up too much energy. Agreed! Willow brought it out onto the back deck. She’ll string small white lights through it and hang it there. It will look festive!

Next, using my customary professional organizer method of working top-to-bottom, we touched each item. We set aside a few things for donation, others to be tossed, and still others to be stored downstairs in her crafts area. When done with the cubes, they looked neater, and there even were a few empty ones. Easier on the eyes!

Storage cubes before we cleared their clutter
Before
Storage cubes clutter-free!
After

We then worked on the sitting area across from the storage cubes. We repeated the organizing process with the boxes on the floor and on the upholstered chair.

Before we cleared box and chair clutter
Before
Box and chair clutter gone!
After

Next, on to low storage cubes and the little table in front of it. We consolidated some paper, recycled catalogs, and otherwise “neatened up” the area. It also included the couch.

The cluttered "long view"
Before
The "long view" with its clutter cleared
After

Now, how many pets do you know of that have their own designated sitting areas? Well, pooch Dylan does! He kindly does share it with Willow, though. Why else would a small lamp be there? We “neatened” it up.

Dylan's area before we "neatened" it
Before
Dylan's more inviting lounging area
After

We next focused on the dining table, repeating my organizer’s process of touching everything, before deciding to toss, recycle, or store it elsewhere. The table now felt more inviting to use.

Dining table clutter
Before
Dining table clutter gone!
After

With our remaining session time together, Willow and I worked on a hutch next to the dining table. As ever, working top-to-bottom, we consolidated items to toss, recycle, or store elsewhere for crafts. We placed candles together on the middle shelf, where they’ll be easily seen for use in the darker times of the year.

The hutch, before we cleared its clutter
Before
The clutter-free hutch
After

It was a very productive session! What might be next? That’s to be determined…

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced, and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

A Living Room Ready to be Lived In Again

Jess and John lead a busy life. Both working professionals, they also enjoy a wide variety of activities. Time can be tight, including for keeping things straight. We decided to tackle the living room.

The long view…there were several areas “calling out for help.”

The long view of the living room before we cleared its clutter
Before

First, a set of decorative shelves, which looked okay at the top. The middle and bottom areas, though, had become a crafts materials storage area, with spill-over onto the floor. As ever, we started at the top and worked our way down. We left some free space, set aside the crafts for storage elsewhere, and cleaned up the floor.

Decorative shelves before we cleared their clutter
Before
Decorative shelves' clutter cleared, now with open space ready for additional items
After
Crafts and other papers spilled onto the floor
Before
The cleared floor!
After

Our next focus was the TV area. We moved their dog Blaze’s bed, placed some of Jess’s rocks collection treasures under the wide screen.

The TV area before we cleared it
Before
The TV area, its clutter cleared
After

With COVID-19, Jess has worked at home much of the time. The couch became her primary workspace. We separated papers to either go back to her “real” office or upstairs office, returned salt and pepper to the kitchen, folded throws and other small blankets,

The cluttered couch, now a work space
Before
The couch, now ready for relaxing!
After

As we finished, John said that he didn’t think we would get it all done. I admitted to having privately thought the same way. We finished it, though! There were smiles all around.

The long view, much improved!
After

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced, and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Kitchen, Living Room, Success Stories

Working Our Way Around the Room

She found De-clutter Me! by googling professional organizer and her zip code. We talked. She said that she and her husband are “victims of their stuff.” Their home offices, living room, and kitchen need help. Would I work with them, both individually and together? Sure!

After arriving, and checking our temperatures, she and I toured around the house, discussing the work to be done. What was bugging her most? Where to start? She quickly suggested the living room. We started around the wood stove. The area had become a dumping ground. Her husband has many cookbooks. A sideways box held some that he would purge. The chair held clothes and other items to put away. Other stuff was discarded or placed into recycling. We also cleaned behind it, next to the couch. I encouraged her to get rid of the little TV tray-type table that was a clutter magnet.

The area around the wood stove before we cleared its clutter
Before
Now we can see the wood stove and the nice plant on it!
After

Next, we focused on the area at the other side of the couch, where her husband sits. We put some items into recycling, moved a power strip cord to make it less visible. It was creating “visual noise,” a great term I learned from another client a few summers ago. We consolidated reading materials, discarded excess pens, and otherwise neatened-up the area.

Before
His corner now clutter-free!
After

What next? She suggested the bench with storage. Should we look through the stored items? No, she could do that at another time. On the bench part, though – a few pieces of clothing, two decorative pillows, a phone book, a power strip. The clothing was set aside for the laundry, the phone book added to recycling, the power strip set aside for use elsewhere in the house. We placed the pillows back on the bench, where she now could put on her shoes. Success!

The bench and storage piece before we cleared its clutter
Before
Now she can sit on the bench to put on her shoes!
After

We had a little bit of time left. How to use it? She chose a slim kitchen counter and a bench below it, actually in the dining area. We consolidated a few small appliances on the counter, along with a container for often-grabbed items, and a decorative rooster. On the bench below, napkins, pot holders, muffins for toasting. Our time together used up, they were pleased.

A counter and bench before we cleared their clutter
Before
Small appliances together, clear space, and room to make toast!
After

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

A Wheelchair-friendly Living Room!

As we finished our first session together, I told Sarah and her son Josh that I had a bold suggestion for them. How about a “double session” day? Borrowing the term from high school sports practice at the end of the summer, we would work for three morning hours, take a lunch break, then work for three more hours in the afternoon. They were “game” for it, and we agreed to take a 30-minute lunch break. Pretty impressive for a woman who admitted to being nervous before our first session!

When I arrived, we discussed where to focus our energy. We first chose the living room, which looked more like a storage space than one to use and enjoy. I suggested that we work our way around the room. We removed two plastic bins, like laundry baskets from one wall, and put a big leather chair and side table there. (Later on, as we worked on a closet, we found a projector, which we would place on the side table’s lower shelf.) Would that wall also be a good spot for a cupboard with a fold-down table where Sarah could store art supplies and work on projects? The room would be cleared enough to accommodate one.

A space practically "begging" for furniture
Before
Much more welcoming - with a big chair and side table
After

Our next focus area was in front of the windows. We cleared a couple of big blankets to be washed, removed a corner set of shelves, placing it in the bathroom to hold towels. We tossed some broken small decorative pieces that it had held. Sarah bravely set aside others for a spring tag sale, keeping only the most special ones. We removed other bins, setting aside their contents for donation, for the trash, or for the tag sale.

Part of the living room before we cleared its clutter
Before
A cleared space, big enough for Sarah's wheelchair
After

We also made room for pint-sized family members to enjoy the blackboard, there from when Sarah ran a day care center in the house.

Clutter to be cleared
Before
Another comfy seating spot, complete with toddler-height blackboard!
After

When we were done with the living room, it felt open and airy. Perhaps most importantly, Sarah would be able to move around the room comfortably in her wheelchair.

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

The Living Room – Quickly!

Her mother sent a link to the De-clutter Me! website – from Minnesota! Bryce got in touch. She had recently moved into a new condo. I sensed that moving had been exhausting. (When isn’t it?!)

When would I be available to help sort things out? Soon; in fact, it actually could be possible two days later. That doesn’t often happen!

Our task – to clear the living room, so that she could relax a bit, without looking at piles of various things left from moving. We started by setting aside clothes for storage. We collected notebooks and other materials for writing and art projects, tucking them away next to the couch, in the corner. She’ll be able to easily reach them there, when the time is right.

I suggested moving a large flat screen TV, which was in the small entryway, to protect it until there’s time to have it mounted on the wall. I placed it next to the couch, with the screen facing the wall, with the mounting hardware and cables.

We also cleared part of the kitchen counter, discussing the best places to store various kitchen-type objects.

The very full living room area before we cleared it
Before
The cleared couch and kitchen counter - aahh!
After

Our time used up, we discussed our next session. What to do? That was to be determined but, in the meantime, Bryce was smiling. Success!

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

A Transformed Armoire

Jonathan is a busy guy, working many hours. It seemed that he sometimes puts things in places temporarily then, because of his schedule, they stay there. In one session, we would focus on a tall armoire.

Using my tried-and-true professional organizer’s method, we would work top-to-bottom. We would “reserve” the most valuable real estate – the two shelves easiest seen and reached – for items Jonathan would want to use most. We would include the low bookcase next to the armoire, adding its books to the shelves.

First, we pulled out some clothes items that had landed there, placing them in the laundry. We put tall books on the top shelf. We worked our way down, putting hardcover books together, then paperbacks. We collected photographs in a bowl, for him to review at another time. Likewise, we collected various notebooks on a lower shelf, for when Jonathan wants to use them.

In the bottom area, we put his trumpet in its case, some paint brushes and other random items. All are clearly visible, for when he has time to use them.

Bonus points – the low bookcase was now empty, ready for another use.

What’s next? Maybe some work in the kitchen. We would decide then.

A tall armoire before we organized it
Before
the transformed armoire in the living room
After

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Dining Room, Living Room, Office, Success Stories

It’s Kitty Land!

Cece is devoted to her cat Babe. Boxes, bags and big pieces of paper are laid out for her to jump into and otherwise enjoy.

We started by clearing a floor area, then moved on to a corner piece holding family items, then to the table.

BEFORE
AFTER
BEFORE
AFTER

Our next area of focus was her desk.

BEFORE
AFTER

With our remaining time, we cleared some of the living room floor space.

BEFORE
AFTER

With great first progress achieved, we scheduled another session in a couple of weeks. Responding to my thank-you note, Cece wrote back that Babe had lots of new space to run around. Success!

About De-clutter Me!
De-clutter Me! offers non-judgmental, competitively-priced and confidential assistance to help clear clutter in your home and/or business. We’ve been changing chaos to calm since 2013.

Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

Bookshelf Organization = Rest for the Eyes

Jennifer and Jim are working hard to clear clutter in their home. Bookshelf organization and decorating were needed for the island, really a free-standing bookshelf that “straddles” the kitchen and the living room. It’s next to Jennifer’s desk, which we organized during our last session. Continue reading “Bookshelf Organization = Rest for the Eyes”

Posted in Living Room, Success Stories

Our Planned Desk Organization Task is Done

In our second session, Jennifer and I mostly focused on her sweet desk, which she’s had for decades and likes very much.

First, we lifted everything to clear clutter from its top, dusted, and returned only a few items.  Next, we worked on its cubby holes. Internal desk organization would make it much easier to use. Continue reading “Our Planned Desk Organization Task is Done”