Spring Cleaning

Gilat Tunit, owner & founder of Project Neat: a New Jersey-based home organization company

When the days get longer and the breeze feels warmer, you know that spring is around the corner. The change of seasons also means it’s time for Spring cleaning. Considered a major event in most households, efficient and successful spring cleaning is all about purging and creating lasting systems. Spring cleaning efforts also mean purging and asking yourself questions like:  Has it brought me joy? Does it have sentimental value? Will I miss it when it’s gone? Have I used it or worn it in the past year?

Clear storage bins keep shoes, sweaters and other contents easily accessible and dust free.

 

These questions must be asked when beginning the first phase of any spring cleaning process, which I call, ‘Purging’! How we purge is all about asking the right questions and overcoming the fear of the right answer. So many times, we purge the bare minimum. After all, we “might” need that old fondue maker we received as a wedding gift but never used. We’re scared to donate our dresses from 1985 because they “might” come back in style! Don’t get me wrong, a true vintage piece should be stored and well maintained, but let’s be honest, we love to keep what we don’t need. I get it.  It’s so hard to part with things. We had a reason to buy it in the first place, right? Wrong!

Once you have truly committed to the purging process, I recommend a slow and steady approach.

  • Create a checklist of your cluttered spaces.
  • Take one day per week, starting from the beginning of the year, and concentrate on that one space. Let’s say your first space is your long overdue master closet. Turn on some music, roll your sleeves up and have some fun!
  • Do one section at a time.
  • Commit to getting rid of what you don’t need or truly want.

Once you have purged all of the items that were creating chaos and clutter, you’ll want to ask yourself, “What do I do with it all?

Built-in shelving and pullout drawers make efficient use of tight quarters.

It all comes down to 4 main categories.

  • Donate
  • Gift
  • Store
  • Trash
  • Each item should fall into one of these categories. And, as you go through item by item, start sorting them immediately. It will be much easier to separate one by one rather than waiting until the end, which can be overwhelming.

I then recommend:

  • Calling a local donation service
  • Gifting items to people who will have a use for it
  • Throwing away the things that are not salvageable
  • Storing away the rest by using products used for organization. (E.g., vacuum seal bags, clear airtight bins, etc.)

The last step is to tidy up the items that are left over. Remember, you aren’t tackling the entire house at once. Focus on one space at a time, at a slow and steady pace.

If we continue to use the example of a master closet, tidying up would include a few main steps:

  • Separate your remaining clothing into categories such as long sleeve, short sleeve, tank, athletic, skirts, pants, etc.
  • If you have a lot of hanging space, hang as much as you can, using non-slip hangers. These hangers are thin and create a ton of space.
  • The items that are being folded should be separated into sections as well. Try using a shelf divider to really keep things in their proper zones. For smaller items such as belts, hats, scarves, etc., I suggest buying easy access bins. If you really want to take it up a notch, color coordinate it all within the sections you have created!

Acrylic dividers maximize shelving and keep contents tidy. Space-saving slim hangers also squeeze out extra storage.

Spring cleaning is all about creating systems, efficiency, and most importantly peace of mind. Staying organized and adapting the basic principles of living in an organized space can be truly life changing. It may seem intimidating at first, but if you take it slow, step-by-step, and avoid overwhelming yourself, the process should be easy and effective.


Gilat Tunit is a self-proclaimed neat freak who turned her passion for all things organized into a full time affair when she launched her business nearly 5 years ago. Nowadays, when she’s not organizing someone else’s space or organizing something in her own home, she’s chasing around three very messy boys and an equally messy husband (not all at once!) Tunit has a background in interior design and is a member of the National Association of Productivity & Organizing (NAPO). She and her family currently reside in New Jersey.

www.theprojectneat.com | 908-770-7727 | instagram.com/TheProjectNeat