Spark Joy by Marie Kondo was one of my February Favorites, and now I wanted to share a more in-depth review as well as an account of my tidying experience.
As I stated in my favorites post, I watched a few episodes of Tidying Up with Marie Kondo on Netflix, which inspired me to start my own tidying campaign. I knew I would need help going through the tidying process, so I decided to get the e-book of Spark Joy to help. Spark Joy is an illustrated guide that takes you step-by-step through the KonMari Method. The main objective of the KonMari Method is to keep the items that spark joy for you while discarding the rest. The first section of the book contains tips from how to choose items that spark joy to how to store them. This section was useful as it addressed frequently asked questions about the tidying process. The next section was all about the five categories of the KonMari Method including how to tidy clothes, books, papers, komono (miscellaneous), and finally sentimental items. As I mentioned, the book went step-by-step on how to tidy the items in each category and how to store them. The illustrations were especially useful for the clothing section as it was easy to follow along with how to fold all the different types of clothing from shirts to socks. The last section of the book summed up the tidying process and the changes that could happen when you finish your campaign. It was nice reading about how tidying has changed other people’s lives for the better.
In general, the writing was easy to follow, and the illustrations were so cute and helpful. The book took around two weeks for me to finish reading and that is because I started reading the clothing, books, and papers categories before I started my tidying campaign. When I finished tidying those categories, I read the komono and sentimental categories as well as the rest of the book. If you are planning on starting your own tidying campaign, I definitely recommend picking up this book as it will help you along your journey.
Overall, Spark Joy by Marie Kondo is a useful step-by-step that explains how to tidy your home using the KonMari Method.
$17.26 at Book Depository
My Tidying Experience
Now for my tidying experience! After I was inspired to start my tidying campaign, I asked my boyfriend to watch one episode of Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, and he agreed. After the episode I asked him if he would be willing to tidy with me, and he said he would like to as he had a bunch of clothes he wanted to go through. We planned for the following weekend to start our tidying campaign, and that is when I read the first three categories of the KonMari Method. When the weekend came, I told my boyfriend to pile ALL of his clothes on the bed and go through them one-by-one and sort them by keep, sell, donate, and throw away, and I did the same thing with my clothes. When I was done tidying my clothes, I folded them following the directions in the book and stored them in my drawers of the wardrobe. I worked on tidying my daughter’s clothes. By the time I finished tidying most of her clothes, my boyfriend was done tidying his clothes and we moved onto books.
We followed the same method of piling ALL of our books into separate piles (one pile for my books, another for my boyfriend’s books, and the last pile for my daughter’s). We then went through our separate piles and kept the books that brought us joy and put the rest in a donate pile. I had one shelf of books for me, my boyfriend had a shelf for his, and my daughter had a book stand for hers. I also had a bunch of cookbooks that I decided to place in one of the kitchen cabinets as a recommendation by Marie Kondo. The last category we tackled that day was papers. Again we put all the papers we found at that time into a pile and went through them. Marie Kondo suggests having the mentality to discard ALL papers because if you do not, you will keep papers that you do not necessarily need. Of course we kept necessary papers, but we discarded around 95% of the papers we had. After we finished tidying the papers, we planned for the following weekend to begin komono. Between this time I finished reading the rest of Spark Joy.
The next weekend came and I decided to tackle my makeup and skin care first while my boyfriend tidied his skin care and cologne. My boyfriend also tidied electronics as he knew what random cords we needed to keep. First I started with my makeup and discarded all my old makeup and makeup that was poor quality. I followed Marie Kondo’s tip and stored my makeup in compartments separated by the type of makeup (eyeshadow, lipstick, blush, etc) on one of the shelves of the wardrobe. After I finished tidying my makeup, I did the same with my skin care and stored them by face and body skin care products and placed them on a separate shelf in the wardrobe. When I finished tidying my makeup and skin care, I decided to help my daughter tidy her toys. Even though my daughter is only 3 years old, she was able to help in tidying. First we put her old baby toys in a trash bag to give to other kids then we moved onto her stuffed animals. She put the animals she wanted to keep in her toy chest and the rest in the trash bag. We then put her Barbie dolls together in a box, and her items for her baby doll in another box. We then moved onto her smaller toys, and I put them on the floor in front of her and gave her a box and told her she can fill up the box but then the rest she will give to the other kids. My daughter went through her toys and put the ones she wanted to keep in the box. Before we knew it we tidied all of her toys and had a trash bag filled with toys to give to other kids. The next day I decided to tackle the closest that was filled with random things. I first started with the towels then linens and folded them following the directions in Spark Joy. I then sorted through our holiday decorations and placed them on the top shelf. I ended up finding more of my boyfriend’s books in the closet and he went through the tidying process of these books and I stored them on one of the shelves in the closet. Another category I tackled in the closet was all of my daughter’s old clothes that filled several Ikea bags. I separated the clothes by which can be sold, donated, and thrown away. After I completed the sorting of my daughter’s old clothes, the closet looked so much neater and you could actually walk into it!
Throughout the following week, I decided to tackle the kitchen. I am the one who mainly cooks so I decided it was appropriate that I went through the kitchen. I started with the dishes (plates, bowls, cups, mugs, etc.) followed by the tupperware. I kept all the dishes and discarded the tupperware that we did not use. I then tidied the silverware, pots and pans. Again, I did not discard anything, but I found better storage solutions. For example, we had sharp knives in one of the cabinets since we could no longer keep them in the silverware drawers because my daughter could reach them, so I bought a knife block for them. I then tackled the tea and food in the pantries. I threw away all expired food and stored the rest in categories like breads, pasta/rice, canned goods, baking goods, and spices. Once I finished storing the food, I was done tidying the kitchen.
As of now there are only a few komono categories to finish. When I was tidying, I found sentimental items that I decided to keep in a small box in my wardrobe. Even though I am not 100% done with the KonMari Method, I definitely feel a difference in the atmosphere of our apartment. At first I felt overwhelmed with all the stuff we had, but now I feel happy that I only have items that bring me joy, and every item has a home instead of being shoved into a random drawer or on a shelf in the closet. If you do not want to go through the whole KonMari Method for yourself, there are little steps you can take to declutter your home, and you can read At Live The Easy Life’s post on The Easy Way to Minimise Clutter in Your Home for more information.