How to clean and declutter your wardrobe for the new year with the KonMari method


By Joan Kong

How to clean and declutter your wardrobe for the new year with the KonMari method

It’s been a year since Netflix released ‘Tidying Up with Marie Kondo’, a show where organisational guru Marie Kondo gives clients’ home a clutter-free makeover, and since then, the 35-year-old went on to grow her KonMari empire. First, by launching her first children’s book ‘Kiki & Jax’ (that talks about friendship and—you guessed it—tidying), and most recently, a new online homeware store that were, unfortunately, met with backlash for its irony. But regardless whether you like her or not, there’s no denying that her tidying tips are useful—especially if one of your New Year’s resolutions is to be more organised. And with Chinese New Year approaching end of the month, there’s no better time to start spring cleaning.

Before you groan at how tough and dreadful it will be, trust us when we say it’s simpler than you think. According to the tidying expert, the sequence to cleaning out your home should start with clothing, before moving on to books, paper, Komono (everything miscellaneous in the kitchen, bathroom, and garage), and lastly, sentimental items. And if you think tidying is just to keep your home neater, you’re wrong. It also “allows you to create a space that suits your ideal self”, and to have a better connection to your house. In one of the episodes, she also mentioned that it’s very important to have a vision, and to communicate that vision to your home.

Here are all the closet-clearing tips gathered from the eight episodes of ‘Tidying Up with Marie Kondo’:

Whether you’re opting to go down the minimalism route or to make room for something new, keep these two words in mind: spark joy. To determine what to keep depends on how your body reacts to an item, and how happy it makes you feel.

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1) Take all your clothes in the house and pile them into one big mountain. Only by doing this are you able to see how much clothes you actually have, and by experiencing the shock over the amount you have, you’ll be able to decide which items are truly necessary.

2) Hold each item and only keep those that spark joy for you. The rest? Thank them and (gently) put them away. You’ll be able to be attuned to what sparks joy for you if you start with something you’re 100% sure it brings you happiness, such as clothing that you wear all the time and obviously liked. However, you shouldn’t base your judgment solely on that. You should also consider how much you need it, and if it’s something you really want to take with you into your future.

Some tips from Marie Kondo on folding to maximise your wardrobe space:

1) It’s important to convey love to your clothes from the palms of your hands. By doing this, you will soon start to love folding.

2) Folding is not just to make your clothes smaller for storage. It’s actually an important opportunity to talk to your clothes and thank them.

3) If you don’t have enough drawers, you can opt for shoeboxes temporarily—stack them vertically to know how much space you’ll actually need.

Watch the video below for step-by-step instructions on how to fold you clothes:

How to store your bags:

Konmari method – bags


1) Do you feel that there isn’t enough space to store your bags? Try the bag-in-bag method.

2) Take out all the stuffing in the bag, and put similar sized bags inside one another.

3) Keep the handles visible to identify bags easily.

For neckties:

1) You can opt to either hang or fold them.

2) If you opt to fold it, fold in half (the back should reach the label of the tie), before folding half again and lastly, roll it up.

3)     Place all the folded ties in a box and store them in a drawer.

If you feel stuck tidying (we’ve all been there), try to change the air in the room. According to the petite Japanese guru, simply opening the windows will be effective, but apart from that, you can also light a candle, spray an aromatic room spray or light some incense to purify the room. Have fun decluttering!

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