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Konmari De Rigeur

Have you heard of it? A method of tidying up and organizing made famous by a Japanese cleaning consultant named Marie Kondo, this approach to simplifying and decluttering spaces has folks purging their hoarder homes category by category, and keeping only the possessions that "spark joy" in their lives.

I have friends who swear by this method and have read Kondo's book cover to cover. Their own tidying journeys have been inspiring and I am happy that they have found an approach that fits them.  In all honesty, though, I did not read the book. I only skimmed the free excerpt, where she describes her belief that everything must have a designated place, and details her unsettling routine of talking to (or thanking) her belongings and clothes before putting them away, every day, upon her return from work. It was only a brief glimpse into the book, so I can't determine with any certainty if Kondo really is that uncanny valley, or if she is actually just a normal, extra-tidy human being with lots of time on her hands. 

Regardless, I'm not really interested in reading her book nor using categories to organize my stuff. My brain cannot process the "spark joy" standard as a legit and workable measure of what possessions I should keep or donate. And based on that brief blurb I read, Kondo must not have any children or a husband, or if she does, they must be really ...ahem... different.

Anyway, suffice to say that I'm not qualified to review the book that I didn't actually read, so I won't. 

I will, however, tell you about how the "Konmari Method" of folding clothes has revolutionized my dressers and drawers. The change has been so drastic that even Hubbs, who doesn't usually notice or even remember where I always put his clean workout towels, took note and commented on how awesome this new way of folding was! 

So what's the big deal? Go Google "Konmari folding method" and then come back, so that I don't have to describe it in detail to you. I decided to try sorting my chaotic underwear drawer using the Konmari technique and storing my socks and undies "vertically". After I was done, the drawer looked so tidy and spacious  that I decided to konmaritize the rest of my drawers. Everything from Tshirts and shorts to socks and bras and yoga gear got refolded and stacked "upright."It was blissfully liberating to tidy it all up. I did 9 drawers in about 2 hours, and I was flying high! Behold the fruit of my labours:

Anyway, I was originally skeptical as to whether the fold would hold for stuff like my Hubbs' bball shorts, which are made of soft, slippery material that tends to get unfolded the moment I move them. Nope! Her folding technique is universal for most articles of clothing (save for bras) and makes everything look like a little flat (or slightly puffy, in the case of sport socks) fanny pack. 

Does it take longer to fold it her way? Yes. Oh my goodness yes! But does it save space? It has for us. The bonus is that we can now see everything when we open the drawers, not just the items at the top of the pile. This is huge for Hunbs, who has a way of forgetting that he owns certain clothes until he sees them again. In sight, in mind!! 

I have yet to go to the next level with Konmari (eg., my walk-in closet and the shelves therein) but let's just say we are in the early stages of getting to know each other. And while I may not be doing it by the book, I think that even adopting these few simple folding and tidying principles has really "sparked joy" in my life, since I am deriving great pleasure from opening my neatly sorted dressers now! And as a weird bonus for this Type A, it has also renewed my drive to do laundry, since I look at it as a challenge to fill those drawers. I'm weird like Kondo, I guess! ;)


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