May 30, 2018

It's that time of year again, the blossom has bloomed, the flowers are sprouting and everyone is beginning their spring cleaning, including myself. Now that the dark winter nights are fading away and the weather is getting warmer, it's a good place to start de-cluttering and reorganising your home, but where do you start? Well that's all on personal preference, my advice would be to start on the room that you feel needs the most attention. Here's the current plan that I'm following and the trick is to be really strict with yourself, you do want that fresh spring feeling after all!

How cluttered is the room? Find the room that needs a good tidy and de-clutter, once you begin to tidy up, the rest will follow and you'll start to notice a huge difference, this could be the kitchen or the living room. For me, the bedroom always seems to be the worst due to the amount of clothes lying around, bits and bobs all over the place and the atrocities that have beens stashed under the bed. 

Begin with your clothes - I recently wrote a blog post about changing my style and wanting to donate/sell the clothes I no longer wanted - Separate them into piles "Get rid", "Keep" and "Maybe". BE STRICT WITH YOURSELF. If you don't automatically want to keep the item then it's time to let it go, don't hold on to it for the future, if you haven't worn/used it in the past six months, chances are you probably wont again. This doesn't just have to be with clothes, this can be applied with any items around the house. You don't have to go hardcore minimalist, just minimise the amount of things you have around the home. Not only is this good for your home, but it's also good for your mind. Being in an environment that is clutter free and where everything has its own place can make you feel relaxed and at ease, plus it makes it so much easier to keep the home clean and tidy. LESS IS MORE! 

Now that you have minimised your clutter, it's time to begin tidying! Having storage space is a total life saver if you have it, but I live in a small apartment with only a cupboard for space (mostly taken up by the boiler) it's currently a replica of Monica's cupboard from 'FRIENDS', which I will eventually get round to sorting out. So finding other ways to store your items can be tricky, however I found that a chest of drawers, desks, shelves and wardrobes have been a blessing. 

Still, it's not much storage, so having less clutter is beneficial if you don't have much space. For under bed storage, I suggest buying some boxes or tubs in order to store items that you have no space for, it's handy I assure you. Find a place for everything, that way when your home gets messy, you know exactly where to store your items when they are mislaid. Sometimes it's hard to tidy up when you have no idea where to put things or how to arrange them, this is where Pinterest comes in because you can get so much inspiration and can search for pretty much anything. 

Make sure that you keep on top of your tidying as it's so easy to let things get out of hand if you neglect them, but once you get into the habit you won't be able to stop and it's so rewarding to see a clean and tidy home.

Probably my favourite part of the process, I'm a clean freak and as much of chore as it is, it's my secret guilty pleasure. You don't have to clean every single day, although you can if you want to, but twice a week should be a bare minimum. Make sure you have the correct products for the room you're cleaning, it's a lot more vital than you think it will be. Here is a list of products I use for each room:

Antibacterial spray, kitchen roll to wipe down surfaces
Antibacterial kitchen wipes, for the oven
Brush/broom to sweep the floor
Floor cleanser for mopping the floor

Antibacterial bathroom wipes
Toilet bleach
Brush/broom to sweep the floor
Floor cleanser for mopping
Glass cleanser for the shower and mirror

Bedroom/Living room:
Antibacterial wipes
Glass cleanser for the TV, iMac, Mirror and Windows
Frebreze furniture spray

This is where you can get really creative, depending on your style or way of living this will always vary. I'm a mixture of minimalism/vintage/bohemian, so I try to incorporate elements from all of them and somehow they always seem to work out. Again, Pinterest is great for room decor and inspiration and more often than not there will be links to where you can purchase the items you see.

My advice would be to play around with your layout and furniture, you may find that now you have had a good spring clean, you have a lot more room to work with. Although it can be rather pricey, I often look at Urban Outfitters (they also have a pinterest account) for little trends/inspiration I can use around the home. That's not to say now you have spring cleaned you can go out and replace it with all new furniture (although that's entirely up to you) but perhaps you now have some extra space and have seen a coffee table you liked on Pinterest, have a browse around some charity shops, flea markets, discount stores, warehouses etc. You can find amazing deals. Likewise, you can always DIY a lot of items you see to make your home look more minimal and less cluttered but still stylish. 

Making your home smell fresh and spring like can really enhance your mood and the vibes in your home. This can be anything from candles, to reed diffusers, air fresheners or even and a plug in! Try to go for smells that reflect the season, at the moment I'm really loving floral/grassy smells (despite having terrible hayfever) blossom, lavender and lily are just some of my favourites! If you choose to opt for candles, I recommend buying a soy wax candle as there aren't any harmful toxins or chemicals that pollute your home when you burn it. You don't want to have put in all the hard work of spring cleaning, only to fill your home with potentially harmful toxins. 

More often than not, our moods can often be associated with certain smells, so buying spring fragrances can really lift your spirits. This doesn't have to necessarily involve going out and buying a candle etc. You could buy or pick a bunch of flowers (lily's are amazing for their fragrance!) likewise if you want a more long term solution, you can purchase an indoor potted plant such as roses or lavender.

TIP: I've not used any myself, but potpourri is very fragrant and it also looks cute with the right decor. You can even DIY potpourri from old flower petals mixed with spices, which I am intrigued to try!

To Conclude
You don't have to complete a room a day, you can spend up to a week per room if you have the time. Just have some dedication and remember that the end result will be worth it, even if it takes a month or two. You can also spring clean at any time you like, it can be the middle of November, a good spring clean can work in any season! 

I always feel peaceful and relaxed when my home is clean, tidy and clutter free, which is why I try to keep on top of the mess as and when I can. We're only human and don't live in a show home, so of course things won't always be as spic and span as you'd like, don't let that stress you though, sometimes it's good to just let a small mess build up, that way you can get the joy of cleaning! Or maybe that's just me? Either way, it's like the famous saying goes "tidy home, tidy mind". There are a handful of books that I'm looking forward to read on this subject, but I've yet to start reading them. I'll be sure to talk about things further when I have, though.

Whilst finalising this post, I have already made a list of extra jobs that I need to do, that's my brain for you. Constantly working and making endless amounts of lists and chores for me to complete! All of which will be added in future posts, so please stay tuned for more of my tips and advice. Oh, and Happy spring cleaning, everyone! 

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