The coldest days of winter are behind us, and like the first buds of new life poking up from the earth, we stick our heads out from under our cozy blankets and start to feel the urge to be productive. It’s time to wake up, put on some fresh coffee and loud music, and get our decluttering on, especially since we’ve spent more time in our houses in the past year than all other years combined.
Of course, many of you have just spent the past year of the pandemic being your best selves, refinishing all of your furniture, canning preserves and learning five new languages. All while maintaining a spotless, clutter-free home with newly designed office and school spaces for the family. Good on you! For the rest of us, there’s New Year’s resolutions and spring fever to motivate us.
Here are some books to inspire you to refresh your living space and make you OK with staying home a while longer:
“Beautifully Organized: A Guide to Function and Style in Your Home” by Nikki Boyd. Professional organizer Boyd, who has been featured in Martha Stewart Magazine and USA Today, teaches you to transform your home into an attractive and welcoming space. Learn how to declutter to keep what is useful and meaningful, clean more efficiently, appreciate everyday tasks and organize your belongings.
“Wear, Repair, Repurpose” by Lily Fulop. Whether you’re a pro or just starting, you can reduce fashion waste and revitalize your wardrobe with easy step-by-step instructions and projects. Learn the lost art of replacing buttons, mending, embroidering over stains and more to refresh your closet with eco-conscious flair.
“Wellness by Design: A Room-by-Room Guide to Optimizing Your Home for Health, Fitness and Happiness” by Jamie Gold. Explore the connection between personal wellness and your living space. Gold illustrates in a simple room-by-room guide how easy changes to things like lighting, storage and outdoor space can make a real difference in your physical and mental well-being.
“Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up” by Marie Kondo. Kondo’s bestselling book “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up” may have inspired some wisecracks (“I threw out all the things that don’t spark joy and now I miss my kids”), but all jokes aside, this companion guide presents a unique view on how restoring order in the home brings meaning to life and relationships.
“The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning” by Margareta Magnusson. It’s not as morbid as it sounds, and Magnusson charms the reader with anecdotes about her life in Sweden, tackling her husband’s toolshed and her own secret drawer of vices. Embracing minimalism can be painless and almost fun as you get rid of unworn clothes, unwanted gifts and more, making room for things with real meaning, such as photographs and your children’s artwork.
“Happy Starts at Home: Change Your Space, Transform Your Life” by Rebecca West. Like Jamie Gold, psychology coach and interior designer West also connects personal well-being to the condition of your home. A series of self-assessment activities helps you tie the state of your home to your financial, mental and physical health, and allows you to develop a vision of a home that decreases stress and helps you feel your best. Learn what’s holding you back, buy fewer things, and redecorate so you feel happy in your space.
“New Order: A Decluttering Handbook for Creative Folks (And Everyone Else)” by Fay Wolf. Organizing expert Wolf gives you the basic rules you need to part with excess stuff and usher in new habits that free up your creativity and passions. Wolf maintains that a decluttered home fuels creativity, leading to a more fulfilled life, and it can be done in just a few minutes each day.
Once your home is nice and tidy, kick back and join us for Lunch and Learn on Fridays from 11 a.m. to noon at facebook.com/crrlnews (no Facebook account needed). Learn a new topic each week from the comfort of your newly shampooed couch.
Tracy McPeck is an Adult Services coordinator at Central Rappahannock Regional Library.