I don’t know about you, but I love a good tidy.
Not only is it deeply rewarding - that feeling of a clean and organised house is a highly satisfying one - but I also find it to be a really therapeutic way to spend a few hours (does that make me sound mad?).
Every year, as the Spring rolls around, we see all these budding plants and signs of life, which represent a new start and fresh beginnings. As such, for so many of us, the first few days of the Spring have always been synonymous with the concept of a ‘Spring clean’.
It’s a chance to get rid of all the slobbing and slovenliness that we associate with Winter (as fun as that is at the time), and get the house ready for the brighter evenings and the general business that comes with the longer days and more active lives.
This year, the annual Spring clean is more important than ever. This is because - as with the rest of the seasons - we’ll all be at home far more than usual. So, we want to do our bit to make the space uplifting, and a pleasure to be in. If nothing else, thi is a great way to lift our spirits for the last few weeks that remain of lockdown.
So, we’re really going all out with this tidying malarkey.
In this blog post, we’ve actually provided you with a two-part series. These pieces are designed to give you a complete guide to how you can deep clean, declutter and get your home organised this Spring.
In part one of these blogs, we’ll be covering:
- Our top decluttering tips
- Airing your home
- Products to add to your shopping list
1. Our top decluttering tips
First things first, let’s get all your possessions sorted. After all, there’s no point getting everything clean before you decide whether or not you’re going to keep it all.
Decluttering is a bit of a daunting task - it can be a job that’s both physically and mentally draining, and if you’re guilty of a little bit of hoarding, the volume of things to get through can be overwhelming.
But, it’s one of the easiest ways to feel like a weight has been lifted. It’s a chance to get your whole home sorted and managed, which will not only make it look better, but help you to enjoy being in it more.
So, below, we’ve rounded up our top 20 tips to help you tackle your clutter. Don’t worry, we’re here to help make this task a far less challenging one.
- Work on one room at a time. That way, it will feel a lot less daunting.
- Split things into three piles - ‘definitely don’t want’, ‘maybes’, and ‘definitely keep’ piles.
- Come back to the ‘maybe’ pile after a few hours, with a clear head. Make sure that you have time to think about these things, as this will stop you from regretting giving anything away.
- Storage boxes at the ready - anything that you don’t want can go straight into a storage box, ready for you to either sell, recycle, or donate to a charity shop (simply throwing it in the bin should only be a last resort, if none of the above apply).
- Check your bookshelves - will you realistically ever read them again? If not, and they hold no sentimental value, then a charity shop will be delighted to have them.
- Repeat the step above for your CDs and any old videos. After all, will you realistically ever use these again?
- Do you have a big pile of old magazines or newspapers? If you’re not going to sit and read these, recycle them.
- Think about what you can put in the loft. This can be a great way to make some room, without having to part with things that hold sentimental value. But, this shouldn’t be an excuse to just keep everything.
- Create more storage space - this could be anything from an extra pen pot, to a plastic folder for your odd paper receipts.
- Think about your clothes carefully. If you aren’t excited to wear it, and you haven’t worn (or even thought about) it for a long time, then pop it into the charity bag.
- Sort through your bits of paper. These can be found dotted all over the house. Most likely, they’ll be old to do lists or reminders, that you don’t even need any more.
- Ask your children to think about their toys, encourage them to tell you if they’re now too grown up for something.
- Check out your bathroom supplies. Think about what products you don’t ever use, or don’t particularly like. You could either give these to a friend, or empty the contents and recycle the packaging
For the kitchen’s clutter:
- If you have any old or outdated gadgets that you’ll never use again, either donate them to a charity shop, or take them to a specialist recycling centre.
- Tidy your carrier bags. Either fold them in a cupboard, or invest in a carrier bag holder (these are readily available online).
- Organise your recipes - create a designated folder for any cut-outs or notes that you’ve written down.
- Group together all the bits and bobs. These could be batteries, pens, sticky notes, or little fiddly pieces. Collect them into specific Tupperware boxes, and add a label on top.
- Organise your spice rack (and make sure you know what’s what!).
- Create more systematic storage space. This will help to keep your cupboards sorted, even after your Spring cleaning session is over.
- Use the FridgeCam to help you keep track of your supplies. We’ll be covering this point in more detail in part 2, so stay tuned.
2. Let the fresh air in
Now that your space is all clear and decluttered, the next step is to give the house a good airing.
Not sure what this means? It’s quite an old fashioned term, and it’s one that we hear a lot, but many of us aren’t actually sure what the step requires of us. In essence, it’s a way of bringing fresh air into the house. This will help to reduce the build up of moisture, damp, dust or generally stale air. By bringing more clean air into your home, it will feel fresher and cleaner, and also help to limit the build up of any illness associated with mould, and improve the condition of your home, too.
To air your house on a warm day, don’t open your windows at the hottest point of the day. Instead, wait till the early morning or the evening. At this time, leave the windows wide open. You should try to open windows at the opposite sides of your house, as this will create an air flow, and so will make the airing process much quicker. Also, keep all of your doors open, so that the air can travel throughout the house.
You could consider investing in window vents, as these are a great way to keep your home filled with clean air throughout the year. But, it all depends on whether you are willing to pay for this addition.
We would also recommend that you buy a few little potted plants for your home. These take in carbon dioxide from within your home, and release oxygen, thereby creating far more natural, cleaner air.
3. Products to add to your shopping list
Now, we’re almost ready to get started on the cleaning. But, before we get cracking, we need to make sure all our supplies are in order.
So, below we’ve created a little guide to the resources that you’ll need to buy for your big deep clean session.
- Rubber gloves
- A mop
- A pack of cleaning cloths (you can get some great biodegradable versions of these at the supermarket, too)
- An old toothbrush (for getting into little grooves)
- A surface cleaning spray
- Floor wipes / a bottle of floor cleaner
- Anti-bacterial wipes
- Glass wipes / polish spray
- Dishwasher tablets
- Washing up liquid
- Bin liners
- A good vacuum cleaner
- A dependable kettle
There are also some great eco-conscious options in this list, to help you make sustainable choices when you shop.
For example, in all of the wet wipes that we’ve listed below, most supermarkets offer biodegradable versions of these products, which we would highly recommend. So be sure to look out for clever alternatives like these.
For the last point, a good kettle might not necessarily be the first thing that you think of when it comes to a spring cleaner tool, but believe us when we say that it’s one of the best helping hands that you can get.
With an iKettle on hand, you’ll be able to give your house a thorough clean far more efficiently. This is because this smart kettle can be boiled remotely, via the Smarter app on your phone.
So, when you need to heat up some water for your mop bucket, or you need some piping hot water to wipe down the kitchen counters with, you can simply tap a few buttons on the app. This way, you can continue with the cleaning task that you’re currently on while the water is heating, then the kettle is ready for you to use when you start with the next step. All without you having to abandon the task that you’re on.
Plus, the intelligent temperature control function means that you can heat the water to a point that’s hot enough to eliminate germs, but not so hot that you scald your hands when using the cloth.
So, if you need a little extra Spring clean helper, be sure to check out the Smarter online store, where you can order an iKettle for your home.
Written by Josephine Walbank