How to Dig Yourself Out of a Mess (In Steps)


I have a new client who struggles in a lot of the areas we all do, creating the kind of home that is supportive of her lifestyle and reflective of who she is inside. This woman is wise. She is strong. Dynamic. She also happens to be beautiful, inside and out.

Her's chaotic, cluttered and far gone (to her own self-admition). 

BUT I still see the beauty shining through. I still see who she is and what she wants to accomplish here. There are glimpses.


When I started this business, I wrote this as my mission statement: Each one of us can and should be inspired by our most treasured space - our home.

This project serves as a reminder of that. Things are never too far gone. There is never a time to give up and pronounce that you will never have the home of your dreams. Do not be overcome by your excuses: no money, no time, no idea where to begin. Instead, look for a way. Open yourself up to the idea that your home CAN be your most treasured space where you are truly inspired. 

In ignoring your home, you are ignoring your place in the world. You are worthy of having a beautiful home. You are capable of it. Like anything, it's a process and it's not easy. But it's so worth it.

Aside from people in my life, my home is my greatest source of joy. It's a constant labor of love and an ever-changing ecosystem where I get to define and redefine who I am and how I want to live. At the end of the day, all I hope is that it's a reflection of me as a person and my family as a whole.

Here's how to attack a mess:

Roll up your sleeves. Seriously. Prepare to get dirty. Sweaty. And nearly want to give up. But don't.

Stage 1: Discard. Simple. Discard anything that does not spark joy. Repeat. This is your new mantra. Discard anything that does not spark joy. For this project, we will remove dozens and dozens of bags of stuff, maybe hundreds. 

Stage 2: Organize. This is the key in organizing your home: Group similar items by type, keep them together, and store them in one spot. So in other words, don't keep tools or crayons or whatever random object sprinkled all throughout the house because you think you need to access it from every single location. This is called laziness. Or just plain confusion. This creates unrest in the mind. Define a place for them and put them there. That way, when cleaning up there is no decisions to be made. There is a home for everything.

Stage 3. Define spaces. Now you can finally see what's there and consider how to lay out the floor plan. Don't even try until you've done steps 1 and 2.

Stage 4. Fun stuff. Use pinterest to create a mood board. Paint, shop for furniture, rugs, lighting. Now we have our plan and it's easy. 

Stage 5. Install. Call for professional help if you are able. Make a list and have someone handy come and help install lighting, hang heavy mirrors and artwork, install any electronics and hide wires, and also take care of any hardware or repairs.

Stage 6. Accessorize. Don't forget this one!!!!! It's OK to have some shelf space bare, but not all. Dress up your walls, shelves, and table tops. Accessorize in size variation and height variation, so in other words, work the room from high to low and also big to small. Remember in small, tight spaces, use something big and bold and resist the temptation to accessorize with LOTS of little things. Keep it varied.

Stage 7. Reveal. I like to have some moment of a reveal, especially for a client like this one. We have to have the "Extreme Makeover" moment of tears of joy. Oh, and we so will! 

As we roll up our sleeves and dig into this house, everything is an exciting possibility. Can't wait to share it with you all!