Most people are deft at giving their living areas a quick once over before friends pop around, feigning the appearance of everything being under control.
However behind closed doors - kid's bedroom, office, bathroom and laundry doors specifically - the chaos of life can often be truly revealed.
So how do you keep order in these frequently used spaces? Luckily, professional organising and decluttering expert Anita Birges has come to the rescue with this helpful advice.
What are your top tips for keeping your kids' room clean?
It is important to have a designated place for everything. Whether it is clothes or toys, everything needs to have its place. My tips include:
- Declutter your kid's clothes and toys two to three times a year. The perfect times are before a birthday, before Christmas and when the seasons change (for example, changing from a summer to winter uniform and vice versa).
- Invest in cleaning appliances and tools that make life easier.
What are your top decluttering tips to set up an ideal workspace?
The first step is to evaluate your requirements for working. What is essential to your workflow? What inspires you and what makes you comfortable?
Start with your drawers: Your desk drawers are the first place you are going to start.
Store your office supplies: This is the first place that can end up in a mess. Take some time to evaluate and prioritise them by importance and ease of access.
Keep your most essential supplies in the top drawer, on the side of your dominant hand, and work down from there: You will be surprised how much time you save when the things that you really need are close at hand.
Most importantly, the best advice I can give you is to set aside the last five minutes of every day to clear your workspace.
Rest assured, once you get started with this habit, it will take far less than five minutes. Trust me, your morning you will thank you.
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What are the new storage trends for the bathroom and laundry?
When it comes to your bathroom, the hottest trend right now is storage under your bathroom sink.
Either using pull-out drawers or shelving that fits around your pipes makes all the difference when trying to access any of those bathroom items.
The hottest trend in your laundry right now is to install a drying rail or rack. You can install one of these easily by attaching it underneath a laundry cupboard or on the back of the door.
It is such a great alternative if you do not have the space for those big bulky airers, or for apartment living.
What are the best buys this season for storage items?
Spring is the perfect time to declutter your wardrobe and having uniformed hangers makes such an impact to your wardrobe.
Once you have decluttered, make sure your hangers are all the same! Not a mismatched mashup of wire, plastic and wooden ones. I love using velvet hangers, as they give a sleek, uniformed look and work with the material of your clothing rather than the weight of your clothing.
My top tip when buying anything as a storage solution, is to buy quality. You want to do it once and do it right.
What products help you keep things in order?
When it comes to organising, there's a few products I cannot live without.
Vacuum: I have a Samsung Jet Stick Pet and Clean Station which cleans 99.99 per cent of dust and dirt meaning a sparkling home and no more hay fever. The battery life is longer and the Clean Station means no more emptying out your vacuum dustbin and ending up with all that dirt and debris back on the floor or scattered all over the bin.
Label maker: If everything is labelled it does not matter who lives in your home, there is no excuse not to put things back where they belong.
Measuring tape: When choosing the right storage solution, you need to always measure up the space twice and buy once. A solution will only solve the problem if it can fit.