Decluttering & Organizing Do’s and Don’ts

Today I’m here to share with you my list of Do’s and Don’ts for one of the most common new year resolutions: getting your home organized. I hope you find the tips helpful!

DON’T give up before you even start. It can be easy to look at all the clutter, get overwhelmed, decide the task is too hard, and throw your hands up in defeat. Work in chunks and keep in mind that it can take time. One-day complete overhauls like you see on TV aren’t typical. Take it one room, corner, or cabinet at a time, you’ll get there.

DO start with a vision. Have some fun tearing out pages of magazines, pinning images from design blogs, etc. to create an inspiration board of how you want your space to look, function and feel. This will not only give you motivation and get you excited about what you’ll be working towards, but it’ll give you a criteria to judge during the editing process, whether or not particular items fit into that vision and should remain in the space.


DO create sorting categories (Keep, Don’t Keep) as well as sub-categories. Keep like items together based on type, color, function, etc.

DON’T throw all unwanted items directly into the trash. Divert as much as possible from landfills by donating items that are still in usable condition and putting paper, plastics, etc. into the recycling bin (check your city’s recycling program to see what’s recyclable – it’s probably more items than you think).


DON’T talk yourself into keeping something that you already have enough of, you never use, puts you in a bad mood, doesn’t fit you, isn’t your style, and/or doesn’t serve a functional purpose for the life you have now.

DO keep items that you love, make you happy, and help you live your best life.

DON’T keep more items than what actually fit into your space.

DO work within your space means.


DON’T go out and buy organizing products/containers prior to sorting through your belongings and determining where items will “live”. Waiting will allow you to get the sizes and shapes that will maximize use of the space.

DO assign a “home” to items based on where you’re most likely to use them and how often you need to access them.

DON’T forget to label containers whose contents are not obvious.

DO use storage that will work with the existing or planned decor of your space.


DON’T bring any unnecessary items into your space. That means thinking twice prior to purchasing something new, skipping the “free gift”, putting a stop to the junk mail, etc.

DO maintain your space. Make sure items return to their “home” each day, re-asses your belongings from time to time, and adapt your space as your needs change.

image credits: 1-via glitter guide, 2-via pinterest, 3-via apartment therapy, 4-scan from harper’s, 5-via fab sugar, 6-via glitter guide, 7-domino
*Originally published and written for La Dolce Vita Beautifully Organized Series
This entry was posted in decluttering, decluttering strategies, organization. Bookmark the permalink.
  • Amanda

    Going to have to come check this out!

  • Aleksandra

    I can’t wait to check this out also!

  • http://www.ordermatters.com/blog Oksana @ Order Matters

    Useful and to the point suggestions, Arianna. Thx.

  • Clara Turbay

    Awesome ideas put together i find here.

    http://paquetevistasbien.blogspot.com

  • http://lavitapetite.com/ Lavitapetite

    I just found your blog, thanks to your sweet comment. I am also knee-deep in a de-cluttering frenzy. I think it’s fate that we have found one another :) Great post!

  • MWest

    The tips you’ve cited are truly simple to follow and practical. Every house owner definitely needs some reminding when it comes to organizing. Being in a closets Bergen company, some individuals think they have no more storage space when in fact they have more things than they actually need! Organizing is an important step in assessing what type of cabinet or storage is needed. Thanks for sharing, it can help a lot of closet owners out there for sure.