Organize Sentimental

How to organize sentimental items and showcase joy in your home

Why do I have so many keepsakes?

  • We hold onto items to remember and cherish the past
  • When we see and feel these items we relive moments in the past

Remember & Reframe

  • Truly special memories never die, even when we discard items associated with such events.
  • The joy and excitement of the here and now is more important than holding onto something from the past, only to forget about it.
  • The boxes we store in the attic, back of the closet, under the bed often remain there, untouched.
  • When we store sentimental items away they become a weight from our past that holds us back from moving forward in the present.
  • The space in our home is for the person we are and want to become, not who we were in the past.
  • Organize sentimental photos now and display them throughout your home or in a photo album to enjoy for the rest of your years.

The Guide to Organize Sentimental


  • Remove all photos from albums and boxes
  • Joy Check photos one by one
  • Try to keep only five photos per a trip/event
  • Very important photos don’t often have duplicates
  • Keep scenery photos when you can identify the trip/event

“The meaning of a photo lies in the excitement and joy you feel when taking it. In many cases, the prints developed afterward have already outlived their purpose.”

The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo


  • A letter fulfills it’s purpose the moment it’s read
  • The person who wrote it has long forgotten the existence of the letter, its content, and has moved on.


  • Keep it if it truly sparks joy
  • Be courageous and say goodbye if
    • you held onto this item because of a sense of guilt
    • it sparked joy in the past but doesn’t spark joy in the present
    • adds joy to who you are today, not who you were
    • the items served its purpose in your life and by letting it go, frees more space in your home and mind for today and tomorrow

Childhood Memorabilia

  • Stuffed animals feel like they have souls. They were with us in our fondest childhood memories.
    • If it sparks joy for you to hold and see – Display it on a shelf or in your closet
    • If you choose to discard a stuffed animal it helps to cover the eyes.

How to Joy Check

  • Step 1: Pile all sentimental items
    • If you have many photos, it’s okay to create a separate pile of just photos
  • Step 2: Pick one item that undoubtedly sparks joy
    • If you keep it, where will it be stored?
    • Will you display it so you can see and enjoy it?
    • Ask yourself honestly, does it bring you joy today and in the future?
    • Does this item help you cherish who you are now?
  • Step 3: Place items in Keep, Donate, or Trash
  • Step 4: Display keepsakes on walls and shelves to spark joy every day!
  • Step 6: Have the courage to let go & say thank you

Final Touches

When we display sentimental items we remember and celebrate who we were. We are also reminded of who we are now and who we strive to be.

  • Hang sentimental photos on the wall to look at it
  • Display sentimental items to spark joy daily

What sentimental item do you display proudly in your home?

Client’s receive up to 25% off at The Container Store!

“By handling each sentimental item and deciding what to discard, you process your past. If you just stow these things away in a drawer or cardboard box, before you realize it, your past will become a weight that holds you back and keeps you from living in the here and now.”

– The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo

Organize Kitchen Komono

How to organize kitchen komono & live your best life!

Why are my counters cluttered?

  • No designated forever home for categories
  • Less frequently used items left out
  • Too many items to store

Marie Kondo’s Tidy Order


  • Cooking Utensils
  • Cookware
  • Appliances


  • Dish-ware
  • Cutlery
  • Mats, Coasters, Towels, accessories etc.
  • Food Storage Containers


  • Dry goods/Canned
  • Snacks
  • Baking
  • Teas & Coffee
  • Health foods

*If there are many items in a category, create a new subcategory*

How to Joy Check Kitchen Komono

  • Step 1: Pile one subcategory at a time
  • Step 2: Check expiration dates
  • Step 3: Pick an item that sparks joy
    • How often do you use this?
    • Does this make your life easier?
    • When did you buy this?
  • Step 4: Place items in Keep, Donate, or Trash
  • Step 5: Store items by category temporarily (final storage will be at the end)
  • Step 6: Donate food/Toss expired foods in the trash

Tips to Organize Kitchen Komono

  • Take a deep breath
  • Begin the easiest subcategory to joy check
    • Example: if you love baking, start with baking supplies or baking foods
  • Store large items first
    • Fill in the gaps with smaller items
  • Let the design of your kitchen guide you
    • Example: cups stored near “coffee station”
  • Containers & Bins are your BEST FRIENDS! Try to contain each category together by placing everything in a bin. Take a step further and label!

What kitchen gadget give you joy?

“Keep things because you love them – not ‘just because'”

– The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo

Organize Komono

How to organize komono – all the miscellaneous items in your life!

Why are my drawers and cabinets chaotic?

  • No designated forever home for categories
  • Not putting things away

Marie Kondo’s Tidy Order

  • 1. CDs/ DVDs
  • 2. Stationery supplies: tools, paper-like (post-its), letter writing (envelope)
  • 3. Electronic Items (phones, camera)
  • 4. Electronic Cords
  • 5. Electric items: USB, ink cartridges for printers, batteries
  • 6. Skin care items
  • 7. Makeup
  • 8. Hair goods
  • 9. Relaxing goods: candles, essential oils,
  • 10. Hygiene care
  • 11. Medicine
  • 12. Valuables: passbook, wallets, certificates
  • 13. Sewing kit materials and cloth: thread, scissors, needles, tweezers, etc.
  • 14. Tools
  • 15. Hobby
  • 16. Collections
  • 17. “Just Because” buttons, key chains, change, phone cases
  • 18. Linen & Towels
  • 19. Stuffed Toys
  • 20. Recreation: fishing, balls, equipment
  • 21. Seasonal
  • 22. Special occasion: ceremonial, charms, ritual objects
  • 23. Rain gear
  • 24. Paper + Shopping Bags
  • 25. Consumables: tissue, toilet paper, etc.

If there are many items in a category, create a new subcategory

How to Joy Check

  • Step 1: Pile one subcategory at a time
  • Step 2: Pick an item that sparks joy
    • Does it spark joy for you today?
    • Does it weigh you down or compete with your other priorities?
    • Does it contribute to your ideal lifestyle moving forward?
    • Is it something worth keeping if you move?
  • Step 3: Place items in Keep, Donate, or Trash
  • Step 4: Store items by category temporarily (final storage will be at the end)

Facts about komono

  • Be mindful of the items you kept “just because.” See how much of this category takes up precious space.
  • Presents show someone thought of you. The gift should not be kept out of a sense of obligation, guilt, or should be stored away. Thank it for the joy it gave you when you received it and say goodbye if it is not joyful.
  • Travel toiletries have a short shelf life of a few weeks to six months at most
  • Throw away mystery cords. They’ll always be an unsolved mystery.
  • How often do you have overnight guests? If you have guests once or twice a year, be mindful of how many linens you need and keep only ones that spark joy.
  • Free, new, unused items such as calendars, etc, can be donated
  • Add spare change in your wallet so you can use it

What Komono do you need help to organize?

Clients Receive up to 25% off organizer products at The Container Store!

“Keep things because you love them – not ‘just because'”

– The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo

organize papers

Organize Papers

How to organize papers effectively

Why are papers everywhere?

  • Even in our digital age, we accumulate receipts, tags, warranties, mail
  • Papers saved over the years for events like tax season
  • Coursework we intended to refer back to from seminars/classes

The guide to success

  • Create a pending box for “to-do” items
  • Have a file folder or file box with dividers
  • Separate sensitive documents for shredding
  • Save shredding for last, shred everything at the same time

How to set up to organize papers –

  • Gather a manageable amount of papers in a pile or box. Pile an amount that is reasonable to sort through in your set timeframe.
  • Ready your supplies
    • filing cabinet/folder accessible
    • labeler or labels to write down each category
    • Recycling bin/bag
    • Shredding bin/bag
    • Pending box (to-do items)
    • phone or camera nearby
  • Create labels for subcategories. A few examples are:
    • Tax
    • Medical
    • Auto
    • Work
    • Manuals/Warranties
  • Have extra blank labels on hand for new categories you discover as you go.

How to Joy Check papers?

  • Step 1: Pile all papers on large surface
  • Step 2: Pick up papers or a binder one by one.
  • Step 3: Joy Check
    • What papers make life easier?
    • What documents are essential to keep for the future?
    • When did you last refer to these papers? (Seminars/Coursework)
    • Have you ever used this for reference?
    • Will you reference this? If so, when?
  • Step 4: As you sort, subcategorize keep papers in separate piles or a filing cabinet
  • Step 5: Separate and pile empty folders, binders, and notebooks. At the VERY END you will be able to see all of these together. This is the opportunity to joy check and pick the ones you want to keep and use!
  • Step 6: If you want to digitize your documents, I recommend to take photos at the end of each paper session rather than at the very end of ALL papers. This helps to break up the monotony of paper sorting while helping you to digitize your documents as you go.
  • Step 7: Recycle discards & shred sensitive documents
  • Step 8: Designate a home for your papers to live. Perhaps in the office or a cabinet.


  • Have a “pending box” for all incoming mail
  • Attend to your pending box regularly to avoid build-up
  • Store all papers in one spot ex. office

Need help to organize papers?

Organize Books

How to organize books successfully

The guide to success:

Always keep your ideal lifestyle in mind! As you prepare to organize books we need to refrain from reading. When we read books it distracts us from focusing on our emotions.

  • Rule 1: Take every book off the shelf
  • Rule 2: Do not open and read the books
  • Rule 3: Book trilogies can be held at the same time

Marie Kondo’s Tidy Order

  • General (books for pleasure)
  • Practical (instructional, cookbooks, etc.)
  • Visual (coffee table, photography etc.)
  • Magazines

How to Joy Check

  • Step 1: Pile all books in the entire home
  • Step 2: Pick a book that Sparks Joy – use this as an inspirational marker
  • Step 3: Pick up a book one at a time. Focus on the feeling it gives you. Think of its purpose. Ask yourself a few of the joy checking questions to make a decision.
  • Step 4: Place book in keep or donate pile
  • Step 5: Store books to keep on shelves temporarily

Joy Checking Questions

  • Do you want this information to stay by you and support you as your life changes?
  • Is the potential future use of the book equal to the value of the space it will take up?
  • Do you want this book in your ideal lifestyle environment?
  • What emotions and feelings will you enhance by having this book in your life?

Why is it hard to discard books?

  • “I might read it again.”
    • Ask yourself honestly, have you read your favorite books more than once?
  • Books are meant to be read. If you’ve read it, then the knowledge is inside of you.
  • We always have the best intentions. Have the courage to ask yourself honestly if you will read it or accept that this book has served its purpose in teaching you what you don’t like to read.
  • If you can’t commit to reading it today, most likely someday will not happen.
    • Let it go.
  • If you let go of a book and are still thinking about it, you learned that you’re passionate enough to buy another copy and read it.

What books Spark Joy for you?

“What I really wanted to keep was not the book but certain information or specific words contained.”

– The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, Marie Kondo

Organize Clothing

How to organize clothing efficiently

Why is my Closet Clutttered?

  • The closet is too full
  • Most individuals don’t know how to organize clothes

Marie Kondo’s Tidy Order

  1. Tops (shirts, sweaters, etc.)
  2. Bottoms (pants, skirts, etc.)
  3. Clothes to be hung (jackets, coats, suits, etc.)
  4. Socks
  5. Underwear
  6. Clothing for special events (swimwear, uniforms, seasonal, etc.)
  7. Bags (handbags, clutches, totes, etc.)
  8. Accessories (scarves, belts, hats, etc.)
  9. Shoes

Organize Clothing Process

  • Step 1: Pile all clothes in a subcategory
  • Step 2: Double & triple check all clothes in the subcategory are in the pile
  • Step 3: Joy Check
  • Step 4: Fold and test if it stands up right
  • Step 5: Organize by color
  • Step 6: Place vertically in temporary storage

Clothes Tips

  • Remove all tags
  • Take clothes out of package
  • Fold most clothes, hang less
  • See how to fold here
  • Donate clothes at the end


Once we Joy Check all clothes we will find a forever home for each category.

Hanging Clothes

Every person has a preference for how to display clothes

  • Organize by category: suits, dresses, coats, dress shirts, etc.
  • Organize from dark (left) to light (right)
  • Organize by length: longest (left) to shortest (right)
  • Organize by rainbow

Folded Clothes

Lightest items at the top and heaviest items at the bottom.

  • Top drawers: undergarments, socks, & accessories
  • Middle drawers: shirts, pants
  • Lower drawers: sweaters, jackets, seasonal
  • Organize from dark to light or by color


  • Store bags inside bags
  • Handles should be visible to identify bags inside
  • Cloth bags can be folded and stored vertically
  • Store bags near clothes, perhaps on the top shelf


Store shoes with the lightest items on top and heaviest items on bottom.

  • Top shelf: sandals, flip flops
  • Second shelf: heels
  • Third shelf: running shoes, walking shoes
  • Bottom shelf: boots, rain shoes

Find more inspiration from Marie Kondo