How to keep your New Year’s Resolution for a clutter free home in 2018

Decluttering is a little like losing weight. No matter how well you deal with your problem in the beginning, it will keep coming back unless you maintain the same mindset that led you to tidy up in the first place.

With Christmas and New Year’s parties over you are likely to now have your home back to yourselves – and in the spirit that New Year brings of starting the year as a ‘better you’, you may well have spent time tidying up and decluttering your home.  If you like the feeling that comes from having a more minimalist home that is free of mess, here are some tips on how to keep it that way so that you never have to have another moment of panic as you view a home that looks like a bomb has hit it!

Regular Maintenance

This step refers to simply keeping things the way they are by tossing junk when you realise you don’t need it, instead of stashing it in a pile that needs to be sorted over and over. Read your post as soon as it arrives and immediately bin it, shred it, or deal with it and then put it into your filing cabinet. There is no excuse for papers to be lying all over the floor, making it impossible to find them when you actually need them.

Paperwork mess makes it difficult to keep on top of things

When you buy something from the shops, put it where it is going to be kept immediately instead of setting bags on the floor and table. After the washing comes out of the tumble drier or off the line, fold it and put it away immediately in the proper rooms and drawers. And, of course, when you are getting ready for bed put your earrings, necklaces and rings away in your Little Books rather than lying around in the bathroom or on your dressing table. This all helps to save time too as, if you know where you’ve put something then you’ll know where to find it later.  As we say at Little Shop Of, “Better to look at something, than for something.” Then, when you have five spare minutes, use it to tidy and clean up anything lying around. This is how you keep mess from forming again.

Little Book of Earrings

Declutter Regularly

In addition to your regular maintenance, it is important to declutter on a regular basis. You can decide to have a serious decluttering day every three months, every six months, or just whenever your home starts looking more like a tip! Make it a serious appointment and tidy your home from top to bottom, giving yourself another clean slate to work with.

Stop Buying Unnecessary Things

One of the biggest ways you can stop clutter in its tracks is to stop buying unnecessary things. By only allowing what you need to enter your home, you will cut down on the number of items you need to clear out later. Before you buy an item, think about whether you really need it, or if it is something you will regret at a later point in time.  As William Morris once said, “Have nothing in your home that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” Wise words indeed!

Get Everyone on Board

You can’t conquer clutter alone, unless you live alone. If you are part of a family who lives together, or have roommates of any kind, you will need to make everyone a part of the decluttering team. Talk to everyone about your wishes to maintain a junk-free haven, and talk about the many benefits of living in a more minimalist way than you have been. Let the other household members know that everyone’s efforts will benefit everyone else, and that you expect cooperation and teamwork.

Decluttering is only half of the solution. In order to maintain a beautiful home, you will need to take steps to keep it that way after the original clean sweep. Use these tips to keep your home free of clutter for 2018 and years to come.

Who should you give our Little Books to this Christmas?

With less than a week to go until Christmas day (yikes!) if you’re like us you will no doubt be desperately trying to finish your shopping without having to succumb to buying something just for the sake of it! The joy of giving is always equal to, if not greater than, the joy of receiving so finding the right thing is so important. And yet that perfect gift that not only looks great, but which is useful and unusual too can prove elusive.

Well, look no further! Our Little Books are all of the above.  For any of the women in your life, from mum to little sister, from Secret Santa recipient to granny, they can be the perfect present. Below we outline the kind of people who have told us that they LOVE them and why. We hope this gives you a little inspiration – and don’t forget, when you’re buying Christmas gifts it is totally acceptable to buy something for yourself as well! Our top-selling teal Little Book of Earrings is totally on trend – go on. You know you’re worth it!

Working Women: No one wants to be late to work. And yet research we carried out at the beginning of the year showed that just under ¾ of Brits (73 per cent) are late for work up to four times a month due to time spent looking for misplaced items. And that leads to stress. Indeed, our research also showed that almost 1/3 (31 per cent) of the UK population feel anxious and depressed by a cluttered and disorganised house. Giving someone one of our Little Book of Earrings or Little Book of necklaces means they will have one less thing to worry about as they will know exactly where to find the perfect jewellery to match their outfit. Whether that gives the recipient more opportunities to get to work on time, or even a few more minutes in bed, they will thank you for it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Married/Co-habiting Women: When in a long term relationship it can often be the little things that lead to arguments. Talking to friends it is clear that one of the annoying habits that can annoy partners the most is when we take too long to get ready! And when they are pacing around as they wait for us that can take the shine out of preparing for a big night out. Hey presto – one of our Little Books can do magic in marriage relations! We can’t help you find the right outfit, but the right accessories can be found in seconds – earrings will be in pairs and necklaces tangle-free!

Teenagers: Tweens and teens tend not to be known for their tidiness. And jewellery can be yet another thing to add to the mess or lead to tears when they go missing. Gifting one of our Little Little Book of Earrings gets young ones into good habits at an early age. Plus, anything that removes the potential for stepping on an earring post when you finally break and go into their room to tidy up has got to be a good thing. Ouch!!

Women Who Love Holidays: Who doesn’t love a holiday?! However, another finding from our research was that over a third of us (39 per cent) admit that packing for holidays takes longer and is more stressful when our homes are cluttered. One of the mantras of our founder, Jackie, is ‘a place for everything and everything in its place’! Our Little Little Books not only provide the perfect place to keep your jewellery safe every day, but they are also the perfect size to pop in your suitcase. One less task when you’re trying to get ready for the off.

A Little Book of Earrings takes a trip to Goteborg

Granny: Over the years most of us build up our jewellery collections, so by the time you’re in your fifties, sixties or more it’s likely you’ll have earrings and necklaces galore. Indeed, few of us throw jewellery out as even cheaper items can have sentimental value.  As we own the patent on all of our Little Books for jewellery storage, they are unique gifts that will help Mums and Grannies keep their precious collections neat and safe. They can be ‘hidden’ on a bookshelf for added security and are sulphur tested which means items won’t tarnish.

Secret Santa: If that’s not enough reasons for you, prices start at under £15 which makes them affordable as Secret Santa presents – far more classy than a novelty mug!

Setting Up Your Own Business? Read Co-founder Jackie’s Top Tips for Success

 

How it all began: the very first Little Book prototype

They say necessity is the mother of invention and that’s certainly true in my case. The idea for the ‘Little Books’ came about when I became utterly fed up with my earrings and necklaces getting tangled, broken or lost. I searched everywhere for a product that would solve the problem and also look good on my dressing table, but nothing existed. That’s when I came up with my own solution to the problem. Simon, my husband asked a contact who made bags for television equipment to bring my concept, the ‘Little Book’ prototype, to life. The result was so effective that friends quickly began requesting their own and the idea for a business was born!

Seven years on from the creation of the first ‘Little Book’, the business continues to go from strength to strength, so much so that I sometimes get up-and-coming entrepreneurs asking me for business tips! I have three pieces of advice for anyone setting up their own business.

1. Test demand

By having samples of our product made we were able to test demand for it by persuading a local gift shop to stock a small selection. Within 24 hours they had sold out. This gave us the courage to launch the business properly and we received invaluable feedback about product formats, colours etc., which we took on board. My advice is to identify a local shop or business that reflects your own values, and whose products/services are targeted at the same audience. Then go in with some samples and just ask them to trial them! If you’re friendly, open and honest about what you’re asking them to do for you (and why), you will be surprised how supportive other entrepreneurs can be of fledgling businesses. After all they’ve been there themselves!

2. Take criticism

When you’re setting up your own business it can be easy to get carried away with how fantastic your idea is! However, you need to ensure that your own enthusiasm is grounded in reality. Listening to the opinions of others about your idea is therefore a must.  Whether it’s your partner, your family or a mixed group of friends you get round for a bottle of wine and a chat about your concept or a research company focus group – they will all have a point of view. It’s great to hear what they love about your idea, but even more important can be inviting the criticisms. This is how you spot any pitfalls that you hadn’t thought of and can tweak your offering before you launch to make sure your product really works and is the best it can be. It is always difficult to hear the negatives when you’ve invested so much of yourself in an idea, but criticism is often the best advice you’ll ever get.

3. Create something you love

You’re likely to end up living and breathing your product/service once your business is off the ground, so make sure it’s something you love! I can guarantee there will be times when you’re frustrated, stressed out and questioning everything you’re doing. But if you’ve created something you love and believe in, your enthusiasm will overcome the doubts and your drive to see your product come to life will keep you pushing on through the toughest of times. And I can assure you, it’s worth it.

Good luck!