Spring Cleaning and Organizing with Style + Dwell

With the onset of COVID-19 stay-at-home and quarantine orders, many us recognized an opportunity to go full-Marie Kondo or get into Swedish death cleaning mode. Others may have been already overwhelmed with setting up home offices, helping with online schooling, and just managing the day-to-day of a new life at home without adding decluttering to the to-do list.

For those of us who still have spring cleaning projects, it’s Style + Dwell to the rescue. “Now is a great time to get a start on your spring cleaning and organizing,” affirms Ashley McCarthy, co-founder of the home organizing business. “Our clients say that cleaning and organizing their homes is therapeutic and a great distraction during this time, and we completely agree. There is something about feeling organized and prepared that lightens our mood and actually helps us be more productive during the day.”

“With summer on the horizon, there are a few key areas of the home that we love getting ready for the season,” she adds. “Understandably, even though we are at home more, it doesn’t mean we have more time. Don’t feel like you have to complete these projects all in one day. Work at them a piece at time, a little each day until they are complete.”

Let’s get started.

Small Projects

Linen Closets: “Sorting through your linen closet is a quick organizing project that makes a big difference,” McCarthy says. “Using labeled baskets to store and organize towels, linens, and other items makes everything more accessible, and easier to put away and stay that way!”

Desk + Junk Drawers: “Drawers that become a catch-all need to be sorted through periodically. Dispose of pens that no longer work, along with receipts, miscellaneous hardware, and other items that you no longer need. Only keep items you use most frequently. Use divided organizers to keep everything in its place.”

Under the Sink: “This highly neglected area is an easy space to organize! Take everything out and give the cabinet a good scrub. Consolidate (and discard when necessary) the sponge collection and multiple bottles of half-empty counter cleaner. Dedicate a plastic container to dish cleaning products, and another to general cleaning.”

Baseboards: “Grab a sponge and scrub your baseboards; you’d be amazed how much grime collects on these things!”

Kitchen Appliances

Refrigerator: “Take EVERYTHING out,” McCarthy says. “Wipe down the shelves, remove the drawers, and give them a good soak in dish soap and water. While you’re at it, discard any expired foods or condiments.”

Stove: “If you have a gas stove with grates, remove the grates and put them in the sink. Make a thick paste of baking soda and water and coat all surfaces. Let it sit for 20 minutes. Using a cloth, scrub off any residue and rinse under warm water. Electric burner drip pans? Usually these can be tossed in the dishwasher. If there is some seriously baked-on grease, Kitchen Magic Erasers work wonders.”

Oven: “Create that same baking soda paste and let it sit inside your oven floor and glass for an hour. Use a cloth to remove the baked-on grease.”

Patio Furniture: “Even with covers on, furniture still collects dust and dirt,” McCarthy says. “Use your garden hose to spray down your tables, chairs and other outdoor furniture. Wipe them down with a cloth to remove any stubborn dirt. If you didn’t wash your cushion covers before putting them away for the winter, now is the time.”

Larger Projects

Windows: “For a streak-free clean, use a vinegar and water solution and wipe down all the glass surfaces,” she advises. “Take a damp rag and wipe down the screens as well, or remove them and spray them down with your outdoor hose. For drapes and curtains, vacuum and/or have them laundered. Dust and wipe down blinds.”

Cabinets: “This project can be completed over several days. Take everything out, and wipe down the shelves and cabinet fronts. Use this as an opportunity to sort through your items to make sure you’re only keeping what you currently use.”

Garage: “Our garages get quite the workout. Between leaves, snow, salt, sand, and mud, they deserve a good clean-out in the spring. If you haven’t invested in a power washer, now is the time…or find a neighbor who has one. Sweep out your garage stalls, vac, then give them a good pressure wash. Getting winter’s salt and dirt off your garage floor will prevent it from coming into your house. Make sure lawn mowers, trimmers, etc. get in for a tune-up as well.”

Final words of advice from McCarthy? “Remember, don’t try to tackle these projects all at once! Start small, and work your way through to a clean and organized home.”

Photos courtesy Style + Dwell

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