TUPELO – For Lisa Kimes, there’s really no such thing as spring cleaning. That’s because nothing has a chance to get out of place at Kimes’ Saltillo home.
“I don’t have clutter at my house because I did a major de-clutter three years ago and I don’t miss a thing,” said Kimes, a professional organizer of personal space. “I know everything I own. I know where everything I own is.”
The former tap, jazz and ballet teacher said she’s always had a knack for organizing.
“When I was a teenager, my friend’s mom would always leave a drawer partially open when I’d visit and I’d get so excited,” she said. “And I’d say, ‘Mrs. Turner, would you mind if I straightened out that drawer?’ and she’d say, ‘Go ahead.’ I know she left them open on purpose.”
Disorganization can rob people of everyday joy, Kimes said.
“Excess is not a happy thing,” she said.
Kimes offered a few tips for people trying to get rid of, or prevent, clutter in their homes.
“If you don’t use it, wear it, love it, or have a place for it, get rid of it,” she said. That’s her mantra.
The worst offenders, in her opinion, are paper and clothes.
“Don’t bring junk mail into your house,” she said. “Throw it in the trash as soon as you take it out of the mailbox. That will eliminate a lot of paper.”
As for clothes, we all we have too many, she said. Some don’t fit us anymore. Some are out of style. Some are duplicates.
She suggested keeping in your closet only the clothes you wear now, the ones that fit. Put all like clothing colors together, all your pants together, all your skirts together. Remove old sizes and, if you just can’t bear to get rid of them, put them in plastic tubs in your attic.
“If you know your body style, you only need about four colors and 18 pieces,” she said.
64 pair of white socks
Sometimes, people don’t realize just how much unnecessary stuff they have, Kimes said. When she visits clients, she’s very frank with them.
“Because I don’t know these people – I’m not their family or friend – I can say, ‘How many pair of white socks do you really need?’ This one lady had 64 pair of white socks and she didn’t even play tennis. I took out 14 pair for her and hauled the rest to the Sanctuary Village Shoppe. That’s where I take everything people don’t want or need anymore.”
Sanctuary Village Shoppe is a thrift store on South Gloster. All proceeds go to the Sanctuary Hospice House in Tupelo.
Kimes organizes basements, attics, drawers, offices, kitchen cabinets and pantries but her favorite thing to work on are closets, because people use them daily.
“You either have the organizing gene or you don’t,” she said. “I thought everybody had it. I haven’t found anything I couldn’t make better by organizing it.”
Ginna Parsons/NEMS Daily Journal