Frequently Asked Questions
If you have any questions which are not covered here, please do not hesitate to contact me. Or, book in a Free Consultation. During this 30-minute video call we’ll talk about why and what you’d like to tidy, how I can help you, and you can ask any questions you might have.
What happens during a Tidying Session?
A Tidying Session can take place in-person (home visit) or virtual (via video call). During Tidying Sessions we go through your belongings category by category, and you decide which items to keep/discard. I help you with the decision-making process by asking you questions. Once you’ve decided what you’d like to keep, we look at the best way to store and organise your items.
Which areas do you cover?
I live in south east London, on the border of Lewisham and Greenwich, in between Blackheath and Deptford (my postcode is SE10 8FN). Included in my fees are travel time and costs for travel up to an hour each way, by public transport or bicycle. I’m happy to travel further afield, but a surcharge may apply if you live further away. Please contact me to discuss this. Sessions via video call are also always an option.
How many hours will it take to declutter and organise my home?
The number of hours/sessions that someone needs differs from person to person, because each home and each person are different. Examples of factors that may affect the number of hours/sessions required are the size of your home and volume of items to be addressed, your pace in determining what ‘sparks joy’ (e.g. deciding what to keep/discard), your preparation before each session, and the amount of tidying you do independently following our session(s). Please note that it’s not required to do any decluttering and organising by yourself prior or between sessions, if you don’t want to do this.
I offer free 30-minute Consultations. Before we start your first Tidying Session, we will first have this 30-minute video call, during which we can discuss how many hours/sessions you might need.
Will I need to do any decluttering by myself, prior to the first session or in between sessions?
You don’t need to, but if you wanted to do this, you are very welcome to. At the end of each session, we could discuss what ‘homework’ you’d like to do prior to the next session. If you don’t do your ‘homework’, that is not an issue whatsoever, as we can simply continue where we left off. Please do not feel obliged to do anything on your own.
Can I do something else (work, meet a friend, go shopping) whilst Tidylicious declutters and organises my home?
I cannot declutter and organise your home without you, because only you can decide which items you’d like to keep/discard. When I help you to declutter, the focus will be on what you’d like to keep, rather than on what you’d like to discard. This gives a more positive focus and makes the process easier. I am qualified in the KonMari Method®, developed by Japanese tidying expert Marie Kondo. With this method it’s all about keeping what ‘sparks joy’ and only you know what sparks joy for you.
Will you take away the items which I am not keeping?
It is your responsibility to take away the items which you are not keeping. There are several options including selling, donating, recycling and putting it in the bin. I always recommend considering other options first before putting unwanted items in the bin. I cannot take any items to charity shops or the tip for you. If you like, I can give you tips and advice on how and where to discard items.
What is the advantage of working with a Professional Organiser, like Tidylicious?
Many people want to tidy, but never start. Or, people start but get distracted. The great advantage of working with a Professional Organiser is that you will tidy. You will set aside a certain numbers of hours of your time, in which we will work together on decluttering and organising your space. During our time together, I am there to gently keep you focused if you get distracted. Also, most people find that they let go of more items when they work with me compared to decluttering on their own. Not because I will tell you to discard items, but because I will ask you questions to explore the reasons why you’re holding onto items. Many people discover during these conversations that they can let go of more items than they initially thought. However, it’s always your decision to keep or discard any item. I’m there to help you be more confident in your decision-making, and as a result you will hold on or discard with confidence, rather than ‘just in case’ or with doubt.
Can you help with sorting out my kids’ toys?
Yes, I can. Before we do this, we’ll discuss how you’d like to go about this. You can involve the children as much or as little as you like. A middle ground could be that you make a pre-selection before involving your children. If you involve them, you might be surprised at how good they are at letting go of items. I’m a parent myself to two girls aged 10 and 5, and one boy aged 8, so I have professional as well as personal experience in decluttering toys. It’s actually after I had my children that I read Marie Kondo’s books and started decluttering and organising my own home, because with the children came an influx of ‘stuff’ and to me our home felt too messy.
Can you help with decluttering my garage/shed?
Yes, I can. The approach to decluttering and organising a garage or a shed is usually very similar to decluttering and organising a home. Based on my experience of working with a variety of people in a variety of homes (and garages and sheds!), quite good progress can be made in a home during a three hour session. However, for garages and sheds it’s usually better to book in longer sessions. Please book in a free Consultation, if you’d like to have a chat about this.
I’m worried about adding lots of stuff to landfill whilst decluttering.
When discarding items, first think about whether anyone else can use it. If so, charity shops are great to donate these items to. If not, try and recycle it. Use the bin as a last resort when discarding items. Even though you might be adding to landfill a bit when you’re decluttering your home, your attitude towards bringing things into your home will change, because you want to keep your ‘new’ home uncluttered, as you worked hard on getting it to that calm, clutter-free state. People usually become much more mindful consumers (no more buying for the sake of buying, and being less tempted by money off or multi-buy offers). So in the long term there should be less landfill.
In her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying, Marie Kondo explains this as follows:
“When you tidy your space completely, you transform the scenery around you. The change is so profound that you will feel as if you are living in a totally different world. This deeply affects your mind and inspires a strong aversion to returning to your previously cluttered state.”
How many items do I need to discard?
There is not a minimum number of items that you should discard, nor is there is a maximum number of items that you can keep. Some people declutter and their homes become quite minimalistic, but that is not what decluttering and organising with Tidylicious is about. It is about looking at all your belongings and only keeping those that spark joy (directly or indirectly), rather than keeping items that weigh you down. In her book Soulful Simplicity, Courtney Carver describes it as follows:
“When it comes to what you own, there is no magic number of items to sacrifice in order feel lighter. The magic in letting go happens you feel light, wherever that may be.”
Please note that I will never make you discard anything; the decision is always completely up to you. There is no right or wrong number of items that you should keep, nor discard. Some people are happy to keep ten books, others are happier to keep a hundred. What sparks joy for you, is what counts.
How many items can I keep?
Please have a look at the previous question ‘How many items do I need to discard?’.
I feel a bit uncomfortable letting a stranger in my home who is going through my personal belongings.
Even though I might see a lot of your personal belongings, many will just be items to me without any specific meaning. If there is anything you don’t want me to see, you could put it out of sight before our session. Also, I’ll ask for permission to open cabinets, doors, drawers, etcetera so that you are in control of what I get to see.
I have another question.
If you have any other questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. Or, book in a Free Consultation. During this 30-minute video call we’ll talk about why and what you’d like to tidy, how I can help you, and we can also discuss any questions you might have.
"Thank you so much. I’m going to sleep now with a grin of satisfaction on my face just thinking of all the tidy clothes in my closet!"
"Hester is patient but persistent. I was able to get rid of more than I thought I would and it feels great!"
"I can’t express just how much Hester has helped me so far. It is so much more than decluttering. It also helps so much to let go of the past and move on!"
"I didn’t know I could achieve so much by tidying and storing items in a different yet simple way. The time spent with Hester was both very productive and pleasant. The right comments always came at the right time and the results are amazing. It never felt so easy and effortless to keep my flat tidy, even with a child around."