How did we get this way? The trillion tote bag problem.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I hire a professional organizer?

It’s important to evaluate carefully, on your own, why you should hire a professional organizer versus why you want to. This is an important distinction.

Generally, when a person is facing a “should” in considering a hired service, it can cast a negative tone on the endeavor. Hiring an organizer is ultimately an act of self-improvement. By improving your environment, you are improving yourself.  Don’t force yourself to do it if you are not really ready, but feel you ought to. You won’t get much out of it and the commitment won’t be there to follow through on what you’ve learned about yourself.

The right conditions for hiring a professional organizer are when you are truly ready to make some important changes in how you function in your space. When you see very clearly the advantages that being organized will give you.

The person who is wary of any advantage, like someone who is forced to hire one by their partner or their therapist, will resent the session and waste their money and time.

Think of why we hire a personal trainer: They can teach us how to maximize our exercise. They make us accountable. They coach us and encourage us to do the thing we, essentially, don’t want to do.

That’s the most similar analogy I can provide.

What can a professional organizer do for me?

Ultimately, the best service a professional organizer can provide is one that helps you create a functional space that enables you to succeed on a daily basis. There is significant improvement in the quality of our lives when we portion out for ourselves time, space, light and a sense of control over our environment.

Then an amazing thing happens: the environment helps you do what you do best because it supports and assists you. Not everyone can do this for themselves or maybe they can but they don’t want to. Or maybe they are simply time starved. The reasons are plentiful.

How are you different from other organizers?

I am inspired by my love of design in nearly every field from early 19th century sawmills to bridges to interiors and typography. Scissors seem to me a splendid work of sculpture and utility. I don’t look to products or closets for the key to your perfect space. I look at history, both our human and your personal, to evaluate a perfect set up or system specific for each client.

Most important of all, I will listen to your every word because whether you know it or not, you already have a vision of how you want to live. I am there to help you uncover it and translate it to your environment.

Finally, I’ve moved 32 times and the learning, sweat and tears of that kind of frequent upheaval and instant nesting is essential in developing an eye for what ails a room.

What is a consultation like?

I’d like to say it’s like a very organized friend has come over to help you sort your stuff. However, most people are nervous and perhaps slightly embarrassed when I first arrive. This dissipates very quickly once we start working because our focus on the project is often an exciting feeling.

Even though I tell them in our initial conversation not to touch a thing, not to clean up or organize, they often do to prevent judgement. Please don’t do that. I don’t judge my clients because when I meet them and they show me around their space, all I see is the potential. Fairly quickly, I start planning how we can get there.

I always ask a client what they really want out of their space. We discuss personal obstacles, habits, ideals, inspiration, the folks they live with and their styles and habits.

After an hour, I’m able to offer a summary of the project along with a rate package. Some projects are small and require a single 4-8 hour session; others span weeks and cover weekends.

What happens in the first session?

The strategy differs depending on the space and what’s in it. First, we define a staging area where we can tackle the hardest things right away. Some piles of stuff are tougher than others. Many of the things we leave lying about are actually “things to do” or projects in progress. A pad of paper and a calendar close by will help log these things. Time can move quickly while we work. With that in mind, each session is designed to meet specific goals we set together during the consultation.

What does an organizer not do?

Generally speaking, I do not clean your home. I will help you sort through old clothes, books, or ephemera to decide what should be kept or donated. This is a process we do together or at least in tandem, each of us tackling different piles at once with you present to answer questions.

I do not do handy work, i.e. hang shelves, photos, assemble furniture, carry all your storage items from the basement to your attic. Although for large-scale projects, I can bring in a handyman to build custom shelving or storage centers.

Can you organize my home while I'm at work?

Unless you have absolutely no personal attachment to your belongings, you will not only need to be a present during our sessions, but also a willing participant. Only you can ultimately decide where and how you’ll work best.

The only exception is for estate sales, where items of personal or sentimental value have already been removed.