Tackle your clutter zones throughout the house

It's time to get rid of the clutter, says Peter Walsh, host of TLC's "Clean Sweep" and Oprah Winfrey's go-to organizational expert.

The kitchen

"Take the pizza rolling slicing thing and all those other items you bought for less than $5.99 that you just knew you'd always use and put them in a cardboard box," says Walsh. "Whenever you use one of the items, put it back in the drawer. At the end of the month — with the exception of the turkey baster — whatever is still in the cardboard box you've got to ask yourself, 'Will I ever use these?' "


"We wear 20 percent of our clothes 80 percent of the time," Walsh says. Which means the vast majority of your closet is filled with — you guessed it, clutter. Walsh suggests the "reverse clothes hanger trick."

"Take everything on a clothes hanger and turn it around back-to-front. For the next three to six months — you decide — every time you wear something hang it back the correct way after you launder it. Whatever is still hanging back-to-front, ask yourself: 'Will I ever wear this item?' It's an efficient, nontraumatic way to see what you wear and what you don't."


"One: Get in the habit that whenever you gas up the car, in those two minutes you declutter and throw out any trash."

"Two: Get milk crate-size containers, and put them in the way back. Whenever the kids bring something into the car — sports gear, book bags — it goes in their crate.

"Whenever you go shopping, put the groceries in the crates. Nobody leaves the car empty-handed when you get home. Everyone has to carry their crate into the house."


"Divide your garage into clear zones: one area for gardening equipment, one area for holiday decorations, one area for luggage, one area for tools," Walsh says. "Establishing zones is a functional way of keeping the place organized and the volume of stuff in control.

"Say the holiday decorations zone is three shelves that will hold two plastic totes each and that's the limit for holiday decorations. Once they expand beyond six totes, you have to do some purging and discarding."

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