San-Marién Vogel

The effect of clutter/declutter on décor

San-Marié Vogel
17.10.19 04:22 AM Comment(s)
For some people the idea of clearing up a room is the worst punishment that can befall them; others however, understand not only the satisfaction of this exercise, but also the extraordinary difference it can make to the appearance of your home. That’s without going to the extreme of minimalism or measuring every cushion; a cleared space can give a different view of your furniture and furnishings, and actually clear your head.

But never mind opening up your mind, just think of the effects of cluttered space on the décor of your home. To be blunt, a cluttered home often means you have no décor. Well, it might be there under all the mess – but if nobody can see it, then seriously why did you bother?

The psychology of clutter

The thing with clutter is that it is as negative psychologically as it is aesthetically. The great benefit to clearing out is that you have to make decisions. Sometimes this entails staring at great-granny’s china budgie for ages while you decide on its sentimental value and how it would ever enhance your modern space. So clearing out takes time, effort and thought. When you clear out, you are essentially working to keep only what you will need. Everything else should go – leaving you with a freedom of spirit and a fresh, airy look to your home.

While clutter might hide your décor, it reveals quite a bit about your character – perhaps some aspects you would prefer people not to know. When a visitor walks into your cluttered home be assured they will have a good sense of: 

Procrastination – they will guess that you might be slow in getting things done, a fence-sitter, unlikely to keep yourself busy, somewhat unreliable, perhaps even lazy. 

Poor decision-making – living in a mess may mean you are scatterbrained, forgetful, insecure, and unable to move forward, always in I’ll get this done tomorrow mode. 

Lack of energy – being unaware of the mess around you may be an indication of lack of motivation, or even a more serious underlying health problem such as a heart issue. 

Stress and depression – if you are overwhelmed by emotional issues, the likelihood of you paying attention to your surroundings diminishes. You forget how pretty your cushions look because they’re buried under a pile of newspapers or untidy throws. Letting clutter hide your home can be a form of depression, and you should pay a visit to your doctor. 

Isolation and loneliness – sometimes clutter in the home means you are really trying to hide away. Revealing the true décor of the house would be like opening up to the truth about yourself or your situation. Lonely, insecure people often take refuge in a messy home that for them feels comfortable, familiar, reassured – it’s their stuff – but in reality this attitude can perpetuate a rut and discourage visitors. 

Career productivity – even your work can suffer even though you may be miles from your home. Unfortunately, people often take a cluttered mindset with them wherever they go, and when your company seeks a decisive, adaptable person with leadership qualities, they may not pick you – especially if you’ve had your boss to supper… 

Concern for your safety – a house with too many objects is hard to clean and as a result there may be an inordinate amount of dust lurking about, which is so often the catalyst for allergies. It’s also important to note that clutter can be a fire hazard because the more paper, magazines and general paraphernalia are lying about, the quicker flames can travel through your home.

The benefits of decluttering to décor

Light: The first thing you might notice once you have cleared your home, is that there appears to be more light. Windows may have opened up with less furniture stacked around them, and less furniture and clutter in the room allows more light to penetrate – possibly in corners where it’s never been before! Light provides a greater sense of space and lifts the mood. It highlights and complements the new order you have created, and lifts your décor into focus, adding colour and greater harmony to the layout of your room. 

Repurpose: There’s no need to throw everything away. Indeed, you might find objects you had forgotten and be able to put them to good use. An old gramophone player might find new pride of place in your living-room, intriguing visitors. Or an old bookcase can be repainted and add a new corner of interest in any room. An old lampstand with a new shade can be very effective. 

Replace: Decluttering gives you a view of what is holding back the look of your home, and lets you sift through ideas of change and updating. Is your coffee table too small or broken? Are your kitchen cupboards looking grubby? Is your doormat in tatters? Do you need a couch recovered? Very often it’s the simple things that won’t cost a fortune that can revolutionise the look of your home. Decluttering produces clarity and vision, and lets you quickly see where an improvement can be usefully effected. 

See the real value of your home: If you’re wanting to sell, the first thing you might be advised to do, is clear the clutter. There are vital selling points in every home which, if hidden by too much mess and furniture, fade from effect through poor lighting and visibility. Decluttering allows you to make those valuable décor points such as fireplaces, shelving, the spaciousness of a room, access points and good design more evident and pleasing. 

Clearing the chief culprits of clutter: The decluttering process itself need not be too traumatic – unless of course, the situation is dire. Often a simple clean out and upgrading can make the whole house shine up. There are just five key areas to tackle that can make a big difference in your life and the general feel of your home: 

Kitchen – all you have to do in essence, is tidy this space. A cluttered kitchen is just plain messy. Clear up space in cupboards and put things away. If cupboards need fixing, get that done. Maybe repaint the room in a new colour or change handles on cupboard doors. The kitchen is probably the most important space in your house. 

Bookcases – resort your books, throw away old ones that you will never read again, and repack in order of size. A tidy bookcase is always an unobtrusive but effective décor tool. 

Hallway – it’s any visitor’s first impression, so if you don’t declutter anywhere else, this is it. Hang up coats, remove piles of old post, take out as much furniture as possible. Let in the light, find a place for a bowl of flowers, and space for a new picture or two. A simple transformation! 

Cupboards – clearing out cupboards can give great satisfaction. It gives you more space to find things, and to put things away so that you don’t have half your belongings lying about. Another simple and effective measure for clarity and order. 

Garage – probably the worst culprit for clutter. Everything you want to clear out of the house invariably goes in the garage. So this is a biggie for most people. Get it done! You may not be living in the garage, but it’s one of the chief giveaways of how you live!

Udumo’s Mission: The combined energy of empowerment and aesthetic design

Udumo Group delivers interior décor and design services by empowering unemployed people with skills development initiatives. We believe in investing in the individual, nurturing inherent skills, and uplifting communities. Our interior design philosophy is to design beautiful spaces that are both functional and timelessly pleasing. We believe that through promoting the values of creative excellence, discipline and commitment, we are able to bring out the best in people, motivating positive surroundings and the value of living and working in such spaces.
Back to blogs

San-Marié Vogel