Q: I’ve got a problem, I love everything!

A: Why is that a problem? One of my oldest friends lives in a mansion. Her friends keep telling her to move. She has no interest in moving. She doesn’t need to move. It’s not a problem.

Q: I love everything, and I’m moving to a much smaller place. Can you help?

A: Yes. I love helping people prepare for their next adventure by choosing the best stuff to support a full, good, wonderful life. And I love helping them find good homes for stuff that needs to go, where the stuff will be useful, do good, and be appreciated.

I’ve discovered that if people watching television shows about hoarding, they may find themselves letting go of lots of stuff they don’t need. My theory about this is that the primitive parts of our brains do not know it’s someone else’s stuff, and there is a primal instinct to make order and beauty. Peter Walsh starred in two hoarding shows, and you can find free episodes on the web. Even watching the trailers can be inspiring. Some people like reading Karen Kingston’s book Clear Your Clutter with Feng Shui (but no one likes the advice about intestines—so I’d ignore that bit). Marie Kondo’s book about the magic of tidying is a little nutty (she’s very young and obsessive) but it can be helpful. Julia Morgenstern’s book about Organizing from the Inside Out can be helpful. Basically there are a zillion books you can find at your local library which are helpful.

I can help.  Click HERE to contact me. Thank you.

Q: I have a problem. It’s my closet.

A: Can you be more specific?

Q: How do I make my clothes closet an oasis of calm and joy?

A: I am going to give you the short version here:

Get rid of everything except stuff you use and stuff you love. Learn about what makes you look and feel good. Click HERE contact me to send you for FREE the chapter from my book Open and Clothed entitled, “What Makes You Feel Beautiful?” Make sure the stuff you use and love is cared for, and kept in good shape, so that you look good and feel good in it. Only buy more stuff you use and love. Repeat, letting go of stuff as it no longer fulfills those criteria.

If you’ve got an archive of stuff that you keep for the memories, that’s fine, just make sure the stuff you use and love is easy to get to, and the stuff you don’t use is stored in a respectful way–not in the way.

Q: Can you help me with my closet? I know it’s not art but….

A. Yes. I also can work with you on calming your closet. That’s fun. Many years ago, I wrote a best-selling book about clothes called Open and Clothed. I’m an expert at this too.

Q: I have a question I don’t see on this list.

A: Please contact me and ask it. If it elicits useful information, I’ll post it here for everyone.

Q: I don’t get it. If you’re giving away all this information, how do you make your money?

A: Folks who don’t want to do the legwork you see detailed here, or don’t feel comfortable doing it alone, hire me to do it.

It’s like this: Some people enjoy buying Chez Panisse cookbooks and preparing food at home; other people love going to the restaurant in Berkeley, and paying the restaurant to cook, serve, and do the dishes. I respect both approaches. If you want to do it yourself, do so. If you’d like to work with someone, I’m here.

Q: I can’t believe how helpful this has been. Can I send you a consulting fee?

A:  I really get asked that question. A consulting fee is a lovely idea.  Thank you for that kindness. However, I suggest you wait and see if the advice actually works before you act on that impulse.