First there was Marie Kondo and her “sparking joy” tidying tips. Now we have Swedish death cleaning, today’s uber-version of cleaning out the top drawer, that seemingly bottomless receptacle for everything you might need.
From the word döstädning – death (dö), cleaning (städning) – the concept has been popularised by Margareta Magnusson and her best-selling book, The Gentle Art of Swedish Death Cleaning.
It hooks into the minimalism trend, where downsizing and decluttering have become the buzzwords for a new generation of less-is-more believers.
But as Margareta says, death cleaning is “not about dusting or mopping up, it is about a permanent form of organisation that makes your everyday life run smoothly”.
For anyone contemplating a big move – empty nesters looking to quit the family home, retirees pondering retirement village living – there are many financial, emotional and practical factors to consider.
The thought of sorting through years of accumulated possessions may be daunting, but most experts agree starting sooner rather than later is best.
Getting A Grip’s Robyn Pearce, aka the Time Queen, says we do everything we can for our nearest and dearest while we’re alive, so why leave them with a mess to clean up once we’ve gone.
Start now and do it little by little, she advises.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
Removing the fear of dying A DOULA SHARES HER WISDOM
EMBRACING THE LAST STAGE OF LIFE HAS BEEN A LIFE-AFFIRMING EXPERIENCE FOR CAROL
An eye for a bargain! QUEEN OF OP SHOPPING
SAVVY LOUISE HAS KITTED OUT HER SON’S ENTIRE HOUSE FOR $5000
Not in the MOOD
OFF DAYS CAN AFFECT US ALL, BUT THERE ARE WAYS TO TURN THAT FROWN UPSIDE DOWN
Song & dance at 75 LIZA'S CABARET CELEBRATION
A TRUE SURVIVOR, SHE’S CHEATED DEATH ON MANY OCCASIONS
A HOLIDAY romance
KERRE FALLS IN LOVE WITH THE HOKI ALL OVER AGAIN, SEEING IT THROUGH HER GRANDKIDS’ EYES
Suzi's on the job SAVING WOMEN FROM BURNOUT
HAUNTED BY A MOTHERHOOD MOMENT, SHE’S FIGHTING FOR FAIRER, HAPPIER WORKPLACES
Design a GREAT DECK
HOW TO CREATE AN OUTDOOR LIVING SPACE THAT CAN BE ENJOYED ALL YEAR ROUND
A cup of tea with...CHRISTINE RANKIN
STILL SPARKLING, THE FORMER WIN
Secret Vigil Kate Breaks Royal Rank
The duchess pays tribute to a murdered woman
Smitten But Sleep-Deprived! Sam & Sarah On Double Duty
They can’t imagine life without their twin treasures