Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up

Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up

by Marie Kondo


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The follow-up to the New York Times bestselling The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, from the star of the hit Netflix series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.

Japanese decluttering guru Marie Kondo has revolutionized homes—and lives—across the world. Now, Kondo presents an illustrated guide to her acclaimed KonMari Method, with step-by-step folding illustrations for everything from shirts to socks, plus drawings of perfectly organized drawers and closets. She also provides advice on frequently asked questions, such as whether to keep “necessary” items that may not bring you joy. With guidance on specific categories including kitchen tools, cleaning supplies, hobby goods, and digital photos, this comprehensive companion is sure to spark joy in anyone who wants to simplify their life.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781607749721
Publisher: Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale
Publication date: 01/05/2016
Edition description: Illustrate
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 16,789
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.00(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

Marie Kondo is a tidying expert, star of the Netflix series Tidying Up with Marie Kondo, #1 New York Times bestselling author, and founder of KonMari Media, Inc.
Enchanted with organizing since her childhood, Marie began her tidying consultant business as a 19-year-old university student in Tokyo. Today, Marie is a renowned tidying expert helping people around the world to transform their cluttered homes into spaces of serenity and inspiration.
Marie has been featured on more than fifty major Japanese television and radio programs as well as in The New York TimesThe Wall Street JournalThe Times of London, VogueEllen, the Rachael Ray show, and many more. She has also been listed as one of Time magazine’s 100 most influential people.

Read an Excerpt

Life truly begins only after you have put your house in order. That’s why I’ve devoted most of my life to the study of tidying. I want to help as many people as possible tidy up once and for all. 
This doesn’t mean, however, that you should just dump anything and everything. Far from it. Only when you know how to choose those things that spark joy can you attain your ideal lifestyle.
If you are confident that something brings you joy, keep it, regardless of what anyone else might say. Even if it isn’t perfect, no matter how mundane it might be, when you use it with care and respect, you transform it into something priceless. As you repeat this selection process, you increase your sensitivity to joy. This not only acceler-ates your tidying pace but also hones your decision-making

capacity in all areas of life. Taking good care of your things leads to taking good care of yourself.

What sparks joy for you personally? And what doesn’t?

The answers to these questions represent a major clue for getting to know yourself as a recipient of the gift of life. And I am convinced that the perspective we gain through this process represents the driving force that can make not only our lifestyle, but our very lives, shine.
Some people have told me that they had almost

nothing left after discarding those things that didn’t spark joy and, at first, didn’t know what to do. This reaction seems particularly common when people finish tidying their clothes. If it happens to you, don’t be discouraged. The important thing is that you have noticed. The real tragedy is to live your entire life without anything that brings you joy and never even realize it. From the moment you finish tidying, you can begin to add a new zest to your home and to your life. 

Only two skills are necessary to successfully put your house in order: the ability to keep what sparks joy and chuck the rest, and the ability to decide where to keep each thing you choose and always put it back in its place. 

The important thing in tidying is not deciding what to discard but rather what you want to keep in your life. It is my hope that the magic of tidying will help you create a bright and joyful future.

Table of Contents

Preface  xi
Introduction: The KonMari Method  1
The six basic rules of tidying  3
Part I  |  KonMari master tips

Honing your sensitivity to joy   13
Tidying is the act of confronting yourself; cleaning is the act of confronting nature  13
If you don’t know what brings you joy, start with things close to your heart  16
“It might come in handy” is taboo  19
For essential things that don’t bring joy, look at what they do for you  21
Save your cosplay for indoors  24
Don’t confuse temporary clutter with rebound  26
When you feel like quitting  29
The clutter-photo shock treatment  31
No matter how cluttered it looks, don’t pause, don’t stop, don’t quit  33
If you’re terrible at tidying, you’ll experience the most dramatic change  36

How to fill your home with joy   39
Imagine your perfect lifestyle from a single photograph  39
Keep items in the gray zone with confidence  41
A joy-filled home is like your own personal art museum  45
Add color to your life  47
How to make the most of “useless” things that still spark joy  49
Make your own personal power spot  54 

Everything you need to know about storing joyfully   57
During the tidying process, storage is temporary  57
Store by material  60
Pack drawers like a Japanese bento box  62
The four principles of storage  65
Fold clothes like origami  67
Everything you need to know about the
KonMari folding method  69
Plan storage with the idea of getting rid of furniture used for storing  73
Ideal storage weaves a rainbow in your home  75
Part II  |  The tidying encyclopedia

Tidying clothes   81
Tops  82
Bottoms  92
Dresses and skirts  94
Clothes that hang  96
Socks and stockings  98
Underwear  100
A clothes closet that sparks joy  107
Bags  115
Clothing accessories  115
Shoes  120
Tips for packing a suitcase  122

Tidying books   125
Advice for those who think they can’t part with books  125
Series  127
Magazines and coffee-table books  128
Storing books attractively  129

Tidying papers   131
The basic rule for papers: Discard everything  131
Make a pending box  132
Course materials  133
Credit card statements  134
Warranties  134
Manuals  135
Greeting cards  136
Clippings  136
Assign a day to attend to pending items  137

Tidying komono   139 
CDs and DVDs  141
Stationery supplies  142
Electrical komono  145
Skincare products and cosmetics  147
Relaxation goods  153
Medicines  154
Valuables  154
Sewing kits  158
Tools  158
Hobby komono  159
Collectibles  160
Things you kept “just because”  161
Linen and bedding  161
Towels  162
Stuffed toys  163
Recreational items  166
Seasonal items  166
Emergency supplies  167
Rain gear  167
Kitchen komono  168
Cleaning supplies  208
Laundry supplies  208
Bathroom komono  209

Tidying sentimental items   221
Tidying sentimental items means putting the past in order  221
Putting school memories in order  223
Putting memories of past lovers in order  223
Sentimental recordings  224
Your children’s creations  225
Life records  226
Letters  226
Tidying your photos as the final step in your campaign  227
Part III  |  Life-changing magic

A home that sparks joy   237
An entranceway that sparks joy  237
A living room that sparks joy  239
A kitchen that sparks joy  240
An office that sparks joy  241
A bedroom that sparks joy  242
A bathroom that sparks joy  243

The changes that come when you’re done   245
Tidy up and put your love life in order  249
Tidying brings relationships into focus  251
If your family’s stuff bothers you, be like the sun  253
Don’t force people to tidy if they don’t want to  257
Teach your children how to fold  260
Even if you fail, don’t worry—your house won’t blow up  262
Things that spark joy soak up precious memories  266

Epilogue  271
Afterword: Preparing for the next stage of your life  275
Acknowledgments  281
About the author  283
Index  285

Customer Reviews

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Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up 4.1 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Teadrinker More than 1 year ago
Spark Joy from Marie Kondo would help anyone take the Life-changing Magic Of Tidying Up to the next level. This book is "an illustrated master class on the art of organizing and tidying up." This book relays Marie Kondo's methods in complete detail for someone interested in putting all of her methods to work in their life. Spark Joy is divided into three parts: KonMari Master Tips; The Tidying Encyclopedia; and Life-Changing Magic. In the first section, Marie Kondo shares what her method is and why it can help you live a more joyful life. The second section is a detailed description of how to go through your house completely, including the order she recommends. The last section offers advice on how to tie everything together into your house with your family. She also shares some things she struggled with here and offers some encouragement for making a few changes to make the plan work long term for you. The KonMari method is Marie Kondo's specific method for tidying your house up once and for all so it stays that way. I find Marie Kondo's books to be inspiring. This one is no exception for me. I am in process of finishing our move to a new house in a new town. I am almost ready to use her method to go through my house and organize once and for all. I had things quite tidy and nice when we left our other house. However, I like the idea of looking at my things as to whether they spark joy or not. I have some things that I have kept out of obligation that I know will go. Then I liked that this book explains her folding method of clothes better, although I wish I had larger illustrations to work with. There are a few other illustrations in this book, but they are small. Also, Marie Kondo shares things from a Japanese perspective. I spent a year with a Japanese foreign exchange student, so I understand a bit about their culture. I could see things from her perspective and understood some of her unique terms. However, I could see where some American readers might struggle with some of her terms and ideas. However, if readers would keep the cultural differences in mind and find a way to relate to them, I think they could learn much and easily use this method for their house. Other than that, I liked this book and would recommend any of her books to someone looking to tidy up their house once and for all. More importantly, though, I look at my things differently now and I do really feel joy in my home and my surroundings. I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review. I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for the book.
CasualUnclutterer More than 1 year ago
I disliked Ms. Kondo's first book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up: The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing. I'm warmer to Spark Joy. It's significantly gentler: Ms. Kondo has softened her "my way or else" invocations, acknowledging that people can use other approaches  to their possessions, in particular when it is necessary to assess the utilitarian stuff of life like garbage cans and screwdrivers and legal papers. Even if it means keeping items - gasp! She has also begun acknowledging some of the sources of her knowledge, which I wish I could explore, but sadly they do not seem to be in English translation: The Thrilling Art of Not Discarding! by Shinobu Machida and a magazine titled Himawari, published in 1948 by Junichi Nakahara, a well-regarded fashion icon of the time. But I still don't see her truly taking learning and thinking styles into account. I still see her quirks underlying (undermining?) the suitability of her process for many people. She now recognizes that her intuitions are in line with Feng Shui principles: that can be as useful a starting point as any other, if it resonates with you. As with all organizing books, read it for any and all support you find within its pages. Just perhaps remember that no one book will solve all problems. Lauren Williams, Certified Professional Organizer, Casual Uncluttering LLC, Woodinville, WA, USA
thebeeb More than 1 year ago
The book is divided into two parts, of three chapters each: Part I encompasses "Master Tips," which is a "how-to" guide on the more subtle points of the KonMari method. Part II is the "Encyclopedia," which covers the more practical aspects of organizing and tidying up following the KonMari method. The book is not too different from most organizing books I've read, including those written by Peter Walsh. The thing that separates this book from the average organizing book is the added spiritual dimension that KonMari gives her method, which is based on the practice of the Japanese animistic religion of Shinto. In the Shinto spiritual belief system, all things, including what we in the West would consider "inanimate" objects, are considered to be imbued with spirits. Kondo encourages her readers to respect these spirits by thanking and saying good-bye to any items they may be discarding or donating. This may seem strange to the Western mind, and to practitioners of monotheistic religions, but the way she describes it, Kondo's explanation makes sense. I would suggest that if you don't feel comfortable thanking and saying good-bye to your things, then maybe thanking the deity of your belief system for allowing you to have enough wealth to provide such things might be preferable. Then thank the deity for allowing you to have more things to replace or use in place of the objects you are discarding. We in the developed world tend to forget how lucky we are to have enough and even more than enough than we need, so being grateful for our things would not be out of order. One of the things that I liked about this book, more so than her previous book, was her humbleness and her willingness to admit when she was wrong and made a mistake and that she would work to rectify it. I think that is one of the qualities that has won Marie Kondo fans around the world. As a book on organizing, I found it inspiring, though not inspiring enough to plunge into KonMari-ing my apartment. I'm going to think long and hard about that, since I have a roommate and shared spaces to consider. That said, Marie Kondo lays out her method in detail in this book, and many of the questions and contradictions that were raised in her last book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, are answered and clarified. Whether or not you decide to undertake the KonMari process and apply it to your work or living space, I would recommend discussing your plans ahead of time with anyone with whom you share your space, so they know what's going on, if it affects them. It seems to me that's the polite thing to do. However, don't let their reaction stop you from undertaking the process, as far as it relates to your own things and space.
Donna Mahoney More than 1 year ago
Excellent book. Innovative ideas and techniques for simplifying and cleaning up your life, literally. I'm happily using her ideas and I'm taking it further by purging people from my life who don't "spark joy."
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Purchased online from Barnes & Noble last week. The book cover is upside-down and backward. This is quite annoying for a reference manual -- which is how I'm using this book. I've already picked it up and opened it dozens of times and almost always forgotten that I need to turn it over and upside down. I'd advise purchasing the book elsewhere in hopes of avoiding this problem.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A continuation and repeat of the prior highly successful book about Tidying Up. The first book was repetitious, perhaps fittingly. This book had little more to add, except maybe a clarification on how to fold the sleeves of shirts.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
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charles small More than 1 year ago
how meany panting do you have
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
(Oh this is fun) Too much 'more', apparently, because Johnny started choking.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
New book?....
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cleans the counter.