• Angela Marie Organizing

Updated: Apr 24, 2019

A lot of people have watched the show "Tidying Up" starring Marie Kondo. Marie Kondo is a professional organizer (as we would call her) who has a very specific way of helping people to "tidy up." What a lot of people don't realize is that every organizer is unique. I am no exception. Today, I wanted to write about the ways she and I are alike in our methods, and the ways we differ.

Angela Marie (top) and Marie Kondo (bottom left) love helping clients get organized even if we go about it differently.

The purpose is not to downplay Marie Kondo's method as I think she has a lot of great ideas and methods, but is more to spread awareness about the uniqueness of all organizers.


  1. Marie is in both our names!

  2. We both want you to streamline your life by taking out the excess and organizing the rest in the simplest most intuitive way.

  3. The clients always has ultimate control of what to keep and what to toss.


1. Hands-on Versus Hands-Off

What she does: Marie Kondo does perform some hands-on help by moving the clothes to a bed or helping for a few minutes on a kitchen or room here or there, but by and large the clients do the work without assistance. Marie Kondo acts as a consultant, advising her clients to do a majority of the work and follows up in a week to check up on them and praise them for doing their homework.

What I do: My clients and I work together every step of the way. I get in there "in the weeds" with my clients until the job is done. Although it is fine with me if clients want to get ahead in between our sessions, ultimately I do not expect them to do any work between our work sessions. I am there with them every step of the way.

2. Priority Area Versus Clothes

Marie Kondo always has her clients start a job by doing their clothes first whereas I work with my clients to tackle "Pain Point" first. What she does: Marie Kondo always starts with organizing the clothes first - always. She then directs you do to do the kitchen next, and so on. This order does not change as it is part of her KonMari method.

What I do: My method is to first let you guide me around your home, discussing the areas you would like to improve. If there are particular "pain spots" such as a basement filled with boxes, a garage you can't walk through or even just a closet that is overflowing, we will discuss the history of this area, and then together we pick the area that you most want to work on first. If you don’t have a preferred area to work on, I will suggest/pick one for us to start on.

Marie Kondo always starts with the clothes whereas I start where you need assistance the most.

3. Logic Versus "Sparking Joy"

Marie Kondo and I have very different methods to help clients decide what to keep or what to toss. What she does: She asks you to look at each item to determine if it "Sparks Joy” as a way of determining whether to keep it or not. As has been pointed out by people watching the show and trying her methods, there are many items which do not "spark joy” at all, but they have to keep them for practical reasons. A toothbrush comes to mind pretty readily.

The KonMari method may not work for all the items you own.

What I do: I show you an easy to use flow chart before we get started. If you disagree with anything about the flow chart we change it before we get started. Once we start working, we look at each item and use the flow chart to determine if the item is still useful to you, and for those that aren’t useful but you still want to keep (perhaps because they "spark joy"), I have a process to help you determine what to do with it. At the end of the working sessions, I help determine our next steps, take away any donations or trash as you wish, and make decisions regarding organizing the items you are keeping.

4. Custom Organizing Versus One Size Fits All

Marie Kondo and I differ on some little things too. One of those things is the way we come up with solutions to the client's organizing challenges.

What she does: Marie Kondo has very specific way to do, well... everything. As just one example, she recommends storing bags and purses inside bigger bags and purses.

What I do: I am not a big fan of the "purse inside a purse" method. If you can’t see it, you aren’t likely to remember to use it. I love to use hooks and other ways so you can see all your items easily. There is an over-the-door purse hanger that allows you to display all your purses and bags so you can easily see all of them and access them.

Marie Kondo's method of "bags within bags" makes it a bit hard to see each item

I like my clients to be able to see all of their belongings at a glance

This last example of the bags and purse storage is just one example of the little ways we differ. Marie Kondo has developed the way she likes to keep her things and she asks her clients to do it the way she does it, and she does not waiver from that. I take a much more custom approach to your items. I look at the space you have, the items you own, and come up with custom solutions to make sure you can see and use your items with ease.

The last thing I have to say is Marie Kondo and I have one big thing IN COMMON. We both have our client as our first priority. We both love our clients, and get a huge amount of joy and satisfaction when we see you happy after a great work session.

If you enjoyed this article, feel free to log in and post a comment! If you are thinking about getting some organizing help, give me a shout!

Angela Marie Organizing is not accepting new clients at this time due to COVID-19. We are sorry for any inconvenience. Current clients will continue to be served.

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(865) 232-4060


Professional Organizer 

Knoxville, TN