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Pack your Suitcase the KonMari Way

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January 31, 2019

Heard the name Marie Kondo lately? Chances are your friends and coworkers are talking about the home organization guru turned pop culture sensation and her new Netflix series “Tidying Up with Marie Kondo.” Around the world, people are emptying their closets and hauling away belongings that no longer bring them joy.

Wondering what all the hype is about? The KonMari method and bestselling book, "The Life Changing Art of Tidying Up"— advises tidying by category rather than by room, beginning with clothes, then moving on to books, papers, komono (miscellaneous items), and, finally, sentimental items. The method promises mindful home organization by keeping only items that speak to the heart and tossing items that no longer spark joy.

How do you take this method on the road? If you pack the KonMari way, you can ensure that every item in your suitcase is essential and sparks joy. To simplify travel and keep baggage fees to a minimum, packing all your belongings into a single carry-on makes sense. But how do you begin? 

Here are five ways to pack efficiently and get you (joyfully) on your way — all inspired by Marie Kondo.

1.    Pack your joy

Fill your suitcase with items that bring you joy. As you’re packing, consider whether you really love each piece you’re taking with you on your journey. If you’re not sure, try the “hug test.” Take the next item you’re about to pack and “hug” it. Evaluate every item that you pack — and anything you bring home from your trip — against this criteria. Only bring home the things that give you the most joy, and nothing more. And before you go, leave 10-20 percent of space in your suitcase to make room for new items.

2.    Pack light, pack right

Bring only what you need. Will you have access to laundry facilities on your trip? If you’ll be gone for five days, then pack for five days. For longer trips research your laundry options and plan on wearing each item more than once. Take into account your planned activities and the weather forecast.

3.    Pack tight

Make sure your belongings are tightly packed. Pack items standing up in your suitcase and avoid laying them flat. Be careful not to compress so that you can fit as much as possible in the suitcase. That defeats the purpose of packing the Marie Kondo way.

4.    Get rolling

Marie Kondo’s folding technique, which rolls clothes and stacks them vertically, is considered revolutionary. Make your rolls as small as possible to save space in your suitcase and prevent wrinkles.

Watch this video to learn how to fold the KonMari way.

5.    Keep it together

Keep like items together.  Makeup and cords can be stored together in pouches so they’ll be easier to locate later. Pack shoes separately (in a bag) to keep everything clean. Line up your items so they can all be seen at once. This will make it easier to find what you are looking for when you reach your destination.

Photo credit: Erwan Hesry on Unsplash

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