Archives for Celebrities
This week seems to be all about videos here on Unclutterer (don’t forget our upcoming Ask Peter Walsh anything!), and I’m excited to be part of the collection. For anyone who doesn’t have a television, lives outside the U.S. or Canada, or missed Saturday’s announcement, you can now see my appearance on yesterday’s Rachael Ray Show online:
The clip is just a little over three minutes long, and I’m really happy with how it went. I had a great time on set, and Rachael and her staff were incredibly kind. I also love how Michael Buffer says my name — Erin Roooooooooooooney Dolaaaaaaaand! I hope you enjoy the clip and the closet organizing tips, too.
Set your TiVOs, DVRs, or tune in Monday morning, April 26, to the Rachael Ray Daytime Talk Show. I’m on the episode giving advice on how to organize your closet, just in time for warmer weather.
I filmed my segment for this episode back in January, and I can’t believe I was able to keep it a secret until now while I’ve been waiting for it to air. I had an amazing time on set, and Rachael was incredibly nice to me. Michael Buffer (famous for his “Let’s Get Ready to Rumble” tagline) was on set the same day and I was able to meet his adorable dogs and daughter. Buffer announces the whole episode, and even announced me! In the same episode, RuPaul teaches the audience how to put on fake eyelashes (and, wow, RuPaul is tall — I had no idea), and veterinarian Dr. Ernie Ward shows viewers how to safely trim their pets’ nails. There are even more experts giving advice in the episode, but you’ll have to watch to learn more.
My appearance on the show is a little bittersweet, as it was the last time I wore high heel shoes. After my accident, I may never be able to wear high heels again. I know it’s not the most important thing in the world, and my podiatrist assures me my feet will appreciate the change, but it’s still a little sad. Feel welcome to join me in waving goodbye to my high heels at the end of the segment.
For clarification, I’m on Rachael’s daytime talk show, not her 30-Minute Meals show. Check your local listings for when the show airs in your region. I hope you enjoy the tips!
The March 2010 issue of O: The Oprah Magazine just hit newsstands and it is dedicated to the theme “De-Clutter Your Life!” The uncluttering articles begin on page 142, but most of the content in the rest of the magazine is tangentially related to the topic.
If you turn to page 158 of the issue, and search diligently, you can even spot a quote from me (hunting for it is like playing a game of Where’s Waldo?). This was my first time being quoted in O, and I was thrilled they thought of me for their big “De-Clutter Your Life!” issue.
For one of the uncluttering stories, Oprah let camera crews into her closet to see how much clutter she had stored on her rods and shelves. Her closet seemed to me to be in decent shape, but she talked frankly about her decisions to keep and purge items with Adam Glassman, O‘s creative director:
OPRAH: “I bought a lot of little bags when I thought I was going to be a ‘lady who lunches.’ I’ve never been one, but I’ve always liked the idea and longed for that life. There’s something about dressing up and being ladies–it’s like playing house.”
ADAM: “Fashion can help you create an image, but be honest about your lifestyle. Do you really need yachting clothes when you never set foot on a boat? When buying an item, if you can answer ‘Where am I going in this?’ with at least four legitimate places, you have my blessing.”
One of my favorite features in the issue is a chart on page 153 “The 10 Habits of Highly Organized People.” From the list:
9. FORSEE (AND AVOID) PROBLEMS. You wouldn’t leave the house on a gray day without an umbrella, right? People who appear to sail through life unruffled apply this thinking to every scenario, says [Dorthy] Breininger [president of the Delphi Center for Organization]. Have a cabinet packed with leaning towers of Tupperware? Organized folks will take a few minutes to short-circuit an avalanche before it happens. (In other words, rearranging that cupboard now is easier than chasing after wayward lids as they scatter underneath the fridge.)
There are many great tips to be garnered from the March issue of O. Also, the items that Oprah decided to pitch from her closet are being auctioned on eBay starting March 1, and proceeds with benefit her Leadership Academy.
Except for when a kind neighbor drove me to the grocery store in his all-wheel drive station wagon on Monday, I haven’t left my house in 10 days. Since I declared February as Super Simple Month, I guess I should think of this time as Mother Nature’s way of helping me to keep to my plans. (We’ve received about 4′ of snow in the past two weeks.) But, unfortunately, being shut up in my house for so long has negatively affected my creativity. I haven’t been able to run (usually this is my time to be alone with my thoughts each day), and I’m finding nothing in my house inspiring right now.
Instead of reading about my cabin fever, I thought you might enjoy checking out some links that have more valuable insights into uncluttering, organizing, and simple living than I can produce right now. Trust me, this is what is best for all of us:
- “Diary of a Mad Hoarder: Uncluttering Your Life” by Betsy Lowther for the Washington Post Express
- “Downsizing: New-to-D.C. lawyer starts from scratch in small condo” about an amazing 600 sq ft condo by Jura Koncius for the Washington Post. (Be sure to check out the photo gallery.)
- “A Roomy 178 Square Feet” by Penelope Green for The New York Times
- “Cool ideas to streamline your home office” on CNN.com. Select Get Started to make the advice in the image interactive.
- “Is Lindsay Lohan a Celebrity Hoarder?” “Lindsay Lohan Gets Ready to Clean House!” and “Lindsay Lohan Cleans House.” A final video aired in the series showing before and after of Lindsay’s closet, but haven’t been able to find it yet. Anyone?
- “Waste Not” by Monica Ricci
- “Nina Garcia’s Shopping Tips” from Marie Claire magazine
- Finally, “How to organize cats” to put a smile on your face.
In 1952, Popular Mechanics magazine ran an article about science fiction author Robert Heinlein‘s then-new 1,150-square-foot minimalist home. Titled “A House To Make Life Easy,” the article written by Thomas E. Stimson, Jr., explores the “house that’s called extreme today but may become conventional before the 20th century has run its course.”
More than half a century later, it’s interesting to look back on this article and see which of the futuristic ideas caught on and which ones didn’t. One of the more interesting items that didn’t become a mainstream feature in American homes is the “commuting” table on page 66:
The “commuting” table allows you to set the table in the kitchen and then push it through the wall into the bookshelf-lined dining area. As full-time housekeepers were becoming more rare in the 1950s, I’m sure this was seen as a luxury for Heinlein’s wife. Nowadays, most new homes simply have open kitchen and dining floor plans where no walls exist between the two areas.
Check out the article (be sure to catch the jump from page 69 to 228, and then again to page 230) and learn about Heinlein’s minimalist home that supposedly only took “about an hour” to clean. Then, come back here and tell us your thoughts on this house that was supposed to make life easy.
Thanks to reader Robert R. for leading us to the article.
Singer-actress extraordinaire Barbra Streisand will be auctioning off more than 500 of her belongings October 17-18 and the proceeds of the auction will be going to charity. CNN reporter Kareen Wynter asked Barbra why she chose to purge her things:
Barbra Streisand: We really never possess anything — I mean, not forever. We borrow things and then we let them go and be used and shared and enjoyed by the next generation and the next generation. So if you can’t really use something anymore, even though it belonged to you for a long time and you loved it, it’s great to pass it on.
Costumes she wore in movies, furniture from her home, and her piano are some of the things she is putting up for auction. You can find the entire collection on Juliens Auctions.
Purging your life of more than 500 items is a significant decluttering endeavor and I’m impressed to read about it. Uncluttering kudos to Barbra Streisand.
(Image from Juliens Auctions, and a hat tip to reader Katie for directing us to the story.)
Today’s first post is a quick one. I simply want to direct you to a fun feature that ran last week over on Lifehacker: “Nine Workspaces Where Famous Folks Get Stuff Done.”
We’ve shown Al Gore‘s piled space here on Unclutterer before, but the others are new to us. I especially love the video of David Allen’s desk — simple and extremely productive:
Now I’m really curious what all of these famous peoples’ assistant’s desks look like …
Go on and check out the article, and then come back here and share your reactions.
A year or two ago when Hannah Montana became the favorite topic among my young cousins, I decided to watch four or five of the episodes on the Disney channel to figure out what they were discussing. I’m not really sure I’ll ever understand the appeal of the show, but I did learn about Hannah Montana’s closet. (The link goes to a video of her closet. I couldn’t bring myself to embed the video.)
Hannah Montana has an enormous closet with library stacks filled with shoes, belts, and purses, and rotating racks of dresses, tops, and sequined pants. While a fashionista might see the closet and start salivating, my first thought was, “How could I better organize this space?”
A Closet Carousel would definitely be an improvement over the spinning metal racks in Hannah’s wardrobe. Getting rid of all of the clothes she no longer wears would be another good idea (but my assumption is that since she leads a double life, she has more clothing needs than most). And, Simple Division Garment Organizers wouldn’t hurt in such a large collection of clothes.
The pièce de résistance, however, would be a digital wardrobe database with images and descriptions of all of her clothing and accessories. This way, Hannah might be able to pick out what she wants to wear before setting foot into her closet for an evening of party hopping or whatever it is secret rock stars do with their time.
If she has a Mac, she might enjoy the Dress Assistant closet organizing software:
If she is a Windows user, she might like the Victoria Clothes Organizer:
Or, if she wants a custom solution, I’m sure she could whip one up in Access without too much trouble.
For those of us not living the secret rock star life, any and all of these ideas would be overkill. However, it’s still a fun mental exercise. How would you organize a fashionista’s closet?
Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is selling his ski villa in Utah and a home in Massachusetts. He’s downsizing from four properties to two. (The Utah home is pictured at right.)
The reason for this downsizing? From a Salt Lake Tribune article:
“The Romney children are all grown up with families of their own, and Mitt and [his wife] Ann have more space than they need,” spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom said Monday. “So they are simplifying and downsizing.”
By cutting his property portfolio in half, former Governor Romney has indeed downsized. Holding on to two large properties on each coast of the United States could hardly be considered simple living, though. But it’s a first step.
Like many Americans, we’re always fascinated by which celebrities choose to live simply. Check out our “Celebrities” category to see who is hip to simple living.
In the May and June issue of AARP Magazine, actress Jamie Lee Curtis discusses turning 50. She also talks about her commitment to simple living and the benefits she has gained from her uncluttered choices:
“My style is a distillation. I’ve etched out who I am through myriad haircut attempts, outfit attempts, beauty attempts, diet attempts. It’s been an evolution. I’ve let my hair go gray. I wear only black and white. Every year I buy three or four black dresses that I just keep in rotation. I own one pair of blue jeans. I’ve given away all my jewelry, because I don’t wear it.
“The same way that midcentury modern architecture was in the ’50s, I want to be as a human being. New. Different. Challenging the old. Function over frivolity. Clean living. Clean lines.
The article is inspiring, and I recommend giving it a read.
When I think of a rock star, I imagine a party-until-dawn lifestyle that isn’t conducive to simple living. Maybe I’ve seen too many lives of excess stories chronicled on VH-1′s Behind the Music? So, it was refreshing for me to read that Foo Fighters’ bassist Nate Mendel buys his music digitally because he “abhors clutter.” From a Houston Chronicle article:
“People are buying fewer CDs every year,” Mendel says. “You don’t want to wait until those sales are finished, before you find a way to run your band.
Mendel isn’t helping CD sales. He admits that he buys his music digitally because “CDs create clutter, and I abhor clutter.”
Maybe Nate would be interested in our post on eliminating CD clutter.
Here’s another rock star who enjoys simple living.
In a recent Reuters interview, Police drummer Stewart Copeland talks about his simple living:
I have one house (in Los Angeles), I drive a Jeep Cherokee, I live very simply. I discovered in life that I have the same joy in divestment as I once got as a young man in acquisition. I have the perfect house. I’m never leaving this house that I’m in. I might trade my Jeep in for some environment-friendly vehicle of some kind. But I’m not into fancy cars. My watch is a Casio. I live very simply, and I’ve discovered that half of the so-called luxuries that people strive for do not provide happiness. My happiness comes from my children, my wife, my house that I love that I live in.
Here at Unclutterer, we like to encourage people to find joy in divestment and discourage needless acquisitions. I’m sure as a young rockstar Mr. Copeland had his fair share of needless acquisitions. It is nice to see he has found joy in simplifying his life.