Get inspired to declutter with these before and after declutter projects

Wow – you guys are on fire with our weekend challenge! I cannot believe the progress you’ve shown me in your decluttering before and after pictures! Find inspiration with these declutter projects below.

women sitting in front of couch with a cluttered mess

Special thanks to our sponsors of the weekend decluttering challenge!

Grove Collaborative and thredUP each donated an amazing price to 2 lucky winners of our challenge!

Here are some inspiring before and after photos showing how you cleared the clutter.

Susan has a nice, neat junk drawer!

before and after decluttering counter

Here’s what Holly said about her project. I’m so impressed that she did all this in 20 minutes!

When Sarah put her weekend challenge out to us I knew I wanted to take part but I also knew I had a VERY full weekend ahead of me. With this in mind I decided to select something that I really wanted done but not something that would take several 20 minutes sessions to complete and therefore not get completed this weekend.

decluttering before and after on desk

My in real life friend, Elaine, decluttered the kitchen medicine cabinet, a corner counter top AND junk drawer! She had so many expired meds to toss.

how to declutter projects at home with before and after

Michelle is another in real life friend and I told her about the challenge last night! She went home from our meeting and cleaned up her kitchen table. She said did it for me 🙂 Go Michelle!

before and after decluttering project on kitchen table

And here’s my own decluttering project – I tidied up a set of shelves in my closet and found yet more clothing I don’t like!

closet declutter before and after

So what have we learned from this weekend decluttering challenge

1. You all are amazing!

We had a grandmother with a toddler finding 10 minutes here and there and cleaning up her entire desktop.
We had people with beds so covered with stuff that you could not see an inch of the bedspread.  Now that bed is 100% clear!
We had junk drawers decluttered and kitchen cabinets and hallways cleaned out.

2. You can get started! 

So often, I hear that people don’t know where to start decluttering. Well, you’ve all proved to yourselves that you can get started! The most important criteria in picking where to start is to keep it focused and make sure to finish up. Don’t declutter and leave the donations in the hallway 🙂

You don’t have to think long and hard about where to start. Just pick a spot and go.

We talk a lot more about where to start in Step-by-Step Decluttering.

3. No one likes sharing “before” photos.

It’s humbling, isn’t it? It’s hard to show your clutter to others. But taking those “before’s” is important for 2 reasons:

  • You’ll see your own progress. You may not even realize what a great transformation you do without the “before”.
  • This is part of acknowledging that your clutter doesn’t define you. Remember the Bissell commercial? “Life’s messy. Clean it up!” Don’t let clutter be your awful secret – expose it and it won’t retain the same power over you.

4. Once you get started, you gain momentum

Several people mentioned spending more than 20 minutes! Once they got going they found momentum. Motivation is like this! One small step will make it easier to do the next.

5. A community is powerful.

We’ve had people supporting each other and congratulating each other on their successes.

It may seem a little silly to get excited over a clean counter or a drawer that isn’t overflowing. But aren’t you happy to walk in the room and enjoy a little peace? It is a big deal! 

You can inspire yourself and others! Start digging out of the clutter and make a huge difference in your life. All that anxiety and stress and frustration will start to evaporate.

Take those first step and you’re going to start to see the sun come out! You’re going to feel so good.

Maybe some people who are reading this are dealing with significant challenges.

People were sick this weekend. Or you might find that some people have a chronic illness. This is really hard. I know it wasn’t easy for those people to take on this challenge but even that I want you to see that even 10 minutes can make a difference and it all goes back to your mindset.

The decluttering guide you need

step by step guide to decluttering home


If you haven’t purchased yet and you been thinking about it now is a perfect time. Why? Because if you decluttered this weekend or if you are inspired by the pictures you’ve got momentum.

Get your copy of this book and keep going. All that stress and frustration and anxiety starts to go away when you take action.

I’m not saying it’s always going to be fun but we can work to make it positive.

How do you feel?

If you participated in the challenge already leave a comment below and tell us how you feel after cleaning up that space. If you are just getting started let us know what area you want to tidy up

Do you have a declutter project you need to tackle in your home?


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10 thoughts on “Get inspired to declutter with these before and after declutter projects”

  1. I felt great after decluttering my kitchen it looked so clean everything in its place almost a few stragglers in the dish strainers. Sarah my daughter sent pictures to your Early Bird Mom email.

  2. I decided to try to take a tiny piece of a huge basement and see what I could do in 20 minutes. I was pleasantly surprised!

  3. It was so gratifying to see the area cleared away! The dump site I created on my son’s bed, (as he had been away for a year at college), were all delayed decisions! So, now, I’m trying to handle “stuff” immediately– Throwing them out, placing them back in their homes, put in donate bin or hamper, or fixing it. It’s been a big difference. I’m loving the decluttering and organizing process 🙂

  4. I cleared the floor and shelves and the clutter on that side of the bedroom. It felt so good that today I made a start on the mess in the closet room. We live in a century home therefore tiny closets. We use a very small bedroom as a walk-in closet known as the closet room. It is a work in progress!

  5. I started on the spareroom and did 3 large boxes and can’t believe i managed to do it was so overwealming that the whole room was filled with boxes wasnt sure how i was gona get on but 3 boxes gone it really does make a difference. So you can do it guys you have to start somewhere! 🙂


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Welcome. I’m Sarah!


I’m the creator of Decluttering School (formerly known as Early Bird Mom), lover of organized spaces, encourager to women and mom to four boys. Click here to read more!

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