Might be a little strange to talk about car decluttering in the home-organization series, but here’s my thought. A reader commented in a recent issue of Real Simple magazine that she thought of her car as another room in her house. That’s the root of the problem. Car is car and house is house. (And moped is moped – still probably the best choice for avoiding clutter in your vehicle 😉 )
Keeping your car sleek and clean, Italian style, is terrific for three reasons:
- Safety – no personally identifying items in the car (like mail with address facing out)
- Time – one less place to hunt for lost items, clear space to load groceries and people
- Money – no need to buy new car organizers, no need to spring for a deep-clean wash
If your car has grown into its own eco-system lately, no problem! Declutter it just like you would a closet (see earlier post) by separating: (a) throw away; (b) give away; (c) return to rightful place or owner. For those few things that do belong in a car, help them repatriate to their proper home:
- Glove compartment: Owner’s manual, registration, insurance, maintenance info;
- Trunk: nothing in the trunk unless your transporting it, but a real-live Italian taught me to use the underbelly of the trunk if you have one, or use the mat to stow flat items, like a picnic blanket or a poncho;
- Floorboards– same as trunk. Floorboard mats can cover flat items like an atlas or maintenance log or anything you use daily (like a textbook), and can also lift up slightly to cover and secure anything that you store under the seats;
- Under the seats – umbrella, emergency kit, window-breaker;
- Map compartment – you got it – maps!
- Center console – any remaining small easy-to-reach spaces would ideally be kept clear, so that you can stow items during your travels and then take inside when you get out;
- Trash – you got it – trash! If your lucky enough to have a small trash compartment. Otherwise, co-opt the center console, line with a plastic baggie, and then clear / replace each time you fill up.
Your car will be looking sleek, Italian, and road-ready in no time. Buon viaggio!