April 1, 2014 10:00 AM

Spring cleaning basics 

There's no time like springtime to turn over a new (clean) leaf. And we don't mean just dusting the blinds. Before you take to the mops and magic erasers, tackle your interiors. Jen Kemzuro and Todd Zimmerman of Design by Todd break down the best ways to get it together inside your home.

The closet is often the dirty little secret of the home. Get yours in working order like this one in Audubon Oaks that's organized for function without loads and loads of space.

"Organize by season and color," Kemzuro suggests. "If you don't wear it, toss it."

And by toss it' Kemzuro means put it in a donation bag. She keeps one handy to add to throughout the year, and when it's full it goes out. She also suggests turning all the hangers around in your closet and then moving them back to the correct position once you've worn something. If a piece of clothing hasn't been worn you'll spot it quickly.

"And if you wouldn't buy it right now, it may be time to toss it," Kemzuro notes.

To avoid the constant tossing and reorganizing, Zimmerman says he follows the principle of buying better.

"You only buy quality one time," he says.

And if you're one of those people who holds on to pieces hoping to wear it for a random occasion - think costume party or

Halloween - Kemzuro says to find another spot for them outside of the closet.

"Put them in your empty luggage," she suggests.

In addition to getting the closet in order, spring can be just the time to get your interior look streamlined. The Design by Todd team suggests gathering all your accessories, sorting by type (put all the art in one pile, all the silver in another, etc.) and then place sparingly around the home. Rarely is there a need to place every accessory every time of the year.

"Not everything you own needs to be out," Zimmerman says. "We all tend to overdo spaces and don't allow space for people."

In other words, you don't put on all your jewelry at once, why would you do the same in your home?

Other simple tips no matter where you're getting things in order - get in the right frame of mind.

"You can't be sentimental. You'll hold onto stuff. Put on some good music and open a window. Have some caffeine. Dance while you're doing it. Put on clothes like you're going to work out," Kemzuro says.

The results will be well worth the few hours spent.

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