Louise's clients tell their stories.
I'm so grateful to you for the huge change you made in my life, it'll be lovely to see you again.
Good morning! Just to say Thank You so much for yesterday. I can't describe the relief! The rest of my day I almost danced through.
I just wanted to thank you again for all your help with decluttering, both in my current flat and previously in Morningside. I finally finished all my additional sorting and filing on Thursday evening, so all decluttering has now been completed.
Engaging your decluttering services has been the best money I have ever spent and has made such a difference to my wellbeing. It feels as if an enormous weight has been taken off my shoulders and I am freed up to enjoy my surroundings.
With best wishes
Louise, thank you so much for coming. I feel that there is light at the end of the tunnel. God bless😊😊
Louise - I just want to say thank you again as I was a bit tired when you left and perhaps did not express this... You have no idea what a difference you have made. We have gained a room and I am slowly believing that I will have a home I want to come back to... if only I had called you a couple of years ago a lot of stress could have been saved.
Hi Louise, Thank you SO much for today - every time I look at the room I feel proud of what we've achieved in JUST TWO HOURS I'm very thankful for your service and will ask for help again for sure.
Ms Donald came to us prior to a house move, the first for 46 years! I was not sure how decluttering could help, but need not have wondered. Louise is very efficient, does not waste a moment while working and helps tremendously to clear cupboards and drawers. She knows a huge amount about outlets for all sorts of materials, and comes prepared with large bags to use for categorising all the stuff which one would hate to see going simply in the bin!
With her help, we sold books and furniture, and donated a large amount to charity. Louise knows who can use surplus paper, wood or metal, and she removes bagsfull herself after each session. Throughout she took care that we were not too fatigued by the process!
She then rearranged our remaining effects to look their best for selling, and then on the day of the move, came again and was a tower of strength, emptying boxes, making up the bed, hanging pictures and generally making the whole procedure much less difficult than might have been the case.
I have no hesitation in recommending her services.
Rosemary, April 2014
[And a word about my website...] That website is a perfect example of how it should be. Clear, simple, security aware and pretty fabulous without being too flashypants and annoying for the elderly, decrepit and internet phobic!
LH, Yorkshire 2014
Hello Louise, I have finally got to round to emailing you with a heartfelt thanks. What I was really pleased about was your commitment to recycling and finding a good home for stuff that was not wanted or needed by me, but which I did not want to throw out. The other great contribution you made was to carry on until the job was finished. I have just painted the totally de-cluttered stair cupboard which looks actually looks smart now. and I have not got tired of enjoying my great wardrobe. I have recommended you to anyone I have told about my great de-cluttering.
Maggie, Edinburgh October 2012
Louise came to help me sort out my paperwork which had got to the point of overwhelming me because I'd neglected to sort it out for so long. She is very straightforward and practical, easy to talk to, empathetic and non-judgemental. I enjoyed working with her and was very impressed by what we managed to get through in a few hours. Highly recommended!
Susan, Fife August 2012
Thank you for yesterday. I wanted to text you this morning it was so nice to open my wardrobe and decide what I wanted to wear this morning. My new wardrobe has been making me smile all day.
FH Morningside, Edinburgh June 2012
Louise has been an absolute Godsend. I am a busy professional woman, who is always taking on too many interesting projects. Consequently I don't have much time for domestics. Louise helped me organise my home so that I can continue all my interests and have everything I need to hand. She is completely trustworthy, discreet, and non-judgemental. She also is keen to suggest other services and professionals who can be of use to me. I am now able to invite people over for dinner, or guests to stay in my recently re-discovered guest room.
CE Central Edinburgh February 2011
My small flat was full of clutter and I seemed unable to get it organised. As I suffer from arthritis I cannot bend easily or get down on my knees. Louise came in like a breath of fresh air, and transformed the place before my eyes. Not only decluttering, but helping me find better ways to organise my storage spaces. The house now feels brighter and is easier to clean. I have been inspired to get new flooring and begin to redecorate, something I felt unable to tackle previously. I cannot believe that a simple declutter could lift my spirits so much. Thank you so much.
FR East Edinburgh February 2011
As I hope you know, we think you're fantastic at what you do and the way you have accepted us with all our frailties and strange ways!
SM Barnton March 2011
You are a star and have a great way with words!! I shall send this letter out before the week has ended... Thanks again.
EO January 2011
Thank you, Louise. With your help, I got my flat back! Cupboards, wardrobes, kitchen, surfaces, drawers, all fully back in use again. The flat seems so much bigger. Thanks again.
AM Central Edinburgh March 2011
BIG THANK YOU again. The house feels lovely to come home to & office already a million percent improved. I look forward to your next visit & will recommend you 2 anyone nice (not evil people though, leave them cluttered Hah!) ?
D [by text] March 2011
I think 2012 may well be the year that we make a move away from here and would like you to know that I would certainly not be thinking like this if I had not managed to find you. You have been so very patient, kind and understanding at all times and have also been a true inspiration. Thankyou.
S December 2011
My Mum and Dad bought me a session with a decluttering lady, Louise Donald, for my Christmas present - I guess some people would have been quite insulted and a little aggrieved but I was over the moon as Graeme and I are hoarders. We are both very untidy and the old adage of 'a place for everything....' doesn't figure at all (unless that place is the floor). Took me a little while to get in touch with Louise and when I did it was after she emailed me - I think she must be used to clients being a bit sheepish about their homes! Anyway - we arranged for her to pop in one night to come and do a recce and then come back for a full day on 12th May. I told her on the phone that I wanted our bedroom to be a haven of peace and tranquility and I asked her how messy was the worst room she had seen. She just laughed and said that she was sure our room didn't even come close. She assured me that I didn't need to do anything before she came so, of course, I had a mad tidy-round the day before she came to remove the surface clutter.
I liked her immediately - very practical, pragmatic and down to earth and spent time reassuring G that she wasn't there to throw all his stuff out (curses!). I showed her round the spare rooms and she said that we could do the upstairs cupboards as well to create space. Louise was clear that I didn't need to do any prep and that she was there to help me and do the graft while me and G would just be required to say 'keep' or 'throw' repeatedly!
What amazed me was how the pending visit of Louise affected me - the weekend before, I decided to tackle the cupboards in the two spare rooms - they had boxes that hadn't been opened since we moved in 4 years ago, or had been opened, looked at and then put back. What surprised me more was that I enjoyed doing the clear-out and in the space of a couple of days I already had about 6 or 7 bags and boxes to take to the charity shop and 3 pretty empty wardrobes.
So - the big day arrived and Louise arrived armed with cleaning cloths (she cleans as she goes), bin bags, stickers and loads of energy. She suggested a very sensible approach that really wouldn't have dawned on me - ignore the surface mess and start with the wardrobe, cupboards and the drawers so that you then have space to put everything else away. In the morning we blasted through the wardrobe filling charity bags galore and ending up with a wardrobe that actually now shuts. When we took a break for lunch Louise disappeared off with a car full to the gunnels with charity bags and recycling. It was a bit strange at first - sitting on the bed and letting someone else do all the work.
What was great was that Louise just carries on at the point when I would have just given in - it took 5.5 hours in all and when Louise left, the room looked fantastic. We cleared out a huge amount of stuff- most of it went to charity but Louise will also sell things off for you, recycle things and also uses the freecycle website for some items that she thinks will go down on that.
I felt great after she had gone too - great to have cleared out so much stuff and I now have loads of space in all of the cupboards so I can tackle some of the other rooms in the house myself using the approach Louise suggested.
Laura's story was published in The
Foot Reading Coach by Jane Sheehan (2008)
I first found out about Space and Time when a friend sent me the link to the website - before that I didn't really appreciate that people like Louise existed. But she was exactly what I needed, and at exactly the right time.
After several years of being the main family support (aka only daughter) to an aging mother, (closest in terms of miles, but still at a significant distance) I was spending increasing amounts of time with her while trying to maintain a semblance of a normal life at my own end; full time work, and a very full social calendar, all very important to the single woman. Something had to give, and that thing was my own home.
I could shut the door, step over the mess, live with the chaos, simply close my eyes to it because it was too big a problem to know where to start. I couldn't let friends see, but certainly not ask for help from them, how could I let them see the reality behind my front door? Socialising was all somewhere else than my home, and friends picked me up or dropped me off at the end of the street.
After my mother died, her estate dealt with, it was time to turn to my own 'estates'. I'm sure there are lots of psychological reasons that would explain this, like how would I feel if someone had to do that for me right then? Enough to say it was time to get it sorted and get on with living a normal life again.
I am a great believer in serendipity, and this link to Space & Time had arrived at precisely the moment in my life that I needed it, but it still took me a few weeks to pluck up the courage to write to Louise and admit I needed her help. But that was all it needed to set the train in motion, first a consultation, how big was the problem, then book some dates - it was going to take more than a couple of sessions, this was a major de-clutter, but we booked no more than a couple of weeks in advance each time, a few manageable chunks so I was never overwhelmed by how much needed to be done.
Working systematically through the rooms of the house, we disposed, discarded, donated and destroyed, but we also saved, stored, scrubbed and stashed the things that I wanted to keep around me.
Louise filled her car after each visit with bags of recycling, private papers for burning, items for donation to charity and other good causes. She organised council uplifts of larger items, and took other items to the council dump herself. Cleaning as she went along, she made suggestions on how I could sort my mail as I arrived home, took my piggy-bank to the bank for me, even took me to Ikea one evening for storage ideas (and purchases!), and contacted cleaning companies about spring cleans. She was even happy to do some washing for me on weeks we had consecutive evenings booked!
But more than that, she became a friend very quickly. She is very perceptive, very supportive, and could see that just sometimes, calling a halt half an hour before the usual end time was the right thing to do that night. And she was very quick to pick up that when i said dump, I really meant it, but if I paused for more than a moment, then that was something to keep.
I have to say that for me, it wasn't easy emotionally. It's like living with a mess of brambles at the bottom of the garden - one day you just have to start to tackle them, to get rid, and get yourself scratched and torn to bits while you do, but eventually they are gone and the scratches healed! This de-clutter took a good couple of months to achieve, but one evening I turned around and suddenly realised there was my home again, and I am through to the other side now, and I have survived, (of course I have) and now we are even a couple of months beyond that. I can't believe that it all was over so quickly.
There is nothing that I have regretted getting rid of yet, and still more things that I am disposing of slowly, either to charity shops, or even as gifts! From not letting anyone in my house for years, I have now had countless workmen in, and friends several times a week... just like normal people do! And my house is not wonderfully tidy, and I am still waiting for my new kitchen to get started... but what does that matter really, my friends all know, and it is me they are visiting, not my house.
It is now a pleasure to go back home after work, enjoy my own space, spontanously invite people round, and even get creative there. From being someone who stayed at her desk late every evening, or went out straight after work, I am now watching the clock for 5.30 to come round so I can get home!
Credit crunch or not, this has been the best investment I've made in the last year, as Louise has helped give me my home back, that is worth everything in the world to me, and I still have the reassurance of knowing she is there to call on if I need her in the future.
So if you are reading this with a view to booking Louise, my advice to you is this.... take a deep breath, hold your nose, and jump in! Louise is there for you, just do it, and make space and time for you to live your life again.