We love our homes, and try to keep them as safe, clean and comfortable as possible. Yet, over time, little things manage to accumulate in nooks and corners, in the form of unwanted belongings as well as dust! We often mean to get down to it and take care of the mess, but something always comes up. Well now that Diwali’s almost here, you can’t put it off any longer! If the task seems far too overwhelming at this point, don’t worry. We have mapped out a simple but effective 7 step guide to help you prepare your home for Diwali.
Diwali is a festival that honors Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth. It is believed that homes are lit up to show the way for the goddess, so that she may enter them and bless the residents of each home with wealth and prosperity. Surely, you want a clean and tidy home to welcome Goddess Lakshmi! Besides, universal laws of attraction are based on the theory that in order to receive something, you first need to have the space for it. Something that’s not possible when every available nook and cranny in your home is stuffed with broken toasters, out-of-size clothes and un-stuffed teddies!
So this Diwali, lets clear your home of clutter, dust it up and make it shine. Let’s make it ready to receive abundance, prosperity and lots of divine blessings!
A 7 Step Guide to Prepare your Home for Diwali
The first step to prepare your home for Diwali is to make it trash-free. Yes, all those unused objects are trash! This is probably the most physically and emotionally taxing step of all, so be sure to allot some time for it everyday. Don’t worry about completing it all at once – you’ll go crazy! On some days you may only get time for a drawer; some days you can finish a whole room. Now that the kids’ exams are over, you’ll have some extra time as well as some little helpers! Start out from one end of the house and go through every drawer, every shelf and under every bed. Take out everything you haven’t used in a couple of years and are unlikely to use in the near future. Be ruthless!
Once you’ve got all the unwanted stuff from all the rooms together, sort them. You can give away things that are still in usable condition and toss the rest. You can call in your local recycling unit a.k.a. kabadiwala. Depending upon your location, you can even sell scrap online at websites like The Kabadiwala, Junkart, Scrapos or Scruffree.
2. Deep Clean
Once you’ve decluttered your home, you’re probably feeling like you got a load off your chest! Now that you can actually see some parts of your home, you can also see how much dirt they’ve collected. Get your house help ready to work solely on this for the whole day, so the two of you can clean all those difficult to reach spaces together. Don’t forget the tops of cupboards, under furniture, behind cupboards, over light bulbs as well as clocks, paintings and switchboards. Avoid dusting vigorously that just sends the dust flying into the air; use a vacuum cleaner instead and wet wipe all surfaces. You don’t need a lot of chemical cleaners; just vinegar can accomplish a lot of things!
3. Do a Maintenance Check
So you’ve tossed all the broken toasters, but what about the appliances that are currently in use? Go through all your warranty papers and get a maintenance check done on all of them. Very old appliances may be consuming a lot of electricity – not good for the environment or your pocket! If any appliance is malfunctioning get it repaired right away. Make sure all the lights are of the energy saving variety. The same goes for furniture – polish scuffed surfaces, fix wobbly legs and broken hinges. Check all doors, windows and locks. If anything seems far too old that it’s better to get a new one than repair it, note it down somewhere. Get an expert’s opinion on pest control or plumbing issues. Don’t forget your car – you need it to be in perfect shape too!
4. Decide on a Theme
Okay, so everything is ship-shape and working great! By now, Diwali is only a few days away and you need to start thinking more in ‘festive mode’. Decide on how you’d like to decorate your home for Diwali. Do you want a grand, rich style with brocades and mighty brass lamps? Or do you want a more earthy feel with clay pots and leaf torans? Once you zero in on a theme that’ll work for your home and family, it becomes easier to bring it to life. Think about the things you already have at home and how you can make them work. Unused rich sarees can be draped over existing curtains to give a grand look. Flowy dupattas can give a more casual, breezy feel. Don’t hesitate to borrow from your Mom too!
5. Make a List
Remember the list we talked about in Step 3? It contained the list of appliances/furniture in your home that were worn out. Some appliances may be working but probably aren’t sufficient for your family’s needs anymore, like a small washing machine or fridge. If you think you need a bigger fridge or a newer iron box, add it to the list. Now that your theme is set, you can add any more pieces that you think you need, along with regular Diwali items like sweets, flowers, puja supplies etc. Get incense sticks to match your theme and give your home a welcoming feel. As far as possible, try to include things that can multitask and which you can use beyond Diwali as well.
6. Go Shopping
Here comes the best part – shopping! Make the most of sales and Diwali deals that run both online and in physical stores. Wholesale stores are a good place to get inexpensive items like flowers, lamps and other random decorations. If you’re getting fresh flowers, arrange for someone to bring them home on the day. When buying home decor pieces, always think about how they’ll fit in your space, and if it’s a relatively large piece, take measurements to be sure. Keep the colors of your home in mind, so that everything comes together to create a harmonious look. If shopping with credit cards, use the ones that offer maximum benefits or points.
7. Get Decorating!
After all that prep, Diwali is nearly here! Your home is clean and clutter-free and everything is working to your satisfaction. Now it’s time to put the final touches to make your home truly worthy of a goddess’ visit. Place lights everywhere – diyas along the window sill, tea lights in jars or on a platter, fairy lights along the window. Place a traditional lamp or an uruli (traditional bowl) at the entrance, filled with flowers or flower petals. One tip – make at least one piece of DIY decor and put it in a visible spot to add that personal touch – it’s your home after all!
Your home is beautiful and ready! In every step, be sure that you work in a way that is friendly to the environment. Use eco-friendly colors for rangoli, get star-rated energy saving appliances and buy quality products. Avoid getting too much stuff that’ll just contribute to clutter and take you back to square one! Keep away from plastic and use natural materials as far as possible. This also makes your post-Diwali clean up a lot easier. You don’t need to break the bank to make your home beautiful, just some planning and creativity. Now sit back and enjoy your beautiful, happy new home!