Marie Kondo Netflix Show

marie kondo

Marie Kondo

I read Marie Kondo’s The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up a couple years ago. As a long-term minimalist, I was underwhelmed. Partly it was her (or her translator’s) use of the words “always” and “never” when referring to what her clients were to do and how they felt about it. Except for the maxim that we will all die, I tend to see human feelings and behaviors on a continuum, not as absolutes. And then there was the chapter that had her attorney clients destroying all their paper documents. I have no idea what the requirements for document storage is in Japan, but I know that attorneys in the United States are required to keep client documents for years after they close their practices, as well as for an active practice.

So, I kind of wrote her off as a means-well minimalist, still too young to have gotten into too much trouble. I read she got married, and thought, “Okay, now things will get interesting.” Then she had a couple of girls, both under my radar. Now she has a Netflix show. And I am smitten.

First of all, she is just a joy to watch. She has a manner of moving and speaking that is a combination of serene and playful that makes whatever she is doing on camera fun. She smiles like the Buddha as she tells the cluttered Americans to pile all their clothing on the bed. And you know, you just know, that as the mountain of clothes reaches toward the ceiling, she is probably giggling on the inside knowing that she is going to give them the homework of touching every article of clothing before deciding what to do with it.

I love watching her “greet” the house, which appears to be a meditation where she connects with the energy of the house. Kudos to the one American family who greeted their house with her.

I could do less with the greetings of the humans at the doorways every time she and her interpreter arrive or leave. I would rather see more of the house inhabitants talking about their internal process as they deal with their accumulated stuff. But there is plenty of that too.

I like the variety of the families that have been chosen for the show: preparing for a baby, letting go of a deceased family member’s things, marrying the objects of young couples. There are lessons for all of us. And it was good to see her be flexible with one of her clients who wished to do this out of the “proper” order.

I like listening to Marie tell us and show us in her studio home how to deal with particularly challenging items like children’s toys and paper documents. And I like that she has apparently created a uniform for herself: White tops/jackets, skirts and dresses and black tights with black flat shoes. She is a charming persona and I am delighted with the show.

I still have questions about the Konmari folding. It seems to me that every time you pull out a T-shirt folded to stand on it’s end, it will inevitably have wrinkles in it. And lumping kitchen, bathroom and garage under a “miscellaneous” category seems unwieldly large to me. But I guess the shows producers can keep everybody on track for the length of filming. You would probably want to keep all those things separated out if you were doing your own place by yourselves, on the weekends.

How about you all? Are you fans of the book or the show?

16 thoughts on “Marie Kondo Netflix Show

  1. Priscilla Bettis says:

    I read the book and thought her methods would be overwhelming for some. Imagine a working, single mom with carpool duty. She’d have to take off work to get through the process and still be interrupted by the kids’ activities. I wouldn’t be surprised if some readers started and then gave up. A piecemeal, 60-day declutter might be better for some.

    I did notice the “always” and “never,” but I figured that was a language-culture thing and shrugged it off.

    I watched her on TV one time during a minimalism special, and she helped an office. It was beautiful and serene afterwards, but you could tell not everyone LIKED being more streamline and efficient. Perhaps some folks feel busier and more . . . important? hard-working? with a cluttered workspace.

    Thanks for telling us about her show. I didn’t even know it existed!


    • Fawn says:

      Actually, as a working single mom with car-pool duty, I felt like being a minimalist was the thing that saved me. But I never piled all my clothes on a mountain on my bed. I just noticed what did not get used and made better choices. And yeah…a whole office, who probably did not sign on for the event. Ha! No backlash there! That is the thing about humans–you can inspire them and they will walk over burning coals to get their kid the drama/sports program that they desire, but if you tell them they “Have To” do something, you can just hear their heels digging into the carpet.


  2. karenvanzon says:

    I read the book but gave up when she said to store bags inside bags. I understood the whole emptying the bag every night and only packing what you need each day – I do that because I use a bumbag, rucksack or large handbag depending on my planned day. However, I don’t store the bags inside each other – I can’t even handle the effort of my pots all stacked inside each other. No simplicity in having to restuff bags every morning and night!
    Other than that, I did love the tone of the book and the whole ‘spark of joy’ idea. I caught a preview of the Netflix show but I doubt I’ll watch it (but I don’t watch much and rarely watch real people shows – I want escapism from my telly!)

    Liked by 1 person

    • Fawn says:

      Rest assured, Karen, this is escapism too. But if you prefer fiction…..that is A-Okay. Heh. I get the frustration about storing bags in bags (and pots in pots.) It seems like if you are minimalist enough there is room for a bumbag, a rucksack AND a large handbag.


  3. karenvanzon says:

    Oh, and the folding method is actually fab. I use it for tshirt, tops, vests, leggings, some trousers and they all look great (but I don’t iron at all so my standards are low!).
    I no longer do it for socks etc – life is too short. Although, when I did fold them, I remember my socks feeling nicer!


  4. Priscilla says:

    Happy New Year’s Fawn!

    Count me as a Marie Kondo fan. I loved her first two books, esp. the 2nd “Master” study one. I did not know about her Netflix show, but also don’t have Netflix. To be honest, I am at the stage where I still feel as if we have too much stuff to go KonMari on everything, but am still studying to be an apprentice, i.e. reading them approx annually.

    Things like t-shirts, I prefer to stack. I did though, fold drawer held items as she instructs, and I really like the atmosphere in my drawers now. Kind of like a greeting whenever opened.

    I’m going to check out the videos though…


  5. kulturschnepfe says:

    A while back, I tried reading her book but to me she sounded like one of those 50’s movie caricatures of an Angry Asian yelling at me to get my shit together. Uhm no. Also, her method of piling everything up and then going through it would so overwhelm me that I would lock that particular room the pile was in and move to another one, losing one room of my small flat.

    I’m aware that she has done a lot of good for very many people, but I prefer going through my things one shelf or compartment or drawer at a time. That takes a lot of time, but it’s quiet work (the kind I like at home, the office is busy and noisy enough) and just how I like it.

    I wonder if her show makes it or has made it to Europe. I might check that out if I can find somebody with Netflix to share it with me. If only to get rid of the Angry Asian image that the book (obviously unfairly) gave me of her 😀


    • Fawn says:

      Angry Asian lady! Hee hee. Yeah, her persona in the book is very bossy, which I also found off-putting. On camera she is just delightful. And I think having a bit more of life (husband, children) has softened her a bit. I would not go out of my way to watch her show…I only get Netflix for about a month a year….but I am glad the show dropped into my line of sight. I enjoyed it.


  6. NicolaB says:

    I read the book and enjoyed it- I liked the respect she has for objects, whilst not being attached to them.
    Having read your post, I found her show on Netflix- I find it helpful to watch things like that when I am feeling a bit cluttered and overwhelmed. Seeing someone else work through there stuff and end up with a more ordered space inspires me to work on my own stuff. I agree that she comes across really well on the show- less bossy than the book!

    I’m not sure that I have actually followed her method ‘properly’- perhaps because my stuff is already reasonably minimal and generally stored like-with-like. I can imagine it is really useful to shock you into realising how much you have, though. No room for denial!


    • Fawn says:

      I know that I haven’t followed her method “properly,” or really at all. Yet, I am still drawn toward books and shows that reveal a process of dealing with stuff/life when we are overwhelmed. I value teaching people gratitude for what they do have. I agree, she gets that right!


  7. Angela says:

    Underwhelming is a perfect word to describe the book. ( I was unaware of a second). But I am really drawn to all things minimalism, so I would be interested in checking out her Netflix show. Today I spent the day with my mom, who turns seventy this year, and she went on about how this year they want to sell their place, and downsize. I find it all fascinating and exciting, and have to try to not come on too strong, as I have so many thoughts and feelings about it all! I think refreshing and right sizing your life at any age is so inspiring.

    Thanks for the post, Fawn. I really enjoyed it! And happy new year to you…. :).


    • Fawn says:

      I, also, am drawn to all things minimalism. That said, I have read a bunch of dross on the topic. But when it’s good, it’s magic! “Right sizing you life,” I like that very much.


  8. randomchipmunkblog says:

    I never read the book and to be fair I don’t think I ever will but the Netflix show really resonated with me. It is highly ‘Hollywood’ but I, like you, really liked the selection of people and the energy she transmitted. I want to become a minimalist and I think Marie really helped me in that process. In terms of not feeling as if I have to get rid of stuff just for the sake of it but mostly to understand that I don’t need it, it doesn’t bring me joy.


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