The Japanese tidying guru Marie Kondo appears to have adopted a new approach to decluttering: rid your home of things that don't "spark joy", then replace them with items from her new online store.
Kondo, who rose to international fame for encouraging people to declutter their homes and minds using the KonMari method, launched the store on her website earlier this week.
The homeware and fashion items on sale include a pair of leather room shoes for $206, or €185, a flower-bouquet tote bag for $42, or €38, and a ladle for $96, or €87. The most expensive item is a $275, or €250, brass kitchen-utensil holder: the cheapest is a ceramic chopstick rest for $8, or €7.
In a message posted on the site, Kondo, the star of a hit Netflix show and author of the bestselling book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, explains that with the right items in one's home, more really can be less.
The KonMari method “isn’t about getting rid of things”, she says. “It’s about heightening your sensitivity to what brings you joy. Once you’ve completed your tidying, there is room to welcome meaningful objects, people and experiences into your life.”
The store has been launched just weeks after Rakuten, Japan's biggest ecommerce site, announced a commercial partnership with Kondo. But Kondo says she is not trying to promote consumerism, claiming the idea for the store came from people who asked her what items she liked to have around the house.
“What’s most important to me is that you surround yourself with items that spark joy,” she says. “If the bowl that you’re using currently sparks joy for you, I don’t encourage replacing it at all.”
The irony of Kondo selling household paraphernalia has not been lost on social-media users. "Marie Kondo, who told you to throw away everything you own, apparently wants you to repopulate your now empty life with vaguely minimalist-looking junk that you, of course, buy from her," one wrote on Twitter.