Interview with a Professional Organizer: Ashley of Design, Build, Love | Organizing Made Fun: Interview with a Professional Organizer: Ashley of Design, Build, Love

Monday, July 15, 2013

Interview with a Professional Organizer: Ashley of Design, Build, Love

Today's interview with a professional organizer is Ashley, who blogs over at Design, Build, Love. I met her last year when we were both at a blog conference. She is sweet, perky, and very organized! 

Please tell me a little about you, your family, your career/job, and what you enjoy doing when you’re not organizing.

My husband and I live in a small-town suburb of Sacramento, CA.  It's the perfect mix of small-town country, right next to the city.  We both own our own businesses - he's an attorney- and keep really busy, but we love spending time with our family and friends.  Any spare moment we have, you can find us cycling, hiking, wine tasting, DIYing, or watching our beloved San Francisco Giants!  Aside from my hobbies and business, I've recently earned my law degree, and while I plan to utilize it, I could never give up my incredibly fulfilling career as a professional organizer and efficiency consultant.  

When did you start blogging and your website?

I started my do-it-yourself/home design blog ( in 2010, as a creative outlet while going to law school.  I was in desperate need of a way to express myself creatively, and had no idea the impact that it would eventually have.  After a little over two years of DIY blogging, I had a few lifestyle wake-up-calls that forced me to take a step back and reassess my long-term plans.  Blogging, and my passion for helping others came to the forefront, so I decided to build a business around things that people already came to me for- and so, DBL Designs Lifestyle and Small Business Consulting was officially launched in August 2012-  My focus is teaching individuals and business owners how to be more organized and efficient so that they can have More Time for the things they love, More Money to afford those things, and Less Stress so that they can truly enjoy what really matters.

What is your favorite part of your job?

The tears.  They're always happy tears.  At the end of the project, it's the moment when the client looks at what was done and realizes that they no longer have to carry the burden they used to bear.  Letting go of control and submitting to a process that has its moments of overwhelm can be hard, so when clients see the finished product, it really reinforces that the struggle and the willingness to submit to change was worth everything.

What is the first thing you do with your clients when you go to help them organize?

The first thing I do is get to know my client.  Organizing and efficiency is about more than just a space, it's about trust.  Understanding my client as a person, what their lifestyle entails, what challenges they're facing, and what they're hoping to get out of hiring me, is essential for me to successfully meet their needs.  Once we have a clear understanding of the ultimate goal, I create a fully individualized plan to meet their organization and efficiency needs, explain the plan to my client, and I progress project-by-project to the client's satisfaction. 

My readers have many questions for you, so I will ask you a few:

How much does it cost to hire a professional organizer? And, is it worth it?

We currently charge $50 per hour, but the cost of professional organizers can vary by area.  I also do flat-rate e-organizing, for clients who are not local, where I create customized plans and shopping lists to get each space successfully organized on their own.  As well, if it is a large project, I often do project specific quotes for our clients so that they can plan their budgets accordingly.

How do you keep kitchen counters clutter free?

The first step is finding a home for everything. The second step is to put each item away, in its home, once you are finished with it.  Simple solutions such as a countertop file tote to organize mail and papers from your kids, or a full "command center" to keep track of all of your household's need are both great options.  I wrote a fun post all about this topic, here.

What do I do with all the piles of important things/papers that seem to have no place?

Create a filing system that meets your needs.  Filing does not have to be intimidating, and it shouldn't take a long time to keep on top of, once the right system is established.  Sort through the papers and categorize them into piles that make sense to you, and then create folders/files based on those piles. The files can go into a filing cabinet, an office space keepbox, or a drawer with a file hanging rack.  As well, files can be arranged alphabetically, by groupings, or numerically- whatever system makes the most sense to you!

How do I remember where everything is once it’s organized? I’m a very “out of sight, out of mind” kind of person.

There are a few different ways to do this.  Putting some sort of labeling system up is one.  The labels can be more “permanent” such as from a label maker, or it can be something temporary like sticky notes to help you get everything memorized.  We don't label a lot in my own home, so whenever big changes are made, we use the sticky note method until everyone in the house gets use to the new arrangements, and then they come down.  If I find that a particular space is not staying organized, I will employe a more permanent label solution.  Another way is to create a master list that tracks which items are stored where.

Let me tell you, this girl has talent. Not only can she organize, but she can build and design some great stuff! Aren't her before/after pictures fabulous? What other questions do you have for a professional organizer?

P.S. I'm over at The Better Mom today talking all about dating! Go HERE to see what I'm talking about!

Pin It

 Like what you see here? Consider becoming a follower or subscribe via email! Are you an Organized Reader? I'd love to see your organized space. Email me HERE and show me your space to possibly be featured as one of my Organized Readers.

  Protected by Copyscape Web Plagiarism Check
Connect with me:
Follow OrganizeMadeFun on Twitter Follow Me on Pinterest
Google Plus for OMF beckyb_omf Bloglovin’ OMF OMF Facebook page