Teen earns £500 a month decluttering strangers' wardrobes

·Contributor, Yahoo Life UK
·3-min read
Ella McMahon, 19, from Leicester, has managed to turn her love of tidying into a profitable side hustle. (Caters)
Ella McMahon, 19, from Leicester, has managed to turn her love of decluttering into a profitable side hustle. (Caters)

A teenager has turned her love of decluttering into a side hustle, earning up to £500 a month organising strangers' messy wardrobes.

Ella McMahon, 19, from Leicester, has managed to turn her passion for tidying into a profitable business and now spends three to nine hours a day decluttering and colour-co-ordinating other people's wardrobes.

When she's not studying, the fashion buying and design student helps messy clients get their rooms in order.

“I could do it all day every day, as I am obsessed with organising," she says. “I love making things look perfect and neat."

Read more: UK's answer to Marie Kondo: Decluttering expert shares gruesome discoveries

One of her client's wardrobes before McMahon worked her magic. (Caters)
One of her client's wardrobes before McMahon worked her magic. (Caters)
What a transformation. (Caters)
What a transformation. (Caters)

McMahon says it takes a minimum of three hours to totally declutter and colour-co-ordinate a wardrobe.

“It obviously depends how big the wardrobe is too, but I have spent nine hours on one before.

“I don’t mind though, as I find it very satisfying.”

The fashion and design student has turned her love of decluttering into a business. (Caters)
The fashion and design student has turned her love of decluttering into a business. (Caters)

For her incredible decluttering services, McMahon charges between £15 and £20 an hour.

She originally got the idea to turn her love of tidying into a business after helping to organise the wardrobes of her friends and family.

“I love fashion and looking at clothes, so it is fun for me," she explains.

“When I have a new client, I always go through their clothes with them as you don’t realise how much you hoard.

“We then bag up four to six bags full of unwanted clothes and I drop them off to a charity shop.”

Read more: Five ways to declutter and feel happier

One of McMahon's colour coordinated wardrobes. (Caters)
One of McMahon's colour coordinated wardrobes. (Caters)
McMahon hopes to save enough money to buy a house. (Caters)
McMahon hopes to save enough money to buy a house. (Caters)

McMahon says her favourite part of the job is seeing her clients' reactions.

“I love seeing how happy they are," she says.

“I have about 20 regular clients who I visit every two weeks to keep on top of it. When everything is organised and neat, it is much easier to find items as the colours are in sections meaning no mess will be made.”

Watch: Decluttering expert, hailed as the UK’s Marie Kondo, has seen her business boom since the pandemic

Once she's finished a decluttering job, McMahon often shares the results in a series of satisfying transformation videos that spark total wardrobe envy.

"I always film the wardrobe ahead of tidying it, to show the transformation," she says.

"Most of the time, people just throw their clothes into a drawer and by the end of the week, clothes are everywhere.

"But once I visit, they are colour coordinated, making it easier to find an item.

"In the long run, an organised wardrobe saves a lot of time and hassle."

Read more: What is Swedish Death Cleaning - and why is it causing such a decluttering buzz?

 Another impressively tidy wardrobe McMahon has created. (Caters)
Another impressively tidy wardrobe McMahon has created. (Caters)

As well as making her clients' space much more liveable, McMahon believes there's a mental health benefit to keeping things tidy.

“Decluttering is healthy for the mind," she explains.

The entrepreneurial student is now hoping her side hustle, called 'Cinderella's Closet', means she will be able to save for a house to buy while she's at university.

Additional reporting Caters.

Watch: 7 ways decluttering can support your mental health

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