Tip of the day – cleaning caddies

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If your house, like most houses, has more than one floor, consider making yourself cleaning caddies that have a permanent home on each floor.

Our house has a converted attic, so it’s three stories high – one of my huge extravagances is having a vacuum cleaner on each floor: no more lugging this heavy appliance up and down the stairs. I also have a broom on each floor, and a cleaning station: one in the kitchen island, one under the bathroom sink and another quick-clean one on the top floor, which is just a nice vintage wicker basket lined with oilcloth and filled with cleaning products.

These include window cleaner, squeegee, bin bags, dustpan and brush, wet wipes, a microfibre dusting cloth, home-made air freshener in a spray bottle, a ‘feather’ duster (made of microfibre loops), kitchen roll and lavender oil.

The basket is a tall one designed to hold wine bottles, so it holds the taller products very well, and it has a big looped handle, so is easy to pick up and move from room to room. Our top floor contains our bedroom, library and photographic studio but there is no water, hence the wet wipes, which I use for dusting – elsewhere, I dust with a wet microfibre cloth.

The station under the bathroom sink is an old shoebox that contains loo cleaner, white vinegar, scented cleaning alcohol, anti-bacterial wipes and home-made cleaner/degreaser. Because we have a septic tank, I avoid using bleach products. The kitchen caddy is a big plastic slide-out drawer, with wet wipes, microfibre cloths, essential oils and falun for sprinkling on the floors – the whole thing can be whipped out and placed on the island unit for easy access.

I believe, where possible, in having attractive cleaning materials and equipment. God knows, cleaning is boring work, but it is sweetened a little by my pink, blue and green floral brooms with coloured bristles, dustpans decorated with ladybirds and cupcakes, and nicely scented cleaning products

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