Welcome to The Mess Makers Series, where we take an intimate look inside the lives of Aussie creators, inspirers and side hustlers.

Vol. 9 Jess Stevens

Vol. 9 Jess Stevens

Jess is a mum of 3, home decor & DIY guru AND an organisation extraordinaire.
We asked Jess to be this months Mess Maker to help inspire our readers to organise their house into a home.

Hi Jess! This series is called The Mess Makers. How do you make mess?

Everyday life for us is Messy!
With three children (8, 7, and 2), a mechanic husband and myself, mess is part of every day!

Now – 5 facts about yourself, GO!

Hmmmm, 5 Facts about me. 

1.      I am NOT typically a tidy/organised person! In fact, the exact opposite!
This is the reason behind why we have different “storage systems” in our house to give everything a “home”.

2.      In December 2020 I was diagnosed with ADHD and OCD (not the “cleaning” obsessed OCD to my husband’s dismay). I had a tough year last year which lead to a “Mental Health Plan” from my GP, Psychologist appointments and eventually Psychiatrist visits. I finally had answers as to why everyday tasks were hard for me but seemed simple for others, the fidgeting, the lack of concentration, racing thoughts and forgetfulness. 

3.      Hubby and I are suckers for terrible reality shows! We love watching them together and particularly enjoy “Jersey Shore” and “Florabama Shore”!

4.      I’m TERRIFIED of cockroaches. If I see one somewhere, I can’t relax until I know it’s dead otherwise, I’d probably burn the place down!
And lastly;

5.      Hubby and I met when we were 16 yrs old on high school leavers! We started dating at 21, married at 23 and had our first daughter at 24!
This year we will be celebrating our 10 year wedding anniversary!

Your home is so beautifully organised, let’s be honest, you have kids - does it get messy?

Our home is messy on the daily!
With hubby and I both working, the morning school and daycare rush can turn the house upside down!
Once home we tidy before dinner. The girls unpack their school bags and lunch boxes, put their bags away and their school clothes straight into their own washing baskets. The girls also clean their own rooms and will put their own washing away.
After dinner hubby and I spend a few minutes tidying up before bed. The weekends are usually the time the larger cleaning jobs get done and decluttering.

I know you love crafts and styling, what’s your favourite celebration or holiday of the year to decorate for and why?

I MIGHT go a little bit crazy at Christmas time! The Christmas Tree seems to go up earlier and earlier each year!
Last year we also had a Christmas tree in our room and the girls had one each in their rooms! (I picked the trees up for a few dollars after Christmas the year before).

Every year, we make personalised Christmas ornaments with the Children’s hands or footprints and these are hung on the tree and occasionally gifted to family. We use either Clay or Salt Dough and have a different design each year.
Last year we made “hand sanitiser” ornaments as a tribute to the year that was.

Another tradition that we also do each year is have the children pick out their own special Christmas ornament from the shops. I write their name on it and the year. These are so sweet to look back on as it’s a representation of their personality and interests each year.

There is just something so magical about Christmas and it brings us so much joy!

How do you find inspiration for your DIY projects, and what has been your favourite DIY? (pics please!)

I find Inspiration for my DIY projects in various ways! This includes being influenced by someone who has done something similar, to make something on a budget or to create something I want but hadn’t be able to find. (Also, a friendly reminder to credit those who influence you or who’s ideas you are trying, this helps to ensure that their Intellectual Property is credited).

My favourite DIY project to date is my “DIY Concrete Tables”. These were inspired by some concrete coffee tables I had seen online with high price tags out of my budget. I found some tables that I liked the look of, removed the tabletops and made my own using Concrete, tiles and white colouring.

I have saved the process in my Instagram Highlights for anyone who would like to try something similar at home.

What are your thoughts on Scrub Daddy & The Pink Stuff?

We have just recently started using the Scrub Daddy and The Pink Stuff products and to say I’m impressed is an understatement!

The “Scrub Mummy” works so well on our benchtops! It seems to have removed previous bench spray residue using only water! I went over the bench with the scrubbing side first and then wiped over with the sponge side. I dried the bench with a microfiber cloth and noticed a big difference with the texture of the bench! I even made hubby run his hand over the bench! Haha! 

I have a date planned tomorrow with The Pink Stuff Paste and the bottom of all my kitchen pots!

What is your favourite room/favourite area in your home?

My favourite area in our home would have to be the walk-in pantry! Not only because of the food inside (obviously that’s a delicious pro) but we finally have a system in place that works for our family.
I had previously tried a few different layouts and things would just end up all over the place. Now we use a combination of bins, drawers and canisters to organise and store all our food, baking supplies, medicines etc.
We have the children’s snacks at easy reach, opened packets in air-tight canisters and other things are thrown into bins.

This way unpacking the groceries is much easier and things go straight into their labelled section without having to worry about “refilling” everything straight away.

What has been the most difficult part of getting to where you are today?

The most difficult part was being overwhelmed with the thought of all the areas in our home that needed to be decluttered / organised.

A lot of that was my procrastination and lack of concentration with my undiagnosed ADHD. Tasks just seemed too big, too hard and too overwhelming that I’d start and then stop soon after.
We still have areas in our home that aren’t organised but I now know that I will get there but it is a process and as long as you continue to work on one area, one drawer, one box, one room at a time, slowly you will start to see more and more progress and it will all be worth it. I promise!

Do you have any projects coming up you want to talk about?

I always have a project on the go!
Currently I am decluttering our spare room to move our toddler out of the “study” into his own big boy room. I’m so excited for this as it means I will get the study back and I get to decorate 2 rooms! I am planning a large study/work desk running from one wall to the other with lots of room for crafting and projects!
With Owen’s big boy room, I will be attempting some wall panelling and wallpapering for the very first time! So, stay tuned for the project in real time very soon!

Share a hot tip with us

The best tip I could give anyone is not to compare yourself or your home to anyone else. Someone could be at the end of their home organising journey and you could be at the very beginning!
Just keep working on one thing at a time and be proud of how far you have come, not how much further you have to go! In a year’s time, you will be glad you just started somewhere!

To get your daily dose of DIY or organisation inspiration follow Jess on Instagram @insta.mumma 

Stay Tuned For Our Next Mess Maker!


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