Try as You Might, You Cannot Trick Marie Kondo into Talking About Alison Roman

The queen of decluttering is also the queen of circling all answers back to her brand

CANNES, FRANCE - JUNE 17: Founder of KonMari Media, Inc. Marie Kondo speaks on stage during the Blue...
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Spark Joy

Queen of mess Marie Kondo, now back in the limelight doing press for her new Netflix show Sparking Joy, has finally broken her silence on the whole Alison Roman affair.

A refresher for those who have forgotten all the minor squabbles to dot this tired world in the past year and a half: in May 2020, Roman, the millennial cool girl of the recipe world, got in trouble for criticizing Kondo and Chrissy Teigen for selling out and hawking products to build their brands. Of Kondo in particular, Roman said, “When Marie Kondo decided to capitalize on her fame and make stuff that you can buy, that is completely antithetical to everything she’s ever taught you.” In the dustup that followed, Roman was accused of targeting Asian women and eventually left her position as a cooking columnist at the New York Times.

While Teigen has been very vocal about, um, everything in her life, including Roman’s remarks, Kondo has largely remained quiet. But in a new interview with the Daily Beast’s Marlow Stern, the decluttering maven had some words about being called a sellout for selling organizational goods. Lots of words that didn’t actually say anything at all about Alison Roman. You might say her answer is actually slightly cluttered:

I don’t know if there is a contradiction there, because the fundamentals of my method and my approach to tidying is that we always choose what sparks joy, and what you need to be letting go in order to achieve a life that sparks joy. But not only that: I always try to teach people to cherish what you already have, and in buying new things, I really encourage people to be as selective as possible. And I do have my online shop, but it’s after you finish tidying, and you attain a life that sparks joy for you, that you start to add new things to your life that truly spark joy. I see so many clients let go of things and acquire new things, so I encourage everyone to be as selective as possible in what they introduce into their lives.

When pressed further, however, and asked to weigh in on Roman being “effectively fired from the New York Times for making” those comments, the KonMari creator brought the whole brouhaha back to how it’s also important for the discourse to be tidy:

So, I think it’s completely natural for everyone to have different opinions. I’m someone that really considers discussions among people with different opinions to be very important, because it’s only through such discussions—and through the process of tidying—that we discover what’s important to us individually.

Say what you will about Kondo — she is a master of staying on brand.