If you’ve watched Get Organized with The Home Edit on Netflix, you know that Sumner Canfield is indisputably the breakout star of the show. While it’s centered around The Home Edit co-founders Clea Shearer and Joanna Teplin, it’s their director of product development, Sumner, with her quippy one-liners, genius problem-solving and hilarious facial expressions, who steals every scene she’s in.
On the heels of the second season’s release on Netflix earlier this spring, Sumner Canfield took part in her first-ever interview for this week’s episode of In The Know’s pop culture interview series We Should Talk. In it, she opened up about her evolution at The Home Edit as their first hired employee, shared behind-the-scenes secrets of the show and working for celebrity clients, divulged some useful organizational tips that everyone can start their organizing journey with and picked out her favorite items from The Home Edit’s lines at the Container Store and Walmart.
Listen to Get Organized with The Home Edit star Sumner Canfield’s full episode of We Should Talk here, and keep reading for highlights from the interview:
On how she got involved with The Home Edit: I was the first hire. So, it was Clea, Joanna and me. I’ve done everything [at the company], almost. I just cold-emailed Clea and Joanna out of the blue, because someone I followed on Instagram — before Stories, before The Home Edit Instagram had really taken off — posted about it and I was like, “I’d really enjoy doing that.” I said, “Hey, I’d love to talk to you about your business and see if you need any help,” not knowing that when I emailed them, the business was about 5 weeks old. I had no clue. They were very nice to meet me for coffee, but it’s so funny because the way they tell it now, “We were gonna meet you and talk to you, but we weren’t gonna hire anyone. We were good — it was just the two of us, and we did not need anyone.” But I’m so completely charming that I just won them over!
On Clea Shearer’s recent breast cancer diagnosis: I think I can speak for everyone at The Home Edit and at Hello Sunshine when I say we’re so incredibly proud of her. It’s the busiest time in The Home Edit’s history. We have Season 2 that just came out, we were acquired by Hello Sunshine a little over a month ago … it’s so busy and it’s in so many ways an inopportune time, but Clea has really viewed this as, “I’ve never had a bigger platform. I’ve never had more of a microphone to advocate for women and their health.” The way that she’s taken it all in stride, and the way that she’s decided to give it a bigger purpose has just been so awe-inspiring and so admirable. So, the message is: Women, you have to prioritize your health! In a lot of ways, in the medical community, everything’s moving very fast, everyone’s been very fast and it’s been a very crazy couple of years, but you still have to get through that, advocate for yourself and make sure you’re getting seen by your doctor if you think something’s up. If you think something’s up, don’t wait; get it seen to and be your own best advocate.
On being discreet and not being fazed by organizing celebrity homes: Here’s the good news: Everyone we work with (and this is going to sound really boilerplate) is really amazing, so there’s not a lot of “Guess what I saw…” But, we work in such an intimate way with people. We’re in their house, but we aren’t coming to repair an appliance. We are going through their things, and it’s emotional a lot of the time. It’s private. It’s funny, because I don’t even think I view the celebrity clients that differently than the regular people, because everyone has stuff that they hold dear and close to the heart and close to the vest, so it’s our job to come in very nonjudgmental and say, “OK, so here’s your new sex toy drawer! Please enjoy!” And, whatever it is, you just have to do it, and we’re going to make it look amazing while we’re in there. It’s going to be the best sex toy drawer you’ve ever seen in your life! It’s easier than I would think it would’ve been, because it’s just so personal.
On her top organizing tip for people looking to start their organizing journey: My advice would be: As easy as it is to be in the Container Store or Walmart and say, “Oh, I’m just going to grab some things and see if they work” … no. Come in with a plan. Go to those stores with the space in mind: You’ve measured it, you know what’s bothering you and you know what your goals are. We have so many clients who have tried to start on their own and they’ve done a good job, but then you go back and they’re out of the bins you bought the first time or they’re hanging off the shelf, because you didn’t measure before you went to shop — all that stuff. Take the time to make a plan. It can be a five-minute plan, but it will save you a lot of heartache in the long run. The item that can transform a space the most quickly a lot of times is a turntable slash lazy Susan. They make everything in a cabinet accessible.
Watch In The Know’s full interview with The Home Edit’s Sumner Canfield below, and stream the first two seasons of Get Organized with The Home Edit on Netflix now:
If you enjoyed this interview, check out In The Know’s recent interview with Bravo star Craig Conover here!
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