Who says you have to decorate your own Christmas tree? A new class of specialists is ready to tackle every task – big, small, and unheard of. By Tom Prince
All those boxes of photos are spilling out of the closet – Colorado white- water rafting in 1995, Gobi desert in 1996 – and you’re afraid you’ll book the same vacation if you don’t organize them. You’ve forgotten which clothes are in the closet, and your collection of American presidential biographies has Glover Cleveland-size holes in it. You’d love to upload those 10,000 songs onto your iPod, but there are holiday decorations to put up and presents to buy … and wrap … and deliver. All these details dangle in the back of your brain, separating you from sleep and sanity, keeping you from pursuing the finer things in life. You possess the means but not the method. You need a Fixer. As Americans increasingly seek organized, art-directed, curated, and quality-controlled lives, the market for fixers has grown more specialized. The ones on the front lines will reduce stress, fix problems, and make life bearable. Behind the scenes, others will help build collections or dismantle them, teaching clients how to have and have not. Still others orchestrate three-hour celebrations and catalogue long-lasting memories. In every case, for prices varying as widely as the tasks, fixers wrap up the minutiae that would tie mere mortals in knots.
Robin Domeniconi, a Manhattan publishing executive, could have hired movers to help her relocate from the Flatiron District to her new Chelsea apartment, but she refused to deal with a truckload of movers named Manny who might decide to hold her headboard hostage. Instead she turned to Linda Rothschild, the founder and CEO (chief executive organizer) of Cross It Off Your List, then escaped to her East Hampton house.
Rothschild tagged every item (including the tea bags), oversaw the move, and unpacked. “I never saw any boxes,” says Domeniconi, who arrived at her new apartment to find her cashmere twinsets color-coded in drawers.