Marie Kondo Responds to Alison Roman’s Criticism of Her Product Line

  • Home expert Marie Kondo has responded to food writer Alison Roman’s criticism of her product line.
  • In May 2020, Roman told The New Consumer that Kondo’s merch “is completely antithetical to” her minimalist approach.
  • Kondo told The Daily Beast that she doesn’t think her products contradict her tidying method.

Marie Kondo has finally responded to Alison Roman’s criticism of the home-organization expert from last year. 

The Daily Beast published an interview with Kondo on Monday, during which she reacted to the negative statements Roman made regarding Kondo’s product line, KonMari, during a May 2020 interview with The New Consumer.

The food writer and then-columnist at The New York Times told The New Consumer she didn’t want her brand to turn into a product line, and made comments about model and cookbook author Chrissy Teigen as well as Kondo — both of whom have collections.

“I’d rather stay small and always be myself,” Roman said during the interview. “But at the same time, I do need to figure out how to turn this into money.”

“Like the idea that 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… I’m like, damn, b—-, you f—— just sold out immediately!” she added. “Someone’s like ‘you should make stuff,’ and she’s like, ‘okay, slap my name on it, I don’t give a s—!'”

Roman faced backlash — including from Teigen — after the interview was published, went on hiatus from The Times, and ultimately left the paper to start her own newsletter.

When asked by The Daily Beast’s Marlow Stern about Roman’s statements, Kondo said: “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.” 

Kondo spoke about her product line, saying that she tries “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,” she said.

When asked what she thought about Roman being “effectively fired” from The Times, Kondo said she thinks “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,” she said.

Although The Daily Beast suggests that Roman was let go from The Times, representatives for the publication previously confirmed to Insider that Roman was not fired from her role and said that her column was put on hold and she then chose to leave.

Days after the New Consumer interview was published, Roman apologized to Teigen in tweets (that are not available to view at the time of writing), saying that she was “genuinely sorry I caused you pain with what I said.”

“I shouldn’t have used you /your business (or Marie’s!) as an example to show what I wanted for my own career- it was flippant, careless and I’m so sorry,” she added.

Roman continued in another tweet, saying: “Being a woman who takes down other women is absolutely not my thing and don’t think it’s yours, either.”

At the time, Roman did not appear to tweet a direct apology to Kondo, who also has a public account on Twitter, along with her brand, KonMari.

Roman did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

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