Tucked away in Cahaba Heights Village on an overcast afternoon, we sat down with Amanda LeBlanc of the Clutter Prescription to discuss her new television show, The Amandas, on the Style Network and how this professional organizer manages motherhood, a growing business and, well, being The Amanda.
Amanda is a high-heeled southern belle who packs hand tool heat. A self professed girly-girl, she is the magic and the drill sergeant behind The Amandas which airs on Monday evenings at 9pm CST on the Style Network. Amanda says it was important to her to highlight real people with common organizing challenges, “not some of the crazy houses” that are more reality TV than reality for most of us.
Today, Amanda emerges from the back of her store in a chic dress, heels, and her 6 year old draped over her shoulder. Her child is home from school, sick (we’ve all been there). Husband, store manager, PR consultant and several others hover around as we set up. Despite the distractions, Amanda is at ease. This mother of 2, business owner, and now television personality is living proof that her Clutter Prescription organizational system works.
The path leading Amanda to television is one of faith and fate. For years, the Louisiana native has maintained a regular segment on a New Orleans morning news show (she still drives to New Orleans every other week) and TLC once requested a demo from her although nothing came of it. Then, an accidental meeting with a videographer was followed by a connection to a production studio, then a network merger from which The Amandas pilot show survived to be contracted for 10, one-hour segments on the Style Network.
“It’s harder than it looks,” Amanda offers. “We tape 250 hours for 44 minutes of a show working 14 hour days to get the footage.” There are cameras everywhere – in her car, following her to dinner with her husband. When a scheduling issue presented a roadblock a producer suggested, “What about your house?” Although initially panicked – haven’t we all run to check the guest bath just before opening the front door? – she realized the adjustment as a opportunity to demonstrate her own organized lifestyle at home. Along the way, she’s enjoyed guidance from NeNe Leakes from the Real Housewives of Atlanta but is still mostly figuring it out on her own.
The most recent episode is a nursery renovation in Birmingham. The result is lovely, of course, and includes products found locally. She shared many tips – mom to mom. Her secret? “I’m willing to take a step back from my life and make changes,” acknowledging the ever-evolving nature of family life.
For Birmingham locals: It’s clear that she considers Clutter Prescription employees to be an extension of herself. “We all answer to Amanda around here.” As a result, you can seek face to face solutions in her store located in Cahaba Heights.
The scoop on her dresses… (shhhhh… Serendipity in Cahaba Height’s Village)
Check out her Blog on the Style Network
Watch previous episodes of The Amandas via itunes