Author Topic: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!  (Read 1330075 times)

4alpacas

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1750 on: May 27, 2015, 04:03:26 PM »
I'm pretty sure my husband sometimes just gets rid of things for me.  And then either pretends he doesn't know where it went, or begs forgiveness if I notice something is gone (sometimes years later...)
Haha!  I'm not comfortable with getting rid of my husband's things, but it is tempting. 

CommonCents, I think the number thing will work out.  Logic rules his thinking process, so I think we can be rational about the process.  I hope. 

If the closet (+guest bedroom) clean-up goes well, the garage will be next.  My husband thinks everything will fit if we buy more organizational tools (i.e. pegboard, storage boxes, etc.).

FunkyStickman

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1751 on: May 28, 2015, 06:01:32 AM »
Have been extremely busy, but we culled another garbage bag of clothes from the kids. Also a few pairs of pants from me. Slowly getting there... I haven't even tackled my closet yet. That needs to happen.

midweststache

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1752 on: May 28, 2015, 06:42:09 AM »
I took some books I'm never going to open again back to my department. They're books I had for coursework, so I figured I can leave them in the grad student office and perhaps a future grad student can use them for a class or project. Better that than dumping quality editions off at the thrift store... plus, I purge 10-15 books, easy! (Books continue to be the single most clutter-y thing in our home, which... well, there are worse things).

(I also resisted the urge to buy a new book for an upcoming trip, and thus adding to the clutter. I'm taking a hard copy of one I already own that I haven't read, and DLed a new library book to my Kindle.)

I'm also taking a pair of boots that refuse to get gone out of town with me to give to my sister in law (or her equally slim mom)! Get them out of the apartment!

theadvicist

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1753 on: May 28, 2015, 07:59:25 AM »

Any tips for getting your partner to give up his things?

Great stuff from CommonCents. The other thing I'd add that I've had success with is to ask which ones he wants to keep, rather than which he wants to get rid of. This is an easier proposition, and can also help them see they don't actually value much of it. 

For us, it went like this:

  • Having watched me (silently) declutter for about 5 months DH suddenly says, "I think I'll get rid of some t-shirts"
  • He lays them all out on the bed.
  • I offer a prompt: 'Why don't you pick out the ones you love and put them back in the drawer to start'
  • He picks out maybe 4 (out of 20), puts them away
  • He looks at the pile and realises, hey, I obviously don't like these much...
  • He puts a few more away, and gives me the rest to get rid of.


In my opinion the success, as many others have mentioned, was down to modelling. I tried nagging - not lots, but occassional mentions of 'Why don't you get rid of some t-shirts, and then you're drawer might close' for a few years, it acheived nothing.

In January I resolved to shut up and get my own house in order. He was amazed at how much I got rid of... Worried I wouldn't have anything to wear, and when I said, "But I wasn't wearing any of it anyway" just conversationally, a lightbulb seemed to go off.

We've now had lots of conversations about how we've realised that we didn't have anywhere to put anything because all of our 'storage' spaces (dressers, shelves etc) were neatly storing... things we didn't use.

He's now pretty much totally on board with decluttering, and has since done other areas, though I still wouldn't touch anything of his without checking with him, and I try not to preach.

Whereas before I'd say, "Why don't you get rid of this sock, it's full of holes" (in a judgemental and exasperated tone), now we are on a similar page, I keep all holey socks when I do laundry and say (factually, and without intonation, just as a simple question), "These socks are holey. Is it alright with you if I get rid of them?" and so far, touchwood, he has agreed every time.

The more you both get rid of, the more you realise your life becomes better, not worse, and the easier it is to let go of other stuff. Good luck.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1754 on: May 28, 2015, 08:11:04 AM »
Well, of 28 items I dropped off, the consignment store took 8.
I was surprised they didn't take any of the Lands End polos. They were in great condition.  They also didn't take either of the two Banana Republic shirts, which were in season and good condition.

But my old tennis shoes got priced at $20 (they are Nikes, but that is crazy).

If things sell, I'm hoping I will take home between $5 and $15... 


margarita

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1755 on: May 28, 2015, 09:29:08 AM »
Well, of 28 items I dropped off, the consignment store took 8.
I was surprised they didn't take any of the Lands End polos. They were in great condition.  They also didn't take either of the two Banana Republic shirts, which were in season and good condition.

But my old tennis shoes got priced at $20 (they are Nikes, but that is crazy).

If things sell, I'm hoping I will take home between $5 and $15...

Recently I took clothes to a consignment shop - the owner told me button down shirts (ladies) are not a good seller.  She took my two almost new banana republic button down shirts but warned me they probably will not sell.  Sure enough at the end they did not sell (but I did pick up a cheque for $92.50 for the other items!). 

firelight

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1756 on: May 28, 2015, 10:03:42 AM »
Great progress, everyone! I'm still following the throw/donate one thing a day (since life is super busy and I don't want to stop the decluttering) and have cleaned up our magazine rack, our disposable containers and some extra furniture. Win! I'm now done with the low hanging ones and now have to make time to start looking deeper.

Does anyone feel that the house is still full of stuff even after getting rid of things? How do you keep yourself motivated?

Sibley

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1757 on: May 28, 2015, 10:09:52 AM »
Regarding helping others declutter...

Ask them which they would prefer. That they go through and do it.

Or that they force their surviving loved ones to have to go through a whole bunch of stuff that doesn't matter in order to get to the things that do matter, while under incredible emotional stress.

Because either way, the stuff is gonna go.

4alpacas

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1758 on: May 28, 2015, 10:24:37 AM »

Any tips for getting your partner to give up his things?

Great stuff from CommonCents. The other thing I'd add that I've had success with is to ask which ones he wants to keep, rather than which he wants to get rid of. This is an easier proposition, and can also help them see they don't actually value much of it. 

For us, it went like this:

  • Having watched me (silently) declutter for about 5 months DH suddenly says, "I think I'll get rid of some t-shirts"
  • He lays them all out on the bed.
  • I offer a prompt: 'Why don't you pick out the ones you love and put them back in the drawer to start'
  • He picks out maybe 4 (out of 20), puts them away
  • He looks at the pile and realises, hey, I obviously don't like these much...
  • He puts a few more away, and gives me the rest to get rid of.


In my opinion the success, as many others have mentioned, was down to modelling. I tried nagging - not lots, but occassional mentions of 'Why don't you get rid of some t-shirts, and then you're drawer might close' for a few years, it acheived nothing.

In January I resolved to shut up and get my own house in order. He was amazed at how much I got rid of... Worried I wouldn't have anything to wear, and when I said, "But I wasn't wearing any of it anyway" just conversationally, a lightbulb seemed to go off.

We've now had lots of conversations about how we've realised that we didn't have anywhere to put anything because all of our 'storage' spaces (dressers, shelves etc) were neatly storing... things we didn't use.

He's now pretty much totally on board with decluttering, and has since done other areas, though I still wouldn't touch anything of his without checking with him, and I try not to preach.

Whereas before I'd say, "Why don't you get rid of this sock, it's full of holes" (in a judgemental and exasperated tone), now we are on a similar page, I keep all holey socks when I do laundry and say (factually, and without intonation, just as a simple question), "These socks are holey. Is it alright with you if I get rid of them?" and so far, touchwood, he has agreed every time.

The more you both get rid of, the more you realise your life becomes better, not worse, and the easier it is to let go of other stuff. Good luck.
Thank you for all of the advice!  I've just started reading Marie Kondo's book (http://www.amazon.com/Life-Changing-Magic-Tidying-Decluttering-Organizing-ebook/dp/B00KK0PICK/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&sr=8-1&qid=1432830113).  After reading the first chapter, I realize that I'm going about this process in the completely wrong way.  My husband agreed to read 1 chapter of the book, and we will both sort through our clothes on Saturday.  I'm already planning a trip to Goodwill!  I'm very excited! 


I'm a red panda

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1759 on: May 28, 2015, 10:41:26 AM »
Well, of 28 items I dropped off, the consignment store took 8.
I was surprised they didn't take any of the Lands End polos. They were in great condition.  They also didn't take either of the two Banana Republic shirts, which were in season and good condition.

But my old tennis shoes got priced at $20 (they are Nikes, but that is crazy).

If things sell, I'm hoping I will take home between $5 and $15...

Recently I took clothes to a consignment shop - the owner told me button down shirts (ladies) are not a good seller.  She took my two almost new banana republic button down shirts but warned me they probably will not sell.  Sure enough at the end they did not sell (but I did pick up a cheque for $92.50 for the other items!).

They weren't button down though. They were summer tank tops with crocheted lace necklines.

No biggie. I told them to just donate whatever they weren't selling. The important thing is it is out of the house.
« Last Edit: May 28, 2015, 10:45:22 AM by iowajes »

LiveLean

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1760 on: May 28, 2015, 11:22:17 AM »
Can't believe I found an actual VCR still in our house this morning in an armoire (that itself needs to go).

Tossed the VCR on the pile of crap I had going to electronics recycling.

AlwaysBeenASaver

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1761 on: May 28, 2015, 11:31:29 AM »
Can't believe I found an actual VCR still in our house this morning in an armoire (that itself needs to go).

Tossed the VCR on the pile of crap I had going to electronics recycling.
We have one too, it's been on the floor of our closet for several years! SO doesn't want to get rid of it until we make a list of our VHS tapes so we can, some day, replace the ones we like with DVDs. I hope we get time to do this soon!

horsepoor

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1762 on: May 28, 2015, 12:33:26 PM »
I have four days off, so I'm laying out a couple challenges for myself:

  • Actually get the latest box o' crap delivered to the thrift store
  • Go through and organize file cabinets
  • Get rid of two remaining fish and decommission the aquarium
  • Hang the curtains in the basement and clean up the hardware/crap that is hanging around there
  • List at least 5 items on eBay
  • Re-work a broken horse jump that's in the back yard using stuff I have on hand, and take it out to the stable

Dang, I haven't gotten to any of these.  The weather has been great, so I've been gardening and riding instead.  I was ready to load the boxes into the car and take them to the  Goodwill, but I realized that I am missing my gold necklace, so now I need to go through the boxes with a fine toothed comb to make sure I don't accidentally donate actual diamonds.  OTOH, I had an unexpected day at home today due to a last minute change of plans at work, so I've been decluttering outdoors.  So far I have the truck loaded up with old broken windows I had planned to make into cold frames, some materials that were too weathered to use for anything, a broken screen door and some nasty old Adirondack chairs that aren't worth scraping and re-painting.  I've also got an old A/C unit, 6 patio chairs and two plant pots out at the curb with "free" signs on them, and burned up a pile of yard waste that has been visual clutter in my line of sight from the kitchen window since last fall.

starbuck

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1763 on: May 28, 2015, 01:53:29 PM »
We have one too, it's been on the floor of our closet for several years! SO doesn't want to get rid of it until we make a list of our VHS tapes so we can, some day, replace the ones we like with DVDs. I hope we get time to do this soon!

What about taking a picture (or several if necessary) of the VHS tapes? Then you'd have a record of what you used to own. You could still figure out what you want to replace, but don't have to keep the pile of stuff around to do it. Win, win?

Villanelle

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1764 on: May 28, 2015, 02:47:51 PM »
Tomorrow I start tackling cocktail and evening gowns.  This one will be hard for me.  I do wear these things, anywhere from 2-5 times a year, and I'm likely to start wearing them a bit more often.  Also, my size varies so I have a range of sizes (normal size and up and down one). 

I love these.  They are so beautiful.  And I do wear them.  And I hate wearing the same dress to more than every couple of years to these events.  Not entirely rational, but that's where I'm coming from as I tackle this.

This one will be a real struggle.  I probably have 25 or more.  Uggh.  I'm trying to decide what is reasonable.   This will be my first big challenge I think. 

1967mama

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1765 on: May 28, 2015, 03:09:39 PM »
Ugh! I have a bunch of fancy party dresses too!

Practical Magic

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1766 on: May 28, 2015, 05:05:27 PM »
Just wanted to give a general Thank You, fellow MMM declutterers! Reading what you're all up to is keeping me going when I hit a slump. eBay sales have slowed but I'm still shipping a few items a week. I gave up on some and just donated them. It looks like my rental house sale is going through, so I'll soon be free of that big burden (though there are still others, one less is a good thing!). And I just lowered the price on my collectible car for sale on CL.  I agree about the lowballers and scammers.  Geez, because I have a vintage Mercedes for sale, I'm now being targeted not only by foreign scammers, but by local massage practitioners!! Happy ending anyone? Sure, just buy my car, lady. That will give me the happy ending I'm looking for. ~They disappear quickly when they find out I'm a straight female. Lol
« Last Edit: May 28, 2015, 05:08:11 PM by Practical Magic »

tofuchampion

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1767 on: May 28, 2015, 06:08:03 PM »
I haven't done much of anything since I last posted. I have a pile of clothes that I intended to try to sell on eBay, but I've realized that I'd make so little from most of them that it wouldn't be worth it. So the whole pile is going in trash bags tonight and to Goodwill tomorrow. I did sell a few baby clothes on eBay, but didn't make much. I have $26.20 pending in my Paypal account, and paid $14 total for shipping... so that's $12.20 for 6 pieces. Plus the hassle of making the listings, going to the post office, etc. No thanks.

On the topic of spouses, Mr Tofu has given me permission to get rid of some things that have been cluttering up our closet - 2 old, nonworking computer towers, and a bin full of random bike parts. He also has a bike that needs work that he intended to fix up but never did, and he said that can go on craigslist. His DVD's, he said can go in our closet. He is basically acknowledging that no one ever watches them, but he spent so much money on them, he's still not going to get rid of them. Just put them away where they'll definitely never get watched. I don't understand this, but whatever. I'm actually planning to go through all of our movies, pull out the ones that get watched (mostly the kids' stuff), and leave those downstairs, then put the rest in the closet.

I think I need to go through my clothes again, too...

handsnhearts

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1768 on: May 28, 2015, 06:35:21 PM »
Now that I have moved, I have a big pile of stuff in a box by the front door to go to goodwill/ free cycle. There was some junk left in the house to go also, and I already checked in with the old tenants.   There were some things I was keeping to see about our new house, but now they can go. But I can already feel myself sliding into the phase where there is so much clutter, junk and boxes everywhere that I don't see it as much anymore. My eyes glaze over. How do I get going again?


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FrugalShrew

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1769 on: May 28, 2015, 08:03:11 PM »
It has taken me a few weeks to read through all 37 pages of this thread, but I am finally caught up & excited to get on board! 

Many, many pages ago there was a link to a website about why people hang onto things. Unfortunately, I identified with several of the categories: 1) not wanting to waste things, 2) keeping things that I may need or want someday in future, 3) sentimentality, and 4) feeling guilty about getting rid of things that were given to me as gifts. There is some logic to each of these positions, but they add up to a life governed by stuff and being surrounded by things that weigh me down.

This thread was just the inspiration I needed. I am currently feeling quite overwhelmed by stuff, clothes and papers in particular. I recently moved into an apartment with a small closet, and I have clothes overflowing everywhere in my room. I've never had a problem with this before, but I used to just add more storage if I needed it, and now I don't have room for that. I'd like to move more towards the minimalist wardrobe being discussed in another thread -- having each piece in my closet be something that fits, that I love, and that I would want to wear all the time.

The rest of the apartment could all use a trim, too, but it's all livable right now. The bathroom is actually amazing because there is no linen closet, and at first I found it so frustrating, because: where do I put all my stuff?? But now I LOVE it's lack of storage. There is a small medicine cabinet that I share with my roommate that houses my true essentials, and I keep my towel hung on the back of the door. That's it. I keep extra towels in my dresser.

horsepoor

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1770 on: May 28, 2015, 08:51:04 PM »
I have four days off, so I'm laying out a couple challenges for myself:

  • Actually get the latest box o' crap delivered to the thrift store
  • Go through and organize file cabinets
  • Get rid of two remaining fish and decommission the aquarium
  • Hang the curtains in the basement and clean up the hardware/crap that is hanging around there
  • List at least 5 items on eBay
  • Re-work a broken horse jump that's in the back yard using stuff I have on hand, and take it out to the stable

Dang, I haven't gotten to any of these.  The weather has been great, so I've been gardening and riding instead.  I was ready to load the boxes into the car and take them to the  Goodwill, but I realized that I am missing my gold necklace, so now I need to go through the boxes with a fine toothed comb to make sure I don't accidentally donate actual diamonds.  OTOH, I had an unexpected day at home today due to a last minute change of plans at work, so I've been decluttering outdoors.  So far I have the truck loaded up with old broken windows I had planned to make into cold frames, some materials that were too weathered to use for anything, a broken screen door and some nasty old Adirondack chairs that aren't worth scraping and re-painting.  I've also got an old A/C unit, 6 patio chairs and two plant pots out at the curb with "free" signs on them, and burned up a pile of yard waste that has been visual clutter in my line of sight from the kitchen window since last fall.

The Craigslist leaving things on the curb for the first person who gets it, and then deleting the ad thing works wonders.  I posted the ads, peeked out the window about 30 minutes later, and the stuff was there.  Then the doorbell started ringing while I was on a conference call.  Peeked out the window again and the stuff was gone, and a second person had come right behind them, apparently.  I deleted the ads, then a third person came by hoping to get the chairs.  All this in about an hour.  I feel a tiny bit guilty about the people who come by and don't get the item, but it's gone and out of my life.

Now to go through the boxes to check for my necklace, and get them in the car so they get dropped off tomorrow.  I have a couple books to add to the pile as well.

Villanelle

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1771 on: May 29, 2015, 04:12:51 AM »
I stood in front of the closet, staring at the dresses for about 5 minutes, reordering them, pulling one out and putting it back, etc.  Then I gave up and worked on another section of the closet.  20 pants and blazers in a donation bag.  Blazers are an area where I'll need at least one more pass (L. Ron,  I have so very many clothes!).  Not what I intended and I didn't tackle the scary dress project, but not bad for a day's work, either.

I love the idea of setting a number of X items that seems reasonable.  How many cardigans/swimsuits/pairs of boots is it reasonable for me to own.  If, after a purge, I'm at 150% of that number, clearly there's more work to be done.  Thanks for the great suggestion!

Another project is a major shoe purge.  When I was working in an office, I wore fancy heals almost daily.  I still want that life and imagine it for myself, so getting rid of work clothes is a tough sell mentally.  But I need to accept that it isn't my life.  If shoes haven't been worn since I move to Japan (5 years ago, and I'm in Germany now), clearly they need to go.  If I have the professional life I want again someday, I can buy more shoes.  I've acquired a lot more comfy, casual shoes, because they better fit my life, but I never got rid of the ones that fit my old life. 

It's amazing to me how much mental baggage gets opened up.  They may be just shoes, but to me, they are a symbol of the professional life I sacrificed to move.  Getting rid of them means accepting that difficult change a bit more fully.    Sometimes, a shirt is just a shirt, but other times, there's so much more meaning behind the Stuff.

ZiziPB

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1772 on: May 29, 2015, 05:13:44 AM »
I stood in front of the closet, staring at the dresses for about 5 minutes, reordering them, pulling one out and putting it back, etc.  Then I gave up and worked on another section of the closet.  20 pants and blazers in a donation bag.  Blazers are an area where I'll need at least one more pass (L. Ron,  I have so very many clothes!).  Not what I intended and I didn't tackle the scary dress project, but not bad for a day's work, either.

I love the idea of setting a number of X items that seems reasonable.  How many cardigans/swimsuits/pairs of boots is it reasonable for me to own.  If, after a purge, I'm at 150% of that number, clearly there's more work to be done.  Thanks for the great suggestion!

Another project is a major shoe purge.  When I was working in an office, I wore fancy heals almost daily.  I still want that life and imagine it for myself, so getting rid of work clothes is a tough sell mentally.  But I need to accept that it isn't my life.  If shoes haven't been worn since I move to Japan (5 years ago, and I'm in Germany now), clearly they need to go.  If I have the professional life I want again someday, I can buy more shoes.  I've acquired a lot more comfy, casual shoes, because they better fit my life, but I never got rid of the ones that fit my old life. 

It's amazing to me how much mental baggage gets opened up.  They may be just shoes, but to me, they are a symbol of the professional life I sacrificed to move.  Getting rid of them means accepting that difficult change a bit more fully.    Sometimes, a shirt is just a shirt, but other times, there's so much more meaning behind the Stuff.
This is so true! I recently got rid of some fancy handbags  and clothes that I used to wear in my prior job (5 years ago!).  The hardest part for me was the acknowledgment that that chapter of my life is now irrevocably closed. I almost turned back on my way to the consignment store. But after a day or so I started feeling better about it and now I almost feel ready for the here and now and the next chapter... Almost, because I still have a few dresses I hang on to for sentimental reasons. I need to screw up my courage and let them go. Soon...

I'm a red panda

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1773 on: May 29, 2015, 06:12:24 AM »
Tomorrow I start tackling cocktail and evening gowns.  This one will be hard for me.  I do wear these things, anywhere from 2-5 times a year, and I'm likely to start wearing them a bit more often.  Also, my size varies so I have a range of sizes (normal size and up and down one). 

I love these.  They are so beautiful.  And I do wear them.  And I hate wearing the same dress to more than every couple of years to these events.  Not entirely rational, but that's where I'm coming from as I tackle this.

This one will be a real struggle.  I probably have 25 or more.  Uggh.  I'm trying to decide what is reasonable.   This will be my first big challenge I think.

If you wear 2-5 a year, you don't like to repeat except every few years, it seems rational to keep 15, 5 per year, for 3 years.

So I'd combine the advice of the above post, and pare down to at most 15.

Then, I'd do a long term "hanger turn"- rather than move them to storage (do you have a storage building? I'd get rid of that!) Hang them with the hanger the wrong way, when you wear them, turn it around.  If after 3 years any are still the wrong way, get rid of them too.  Clearly, those weren't your favorites, and you didn't need as many dresses as you thought.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1774 on: May 29, 2015, 06:15:04 AM »
Regarding the fancy dresses, I had a recent revelation that they are cheap and plentiful on ebay here (UK), so I am storing them there from now on. I'll have a couple 'in stock' for last minute invitations, otherwise, I'll buy a 'new' one on ebay as an event invitation rolls in. Saves storing them, and means no repeats (I get you on that front). Actually, I think I'll send them to the consignment store, because they cost a lot more there, so I would probably do better even with the 50% commission.

acorn

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1775 on: May 29, 2015, 12:47:22 PM »
I've decluttered almost everything in the house and the only thing left are my clothes. I did a count of my wardrobe and turns out I have 112 clothes, which isn't too bad but I'm planning to get rid of half of it. eBay (US) is having this promotion with 2000 free 30-day fixed price listings so I listed 60 items. So far I've sold 2 items over 3 days, with 27 more days to go, looking forward to massive purging!

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1776 on: May 29, 2015, 04:49:58 PM »
Hello, I'm back!

I felt done for some time, but now that it is summer I can see what summer clothes I can part with. Also, my SO has come around to the whole "minimalism" thing! He even went a step further and things we should downsize from 1,000 sf (with lots of closets and a storage locker) to 700 (with hardly any closet space!). Which makes me a bit nervous because I don't want to feel crammed, and I also will have trouble parting with my large dining table that I restored with the intention of keeping forever.

So, I think we will have to go through everything again and see what can be trimmed. We aren't planning on moving for over a year, but I am already apprehensive at the thought of it.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1777 on: May 30, 2015, 04:22:20 AM »
I've slowed down on the clutter clearing lately so I went through some of my stuff again last night. I think I only ended up throwing away one thing, it was a packaging for a pillow that i was keeping for some unknown reason!

I ended up moving stuff around so it looks less cluttered which isn't really the point so I'm going to try again today.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1778 on: May 30, 2015, 11:28:44 AM »
Tomorrow I start tackling cocktail and evening gowns.  This one will be hard for me.  I do wear these things, anywhere from 2-5 times a year, and I'm likely to start wearing them a bit more often.  Also, my size varies so I have a range of sizes (normal size and up and down one). 

I love these.  They are so beautiful.  And I do wear them.  And I hate wearing the same dress to more than every couple of years to these events.  Not entirely rational, but that's where I'm coming from as I tackle this.

This one will be a real struggle.  I probably have 25 or more.  Uggh.  I'm trying to decide what is reasonable.   This will be my first big challenge I think.

If you wear 2-5 a year, you don't like to repeat except every few years, it seems rational to keep 15, 5 per year, for 3 years.

So I'd combine the advice of the above post, and pare down to at most 15.

Then, I'd do a long term "hanger turn"- rather than move them to storage (do you have a storage building? I'd get rid of that!) Hang them with the hanger the wrong way, when you wear them, turn it around.  If after 3 years any are still the wrong way, get rid of them too.  Clearly, those weren't your favorites, and you didn't need as many dresses as you thought.

No storage building.  Well, we have furniture in storage, paid for by the military.  A huge purge of that will happen when we are reunited. It will definitely be a large exodus, but it's a separate issue and one we can't address right now.

Because these dresses are expensive (though I bought many used/on ebay), I think I am going to avoid donating them, like I've done with everything else.  I'll move them to the States where I know I can find a good consignment store to take them. Doing that here would be much more difficult, and European style is different. 

I think I am going to try to do 5 formals and 5 cocktail in my main size, and 1 formal and 2 cocktail each in the +1 and -1 sizes. That's 16, which is probably an aggressive goal, but seems reasonable.  Of course, it's easier to say that now than it will be when I'm trying on dresses!

My parents are visiting in a few days (which means a break from the purging) and it has been so nice having less stuff as I clean and organize in anticipation of their visit.  I'm not where I want to be, but it's nice to see some concrete benefits of these efforts. 

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1779 on: May 30, 2015, 12:50:01 PM »
I am giving my cedar chest to my brother, and ottoman back to the coworker who gave it to me . I'm moving in three days, already seeing there is more I want to be rid of before I move - more clothing. Although my belongings are quite minimal, I'm finding that at this point I really do not want to deal with things . moving things, in particular. I am so sick of moving but seems like it keeps being necessary.....

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1780 on: May 30, 2015, 07:39:22 PM »
I sold a couple of items on Craigslist and also joined a local tag sale group on Facebook.  Packed a large bag of items for goodwill and have another large batch of clothes for the consignment store. Some will have to wait until they accept fall items but they are put aside and ready to go.

Feeling good about my tidying so far. Also finished reading Marie Kondo's book tonight. Very inspiring!

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1781 on: May 31, 2015, 02:44:56 AM »
I got rid of some old, organic toothpaste that I think had gone off, a lipstick I hate, some bath foam was used up, an old notebook was put into recycling and pet food packaging thrown away.


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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1782 on: May 31, 2015, 07:49:53 AM »
I threw away a bunch of old bathroom stuff. Like old toothpaste, old lotions and creams that were rancid, sunblock that was old and separated and had a tiny bit left, small sample size bottles of stuff that we were never going to use again. Also some plastic cosmetic bags that had seen better days. We also sorted all of our bathroom stuff, and we should have gotten rid of a ton more.  We have about 10 travel size toothpastes and the same number of brand new toothbrushes, all from the dentist. We use an electric one!  But DH didn't want to part with them (surprisingly since I'm the clutter bug). At least they are all in one place. I still have multiples of things, like 3 hotel shower caps, and too many cleaning items, like old toothbrushes and rags. But now that everything is together and organized, I can try a use things up or get rid of it in another pass. We are still missing a box from the bathroom, and we can't seem to find it.


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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1783 on: May 31, 2015, 07:50:47 AM »
I also kept an old organic toothpaste, but I moved it to cleaning supplies and I'm going to try it on my headlights of my car as suggested on the internet.


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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1784 on: May 31, 2015, 10:22:17 AM »
I threw away a bunch of old bathroom stuff. Like old toothpaste, old lotions and creams that were rancid, sunblock that was old and separated and had a tiny bit left, small sample size bottles of stuff that we were never going to use again. Also some plastic cosmetic bags that had seen better days. We also sorted all of our bathroom stuff, and we should have gotten rid of a ton more.  We have about 10 travel size toothpastes and the same number of brand new toothbrushes, all from the dentist. We use an electric one!  But DH didn't want to part with them (surprisingly since I'm the clutter bug). At least they are all in one place. I still have multiples of things, like 3 hotel shower caps, and too many cleaning items, like old toothbrushes and rags. But now that everything is together and organized, I can try a use things up or get rid of it in another pass. We are still missing a box from the bathroom, and we can't seem to find it.


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Places like Ronald McDonald House, Fischer House (Like Ronald McDonald house but for military), or domestic abuse shelters are likely to be happy to take new toothbrushes and sample toiletries.  Perhaps having someone who can make use of them will make it easier to get rid of them.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1785 on: May 31, 2015, 10:51:22 AM »
I am rewarded for my cluttering efforts:
- $50 savings bond (15 years in of 30)
- $50 bill mixed in with deposit slips

Found them in a bin of my husband I haven't gotten him to go through, languishing in the closet.  Pulled out the obvious trash (e.g. an empty bag of bic razors), put away office stuff (yay, now we don't need to buy a three hole punch), and put off to the side potential sentimental items for him to look at.

Also went through my bathroom cabinet and DH's chest of clothes (reorganized and culled of damaged items, it looks great and actually closes now!  and I know we don't need to buy him new undershirts for about 5-10 years...).

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1786 on: May 31, 2015, 12:47:37 PM »
Went through my costume jewelry and got ride of about 80% of it. Gave one of the empty organizer boxes to my boyfriend for fishing lures. Packed up two organizer boxes with the jewelry I am giving. Away and set it aside for the nanny to take what she wants.

How I wish I had never bought this stuff!

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1787 on: May 31, 2015, 01:44:01 PM »
Not much time today, but I went through our winter hats and scarves.  It was a quick pass and I probably need at least one more but I filled 2 plastic grocery bags plus threw away a few single gloves. 

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1788 on: May 31, 2015, 07:41:23 PM »
I also kept an old organic toothpaste, but I moved it to cleaning supplies and I'm going to try it on my headlights of my car as suggested on the internet.


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Thanks, I am so trying this!  I was looking at my truck headlights today and they're really cloudy.

Other than listing some books on Amazon, I got almost nothing done this weekend.  Still feeling like there is a long way to go, though I happened to be in the living/dining room of an acquaintance a few days ago and with their "normal" amount of stuff, my place seemed almost Spartan in comparison.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1789 on: May 31, 2015, 08:07:32 PM »
I donated 99 books today. (Maybe I should have looked around for one more.) That takes care of mine - now I have to work on DH.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1790 on: June 01, 2015, 03:39:51 AM »
Got rid of a bottle of nailpolish which was going thick and lumpy, even after I tried to thin it. And put another one in a colour I don't like aside to give to my friend who loves all my cast-off cosmetics.

Earmarked a few pieces of fabric for summery patterns, though it's still cold here in the UK so I'm not feeling much motivation to make hot weather clothes. I'm slowly finishing up things in the bathroom and kitchen and loving the empty space left behind (though I have to keep reminding myself not to use too much of something just to get rid of it!).

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1791 on: June 01, 2015, 05:10:58 AM »
Sold some curtain fabric that I had for four years. I was never going to make the curtains, as the ones we have are perfectly good, and I just do not care about home decoration. The fabric had been a gift, but I"m glad to be rid of it. The man who purchased it said his wife was going to be so happy. I also donated an entire storage tub of fabric plus the storage bin. Most of that fabric had been gifted to me as well. Gave some nice sewing patterns to a friend and to the library. I'm next on the list for the Kondo book. Looking forward to more progress.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1792 on: June 01, 2015, 06:14:08 AM »
This post has been inspiring. We already went through our closet and bookshelf. So far we packed up three boxes and two bags.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1793 on: June 01, 2015, 07:46:49 AM »
The Kondo book is SO great - so inspiring, and the author is so empathetic about our attachment to our STUFF.

We're starting with clothes, and we've pulled out 11 kitchen-size trash bags to donate. I had already come to the realization that if I was going to try to sell stuff, it would never leave my house, so we are sending it all off to Green Drop and calling it done.

Our closet has probably half the clothes it did two weeks ago. I also cleaned out a little dresser of socks, undies, PJs, et cetera. Now I know exactly what I have and where it is!

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1794 on: June 01, 2015, 08:52:54 AM »
Well, this weekend was quite slow going, but I managed to: 1) give away a tube of nice lip gloss and three bottles of shampoo to my mom, and 2) donate two pairs of knee-high tights and a spatula.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1795 on: June 01, 2015, 09:05:53 AM »
I had a clothing swap this weekend which motivated me to go through my closet again. Got rid of about 40 more items which bumped me over my goal for this year of 365 items. I'm going to try to double it, since the year is not even half over. I may need to focus a little harder though, now that the easy stuff is already out the door.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1796 on: June 01, 2015, 10:01:41 AM »
I had a clothing swap this weekend which motivated me to go through my closet again. Got rid of about 40 more items which bumped me over my goal for this year of 365 items. I'm going to try to double it, since the year is not even half over. I may need to focus a little harder though, now that the easy stuff is already out the door.

I had a clothing swap this weekend too! Go us :)

It felt so good to get rid of my giant ikea bag of clothes.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1797 on: June 01, 2015, 10:17:48 AM »
Wife and I went through the "possibly mend" pile of kids' clothes yesterday. Chunked most of it. Anything worthy of Goodwill got bagged, and put with other bags waiting to get donated.

We've found a place that takes clothes donations in a drop-off bin, i.e. no long trips to Goodwill! I can chunk the stuff on the way to work now. I have decided to just chunk anything we can't immediately donate and/or sell.

I cleaned out my closet (mostly organized it, but the floor is clear now) and wife is decluttering the girls' room this morning. I'm getting the itch to organize my workshop too, but that's a long-term undertaking.

Slow. Very slow. But making progress.

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1798 on: June 01, 2015, 05:17:16 PM »
Wife and I went through the "possibly mend" pile of kids' clothes yesterday. Chunked most of it. Anything worthy of Goodwill got bagged, and put with other bags waiting to get donated.

We've found a place that takes clothes donations in a drop-off bin, i.e. no long trips to Goodwill! I can chunk the stuff on the way to work now. I have decided to just chunk anything we can't immediately donate and/or sell.

I cleaned out my closet (mostly organized it, but the floor is clear now) and wife is decluttering the girls' room this morning. I'm getting the itch to organize my workshop too, but that's a long-term undertaking.

Slow. Very slow. But making progress.

I hate to be a downer, but I'd recommend checking out the company associated with the bin;they are often not legit.   Just as an FYI: "In 2012, Goodwill officials complained that nationwide donation bins operated by for-profit recycling businesses or nonprofits only giving a fraction of donated items to those who need it most were taking away from donations that would actually benefit the poor, USA Today reported."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/24/new-york-city-clothes-drop-off-scams_n_5617336.html

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Re: Getting rid of stuff / Clearing out clutter!
« Reply #1799 on: June 02, 2015, 05:49:59 AM »
I hate to be a downer, but I'd recommend checking out the company associated with the bin;they are often not legit.   Just as an FYI: "In 2012, Goodwill officials complained that nationwide donation bins operated by for-profit recycling businesses or nonprofits only giving a fraction of donated items to those who need it most were taking away from donations that would actually benefit the poor, USA Today reported."

Goodwill is a for-profit company, too. I don't care what they do with it once I throw it in the bin: it's either that, or it goes in the dumpster. As long as it's not in my house.