Saturday, February 01, 2014

The Art of Decluttering

I'm no pro at keeping things simple.

Ask my violin teacher who often says, "You're making it way harder than what it really needs to be."

Ask one of my sisters who lives on just 10 items in her closet (okay, maybe 12?) who seems to be having a fresh new wardrobe semi annually. (Probably because she wears everything a lot rather than just a few times per season.)
Ask another sister of when we were little and I'd beg her for help in organizing my "junk drawer."

While I've done my best at not being a hoarder, there are times when I go through things and wonder, "Why am I saying this?" This last week I found enough clothes from my closet to fill two grocery bags, and enough odd and ends from other corners to fill another grocery bag. I finally got the nerve to pull out my scrap bin of mostly cotton fabrics (anything less than 1/2 yard kind of fabric bin) and fill up 5 grocery bags to give to a quilter.
I'm tired of the mindset that bespeaks "the art of collecting" and it just sitting for either "someday" or just because I really liked it 8 years ago. There are a few other corners that I should rummage through, too. If anyone out there has "the art of decluttering" down pat (or even if you're wiser in purchasing items than I am!) there is someone who would like to glean some tips and advice from you!


~ Shannon said...

How timely, Cheri! I'm going through (yet another) decluttering phase myself, too. :-) As a child, I was a definite hoarder and had so many "collections" (stamps, rocks, feathers, thimbles, etc.), and every flat surface in my room was "decorated." Fortunately, I've lost the desire to have lots of stuff, but I still find it challenging to know what to let go of (and how to keep it from creeping into my home in the first place!).

I wouldn't regard myself as a minimalist, persay, but I've really enjoyed both and (the latter is newer to me, and I've been sifting through its archives to find "motivation" :-). I'm trying to learn to keep only what I really need now/soon, and a handful of things that are truly meaningful or beautiful to me. Books are an exception -- though even there I'm trying to be picky about which books deserve shelf space.

Good luck!


Laura said...

I know what you mean; it's a hard balance to find. I tend to be the "purger" in our household but that doesn't mean I'm great at it. Right now I feel sincerely overwhelmed with the amount of toys my kids have, but I'm not sure how to go about weeding them out. The problem is that the majority of them were gifts from family and well, that makes it hard to get rid of them! Also, there are different age levels of toys, so even though Edmund might have outgrown them, I think, "Well, future kids will enjoy these!" So I haven't done anything about it yet. :) But I have seriously thought about telling relatives, "NO MORE TOYS!" :)

As far as your scraps, have you thought about selling "scrap bags" in your Etsy shop? Maybe sort by color, or style... it'd be a way to get a little money out of them, at least. I would be interested in such a thing -- I like the idea of scrap quilting, but a lot of the fabrics I use to make clothes aren't really what I want to make quilts out of, but actually a lot of your apron calicos would be very pretty. Just a thought! :)

Cheri said...

Many thanks to you both! :) Perhaps one never "arrives" at these things and should just consider this as a process along ones journey...