Tuesday, October 04, 2011

31 Days {Day 4}: Out of Season Clothes

So here I am with bags and bags of clothes taken from the closet and piled in our bedroom and the upstairs bedroom.  Part of Project 333 is to take things out of your closet so you won't wear anything but your chosen few. I normally switch out my summer and winter clothes with only one rubbermaid bin which is super easy.  However, since I would usually be removing only summer, the others would just keep hanging there all year round. The problem is that I have only removed a couple of things from the winter bin so it's still full. Hmmmm...This may be the first sign of too many clothes, which is amazing since I left here with all of this in August to leave with my family.

I thought about what I wanted to do next for my 31 Days to Simplify and I got to thinking about where to put all these clothes.  I certainly don't want to be looking at them in the corner for the next three months.  Normally my mind just goes to the bins that we put out of season clothes in, but since I'm on simplify alert, I started looking around in a new way.

There is the blanket chest in our closet that has blankets and stuff in them.  It's full.  Well, then I started thinking "shouldn't blankets be in the linen closet?".  The only one we have is in the upstairs hallway.  It's full of books.  Another thought was my hope chest that my uncle Gilmer made for me when I turned 16.  I called it my "hope I get married chest".  It's full too.  There may be Cabbage Patch kids and old love letters from my first boyfriend in there.  It's basically memory lane in a box.

I took pictures of these potential storage facilities just so you could point and laugh at me, and tell me what a fraud I am for talking about decluttering when I obviously have lots to declutter.

This is the blanket chest that used to be my Great Grandmother's. It kind of looks like a coffin in the picture.  Creepy. 
Full of blankets and stuff

Lots of books, many my grandmother gave me and some I haven't even looked at in a long time.

Hope Chest full of lots of interesting artifacts from my childhood.
I'm trying to figure out which place to clean out will be the most painless.  Honestly they are all going to be pretty painful.  I love books, we need blankets and I couldn't part with my Cabbage Patch kids, could I?  Could I?  One of my dolls still has the original diaper and her name is Ella Mellicent.  I also have one of the original dolls that I wasn't allowed to play with, the ones with the soft faces.  Her name is Eva Millicent.  Isn't it funny that they have similar names even though they were bought 4 years apart?  On another tangent, G thinks that Ella is the funniest girl name since it means "she" in spanish.  Totally random comment, I know.

Anyway, I'll stop stalling and get to work on which one of these orifices will be cleaned out today.  I'm thinking it has to be the blanket chest.  I will have to let go of some of the blankets.  We go to a homeless church sometimes on Saturday nights and pretty soon they'll need them.  I think it would be a win-win for all of us.  I get more room and they get a cozy blanket.

Obstacles to my progress:

1.  What if I want to give this to my future children?
2.  What if I regret giving this away?
3.  Somebody made this for me.
4.  Maybe I'll just put it all back and it will be fine.
5.  What if I have to go buy another one of these whatevers?
6.  Whining.
7.  Decisions are so final.

See!  I'm just like any other small time hoarder.  I often have to take breaks and revisit why I'm doing this in the first place.  Who doesn't want organization heaven like this?

 This is seriously dreamy.

Source: bhg.com via Darlene on Pinterest

A closer look.  

What keeps me going:

1.  Visualize the picture I want my house to look like.  See above
2.  I want my house to run efficiently
3.  If I hadn't just looked at this thing I wouldn't even know it was there.
4.  Sharing is good!
5.  If things don't leave the house, you are just rearranging.
6.  I want my efforts to have results and not be wasting my time pushing things around.
7.  Remember how relaxed I feel when I'm in a room with not much stuff.

Casualties of the blanket chest purge that were pried from my hands will freely be donated are:

1.  2 Fleece blankets
2.  Blanket crocheted by my first boyfriend's grandmother.  I'm starting to get concerned about my obvious attachment to my first boyfriend.  Good thing G doesn't read my blog anymore.
3.  2 pillow plastic covers that they came in.
4.  few space bags that we used when we went to Europe for 3 weeks.
5.  The quilt batting-possibly half or all of it.

In the end, I decided to put all the excess clothes in the blanket chest.  It will be a project to go through them again, another day!  I had a lot of tablecloths in there that I put in a cabinet near the kitchen.  I also have been planning to recover our dining room chairs forever and I have the batting for that.  It' bulky and I'm thinking I should just get more when I finally get around to that project.  It's probably the wrong one anyway.

Did I make much progress today?  Maybe not a ton, but this is slow going which is why I'm glad I've dedicated 31 days to it.  "Rome wasn't built in a day!", my inner voice chirps to me.  I'm already learning things even after being on Project 333 for 4 days.  One thought, if I can live just fine with 33 things, then why do I need a whole bin and a whole blanket chest full of extra things.  It will also make me reconsider what I keep when I go back through them in a month or so.  And lastly, forget about shopping for more clothes.  Where will I put them?

Anyone else find themselves in danger of just rearranging and not decluttering?  It's so easy to move things around and feel productive, but not make any real progress.  How do you all store your out of season clothes?  Are all your closets full?  Is it boring hearing about me cleaning out my crap? Does anyone still have their Cabbage Patch kid?


The Vivenne Files said...

I had a major breakthrough when I moved to Europe and could NOT take all of my blankets and quilts; I took the quilts I had that had been made by my ex-husband's grandmother and great aunt, and I sent them BACK to my ex-husband. They really belong more to his family, even if they were, at the time, made for me. It facilitated a cordial rapprochement between us.
Just a thought from the ever admiring,

Anonymous said...

I love your series topic! I totally have pack rat tendencies. It's HARD for me to let go of things, but the feeling of less clutter is so worth the painful purging! I share your affinity for beautiful organized spaces.. hoping to get there some day. one step at a time :)

Fiona Ferris said...

I agree, it's so much easier just to put everything back than think about and sort what to give away. I have the most success when I take everything out, put only my favourites back (whether it's blankets or books) and then look at what's left. I stack the leftovers in a box and put them aside to think about. Most of the time I am happy to get rid of them all and it gives me such pleasure to visit the weeded area. It's only my favourites! No hangers on!

Stephanie said...

No, this is not boring! I love reading about how others process their thoughts when it comes to decluttering. It is really hard. I think making small steps daily is the key. If I keep chipping away at one area, say a closet, eventually it will get done. And I find that if I just look at it once and then move on, there are so many more things I could have gotten rid of if I had been brutally honest the first time. I like Fiona's idea of removing everything and only putting back the favorites. Scrutinize the rest.

I let go of my little girl stuff not that long ago and donated it. It felt really good knowing another little girl who actually needs these things could use them.

The Closet Therapist said...

Vivienne-That's a great idea and so sweet of you to have done that! Thanks for the tip.


The Closet Therapist said...

Caitlyn-So glad you stopped by! Yes, it is hard! Unless there is someone waiting to receive it, I have a hard time releasing into the universe. I should trust more though.

The Closet Therapist said...

Fiona & Stephanie-Wouldn't it be fun if ya'll came over and we did it together?

Stephanie-I love reading about other people's too. :) When I am writing my own little details, I start to feel paranoid, like I'm talking too much! Ha ha!

Fiona-You are so right. This is the first time I've really done that with my closet and it does feel nice in there.

-xoxo, Jen

Anonymous said...

Love what you are doing! I need to make a tiny correction for you.
"Ella" is "she" in Spanish, not girl. Chica or niña are Spanish words for girl.

The Closet Therapist said...

Anon-You are right. Thanks for the correction. Will update.


Fiona Ferris said...

Jennifer, about what you said regarding not 'knowing' who is going to get something. That has stopped me a lot too. I don't just want to dump things at an op-shop where they might be overlooked. I feel silly verbalising it! By targeting my donations though I feel better about letting stuff go - wool to the SPCA, cosmetics to the Womens Refuge. I can imagine the Womens Refuge or childrens hospitals would like toys if you could give them up. Then again, you might want to keep them. It's nice to have a few momentos from childhood.

Kristi said...

Hmm. I honestly have never regretted getting rid of something and I'm a chronic declutterer. By the way, I put all the clothes that weren't part of the project in my stack of suitcases ...

Anonymous said...

Loving this series! I do find myself rearranging, instead of purging -- that's why I have to declutter so often. I will say the only thing I've regretted getting rid of was my childhood doll ... I have a daughter named Violet, and I wish I'd kept my Rainbow Brite Violet doll for her. I'm currently searching Etsy and Ebay for an affordable one ...

The Closet Therapist said...

Fiona-I like to earmark certain things for certain places too. It also gives motivation by knowing that it will be appreciated. Everyone wants that!

Thanks for giving me permission to keep a few things. I wasn't ready to let them all go.


Kristi-I can't think of anything I regret either, but I also give it a lot of thought.

How cool that you have a stack of suitcases! I see those on pinterest and they really are stylish.

The Closet Therapist said...

Anon-Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I think that organizing without getting rid of anything is a common problem! I hope you find the doll for your daughter. It's surprising all the things on ebay.


Our Trip to Rosemary Beach, Florida

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