Simple Saturday ~ My latest declutter item

 

Craft Storage Unit

The storage unit to the left is my latest declutter item. Why did I declutter it? Because I have decluttered all the craft items it contained so I no longer need it. Years of neatly organising my clutter makes me hesitate to part with good storage items of this kind but I have no desire to ever need them again as I have no desire to clutter up my house again. So these days as soon as they are empty I try to get them out the door. This one lingered a little longer because I was trying to sell it and sell it I did for $30. I was pleased with that and even more please to see the  space liberated on its departure.

Now the Simple Saturday question for today is…

What is your latest declutter item and why did you declutter it?

The Weekend’s Mini Missions

Saturday – Declutter something that used to fit with your previous lifestyle but no longer does.

Sunday – Declutter an unused craft, hobby or sports item.


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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.

Comments

  1. Colleen, I join you – though on a smaller scale. My latest declutter item is one of these boxes:

    http://s31.dawandastatic.com/Product/3752/3752782/big/1241718679-734.jpg

    It held buttons, sea shells and other little craft bits, but they are either decluttered or fit elsewhere meanwhile.

    • Oh yes Sanna,
      I still have way too many unmatched boxes like that holding beads in my craft room. I want the beads but the organising is haphazard because of the inconsistency of size and shape of boxes.

  2. Just today I sold a rucksack that was a gift from my aunt. my old one is already falling apart, but saftey pins are doing their job right now. I have been searching for a decent replacement for quite some time now. My aunt thought she would help me, but unfortunately its a bit too small for my laptop, which is the most important criteria for it in the first place. I asked her if she would want it back, but she said, as it was a special offer and she couldnt return it, I should try my luck and sell it.
    so I am now waiting for the money to arrive and then I bring it to the post office. I think she bought it for 45 Euro, and all I could get was 20. makes me cringe, but at least its gone.

    • and congrats on decluttering another “craft item”. I am excited to see you making so much progress…

      • I think I am getting to the point where I am satisfied with the amount at long last. I may meet that June 30 deadline yet. Although I am sure dribs and drabs will still filter out of the collection over time.

    • Lena, I sympathise. Personal items like handbags, wallets, purses and the like are always best purchased yourself because inevitably if someone else buys them for you they never suit your needs.

  3. I’m at the beginning of my craft declutter….if we were closer, I’d have bought your unit to “sort” mine out….then decluttered it again when I was through! 🙂

    • I am sure there is logic in that Monica. 😉

      • lol…yes…hoarder logic. 😉 no really, I have my stuff spread all over my room…and if I coud sort it out and shut it away inbetween “working moments” it would go faster I think?

        • I imagine you are probably right. It is hard to decide if you have enough or too much of something when it is spread all over the place and you don’t really now what you have. Having the equipment to sort and organise it as you declutter would be a help I am sure.

  4. I just decluttered a cafeteria table that has been everything from a desk to work table to a crafts table for the kids to a tv stand. We’re moving to a much smaller place (when this place sells) and I decided it was too heavy to move cross country (it is one of the old style, very sturdy tables). A friend is hosting a big event and can use it and she’ll keep it until her son’s graduation party next year and then pass it to another good home. I was given it for free almost 20 years ago so no money changed hands — but it’s gone from leaning up against the wall in my garage to her party so I’m pleased!

    • Well done Sabrina and well used as well. I wonder how many more homes it will have before its time is done. Gives you a good feeling doesn’t it.

  5. My latest decluttered item is a teapot that I like the look of but it’s not safe to use – the design is flawed. The handle is hollow, so when you’ve got hot tea in there, the handle is too hot to hold. Who makes these things?

    I’m not sure whether to give it away or put it in the garbage. It’s not safe for use as intended, but someone might re-purpose it.

    • Hi Jo. H – thought about your teapot while on the way driving my daughter to tap class – I vote garbage, it doesn’t suit its intended purpose and the chances of finding that one in a thousand person who is out there looking for a teapot for art or craft purposes, pretty slim. You could list on freecycle if you really want to give it a go and set a time limit for interest. I burnt my hand this morning on a coffee cup, so I’m all for safe crockery.

    • You could give it away ~ someone might use it as a planter pot. But someone is more likely to buy it at the thrift store for its intended use and get a nasty surprise from the handle the first time they attempt to use it, so probably best to chuck it. I just gave away a teapot myself also because it was poorly designed. Every time I poured the tea it would dribble down the spout and onto the bench. Annoying! Like you say who designs these things, and this one was bought at one of those tea shops. You would think they would do quality control on the products they supply in such a specialised store.

    • hey Jo H.

      I was reading your post twice in order to make sure that the handle was hollow and not the pot itself (like the insulating ones). anyhow. I could use a pretty can for watering my plants, instead of this yellow plastic can that I somehow ended up with. cant you find another purpose?
      I am with moni, trash it, if you cant use it anymore. if you give it away, make sure to put a note to it. I think its super rude to give something to the thrift shop that is so obviously not working for its original purpose. especially if it can harm people. I was more than once really annoyed to buy something second hand and end up feeling a bit betrayed. like you buy a coffe mug and find out its leaking. whats the point in giving it away so the item can annoy other people?

      • I’m with Lena, I’ve been there and done that (purchased a coffee cup and the thing totally LEAKED!) I mean who on earth would give away something that is not in full working order as intended!). We all can agree that trashing something is NOT the best; however, unless it is so beautiful that someone will buy it to use as a planter or crack it up and use the bits and pieces as a mosaic table top design or for art projects, it is not worth someone else getting burned!

        • I’ve replied way below as a new comment, my friends – thank you for all the helpful suggestions and comments on my teapot dilemma 🙂

  6. I got rid of the last of the Cincinnati stuff. We lived in that lovely Ohio city from 94-mid96. Due to work, family, health issues, that as the unhappiest time for all of us. We made good money and since I had no friends to socialize with, I shopped for fine crystal to fill my time. Life has moved onward & upward and those foolish shopping habits stopped 15 years ago. However, I had a large china cabinet full of crystal bowls, goblets, etc. Everytime I used one of those pretties, a small part of me remembered those bad times. So now the whole kit and kaboodle is in the consignment shop. If they don’t sell, Goodwill gets the unsold pieces.

    • Good for you Gail. Who needs reminders of bad times and bad habits anyway. Best you get them out of there. I hope they sell and you can enjoy the proceeds.

    • This actually brought me to tears. Happy ones. I am sorting out a home after divorce…and have a lot of very nice things, that I simply do not want around me any longer. It is freeing to move them out…and thank you for putting words to my emotions. ♥

      • I am glad Gail helped you with this Monica and I hope you get sorted soon. Get rid of those things that cause you the most grief first.

      • Hi Monica, I don’t know if it will help but I had a friend who was extra ordinarily brave about moving with her life or taking steps to move her life in the direction she wanted (I’m a big scaredy cat personally) and once she said that everyone knows the saying about one door opens as another one closes but had anyone thought that person you couldn’t expect life to open you doors unless you closed one first? It stuck with me and it applies in so many ways. For whatever reason your relationship ended, you want to be happy again, so anything that makes you sad…..doesn’t deserve to be in your new life. Its hard, but good on you for being so brave!

      • Oh you will all make me cry. Been there (YES, Cincinnati and not the best part of my life) and DIVORCE (again, not the best in life even if for the best)…

        Ya’ll are making me cry happy tears for moving life onward! Who cares how initially expensive something was when it comes with memories that really bit the bullet, not even the most amount of money in place of that item is worth it! 🙁

  7. My last declutter item – actually items – were coats from our living closet that we don’t wear any more. The closet is now organized and neat. Next up to clear the clutter from is our spare room. I’ve dubbed it “the dump and run”; it is the room that things go to when I’m not sure what to do with them. I have a goal this year of having my house and garage clutter free by the end of June. I’ve got the garage done as much as I can do – the rest is up to my husband, but it is organized and looks good. When I get the spare room done I can then focus my time on keeping the house looking neat and doing all those craft projects that I have been putting off. But before I do them, I will be clearing out the stuff that I have bought and know I won’t be using. Since it has been taking less time to get each room done than I had given myself; I’m feeling confident that I can beat my goal and have the house done by mid-June.

    • Wow Mary, you are making great progress and have some good goals set as well. How good does it feel to see your home becoming uncluttered and efficient? Well done you!

  8. My latest decluttering item was a couple of hours ago. My daughter stopped by and mentioned that she wished she had a sewing machine.

    I just happened to have an extra one I wasn’t using, so out the door it went with my daughter. 🙂

  9. Ideealistin :

    A sponge. I had to clean a nasty corner and afterwards the sponge just had to be thrown out. Not much … I know. At the moment I am mainly good at not recluttering and at using up doubles we have from moving together. but I hope to be ready to “attack” more difficult areas again soon. I’ve been avoiding lots of things lately because other tasks were just more pressing but heading to the attic today (“dumping” something) really annoyed me SO MUCH …

    • Hi Ideealistin, I am interested in hearing about this attic item that is so annoying and being dumped. I bet you will feel better with that out of the way.

      • Ideealistin :

        Well, I have to admit, I meant I did not dump something FROM the attic but something IN the attic … at the moment I am carrying way too much stuff up there to get it out of the way. Stuff that either awaits selling or further consideration. There are things I am reluctant about letting go (yet) because I think we are still settling in the situation of living together. Also, this place won’t be the place forever so I feel I need to see where we are heading within the next couple of months before wholeheartedly letting go of some things. And some things I just put up there because we ran out of space but actually need the things occasionally (folding chairs, a folding table).
        Moving the stuff up there gives us sanity down in the apartment. But I need some sanity up there within the next couple of months, too, I guess.

        • I think that sounds wise Ideealistin. It never pays to be too hasty.

        • Hi Ideealistin – Oh I feel your pain, attic (we call ceiling storage but attic sounds cooler) has been my ongoing challenge. I am 2/3 there though. It doesn’t feel right to be working thru my attic when there are areas in our home area that still aren’t 100% done, but I ended up doing it in conjunction with our garage as there were things in the garage that ideally should be stored in the attic. But there was no room in the attic. So it was one of those chicken/egg situations. At the time I didn’t enjoy it because it was cramped and dusty and either boiling hot or freezing cold depending on the weather. And I felt a bit ticked off because I REALLY wanted the garage just done already and I seemed to be making things worse as I dragged things down the ladder stairs, but I’m now actually glad I did it this way because its just as easy to take 3 bags to goodwill instead of 1 and to put 2 items in recycling as it is to take 1. And I’ve got a much better idea of what is left up there, so as I see messages from freecycle I’m thinking of what’s up there. Still got a fair bit of work to do, mind you.

          • Ideealistin :

            I’m with you Moni that the attic (in my case really an attic you can walk around on with wired compartments for the renters) will be the last place to be declutteres because it usually is the space to move “predecluttered” items and other stuff. I decluttered the basement to make room for my boyfriends bike and some other gear he brought, much of my stuff went out, but some went into the attic. I made room in apartment. Again things went out but some got put into the attic … I decluttered the attic prior to all this shuffling but now it is just as full or even fuller – so taking a look at it is painful and I have to remind myself that part of it is due to the mentioned shuffling and not pure hoarding …
            Have to get to it though …

          • Just remember that Junk above you weighs you down just as much as junk around you. Bad Feng Shui if you leave junk up there! 🙂 I’m jealous! If I had an attic space I could sort all my scrap stuff up there without being disturbed 🙂 🙂 🙂 Wanna swap jobs!! 🙂

  10. It’s always so nice when you can declutter some storage units. I have two to sell and I’m really excited about it.

    • I hope they sell for you Deb J. I seem to have simplified selling a bit lately because other options have opened up for me. I feel quite casual about it and have been successful with minimal effort so I am happy. In fact I think I will list something now on my local social network. That is how I got rid of today’s item.

  11. My last declutter was from my spare room cupboard.
    Going through a lot of paper work I managed to recycle a pile at least as high as my knee. as well as a mobile I bought about 20 years ago that has been sitting in a box in the cupboard for lack of somewhere to hang it since we moved into this house

    • Gosh it is always good to see paper clutter go in the recycling, well done Wendy W. It is sure sounds like it was time to declutter that mobile. I will be decluttering some long overdue next week also.

  12. I’ve just de-cluttered two writing compendiums – they were not taking up much space I must admit and I have had them for years – both were freebies from companies and I was keeping them because in theory I was going to use at least one of them each time I went to a seminar or conference .One was black leather – beautiful ! and the other one pink and funky – gorgeous ! And guess what- I go to seminars and conferences every few months and I have NEVER used them ! Time to admit I never will – I always grab a small notebook and take minimal notes anyway as useful info is usually provided and how often would I ever go back and look at those notes anyway. Initially I was reluctant to part with such a lovely leather compendium but once I’d made the decision to let it go I felt wonderful .My neighbour is happy to have some nice items for a fund raiser later in the year and its good to ba able to give her something nice. .And speaking of conferences – at the last one I went to I was very aware of how many brochures I usually bring home and how many I actually read and how they usually end up clutttering up a shelf waiting to be read or sitting in a bag by the desk . I think it’s a fear of missing out on something absolutely vital that makes us grab everything . Well not any more – I was VERY selective about what I chose to bring home and I felt much happier . And as we all know so much info is available on line there is probably very little that is essential to bring home in paper form.

    • Hi Jez, I think I have decluttered several of those writing compendiums over the last two years myself. They are easy to keep because they are “useful” and don’t take up much space. But like I say one small thing + one small thing + one small thing does add up to big space. Well done you, finally being able to part with them. Every time I declutter something I think about how much space it took up then I add it to the box holding the other items I am getting rid of for that week and can visually see how much space it adds up to.

      Good for you too avoiding bringing home paper clutter. My hubby and I have been going to open houses in the view to buy lately and every time they offer us a brochure. Since 90% of people probably find and view the brochure on line before coming to the viewing I can’t imagine why they think we need a paper copy. Needless to say I refuse politely and let them know that I prefer to avoid paper waste.

      • I was not that vigilent, Colleen! I took them, and wrote notes on them during the inspections. I did ‘declutter’ them pre move, except for 2-5 that I liked the simple, clutter free decoration of rooms, as a reminder of how I’d like my place to look.

  13. The latest thing I decluttered was my banking. I know it doesn’t take up any room but we consolidated some accounts and my son took me off his accounts so when I log on now, it’s just our accounts, and so much more streamlined (less fees too!). It’s all about simplifying. Today I’m planning on doing the mini missions for this week, better late than never!

    • Good move Judy, digital clutter is still clutter and if simplifying it has made your life easier then all the better.

    • Oh, I’ve just decluttered a supermarket loyalty card which means one less piece of plastic in my wallet and plenty fewer emails in my in-box. The “rewards” were negligble and the irritation factor high. I’m also in process of turning two bank accounts into one and once the transition is safely made, one of the two will be closed, exiting one more plastic card and bank statements. Simplicity in the physical world means less space in my mental world.

  14. MONI SMASH THE TEA POT AND USE THE BROKEN PIECES TO LINE THE BOTTOM OF A PLANT POT FOR DRAINAGE. JUST AN IDEA.

    • Yep it was Jo but its a good idea……not that I have pot plants any more, they all commit suicide around me.

  15. OOPS I GUESS IT WAS JO THAT HAD THE TEA POT

  16. I’m working on decluttering leftovers from last weekend’s fundraising garage sales. On our weekly trip to town yesterday we dropped a camp cot at a friend’s house, knitting needles at the library for Knitting at Knoon (or Stitch ‘n Bitch as we call it), clothes and plastic bags at the thrift store and our mattress at the emergency depot. Tomorrow we’re off to the Wildlife Centre with more stuff they can use for the critters (towels and food bowls).

    • Wendy I would love to have seen some before and after shots of both your house and the Seniors Center. You are going ahead in leaps and bounds, keep it up. You must have Ian’s head spinning. He wouldn’t be game to sit still in case he is the next thing to go. 😆

  17. The last thing I decluttered was a (big) silver claddaugh ring I wore through college. My wedding ring is also a claddaugh ring so I figured I didn’t need two. I wear pretty much the same jewelry everyday, anyways, so have gotten rid of most of it.

  18. Dizzy are you out there? I have a decluttering dilemna and you really are the best qualified to speak words of wisdom. I have a box of costume jewellery, cheap and gaudy (ie perfect for tap) and I would re-make it into something more showy, ie two bracelets and a mega earring or pendant can make a magnificent necklace.

    My youngest is going to start phasing out of comp work from next year and I think she is happy with her chandalier necklace, diamante pendant and a diamante collar. (All faux ladies).
    I think it is time to liberate this box of bling-bling but there is this part of me – and you will appreciate it from your dancing background – that the first rule of costumes is let go of nothing that is possibly usable.
    It is all cheap but the shop I originally got it from is gone.

    On the plus side I have gotten rid of several pairs of opera gloves as my girls have long fingers and toes (got that from their daddy) and they end up stuck half mast.

    • Hey Moni,
      Been there done that, the only thing I can suggest is pass it onto another young lady that may want to use your daughters routine once she finishes. If it helps, why not just make them into something more beautiful than it’s current form and sell it with a costume. I know here if we get rid of a cossie we send the goodies with it, just finishes the outfit and could fetch you extra dollars.

      What a shame your girl is finishing up, is it because of age for the comps or has her career run it’s course for now?

      As for the gloves, isn;t it a pain that they make them one size fits all NOT!!!! My niece has long fingers too! My sister always ended up making her gloves because bought gloves always failed. My son has long fingers too and it makes it really hard to get gloves for him when he switches from totally funky tap to a Fred Astaire number hahaha. Oh the woes of the Stage Life!

      Hope you find a home for the Bling-Bling. 🙂 🙂 🙂

      • Hi Dizzy – to be honest I bought up a basket load of bling jewellery during their closing down sale so had nothing in mind for it. She isn’t planning to stop comp work but scale back the number of events as she has a big year at school.
        She has quite definate opinions on her costumes and has designed her next ones which will see her thru to Solo Seal.
        So I think the majority of this stuff could go.

      • Hi Dizzy – half the bling-bling has been liberated! I decided that all the colours that she would definately never wear could go. There are some bits that only have a 50-50 chance of being used but I will re-visit next year (even put a date on the box) – and am donating a tiara to the studio.

      • Hi Dizzy – I should clarify that my “attic” is actually ceiling storage and I’m crawling around, dragging things over and around roof trusses – as the shortest person in the family I drew the short straw. And because it was traditionally my hubby that did the actual storing of stuff up there his approach was to just shove/pile randomly. Add to this that over summer it was boiling hot and now its winter it is cold its not the most pleasant of environments. BUT the great thing about it is that there is no one popping over my shoulder re-claiming things, the key is to get it down the stair ladder and out the garage ranch slider without anyone seeing. AND try and keep the cats out, for some reason they think it is some sort of forbidden playground and are determined to come up, once they disappear beyond the storage area (when we moved in hubby put down planks and put in lighting) there’s no finding them. Have accidently shut them up there on occasion. Still I am glad I have made the effort, hubby is so impressed. I still have about a third to go. I don’t like to work up there without him being in the house so it limits me to the weekends, but I just pull a “weed” each week and soon patches of organisation start to emerge.

      • Dizzy what was the name of that sheng fui book again?

        • ‘Clearing your Clutter with Feng Shui’ – Karen Kingston, I believe you can get the E-Book now. Just google her name and check it out. It actually makes you feel good when you’re reading it. May I also suggest ‘Enough Already’ – Peter Walsh, good old common sense in a great read. As they always say, it’s not so much about the stuff as to the ‘Why’ of the stuff. I love just picking it up and re-reading for a kickstart when I slow down ‘Too Much’ enjoy 🙂 🙂 🙂

          • Thanks for that – have now downloaded it and look forward to reading it – I read on Sue Ramusseum’s site that its is also bad SF to store stuff under beds. Food for thought! Maybe that could be an upcoming project for me.

  19. I managed to donate some cook books and my son helped by clearing out his old school uniform. Today I am hoping to get my husband to part with his well worn work pants. Five new pairs to replace the ten old ones. So glad I did not declutter a couple of quilts. They have become handy now the weather is chilly but will have to earn their keep to stay.

    • I like that you are judging whether things are earning their keep. Use it or loose it as they say. Well done with the cook book decluttering. I set aside the last of mine last week to go to the thrift store.

  20. My most recently decluttered items come from my work office. We just had a small closet built in a hallway to nowhere, and I’ve been consolidating all our supplies. A dozen 3 ring binder went to my daughters’ school; a bulletin board, a luggage dolly and 100s of hanging file folders went to the thrift shop; a box of boxes (really) went to the CPA firm down the hallway; and two piece of foam core that were exhibits in a lawsuit came home to be used for art supplies.

  21. I’m working my way through a lot of cutesy & decorative stuff this week. Things that are just there really to look at and serve no other purpose. I also gave up a stuffed koala from when I was a baby – not so great feelings attached to that and it was so freeing to finally let it go. It was like removing a block… now all I want to do is fill boxes to take to Goodwill! Most of the rest is just “stuff” after all. =)

    • Well done Karen. Clearing those psychological clutter stumbling blocks is always good. One silly thing goes and you feel so good you just want to declutter more. I have been having a week like that only it was more than one silly thing. I’ll be writing about that next week.

  22. Hi all,
    Still working on Scrap Stuff and I threw away the mongrel rogue GOLF BALL that made my table take a quick exit! Does decluttering cleaning stuff that used to fit my previous lifestyle count?

    Since grabbing a brain and slogging through ‘Bloggy Land’ to find cleaner alternatives, I have been using up as much as I can, all the spray cleaners and softeners and liquids that I can honestly say are just part of my old ‘Consumerist Lifestyle’.

    I will admit to being a ‘Product Junkie’ and was always willing to try the next best thing to ‘Zap, Scrub, Power Through, De-grunge, Dust and Eliminate’ crud, dust, grease etc etc. The power of VINEGAR has released me from the clutches of ozone layer and lung tissue depletion!!!! I will gladly kiss the vinegar scented hand of the lady that suggested using vinegar and a splidge of dish liquid in a spray bottle of water!! Amen and hail the vinegar. Hahahahaha. I have managed to pass on loads of Spray & Wipe (I now call it Spray & Die Slowly) Pine-O-Cleen, Bam and various other brands that promised everything but only managed to gas me!! I feel so cool now being able to do everything from clean all glass and benches & wotnots with a quick spray and wipe with a micro-fibre to the floors etc and add a little vinegar to the rinse cycle on the machine to freshen and fluff fibres without using a heavily scented fabric softener. Oooohhhh the money that lives in my purse still is heavy!!! I now only buy a 2ltr bottle of white vinegar, my washing powder and morning fresh dish liquid! Woo Freakin’ Hoo to me I am so pleased. Just incase anyone is wondering – No the house does not smell like a chip shop, I never realised how congesting chemicals were till I switched.

    I think I’m living up to the slogan on my coffee cup it reads ‘Hot Housewife and Domestic Diva’ yay me. I’m also on the tail end of my Vileda cloths, which I love because they last so long and wash really well. I do love my 5 pack of micro-fibres, that I got for $1.00 in the cheap store and they are so thick & squidgy, ladies I am a force to be reckoned with heehee!!!

    Happy Saturday to you all, I’m off to mop my floors and clean my windows, another home open! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • Dizzy you have definitely inspired me to make the switch to vinegar in a spray bottle – I’m sort of half way there but not really as I still have way too many cleaning products . But I think the addition of a little detergent in the spray bottle is just going to be the thing that tips it nicely for me – somehow the vinegar on its own wasn’t quite so satisfying .So good on you!!! and thanks for inspiring me !!

    • Good riddance to the golf ball that’s for sure. And yes yes yes, decluttering cleaners certainly does count. Run the recipe by me again though ~ is it just straight white vinegar with a smidge of detergent, no diluting involved? I like the sound of this. I usually buy some eco friendly brand of spray and wipe but I am also keen for a heavier purse so will be glad to make the change. Gotta love those microfibre clothes. I can’t believe I still come across people who have never heard of them. What is the world coming to.

      • Hey Colleen, I can’t remember the site that had it but it listed all the things you can clean with vinegar. I just use an old spray & wipe bottle, it’s a 750ml pour 2 cups of white vinegar & a squish of dish liquid into bottle and top up with water. Shake & spray. I’ve used it on all the mirrors, windows, benches, floors etc. Man it is great on your windows, coming into winter the dust is now getting yucky with the wet. The vinegar combined with the dish soap cuts through the yuck and then cleans it more efficiently. If you have a bother with your windows just wipe vinegar straight on to cut through the old window cleaner residue! 🙂 🙂 🙂

        • Thanks for the recipe Dizzy I appreciate that. I don’t have much of a problem with windows but it is probably time I gave them all the once over again.

          • Careful not to use undiluted vinegar on windows, I’ve read it can cloud them (permanently I think). But Dizzy’s recipe has water, so all good.

            I ‘home’ make my washing powder too – grated soap flakes (DIY grating withe food processor is cheaper than lux flakes) and washing soda. Pretty happy with it after 5 months of use.

      • Also use vinegar in the rinse cycle for all your clothes and towels, I was amazed at how soft everything felt, there is no smell and ironing was a breeze, I have now chucked the ironing spray as well, use 50-50 vinegar & water on the shower stall for everyday cleanup. Once you have cut through any yuck, just spray whilst wet and it will kill any mould or mildew that may be there, bleach only whitens the mould!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

        • I knew it was meant to be good for the rinse cycle. A lady who used to work for a dry-cleaner gave me that tip some years ago. Although it is better for rinsing out the chemical build up in the towels rather than softening them. I didn’t find that it softened them well though and I am a bit particular about that. I will give it another go though. And I also knew that fact about vinegar killing mould and mildew while bleach only takes the colour out. I never use ironing spray anyway, I really don’t see the need for it.

    • lol Dizzy. Woo Freakin’ Hoo to you! great comment.

      you ladies are going on about cleaning, and microfibre, I should consider that a bit more carefully. I cleaned years and years in a hotel when I was at school, I got pretty used to very strong chemicals. so all these little bottles you can buy are not “real” for me. maybe I should give it a go. or maybe I make this the one area where I dont go fully eco (most of my cleaning supplies are though). I am already using up a lot or better, I am finding out what I am using and what not…

  23. My latest declutter item was a Roku Lte, streamer, for my TV. After my flat screen TV blew up I decided to use a dinosaur from the 90’s that was sitting around, (predeclutter days) before buying another LED. I had wanted to stream movies and needed this to do so. Little did I know that it wouldn’t work with a TV as old as mine. I haven’t missed my movies. I just watch them on computer or Kindle Fire. I put the new Roku on Craigslist and it sold for $50. The dinosaur?……..it’s still humming along 18 months later. Great color, good size screen, wonderful picture and still works on cable. Bonus: The blown up LED: one less item in my home. Keep those ideas coming. it’s amazing what I find when I look at my world through the eyes of this blog.

    • Hi Judith,
      isn’t it liberating when we are forced to live without something for a while and then realise we really didn’t need it after all. I love that. Whenever something that isn’t necessary around my house wears out these days I do exactly that, live without if for a while and I usually find I can’t be bothered replacing it. Who said decluttering was a chore it can be such fun.

  24. Hi here is my week’s mini missions:
    Freebie – returned gift sample packs to the hairdressers

    Gift – battenburg pillowcases listed on trademe

    Children – bag of lego found in ceiling storage given to my nephew,

    Storage – found a shoe box in the hall cupboard that was empty to recycling and some food storage containers randomly dropped in a box in the ceiling storage, sent to goodwill as they don’t match what I have been using for the last 5 years.

    Something that have too many of – tea towels, was asked at work to get some replacement tea towels, bringing half of mine as have too many

    Previous lifestyle – 6 inch stilettos never worn. Doubt I could walk in them these days. And found two sets of canvas paintings that hubby did for our last house, they don’t suit this house and its been 6 years. Both have gone to goodwill.

    Unused craft/hobby or sport: 2 x uniform jazz ballet tops to families from our dance school who are on very strict budgets and 3 pairs of ballet character shoes (used for Eastern Block dancing) to a family who have 5 – yes 5 – daughters. I feel they deserve them!

    What else got decluttered today? Saturdays are good because I’ve got a bit more time. 3 wigs from dancing and re-discovered 3 cordless hair straighteners – bought one off a trademe merchant years ago that didn’t work so he sent me a replacement but didn’t want the non-working one back, and then for no good reason a 3rd one turned up. Had decided by then that would probably do more damage than good on my hair, besides which daughter was gifted GHD’s from a grandmother not long after so were surplus. Were put in the goodwill bin/chutes with a note explaining one may not work.

    AND Dizzy talked me thru parting with costume jewelery that was earmarked for dancing competitions. Daughter has planned her last round of costumes and anything that doesn’t coordinate with those ideas……packed up and going

    • Moni, what a good decluttering week you have had. Well done. Lots of useless to you stuff out to new homes. Mind you the useless to no one straightener should probably have gone in the bin or to your local electronics recycler. The Goodwill will have to dispose of it now which seems a little unfair.

      Well done Dizzy for giving Moni the good advice of decluttering the Jewellery. Sounds like it has been cluttering up the place for too long now. A fine example that a bargain isn’t always a bargain if it just ends up being clutter.

      • Hi Colleen – hubby read over my shoulder and said he fixed it way back when, so don’t feel so bad. And he saw them in the goodwill pile and took the note out. Apparently the battery had been put in the wrong way.

        • Good on your hubby. I feel much better now. Charities spend a fortune every year on tip fees getting rid of stuff people never should have donated in the first place. Just the other day we received a bag full of stuff in our thrift shop. Some of the shoes were falling apart and several of the clothing items had clearly not been washed after the last use and they were in any condition to sell even if they were clean. Needless to say they went in the trash.

    • impressive. well done, Moni. you must feel so bright and light after this week.

      I think this is a fascinating post with really great comments. I mean you get to hear all sorts of stories. from my rucksack to a hollow handle teapot to storage items to craft supplies, electronics and a golf ball.
      I need to whine a bit: I am so tired of sitting at my desk and writing this bloody thesis, I really would love to spend a day just sorting and cleaning and organizing and after some work you sit down, a bit sweaty, with a coffee and look at the declutter items and wonder what you will do with them. instead of that I yell at the screen because WORD is absolute resistant to any logic structure. I am really more the hardware hands on person. I should ask around if anyone wants help with decluttering the attic/basement as soon as I am done here. no more software bs but making space. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WNG1-hCprE8&feature=related

      • Hang in there Lena, you’re almost there with your thesis.

      • I wrote long documents always in LaTex, which I liked way better than Word.

        • funny you mention that. once I start complaning about word (its really working fine until you want to put a pic plus description into the text), all sorts of people start recommending LaTeX. I guess I wont switch. but for the next paper I will certainly check that out.

      • Have a good whine Lena it will make you feel a little better I am sure and we are happy to listen. We all sympathise with you but it will be over soon. Look at it this way, it isn’t a baby it is just a paper. 23 years later I am still working on making my babies the best they can be but your paper will be done much sooner than that. You need to take that 365 approach ~ just think of it as one word at a time and not just be desperately focused on the finish line. Good luck I am sure my words won’t help but there they are anyway.

        • well, the 365 approach is not really working if you have a deadline rushing up. On the other hand. I am working daily on it, and just a week ago I was absolutely shocked to see that I have written already 60 pages. maybe thats the way. 🙂 Thanks for your words, they did help, thanks colleen.

          oh btw. I sold a book yesterday via amazon, one of really good travelguides for nicaragua that is still usable but not in the greatest shape anymore. I had it listed for ages on ebay local ads, and nothing happenend. then I gave it a shot on amazon. And voilá, someone bought it the next day. I am super happy, that I could finally sell this great book to someone who appreciated it as well. (and who didnt care that its been travelling in a backpack and therefore looks a bit used around the edges). of course I only asked for 5€, as otherwise it would have been a rip off.
          I was already accepting the thought that I might just bring it to the open book case. but that would have been a waste somehow.
          it is really fascinating how I feel about some item’s destiny. In this case, giving it away would have been wrong, and for some books selling would be wrong and giving away would be the right way to do it. I wonder if thats what some hoarders have. the problem of not knowing how to get it out in a way that feels right to them.

          • I am glad you found a good home for that book. As for do people become hoarders because they have trouble finding the right home for there stuff ~ I don’t think so. I think hoards just can’t part with stuff full stop. I do think however that there are certain things that we all have a little more trouble parting with and either want a monetary return for them or for them to go to someone we trust will appreciate them. There are many things I have taken much longer to find homes for and some that I have hung out until I have managed to sell. So long as it isn’t every little thing is isn’t a problem. So long as I am still decluttering constantly while waiting to declutter other thing I am satisfied.

          • I know what you mean. I have except the occasional sales collected my “decluttered items” in one place. Some parts I needed to wait for a car to dispose (like electric garbage goes to the recycling center that is neatly accessible by car, but with public transportation just not worth the hassle). Or I know my mother would like it back. I have now a box full with fleamarket things, partly clothes, partly kitchen items, lot of CDs and some DVDs. I am sure this collection is worth more than 100 Euros, so I need to wait for the next fleamarket, or I decide to rent a shelf in this shop, just as Sanna did. Whatever happens, I know it will happen over july. (thats going to be a great month, where I will be able to sell stuff, and finish some DIY projects around here)
            Anyway, there are a lot of items that I would like to see gone, but I just cant throw them away, because they are in good shape and re-usable…

  25. I tend to package up stuff over a week and it is taken to the charity shop at the weekend. This week we have parted with 3 casserole dishes that we inherited, three cake tins that my husband bought but were the wrong size, 3 supersoakers (big pump action water pistols), 2 skateboards, 2 peg rails and a child’s scooter. And I threw the bread machine (which only seemed to produce house bricks lately) in the bin and the out of date bread flour and yeast went in after it. Very satisfying!

    • Hi Tracey I do much the same as you. Since I work at the thrift store on Wednesday I put all my decluttered items (the ones that I am not selling) into a box in the garage and take the box to the thrift store the day I do my shift. Not only do I get the joy of seeing it leave my house but often the items are sold before the end of my shift and I get to see the store make the money they need to help people in crisis. How rewarding is that.

  26. I’ve started an attack on our basement this morning and hope to get a lot of clutter out so I can store the necessary items there. Our basement is small though( only 3,50x 2 meters including the space under the stairs) and it has duty as a laundry room too. lately it had become an dumpingground for all stuff we had no other place for so I’m trying to get that sorted now. I guess there will be quite a lot of stuff going from there. Hopefully tomorrow or monday we can sort the shed too.
    For now (its only 10.30 am here) I’ve decluttered (or decided to declutter) : 3 under bed roling boxes, that do not fit under our bed. a pile of unloved clothes, a leather jacket I bought recently at a garage sale but that has a smell I can’t get out of it, 3 pairs of shoes (going to try and sell them on the net) a few designer clothings that I hope to sell at a secondhand store.

    • Well done hunter_xs. So often I read about the stuff in people basements and am glad I don’t have one. I guess it is the same stuff I would put in my garage but the garage always seems more light and airy and less sinister than a basement so it doesn’t sound so bad. Strange logic I know.

      I also have one under bed rolling box that has a leather jacket in it. The Jacket either needs to go or could now be moved to the spare bedroom closet as it has been decluttered enough to make room. I have a goal to have nothing under beds so they are easy to vacuum. I think this will definitely be the next step.

      Good luck with your decluttering, I am sure you will feel great satisfaction once the job is done.

  27. I had a brilliant declutter day on Wednesday. A whole room full of junk: Two old washing machines, two armchairs, a broken dining table, a bunch of broken fans, toasters, grownup kids’ old school files, a vacuum cleaner, a huge old TV and a lot of big boxes that TVs and computer monitors came in. Then I swept up a lot of dirt and washed the floor and the wooden furniture (a single pine bed and two benches) that my husband insisted we keep. I hired a cartage contractor to take it all to the dump. I agree – does feel good!

    • Wow Shirls, what an effort. It sounds like you have liberated a whole room in your house. I am impressed. I bet you will think twice about putting anything in there ever again. I would give hubby 6 months to find a use for those benches and if not make the suggestion that they need to go too.

  28. Was finally able to get to a cubby under the work bench in the shed and found a big storage bin of hanging files. WHAT??!! So I just told everyone about them. Bet they will go quick.

    • Good job Deb J. Every time I declutter something I think of how much space it won’t take up in a packing box the next time we move. It spurs me on to the next thing because I am so excited to see how fewer boxes we will need to move. And then of course there is the space these items aren’t taking up in my house anymore and less dusting and the ease of getting to the things I do use…

      • You are right. I forgot to mention we also decluttered some nick nacks off of the bookcase. Have wanted to do that for ages. I have a few more I’d like to part with but Mom wants to keep them. Will give it a while and I bet she will change her mind. I’m just so excited that we decluttered so much and Mom was right in there with me. I see some more things I think she will be chucking before too long. She’s on a roll. GRIN!!!!

  29. You may recall, Colleen, that I have had a weaving loom for the past ten years which I had never warped and used. After many months of hemming and hawing, I finally made the jump and gave it away. Am I sad? A little. I’m working through my ‘remorse’. But I know that if I ever decide to really get in to weaving, I’ll be able to find a great new or used loom when I want it and in the meantime, I don’t have to store it.

    • Good for you Willow and yes I remember very well indeed. I hope you gave it to someone you know who can regale you with all the wonderful stories of the fabulous fabric she weaves on it.
      I was in a secondhand shop the other day and saw a spinning wheel, I know it isn’t a loom but it made me think of you.

      • Awww. I’m please you thought of me. Yes, if I found another working spinning wheel, I might topple to own it. My current wheel though is wonderful, portable and in frequent use. More than I could say for the loom 😉

        • Willow, I’m really jealous of you owning a weaving loom (well you used to) as I would love,love,love to do that craft. But In the meanwhile I have nowhere to put it and no time to do it so maybe somewhere in the future. Your decission to be ruthless with your loom did encourage me to declutter the small table loom than I was storing in my shed. Maybe one day I will get tot the point where I can dedicate myself to crafts, but until that day I will not have aspirational clutter nagging me!

  30. The Other Lynn :

    After a while in the garage, hubby and I got both the cars in the garage today for the first time since cleaning out his father’s apartment after his death six months ago. Freecycled his wheelchair ramp and a hiking backpack. Two other things are up for grabs, or will go in the trash this week. Last week, someone gave me five sacks of clothes for kids and me, and I have already given away three sacks and a box, with another three more to go. Plus I finally have some church clothes without spending anything!! This week is a good purge week, with more to come!!

    • WEll done Lynn, It must be good to get those cars undercover at last, it is much better to have them out of the weather. You are doing well getting free clothes also and decluttering the ones you no longer need.

  31. So this is a wonderful post full of amazing comments! But only 95 comment entries? Really, are we falling behind? (this is my attempt at humor, so if I need to be told to quit my day job, go ahead, because I don’t have a day job anyway (at least one that I get paid for…right!). 🙂

    Today we did declutter the storage bins that we fished out of the dumpster in the alley behind our house BECAUSE we don’t need to clutter them up or keep them in our house as storage for more clutter! Yahoo!). Also, the kids decluttered some toys and I decluttered 7 pieces of clothing that either don’t fit or I haven’t worn in ages (the ‘old hanger turned backwards trick…).

    Hey Colleen, So far in your blogging history what are the top 5 subjects that have received the most comment entries???

    • Hi Annabelle,
      I appreciate your humour and like you I also don’t have a paid day job although I have several day jobs.

      I am glad you decluttered those storage boxes but I am also glad you liberated them to give to the thrift store where they will be sold instead of wasted. Fill them up before you drop them off. 😉

      As for your last question, I have no idea, there have been so many of them. Sometimes I will write a post and think it is a bit so so but then it will get such a great reception from the readers. So who can predict what will work and what won’t. And then sometimes a post will receive very little feed back but but will have been an important ah ha moment for one reader and changes their lives for the better. Those posts are just as successful in my opinion.

      • Of course I had not thought of that at all!!! Those important ah-ha moments! Bravo! 🙂

  32. Ladies, thank you for the suggestions about my hollow-handle teapot. I thought maybe I was being too fussy, not wanting to donate it, or at least in thinking if I donated it I should add a note about the poor design.

    I still haven’t decided what to do with it. I wavered and almost decided to keep it as a planter myself, but that decision made me feel weighed down, and that’s the feeling I listen to these days. One way or another, it will go!

    • If the decision is that hard I would say trash it. We can’t save everything. It was a poor design that could hurt someone else so it is probably best to get rid of it.

    • yeah. trash it by smashing it really hard on the opposite wall. I always wanted to do that, I never smashed anything on purpose, cause I hate broken bottles on the streets (I am a bicyclist) and I wouldnt dare to break anything I own. maybe I should do that once, to know if it feels that liberating…

  33. Booyaaaa! 38 DVD’s going off to the Lionesses Club Annual 2nd hand book sale which they also take DVD’s. All ones that people would be happy to pay a couple of dollars for but probably wouldn’t want to pay what I would have to list them on trademe for to cover costs. And I love that the proceeds of the sale goes to local charities. 12 DVD’s going to a niece as they suit her age group (“My Little Pony”). There are 8 others that I’m waiting to hear back from my sis-in-law before I put them in with the My Little Ponies. If she doesn’t want them I have young 2nd cousins that would probably snap them up the “Magic School Bus”.

  34. I gave a vacuum cleaner to the Salvos today. It works fine but it’s no good for pet hair so I upgraded. I guess this was more of a “one in, one out” situation. It was taking up a lot of space in my study so I’m glad it’s gone.

    • Hi Gaby and welcome to 365 Less Things. I am sure someone will be very pleased to find your old vacuum cleaner at the Salvos and I hope your new vacuum does the job better for you. I don’t have pets so this isn’t a problem for me but I must say my Dyson’s dust bin is usually matted with my hair and the wool fibres that shed from my lounge room carpet. One in one out is the way to stay ahead of clutter. Good job!

  35. I don’t know if digital clutter counts but got rid of about 11,000 in and out e-mails from hardrive and cleared about 3/4 of my favourites from internet browser.

    • hell yeah, that counts. I did that just a week ago. clearing all bookmarks and favourites is such a good feeling. the problem is that it just grows back…

      • Hi Lena – I’d never heard of digital clutter until I joined 365. Yes it was very satisfying!

        • I never had a name for it, but “digital clutter” just describes it so perfectly.
          I had 3 computers overall, external harddrives, usb-sticks, CDs (with pictures, games or software), cables, manuals etc. All the hardware is not the problem. But the clutter of the digital things, software, add-ons, documents, pictures, music, movies, etc.
          I ended up having a music folder that is just super messy, because iTunes stores this here and there, you copy/pasted it twice somewhere and then you have the backups on the harddrive… This is still a problem that I am working on. and slowly but surely I understand this program and know what it does and how to cooperate. (is it just me or is iTunes beside of playlists not giving you a chance to personalize?). I also digitalized around 100 CDs over the last months.
          your pictures are not sorted in a logical way, you have no idea of the depth of your folder system, etc. and then you do it all at once and after a week you realize you have deleted all of your greece holiday pictures. argh. Still bugs me. but hey, you know that can happen. I will tackle that problem soon and burn CDs for the pictures per folder.
          I decluttered my computer with colleens tip – every day you do 10 minutes of decluttering the folders right before you do anything else. Helped me big time. Now I am doing this sometimes in between, when I dont know what is in the folders anymore. I try to keep it simple. some ground rules work wonders. stop at the 3rd layer. you cant possibly get a hang on your structure if you have the 6th subfolder. make it three. like I have: Uni – Semester – courses. Or Pictures – Denmark – my birthday.
          I also started to have a clear desktop. there is one folder called thesis 😉 and the bin. everything (!) I download, goes there. so at one point I can see what I need to clear, and then I can play the old game of get rid of it, keep it, find place to live. for me this is the easiest way, to actually get control of what I have and use on it.

          I just did a proper clean up, because I found my laptop took ages to start. it still takes longer, but then again, I am adding a lot of documents at the moment, which will be fine soon again.

          There is a fantastic collection of more tips than just those from becoming minimalist. that helped me so much in keeping it simple. http://www.becomingminimalist.com/2010/10/18/downsize-your-digital-life/

          • Hi Lena – I had all our photo negatives digitised and then stored them on our ext hard drive, I put them in date order ie a folder for 1995 Jan, 1995 Feb and so on and so on. If there was a special event I’d add the name too. I have to do more work on it as I’ve found photos that have been e-mailed to us that may or may not be included in this system, and I have found photos which I will have to scan and add to it. Plus there are ones saved on cellphones and on the hard-drive of this computer that I need to check.

            iTunes. Funny you mention iTunes because I have told my older daughter that is an upcoming project for us. I finally got myself an iPod last week and am amazed at how messy our iTune library is. My master plan was to finish uploading our cd’s so they can move out of our bookshelf, either sold or stored. But I think I need to figure out a better ‘filing’ system in our iTunes first. And I’m sure it hasn’t helped that my teenagers have set up dozens of playlist folders which don’t seem to have a lot of duplicates.

          • Well if you would have asked me before, I wouldnt have recommended an iPod. I rarely use mine, because I am so tired of the handling of it. I need to read the manual online, before I can do anything about this. (this is a case where I would love to have the manual as a book – and I could just take the time whenever I have it around at my day, to “study” this strange software). I dont consider myself stupid, but my old way of “try and error” isnt working here anymore, I need to understand what it is doing before I touch it. argh.

            my mum refuses to eat chicken as a whole because she said “you have to study anatomy in order to enjoy the meal” I so get what she means now with this, if I apply this to managing music in a digital way.

    • It’s a great feeling isn’t it, when I did it I was amazed how good I felt about deleting so much (digital crap) in the flick of a finger. I’m sure my computer said ‘Thanks’ and I’m sure yours did too! 🙂 Well Done!
      🙂 🙂 🙂

      One and a little bit of month to go on 333 have you chucked anything else mid Project? 🙂

      • Hi Dizzy – YUP! And am also surprised and what I still don’t wear. You’d think with limited options that I would just give in and wear it, but obviously I subconsciously don’t want it for whatever reason, and so it should probably go.

  36. I’ve just dejunked a cardboard document wallet full of training notes from a charity I volunteered for. They date back to 2003. I had no idea they were on the premises; in fact they were obsolete before I moved to this flat so I carted them across town for nothing. 😛

    Don’t you find paper clutter is the most insidious kind? If it’s filed neatly it must be important, right? Err, not always, not by a long shot. There are some more files up there and I shall sneak up on them little by little to make sure they’re still valid. I think my shredder needs a bit of a rest, first, though.

    • Hi GreyQueen,
      better late than never to find it and eradicate it. I agree paper clutter is the most insidious because ounce it builds up for every square feet of it there are about 1000 sheets of paper to work through. I am lucky that my husband stays on top of this task, throwing away every piece the minute it becomes obsolete. Most of our bills are digital these day so that puts us ahead of the eight ball in the first place.