Simple Saturday ~ Post requests

Hi everyone, it’s Saturday again, they come around so fast. This week I just want to ask a simple question.  Actually I want some post ideas but also ones that are of interest to my readers. So the question is…

What would like me to write about in an upcoming post on 365 Less Things?

Please confine your answers to 100 words or less. Thank you.


Continue reading with these posts:

  • Simple Saturday ~ What am I? Hi Readers, today for Simple Saturday I have decided to give you a little puzzle to solve. Your mission is to guess, from the photo provided below, what my declutter item is going to be […]
  • Owning your life skill ~ By Doodle One of our long time regular readers Doodle has kindly agreed to help out here at 365 by writing a blog post for me every other Wednesday. Today is her first regular post although not the […]
  • Simple Saturday ~ Time for another what am I This What AM I has something to do with a very famous brand. Can you guess what it is. Send in your guesses and we shall see who is the clever one. The answer will be the Item of the […]
About Colleen Madsen

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

Comments

  1. Breaking through the decluttering plateau, maybe? I feel like I’ve donated, gifted, or thrown out many things, but I’d like to do more. I’ve reached a rut, you know?

    Decluttered diet or kitchen pantry? I’ve found that meal planning has helped me keep the pantry clutter (and my spending) at a minimum.

    I know you’re considering moving, what about pre-move decluttering? The things that you think, “I don’t want to move this across town, let’s let it go!”

    • Hi Laura and welcome to 365 Less Things. Thank you for letting yourself be known to us and for adding a couple of suggestions to the list. I would like to hear more about your decluttering plateau. I have never reached one yet so I wouldn’t know what that is like. I haven’t even reached a point where I though the end of my decluttering was going to be just around the corner. Some days I feel a little uninspired for something to write about but that won’t be a problem for a while with all the suggestions I have had from this post.

      I have touched on the meal planning decluttered pantry combination before but it is always worth another mention.

      As for decluttering before moving, that is what I used to consider decluttering once but now I realise that hanging on to stuff I don’t need is not helpful and any time. But I must say it never hurts to do a double check before any move just in case something has slipped ones notice. That being said I do have a post half written all about moving house including decluttering beforehand, organising all the little bits and pieces so things don’t get misplaced or lost in the move and labelling the boxes so unpacking is a breeze at the other end. So stay tuned for that one.

    • Hi Laura – when you say decluttering plateau – do you mean when you can’t deal with (A) until you have decluttered (B) but you can’t deal with B until you have sorted out (C) but you need to do something about (D) first but that is no-go until you’ve figured out what you’re going to do with (E) which is stuck until you’ve cleared (A)…….

      Have been having one of those situations the last week.

      • I believe that’s called a bottleneck (once one thing goes, so do a bunch of others).

        I’ve had a couple of plateaus, where I couldn’t find anything else to get rid of or just didn’t feel like decluttering anymore. I tend to declutter in bursts, which fits my lifestyle and personality, so plateaus don’t really worry me. I embraced minimalism head on (cut possessions by 75% in about 6 months) – but have continued to declutter beyond my initial purge. Sometimes the best thing to do with a plateau is ignore it and go about your life, soon you’ll come across something and realize you don’t need it. Or you’ll go to deep clean a room and not put everything back.

      • My advice in this situation is to deal with (F) and in the meantime you may miraculously find a little more clarity to deal with (ABCD&E). And if you are lucky enough that there is no FGH… then think outside the box on ABCD&E and take the plunge because whatever it is, if you have decided it should go then there must be a way to deal with it.

        • LOL – no there wasn’t FGH but I’m sure a year ago there would have been. Yes I ended up dealing with (F), even though it was really a temporary fix, squashed in with (A) because it got the ball rolling.

          We used to have a TV series here – probs based on an overseas programme – but they’d go to a overwhelmingly cluttered house, pack everything up, take it to warehouse that had an outline of the house (exact to size). They had one hour to put what they wanted back in the house. I think they had 15 mins of that hour to put the furniture back in, and then the last 45 mins for whatever else they picked from the rest. And they couldn’t just drag boxes in, it had to be individual items.

          (side note: a professional declutter went thru the remaining stuff later to ensure nothing important like documents or photos had been overlooked) but the rest was taken away/dumped/recycled. Whatever they put into the house outline, was packed up again and put into the house the next day with the host, who usually managed to talk them out of a bit more.

          I would LOVE to do that. Even now that we are making good progress minimising, just to do it all in one hit.

          • Hi Moni, having friends decluttering along side you sure is inspiring and much more fun. You can compare ideas and ask opinions etc. And you are so right spring cleaning is all well and good but if you are serious about staying decluttered it need to be a lifestyle change. Just like diets, the weight will soon pile back on and you will be back to square one unless you permanently change your ways.

          • I sincerely hope these people were just cluttered and not true hoarders or that experience could leave them in a worse state of anxiety than what caused the build up in the first place.

        • That TV programme, I think there was a mix of each or a married couple one a hoarder and one a clutterer, or two clutterers. Generally brought on by family intervention or one of the couple asking for help. Only one person got truly distressed. The host was a counsellor for hoarding prior to the show, so was pretty good at working them thru the issue.

  2. Have you ever thought of showing pictures of your decluttered home? How about gifts that a person would like who doesn’t like clutter? Maybe Scrapbooking clutter?

    • Hi Spendwisemom,
      thank you for those suggestions. I was thinking about the home photos last night. I have included photos before but (kitchen, spare room, lounge, dining, garage and possibly craft area) doing a full spread of where I am up to would be a good idea. There is already a clutter free gift guide here. And also one for children here. And there will definitely be a big craft room declutter spread showing progression shots and the end result buy June this year, all going according to plan.

  3. Decluttering without any help from family or friends because you don’t have family or friends.

    • Hi Judy,
      I would have thought decluttering without family would be easier because you only have your stuff to deal with. I know this not to be true thought because from observing some of my single friends they seem more inclined to clutter than anyone because, I think and correct me if I am wrong, they derive most of their pleasure out of stuff because they are a little lonely.
      Perhaps you should write this post for me if you feel you are up for it.

  4. Question for your readers: What made you decide ‘Enough! It’s time to get rid of this stuff!”

    • Wendy B, I like that question it could be in two parts…

      What made you decide ‘Enough! It’s time to get rid of this stuff!?”
      and
      Why is it then that you still can’t seem to get started?

      I encounter this from time to time where people really are tired of the clutter but their fear of dealing with it overrides their ability to do anything about it.

    • good one!! very very good one!

  5. Decluttered travelling. I recently took a long haul flight and admired the couple sitting next to me. They each had just a tiny backpack and nothing more. I wish I could travel so light. 🙂

    • 🙂 My sister left for her big OE with 3 massive suitcases – and she was adamant that it was all neccessary for her one year of travel – she returned with half a backpack. And a fiance. And when she goes away even for a weekend, she still travels light. I should ask her. I get lay everything out on the bed, take away a third and still have too much stuff.

    • Hi Ann that couple who sat next to you sound like my hubby and I. We travel as light as we possibly can and every time we travel we find a way to travel lighter. We are off to the USA in just under two weeks so I will document our travels for you. Mind you we will have to pack a little heavier this time because winter seems to be lingering in the US and we are going to have to pack warmer clothes than we expected. We still intend to pack as light as possible and buy coats at the goodwill if we find it necessary. Lucky for us this shouldn’t be a problem until we get to Seattle and I know where there are some good thrift shops there. In the meantime read this post my husband wrote before out trip to Italy in 2010

      • One more travel tip. I always try on everything I’m going to pack to make sure it still fits, looks good, and matches the other clothes I’m packing. The outfits must mix and match. I decide ahead of time which color I’ll pack; e.g., everything must match black shoes and bag or brown shoes and bag. I travel with just a carry-on bag and a large purse.

    • My husband and I travel with a kid and take two backpacks plus my purse (which is more because when we get to the other side, I want my purse to hold the stuff I need for the day, like phone and camera). We’d probably not take much more with two kids…two backpacks and a diaper bag instead of a purse?

  6. 1/The aftermath of decluttering for example a relative getting upset over a decluttered gift or heirloom, or declutter’s regret for getting rid of something. Point of stories are how to deal with aftermath and possible steps not to repeat emotion toll again in the future.
    2/Encouragement to keep a collection or a stockpile of provision IF one wants to and has clearly, reasonably ( without guilt or fear) decided to keep it.
    Decluttering is not minimalism, but both include keeping only those items that enhance one’s life and goals

    • Hi Gail,
      1. I like that sound of that first suggestion. The only thing is, I have never encountered either problem personally. My husband did regret decluttering some old letters from his cousin who later passed away quite young. These letter were decluttered years ago before I began this decluttering mission I am on now. As for people getting upset about others getting rid of things they gave you, I have some definite opinions on that but no real experience. People I know either keep it to themselves or I assume really just don’t care. Have you ever encountered any of these problems yourself. I do have examples of this amount my old posts I will search for some and wrote a fresh post using them as examples.

      2. As for encouraging to keep a collection ~ I did write a post called how many is too many once which addressed the idea the what is right for you is the right number to keep. I have also had two post on beloved items that are keepers (Here and Here). Decluttering isn’t about getting rid of everything you love only the stuff that is clutter to you. This does bare mentioning again especially when it comes to collections people love. I will add this to my posts-to-do list.

      • I returned a gift on Saturday, I felt so guilty! The $10 went towards milk and hot cross buns. I just have to button my lip, don’t want people thinking I always return gifts!!

  7. I’d like some post(s) about decorating/creating a “cozy” home without adding clutter. If possible with pictures.

    Also, I’d love posts about storage solutions – or rather: how to make a small place seem spacious. (You don’t only need smart storage for masses of clutter, but also if you live in a small apartment or tiny house – in fact, it’s no harm in a spacious home as well).

    • Oooh I second this. Some ideas about how to decorate without adding “stuff”. I’m about to fly the nest and this is something that I’m not sure how to tackle – I’m very minimalistic and tend to keep only a few sentimental display items.

      • Sanna,
        I like this idea too. Decorating without cluttering, it is possible.
        I also like the idea of storage for small spaces. I assume you are talking about portable storage for a rented space that you can move from one apartment to another if you move.

        • Maybe include something about space-saving convertible furniture, like a coffee table that converts to a dining table.

          • One of the videos I had on Fridays Favourites last week made reference to the guys lifeedited blog which is all about this kind of furniture. I love it. This subject would make a great Simple Saturday post. Thanks for the idea.

        • Yes exactly. Like Anita said, there are some versatile furniture pieces, but also “smaller” practical advice like how to organize the interior of a cupboard or dresser etc.

          I also liked your post on cleaning products. This also helps save space, if you go down to the essentials.
          It might be an idea for other items as well, to have a post on multifunctional items, like: “if you own a ceramic oven prove bowl, you can use it as a casserole, as a form to bake cakes in and as a salad bowl all at once.” or similar. Just to help readers think out of the box and reevaluate which items are truly necessary. You already had some posts like that and I liked them very much. I’m always up for more. 🙂

          • Sanna, my friend decluttered the couple’s sieve. It seems her reasoning was revealed that she thought a fat splatter guard could do the same thing. I can see her logic to be honest (though it might not be super effective, a entirely flat splatter guard, but still!)

          • Hi Sanna,
            organising advice is something that I don’t spend much time on here at 365 less things for two reasons. 1. Because I believe that organising becomes logical once all the unnecessary stuff is removed and 2. Everyones needs are individual in this area. That being said there are some very generic guidelines as to how one should go about this and I will write a post on that. Thank you for clarifying this topic down to the basics.

            Multifunctional items ~ I like the idea of that post also. I’ll have to give that one some thought. thanks

  8. What to do about things that were given to your kids as babies (but now they are teenagers or older). The kids still live at home, they don’t know they ever had a “silver” egg cup and spoon/silver plated train money box because it’s been packed away for all those years. The items, though nice, are not personal (I would never dream of disposing of the little tankards with the name and birth date/weight on). Similarly the Millenium mugs, Queens Jubilee mugs, Royal wedding mugs. They are not likely to be worth any money in my lifetime or theirs……

    • Hi Tracey,
      been there and done that and still weeding out the baby stuff. You are so right the kids couldn’t care less about it for the most part. This is a good post idea and I am sure I have written about it before. I will search up those posts and use the information and my new experiences to write a fresh post.

      The second part of your suggestion about those mugs brings up the question of “Is this worth something?” always a question worth reposting about. One of my biggest bug bears with decluttering is am I getting rid of something that could be valuable.

      • I just had coffee with a friend I haven’t seen in a while – she said something which rings a bell here “its only as valuable as the amount you would be prepared to pay for it today”.

        So if you don’t want those collector items hanging around for another 20 years waiting for them to achieve maximum value…..let them go now, and buy something you want in your life now. 🙂

  9. How to explain to other people that you are not obsessed, just vigilant!
    How to get others on the bandwagon (friends, family, roommates).

    • Hi Gina and welcome to 365 Less Things. I do like your first suggestion and my advise is to start giving them suggestions on what they should be getting rid of from their houses. They will soon learn not to even bring up the topic then. Seriously though I suppose if it is possible to collect things to the point of hoarding then it is also possible to go a little crazy in the other direction too. I, of course, can’t make that judgement as I don’t know your situation but I dare say that this isn’t the case. Many people would rather think that you are the one who is out of hand getting rid of thing than admit to themselves that they are a little too dependent of having stuff and shopping for it.

      As for getting others on the same bandwagon ~ the only thing you can do is set the example and express to them the advantages you have discovered from owning and acquiring less. Less work, more space, healthier bank account and the like. If they aren’t swayed by that then there is nothing more you can do.

  10. 1. Clothing. Buying (and only keeping) clothing for the person /lifestyle I aspire to be verses the person/lifestyle I really am/have.

    2. Resisting temptation. How others handle trying not to drag home more stuff like knick-knacks & clothing, etc. What are their proven methods for curbing the buying urge?

    3. Non-breakable food storage options that’s not plastic (or glass) & doesn’t require much cabinet space. Does it exist?

    4. How people decide what to get rid of & what to keep. Questions folks ask of themselves when deciding what to keep or what to nix.

    5. Correlations between clutter & weight gain. I’m convinced there is somehow. Is there a correlation? If so, which is the cause & which is the effect.

    6. Are folks here (at 365 less Things) because everyone is downsizing or are most folks just simply tired of having too much stuff. Maybe set up a weekly poll of sorts about stuff like that.

    Hope that helps.

    • Hi Jane,
      1. I am intrigued with your clothing buying idea, especially since you used the word aspire in it. Is it not risky to change to a style that you are not comfortable with and could very well end up becoming aspirational clutter.
      I do know where you are coming from though and in fact I have chosen you suggestion to write about this week. So thank you for the idea. My wardrobe of clothing is getting old and shabby and needs a boost of new items to mix things up a bit. I am off to the USA in two weeks and plan on shopping there and wouldn’t mind some advice on the subject of clothes shopping before I leave.

      2. Resisting temptation, this is so different for everyone. I had no problem with this at all because of the higher prices i encountered in Australia after moving back from the USA. I imagine the temptation is much greater for some than others. The comments this post would generate would be interesting I bet. A few confessions may come out of it. Hmmmmm very tempting. We might get a few “Bless me father for I have sinned…” responses. Ha ha!

      3.Some time back there was a post the generated a little talk on the subject of non plastic storage solutions. I will try to find it for you.

      The rest of your idea are good too Jane I can see a post coming up on all of them so stay tuned.

      • Wow – I’m very flattered! Looking forward to reading your post from my suggestion! Very cool!

        • Hey Jane, I have pyrex dishes (with plastic lids). I also have concrete floors. So far, so good. I can oven, microwaves, freeze the dishes, which to me makes them more versatile than tupperware and other plastic wear… Just my suggestion! And the rectangular and circular ‘bottoms’ nest a little.

    • Would be interested to see the correlation between clutter and weight gain. Bound to be something in it.

      • Peter Walsh has written a book titled, “Does This Clutter Make My Butt Look Fat?”. I haven’t read it, but it sounds interesting. I definitely think there’s a connection between clutter and weight gain.

        How can anyone possibly feel “light” and energetic if they are bogged down by lots of extra “stuff” in their house?

        • I think the correlation between clutter and weight issues is more to do with modern societies tendencies to overindulgence. Too much of any good thing is not good for you. This is an interesting subject though.

      • I would love to read and hear from others about this. I found it easier to tackel the weight problem after I started decluttering. I am a lot of things and at least 10 kilos lighter now. so I would argue for a connection.

        • I have a friend who is a healer and she says people acquire weight and acquire things to protect themselves from vulnerability. She was like “duh didn’t you know that?” (I e-mailed her after reading this post) its all about stripping back the layers. I have just turned 39 this morning, and during this decluttering process I have had the strongest feeling that I am getting ready for something, though didn’t know what – a tidy house would have been enough for me! So before I turn 40 (perish the thought) I am going to look forward to great things – less stuff, less weight, more time, more energy, more positivitiy!

    • #1 – I actually have a post drafted up for my own blog about clothes being aspirational clutter. I find it cool that someone else has a similar thought!

  11. Sorry Colleen – used my old email address again, so it’s not someone new – still just regular old me but with a bad habit of not remembering my new email address.

  12. What to do with the dozens of body lotions and shower creams people keep giving me as gifts or that I’ve bought myself. My skin has become super sensitive in my old age and these products irritate rather than soothe. Trouble is, having opened them I can’t regift them or donate to the charity shop. Yet tossing them seems such a waste.

    • Rebecca B. A. R. :

      I would ask friends/family if they wanted them. If not, I would see if any of the local homeless shelter or domestic violence office would want them to give to their clients.

      • A good question Shirls and good advice Rebecca. Actually writing a post about toiletries products in general isn’t a bad idea. I always keep these to a minimum because they do get old and go off. I will add this to my list. Thank you.

      • Brilliant idea Rebecca!

        • I actually use natural food products I have in the kitchen as moisterisers – e.g. hemp oil, coconut oil. Coconut in particular smells so lovely. I don’t put any chemical concoctions on my skin if I can help it.

          • There are many blogs on the internet that cover this sort of use of natural products. I am lazy altogether and use pretty much nothing so my knowledge is just about nil when it comes to this subject.

  13. Colleen, I just finished reading all of your archives and comments. I feel as if I know everyone now. I love, love, love your blog. I’ve been de-cluttered for about 14 years now and it’s constant maintenance but I love it! It’s fun for me. The thing I like most about your blog is that it inspires me to do even better. I’ve gotten rid of so much more stuff since I started reading your blog-you make me think of things (stuff) that I’ve stopped seeing long ago or you (and your people who comment) have inspired me to get rid of things I thought I needed. Anyway, I didn’t mean to be so long-winded but I wanted you to know all of this. I really like reading about all of the things that people get rid of, I also think that before and after pictures would be great and I also enjoy reading about other de-clutterers stories. Maybe sometime I could tell mine. Thanks again, Jennifer

    • Hi jennifer and welcome to 365 Less Things. Thank you so much for taking the time to read all the way through the archives. What a feat that is. And thank you for your kind words as well. I am glad that the 365’ers, Cindy and I have inspired you to continue on in your declutter journey. Like you I also enjoy the decluttering and often wonder whether I will ever get to the point where I think I am done barring general maintenance. I just keep finding more and more stuff to declutter that I hadn’t noticed before or just hadn’t got around to yet.

      There will be a few reader declutter stories coming up soon while I am on vacation so stay tuned. If you would like to write send me your story sometime please do so. I will send you my email address to send it through it if you are keen. Include photos if you have any.

  14. Please keep posting on how to move things on using e-Bay. I just can’t seem to get the hang of it and put it off as it seems too time consuming. Then I am left with a pile of stuff I could potential re-coup some money on so it stays in my house.

    • Aaah Delores, ebay is a love hate relationship for me too, as my readers know. There is no way around it, it is time consuming and you just have to decide whether it is worth it for you and just get on with it if you feel it is. I will continue to post about this subject.

      • I have learnt that Mon-Thurs 7-9 is the best time to have your auctions close for max attendance, so therefore the best time to list. Cause its my busy time and it takes to list – writing all the blah blah blah.

        So on Sat afternoon I do the photos, and write up the blah blah blah and save it in a doc.

        Then Mon-Thurs 7-9 I load it up, copy and paste the blah blah from the doc and have my week’s auctions loaded in a jiffy.

        • I find Moni, that I get less stagnant about placing things for auction if I just forget about restricting myself to “the best ending times”. I just post them when it is most convenient and just hope for the best. The more complicated one makes it on the themselves the less likely they are to even bother. I am much more relaxed about it now that I has given up worrying about all that and just throw them up when I have the time and inclination. I am still selling stuff and I am happy with that.

          • You can chose what time the auction starts (here in the uk anyway) So you can do the whole listing when ever you want and then select either – post straight away, or a time and date.

            • Here in Australia they charge 25c to choose your start time. I know I am penny pinching here but every cent you spend listing the items is less you make on the sale. Between the ending fee and the paypal fees I feel I am paying enough so I try to avoid any other costs.

  15. Hi Colleen – what a good idea for collecting ideas for posts! I’m glad someone mentioned travelling, I’m told there is an art and a science to it.

    I am scheduled to do our garage in the next couple of days, and part of it is our Emergency Civil Defence stuff – naturally every country has different requirements – my dad actually worked in civil defence for a number of years, and I think because of his input I tend to be somewhat over-prepared – apart from the part where my son discovered the emergency provision food and started chipping away at it 🙂

    I do think it is important to be prepared for an emergency ie earthquake, tsunami, floods, long term loss of power and water etc, and I’m not talking about compromising preparedness for my minimalistic goals, but have noticed lots of my friends and myself included, tend to have this jumbled collection of emergency supplies.

    • Hi Moni,
      there is no art or science to travelling light just less vanity I think. You take what you need not what you think you require to look gorgeous at all times. I think it is mostly women who have trouble packing light.

      Cindy has recently written post of being emergency ready. It is a subject much more on peoples minds who live in area that are subject to natural disasters on a regular basis. Call us cray but we have no such emergency kit sitting waiting for such and eventuality in our house. Maybe we are a little too blasé about it all though. I am not the one to write a post about this though that is for sure. Perhaps with your experience you might be better suited to this.

      • My sis is an event planner and has to be immaculately presented, but her suitcase for 5 days is usually half the size of mine for 2 or 3 days, and can’t say anyone has accused me of being immaculately presented in a long time. Once she only got 4 hours warning to attend the cocktail party and pulled it off without flexing a visa. I will ask her her secret.

        Emergency kit, I will document this process as I go back thru and sort out and re-evaluate. The last time I organised it, I was still in my “too much is never too much” phase of life, and it will be interesting to see how I go about it this time.

  16. I’d like to second the eBay suggestion–I don’t seem to have a knack for it either, and would love some tips about successfully posting your stuff for sale.

    Thank you…..

    • Good picture are key. I never bother looking at ads were there are no pictures. And if it is an item of furniture, I want to see several differnt angles. I’m looking for a bed on ebay at the moment and it amazes me how many just post a picture of it dismantled! I also like precise measurements.

      I tend to only ebay items that I know are worth over £30/£40. Otherwise, the stress/hassle isn’t worht it to me.

      • I agree Katharine,
        if the people are too lazy to list the item properly they probably haven’t looked after it well either. Not that I buy much on ebay but if I am looking I want descent photos and a good description.

  17. I’m really glad Anne mentioned travelling – my daughter about to turn 15 is travelling by herself for the first time – its not a mammoth trip, we’re putting her on the plane in Auckland, NZ and she’s getting off at Gold Coast, Oz – so a 3 hr direct flight and straight into the arms of my family over there. At the time of booking the flight there were two different deals 5kg baggage and 23kg baggage. So many of my rellies and friends backpacked thru Europe or the Middle East or Africa, and they were adamant that 5kg was plenty.

    We opted for 23kg because it is her first solo trip and I wanted her to enjoy her trip and not get caught up with bag weight (over) issues and she has saved and saved and not bought anything since Spring so she can enjoy shopping with my mother, but she is hoping to make a longer trip at the end of the year with friends of ours, and will include a few stop overs, a number of borders and obviously having to keep her baggage to a minimum to be considerate to her hosts. So this is where I’d like her to learn the skill of minimalist travelling.

    • Moni, my hubby and I travelled through Italy for a month in Sept of 2010 with no baggage allowance only carry on. One backpack each and the camera bag. My backpack was only half full for the entire trip and lighter on the way home because I dumped some old shoes while I was there (this was planned). I am sure we could go for six months and only need the same amount of stuff. We make sure we know where the closest laundromat is to our accommodation so we never get caught out with no clean clothes. We also take light weight clothes that dry quickly. Gotta love Italy though, the laundromat in Bologna had a vending machine from which you could get beer. We didn’t, but how thoughtful and convenient.

      The trip we are about to take to the USA will however involve replacing some wardrobe items so we may come home with more luggage than we usually would. Although I will probably go with one pair of shoes and leave them behind because they are almost worn through the bottom so the new pair I buy won’t end up as extra baggage.

      • What a cool laundromat! I have one cousin who backpacked thru the Middle East and she swears she had one change of clothes aside from what she was wearing and would wash what she was wearing at the end of the day and anything that wasn’t dry by next morning to go back in her backpack, would be hung off the back of her back pack to dry during the day.

  18. Wardrobe articles are always fun 🙂 Highlight some of the challenges online such as Project333, Six Items or Less, etc.

    Book reviews on simplicity would be another way to get conversations going, although I know it would be a lot of work on your part and not necessarily the focus of this blog.

    Perhaps a room by room look at which major items you’ve given up and how it has impacted your life.

    Now I’m just rambling, but you get the drift!

    • Hi Aurelia – I’m wondering what Project333 and Six Items or Less are?

      • Hey Moni, I forget more often than I probably should that not everyone reads the same multiple blogs that I do.

        Project 333 (http://www.theproject333.com/) is where you take 33 items of clothing, shoes, and accessories and wear them – and only them – for 3 months. It’s like a detox for your wardrobe and an exercise in simplicity. Much easier than it sounds and the founder, Courtney Carver of Be More With Less, stresses that it’s not an exercise in deprivation and to tweak the rules if necessary. Personally I’ve done Project333 twice – the first time by the book and the second time not including accessories.

        Six Items or Less (found news articles but no blog) takes 6 clothing items but unlimited shoes and accessories and you wear them for 30 days. Much more extreme and suited for those with a “uniform” but it’s interesting to read about other people’s experiences.

        Another one is Kendi’s 30 for 30 (http://www.kendieveryday.com/p/30-for-30-remixes.html) – similar concept, different numbers.

        • Hi – wow, 33 items. My initial reaction was NOT possible! And now I’m thinking it thru, this could work but would probably go with the shoes and the accessories out of the 33.

          I’m currently down to a quarter of the clothes that I used to have stuffed into wardrobe, drawers and stored in ceiling space, and not missing them.

          Will give it some thought. Did you find the season makes a difference? How did you decide on your 33 items?

          I’m assuming, the first week is the hardest, does it get easier with practice?

          • I don’t think the seasons matter that much, you can read stories of people doing it through all kinds of temperature changes. You also have to remember that you aren’t getting rid of the extra clothes, just hiding them away for three months.

            The first season was really easy to decide what to use as I didn’t have a lot of summer clothes to begin with (proper bra fitting + realizing clothes can actually fit my bust AND waist = donating everything that didn’t fit and flatter). For me I realized I needed a *little* more variety to stretch laundry day and cover casual/work, hence the accessories. It’s really easier than it sounds, although I did get itchy to switch out this past one because we got hit with a super heat wave that I wasn’t prepared for.

            Give it a try, you can always stop if it’s too much!

        • Does the 33 items include pajamas/night wear?

          • No, it doesn’t include night wear, or any outfit you work out in. I don’t include underlayers either (i.e tops worn under tops to keep warm that never get ‘seen’). I don’t think it includes underwear either. I love project 333, although I have yet to follow it rigidly, but I got rid of 70% of my wardrobe last year and haven’t bought anything new since (except something to get married in:) ) I own a very capsule wardrobe now and it has made my life so much simpler. I will need to replace a few this summer though. For the last 2 months I have only have 3 outfits to wear, as I have put on a few too many lbs over winter. Yes, really, I have only had 3 wearable outfits an I have manged fine. Currently working on decluttering those extra lbs though 🙂

        • Sometimes I think I could easily do this. Even if my wardrobe is full of clothes, I use almost only the same few pieces all the time. I think this winter I used only 3 pairs of trousers, 2 pairs of shoes, 4-5 tops and 2-3 sweaters, and 1 coat. I almost don’t use accessories. When at home I have 2 different sets of shirt + sweatsuit trousers and my slippers. For the night, 2 pajamas (use one, then wash and use the other).
          If we keep underwear out of the count, 33 items could be more than enough for me!
          This used to be different some years ago, when I liked to dress more “like a girl”, so I like to change many outfits, using skirts, dresses and so on. But now I value more comfort and quickness of dressing in the morning 😛

    • I like all your suggestions Aurelia.
      The wardrobe issues are so geographical though. What I need here is so different to what I needed the Seattle or what someone might need in Germany for instance.

      I would like to write more book reviews on simplicity books but I have such a hard time lately just trying to find the time to read them. I just returned two to the library unfinished because my vacation is looming and so were their return dates. I will try again when I get home.

      I think your room by room idea is interesting. I could combine that with Spendwisemom’s desire for photos of my decluttered home. Although my home isn’t completely decluttered yet.

      • Wardrobe issues are indeed geographical. I was thinking more along the lines of “what is enough” and the relationship between stress, “just in case”, aspirational clutter, etc. and our wardrobes. It’s also another place to emphasize quality over quantity.

        Another idea would be examples or stories of re-purposing organizational items or room arrangements – a mini-move if you will. I can’t remember if it was you or another blogger whose children switched rooms: there were some great insights to be had from “creating” a room from a blank slate and the items that were tossed along the way.

        • Hi Aurelia,
          I understand more of what you mean now where clothes are concerned. This is a blog I will write when I return from America. However I will keep in mind all you have mentioned on the subject while I am there and doing my clothes shopping. Aside from better prices I was hope the American stores may have a better selection than we seem to have here in Australia. Quality over quantity will certainly be highly considered along with catering to my personal needs and comfort levels.

          I like this other topic you have mentioned too. I am a great repurposer and love living outside the box so I should be able to come up with a blog. In the meantime check out this post I wrote some time back about using storage items for reasons unintended.

          It was not I who wrote the post on the children switching rooms. But I would really enjoy pulling everything out of Liam’s room and see what he would care to put back in. Not right now though because he is working feverishly on his uni assignments and would not appreciate the interruption.

  19. How ’bout “A Spouse’s Point of View”. We haven’t heard from Steve or Dan in a while. On the home front, the ‘reluctant spouse’ announced the other day that he was attacking his pants and I could help if I wanted to. Twenty minutes later we were done: dress pants hung, jeans sorted into ‘good’ and ‘work’, the junk into the garbage and two pairs of uniform pants to the Thrift Store. Big change in two years, eh?!

    • This is a good one Wendy B perhaps Steve, Dan & Ian need to write a post each on this subject. It would make for a very interesting weeks reading. I like the idea.

  20. My daughter just had a birthday and received some amazing gifts, but felt somewhat uncomfortable about the expense some friends had gone too. How do you request a donation to RSPCA or your favorite charity? From conception to cremation , cards are sent , gifts are exchanged. I would like to know Is there a group, like “don’t buy anything new in October ” in regard to gift giving? I would be happy to be a part of that.
    Colleen, you could do anniversary posting; ” 12 months ago on 365 ”
    ; just let people tell their declutter experience for the day.
    I sent the gift guide to my niece, who has two beautiful little girls, who are the only grandchildren or nieces in her family. She Was very thankful as the house was starting to resemble a small Toys R Us store.
    You help people every day in some way, I am so glad you chose to do this blog.
    Thank you . Cheers

    • Hi Wendy,
      firstly thank you for your kind words, I am glad I started my blog too, my 365’ers have been as big a help to me as I have been to them.

      I am sure Cindy wrote a post that included a donation party she held you for her daughter. I will track down all the post Cindy wrote on kids parties and post them together sometime in the near future so everyone can read them again. It was about Sept 2010 when she wrote them so many people would have missed them. Thanks for the idea.

  21. Goodness, I thought you had covered every possible topic and look at all the suggestions above! I have no fresh ideas but I find that reading about the basics (taking your time to declutter, the types of clutter such as obligation clutter, sentimental clutter, etc) from time to time keeps the principles fresh in my mind. You could just do a repost of some of your older ones if you knew you had a busy week or a gap coming up. I know that some ideas didn’t completely sink in until I had read similar posts a couple of times, sometimes it was the repetition that did it, sometimes it was that it was worded differently or written from a different angle. Also, you do have some different readers from a year ago so maybe they would find those repeats helpful.

    Whatever you write, it is always food for thought.

    • You are so right Jo H. the basics are always worth repeating over and over again. I have been trying to put an ebook together taking snippets from posts I wrote from day one plus new ideas for a well rounded view on each subject. Finding the time to write my blog posts and the ebook and living life is my stumbling block. You readers had better all buy one when I am done or I am going to desert you all. Ha ha only kidding. 😆 😈

  22. I would like some advise on box / packaging clutter. Lots of ‘technical’ things like mobile phones, DVD players, cameras, game consoles, even some toys come with fancy and very precise packaging, invaluable if you need to return the item for a warranty claim or you are moving house. Inside the boxes I store all the fancy foam or cardboard packing, the booklets that come with the item, extra cords, empty video tapes… ‘stuff’ related to that item, but not the item itself because that is where it should be, being used. The top of my wardrobe is full of the boxes just like this and I have moved only once in the last 20 years and made very few warranty claims so why am I keeping them, but if I throw them out where will I put the ‘stuff’ inside them… Hmmmmm… any ideas???

    • Hi Bronwyn,
      I understand your pain when it comes to this subject. I do move on a fairly regular basis so I also keep these boxes. I even have the advantage that when I do move my husbands work pays for a full professional move. Even so it still pays to keep the boxes for electronic or valuable items that you wouldn’t want damaged. I think therefore that this is a good subject for me to write about. I think I might include this one for next Thursday so stay tuned.

    • I don’t think there’s much you could do about what’s already in the home, but you can always make packaging (or the lack thereof) an important (non) part of all future purchases. Buying refurbished, used, or from eco-friendly companies really cuts down on the packaging. Also, not all warranties require you to keep all of the packaging – and warranties expire. So . . . . ditch the packaging no longer required by the warranties and worry about moving when you get there and enjoy your wardrobe now!

  23. Colleen, Here is a strange suggestion for you . I Just decluttered 2 urns that contained loved ones remains. I Carried these urns around with me for over 20 years.Every time I saw them it made me very sad.I looked at them every day . My husband told me one day how much the urns bothered him and he felt a uncomfortable heaviness in the room . I Finally let them go. I spread the ashes in my rose garden and although I cried that day I did feel better ,lighter and the room feels much brighter too.I know I did the right thing.I can still love them but I dont need to hoard them any more I can set them free.

    • wow. I think you could win the prize for most unusual decluttered object here.
      your words really touched something. I can understand how hard that step must have been for you. and how light those tears made you feel afterwards.

    • My husband and I want to be cremated. I told him I don’t want to be kept in an urn; I would rather be returned to the earth in a beautiful setting. I don’t know if that’s of any comfort to you, but if it is, I’m glad I told you. (It’s not something I’ve told anyone other than my husband before.)

    • My friend recently felt the two urns in their house had the same uncomfortable heaviness in the room and has removed them from the house. As she has sisters to make the joint/agreed decision with she is organising an ashes plot at the local cemetary so that they can have a plaque. My friend would rather have returned them to earth somewhere less formal especially as her dad was a gardener, but she had to find an option to please others. I think what you did is much more beautiful and peaceful way and by the sound of it healing too.

    • This is a really delicate subject isn’t it SHIRLEY DO. I always think that cremation is the way to go because a burial plot really binds you to a place in a way. Where as ashes are transportable. But in your case they became depressing and that isn’t good either. I would be inclined to do as you did only I would scatter them in some sort of beautiful geographic location since I never live in the same place for very long. We all unfortunately find ourselves in this position at some point in our lives so having a plan is a good idea. I am glad your room feels lighter and brighter now and yes you did the right thing.

    • Hi Shirley Do,

      I feel for you right now as I’m in the same boat with my Mum over my Dads’ Ashes. We all decided to get a tree and plant it on the family property and scatter Dad around it, I know it probably sounds awful but it is a subject that comes up and has to be dealt with. I personally wanted to load up my Dad into a Ford F100 drive up north and scatter him on the main Highway back home. The North-West here was his life and I feel that would have been fine with my Dad haha he would laugh believe me. It didn’t happen for one reason or another at the time but all through it I know my Mum has had a heavy heart everytime she passes the drawer my Dad is residing in for the time being! We do look forward to releasing him back to the Earth and although it is sad I feel we will all be better for it.

      As for the Urns in the house it is a personal choice and can bring on that ‘sad heaviness’ that many describe, but the practice has been around for 100’s of years, thankfully these days many cremations are interred into the funeral gardens and that gives a lot of peace and happiness to those involved that their loved ones are scattered or placed into beautiful gardens with ponds and trees and a lovely calm quietness.

      I’m sure your loved ones would thank you for choosing a beautiful garden setting for them 🙂 🙂 🙂

  24. Colleen, I was surprised at your question. what on earth can people come up with that you or your readers havent already mentioned?? I am still slowly making my way through the archives, I just LOVE all the different aspects to it. but I am getting close to the time where I jumped in.

    One of the last posts that really got me was the one for decluttering/storing/organising, if you live in just one room. Being a student, having lived for years in shared flats, I get the point. and decluttering a flat that has been a shared one for years, there is stuff, that doesnt belong to people, etc. etc. etc.

    I am also interested in the process of combining two households. here are for sure some people who can tell from experience. I would love to read about that. (and the opinion of the second household ;-))
    another thing that I would love to read about is age. I think I am one of the younger readers here (27). If an older person starts reflecting on: how did I come to stuff? how were certain life changes influencing the amount/quality of stuff (I am thinking first self earned money or children)? and the final question: how did I come to the decision to declutter it? I would also love to hear those stories.

    • Combining a household…oh man. My husband and I got married when we were 18 and 20 (I’m younger) and I already had an apartment worth of stuff when we moved in together and so did he. It’s taken us our entire marriage to finally combine our stuff into one (cluttered) household’s worth and we’ve been married 5 1/2 years!

      I’m 23, by the way, so I’m younger than you are. 🙂

      • I know a couple who combined households – her method was to get rid of his stuff………..

        • Haha!

        • Hahahahaha that just made my day because I think in essence that is what I did with my husband, I literally chucked all of his stuff in the bin, (we were living in a caravan park and he didn’t have a huge amount but what he had was crappy, his own admission not just mine.) His clothes were all daggy monochromatic and boring!!! I know I sound snobby but this was a guy that lived in shorts, jeans and a singlet, uniform for work building water tanks. When I chucked everything I also threw all his jocks and socks, we literally went shopping with him wearing a pair of ‘MY HIS PANTS FOR HER’ (that is the brand name of the knickers I wore then!) We quite often talk about this and laugh our heads off and all he can say is ‘Gives a whole new meaning to Getting into your pants! Fool, but at least he dresses better hahahaha!!!)

          And I’m actually 18 I just like walking around in a body thats 30 years older hahaahha!! (Actually I’m 48 in 4 days and don’t feel any older than 18!!! Except wiser and clutter-free 🙂 🙂 🙂

          • 🙂 LOL!!!! In Jan my teenage daughters took my hubby shopping for an updated look. He likes his new clothes but was unconvinced about the shoes they picked for him but everyone compliments his shoes when he wears them so he just shrugs and goes with it now. He says it was like shopping with Trinnie and Susannah though.
            They handed him over to me to take undies shopping. He has always been a staunch advocate of the 5 pack $9.99 from KMart, so this was a challenge. I took him to the Bendon Factory Outlet store we have in our town on “Everything Under $20 Week” (every bra, camisole, knickers, everything between $10-$20 – its wonderful) and insisted he just try a few pairs from their range. Very reluctantly he bought ONE pair. The next morning I was sent back to get whatever else I could find.

    • You have hit on some really interesting topics here Lena. Many of which I have had no experience of. I may have to enlist some of my readers who I know have had these experiences to write those posts. I think you should be the one to write the post about decluttering a shared flat that has items that now belong to no-one. Even though you won’t learn much from writing the post you will probably gain some insight from the responses it generates.

      Thank you for these ideas I will certainly add them all to the list. I won’t need to have to struggle for ideas for months now.

      • challenge accepted. I will write a guest post on the shared flat. lets see if I can manage that 😉

        I am happy you have fodder for the next months. And I am also happy to read some new names here (and therefore a HUGE number of comments). seems there are more than just a couple shadow readers 😉

        • Hi Lena,
          thank you for taking the challenge. I will send you my email address so you can send the post to me behind the scenes.

          You are right about the shadow readers, there are about 1400 subscribed readers that I am aware of but some of my regular readers/commenters aren’t even subscribed so it is anyone’s guess as to how many read here on a regular basis. Considering I don’t network or follow any blogging SEO (not even sure that is the right three letters) rules of engagement I am pretty happy with that.

          • I have friends that read every day, but don’t want to write. I get a text saying “tell them about the XYZ but don’t say my name” – I think they think their men cyber stalk them to find out what happened to that Hawaiian shirt! LOL it is good to have friends who are also decluttering, it is encouraging and good ideas get passed along. And its not unheard of to hear “well, Colleen said….” or “Cindy said” when we chat amongst ourselves. For six months we googled things like “how to declutter your wardrobe” and “how to declutter your garage” and passed links amongst ourselves so it was brilliant to stumble onto 365 where its a daily thing ie a lifestyle choice, not just a spring clean. Thanks Colleen!

    • “how did I come to stuff? how were certain life changes influencing the amount/quality of stuff (I am thinking first self earned money or children)? and the final question: how did I come to the decision to declutter it?”

      I’ll be glad to tell my story when this post comes along. Everyone’s story will be a bit different so I hope you get lots of replies!

    • Hi Lena!

      It seems, we’ve had very much the same experience so far (shared flats, small rooms, small apartments, eventually moving in with a boyfriend and combining households…) Maybe, because we’re the same age. 🙂

      I’m interested in those topics as well and I’d volunteer to assist with pictures or thoughts, if wanted.

      • hey Sanna,
        I knew I wasnt the only one who is leading a “normal” (european) student life, I am glad you can participate with pictures, I dont have any whatsoever from my flats… shame really.

  25. Luggage? Please? Because I have all of these bags that are useful for when we do travel (once a year or so) and that have future uses and I can’t seem to let them go because they are so *useful*. I need a kick in the pants!

    • Does your luggage fit inside each other?

    • Two comments, Lynn – first, do you store off-season clothing? If so, maybe it could go into the various backpacks and store both together. Second, if the pieces are all used at least once a year, maybe you don’t need to declutter them, assuming you have the room to store them. I always go back to the quote “keep only what you know to be useful or believe to be beautiful” 🙂

      • Jo H, this is great advice, thank you! I don’t actually have off-season clothing other than a jacket for each of us that fit nicely into a hall closet. Unfortunately, we’re in a very small place for a family of four (that we actually love, but still, clutter easily becomes an issue which is why I’m so focused on decluttering) and we don’t have room to keep stuff that isn’t necessary. Really, I suppose I answered my own question when I posted, but making a public comment was a kick in the pants anyway! I need to pick my favorite bag, my husband’s favorite bag and get rid of the rest. I do have two Peruvian bags that are great back-ups (I am Peruvian and they are sentimental as well as useful), so it’s not like we wouldn’t be covered, I suppose. Those fold down very small, too, so they could be slipped into my favorite bag and then that’s that. We have so many and I have a hard time letting go (or losing money) but…I suppose I ought to. 🙁

        • It can be so hard to let them go, I know all too well 🙂 I’m interested to see what Colleen’s post and comments have to say about this topic too.

        • hey Lynn. I have also the problem of not a lot of space, but somehow a huge amount of luggage. I am storing a hammock, a sleeping back and a iso-mat (?) in my bagpack, I have the smaller suitcase in the bigger suitcase, I have my season clothes in the smaller suitcase. all those items are in a shelf (Ivar from IKEA) that I designed for exact the sizes of the items…

          I have several (hand)bags that I cant let go of because of sentimental value (I really hope one day I can declutter them). I made hooks to the wall and hung them on the wall above the cleaning cabinet. its like a decoration really.

    • Interesting idea Lynn. I have experienced some luggage decluttering so I think I should have some advice on this subject. Thank you.

    • Okay, I did it today. We kept two backpacks (our travel packs), two Peruvian knapsack-type bags (sentimental, irreplaceable and useful), two small purses that will fit in my diaper bags and some waist “fanny packs” that we use when we go to the zoo and stuff. I also kept a free bag I got that will be very useful for the pool this summer.

      Got rid of two messenger bags, three or four of my old bags, some old tote bags and a wallet. I’m selling a messenger-style diaper bag, husband added a laptop bag to a laptop he is selling and I’m going to try to sell my Vera Bradley bags that I don’t use any more.

      Probably cut it by half? Not too bad! Two backpacks are hanging from the hook along with the pool bag, now, and all of the smaller bags fit inside one of the backpacks. 😀

  26. As for me, decluttering is time consuming, so from time to time I just throw things away instead of selling or giving them. I am not well organised, and in France we are not used to garage sales, we have what we call “vide -greniers” for a whole village, so I may have to wait quite a while for it to take place. I’ve just moved and I do not know the local second-hand shops.
    Any idea to hep me ?

    • Do you have freecycle in your area? Could you contact your town or village garbage collection services and see if there is a curbside giveaway program? Would the telephone directory have a heading for second-hand shops?

    • Hi Nicole,
      this is an interesting subject to which I have no easy solution for you because I am not familiar with the peculiarities of finding new homes for unwanted stuff in France. I have some general ideas that could be translated to just about any country but the intricacies of each place is up to the individual to work out. I am however inspired to write a post about this and I think I will plan it for Tuesday April 3 so stay tunes.

    • Nicole,
      I lived in France and have also ‘uncluttered’ on holidays there. If you’re OK with not making money off items, there are options. I have given away winter boots to the cleaning staff at Charles de Gualle (it suited me!) I’ve found ‘bins’ for donating clothes in my town (Rennes, Bretagne). I also left a bag of stuff outside a charity in Paris. Just ask the baker or someone similar (ie lived in the place a L-O-N-G time) and they might suggest somewhere. Worst case, the foyer of a public housing building with a sign ‘free’ perhaps? Or even student housing?

  27. Okay, so I read most of the answers and then stopped. 🙂 So, I kinda feel like I am always decluttering and bringing bags of bags of stuff to the thrift stores and other places, but when does it end? When do we have the right amount of stuff? I just can’t get over that I can still take garbage bags full of stuff out our home.

    • Hi Lisa,
      it ends when you are ready, when you reach the level of simplicity that works for you. I can assure you that the goal posts will just keep moving as you realise more and more through this experience that you need a whole lot less than you ever thought you would. Trust me I speak from experience here. I wasn’t sure I would have enough stuff to declutter to keep me going for the first 365 days that I had pledged to remove one thing a day. Boy was I wrong, two years and three months later I am still decluttering. And it isn’t because a whole lot of new stuff has taken its place, because it hasn’t, it is just that I don’t need the stuff and the more I declutter the more aware I become of that fact. My cupboards are emptier and maintenance is easier and I am loving it and I’m not done yet. So keep at it, you will know when you are done. It is well worth the journey.

      • Thanks Colleen. That was a very inspiring response. 🙂

        • My pleasure Lisa. Keep at it.

          • My question is often more (and perhaps the other young’uns’ Lena and the like might also think/feel this) is that ‘I have so much less than a household of 4+ people, and I’m young, so surely I can’t do something everyday forever’ I don’t use this as an excuse, but sometimes I think, well, it’s different for me! :p Cheeky I know!!

            • You are right Snosie, it is different for you. Since you are young and just starting out and have already got smart on being mindful about clutter you should not be able to declutter a thing a day for long. You should also be mindful of what you bring in so the build up never occurs. Life tends to change a lot more for the young as you are still finding your way in the world that is why households with children have a lot more clutter maintenance to deal with than someone like me. The younger the person the more quickly life does change. Be grateful you have learned this lesson early and be a good steward of the environment by curbing your desire for stuff. Give careful, considered thought to everything you bring in and you should never get in the situation of a cluttered household. And your finances will thank you also.

          • hey snosie. I know that feeling… But my new years resolution is to get out an item each day. My compromise here is that I dont really follow the “one in one out rule”, as there is nothing there yet that can go out instead. I mean this year I got a whole new equipment of sport gear. I bought myself a thermo – can (its working now, yay), I am building up a household.
            I remember one of the first mini missions I read was: declutter your spice collection. I was almost laughing: I cant do that, I own only salt and pepper. 6 months later my spice collection got a bit out of hand, and it is time indeed to go through those things…
            So its more the deliberate action of reflecting your possessions that makes it for me. I have been minimizing CD’s, Pictures, Books, Papers (like bills etc). Seems like I dont run out of that.

          • I know what you’re talking about, but moving in with my boyfriend and inheriting stuff from his granny at the very same time made us suddenly drown in clutter.
            Also, stuff that I collected until then (books, dishes and so on) suddenly turned into downweighing clutter, as there were more books and more dishes suddenly moving in with my boyfriend.
            Having never lived on my own (I always shared flats), I also had no clue about how many dishes you actually need. (Living with 4 other people and a dishwasher you need about 6x as many dishes than if you live just with one…) We inherited granny’s set of china for 12 persons. It seemed so normal at that time, as any “grown up” I know owns a set for 12. Meanwhile I’d love to cull it down to a set for 6, but my boyfriend isn’t quite up to that yet. For both “you might need it one day” and sentimental reasons.
            Also, office supplies have suddenly doubled and we’re now at a point where they slowly reach a normal level again.

            I guess, I just want to say, you can reach “cluttered” quite easily, when you’re not prepared – e.g. just move in with a partner 😉 . “Decluttering” really is about being aware of what you let move in with you and make conscious decicions about that.

            I’m not decluttering in trunk loads, but rather in grocery shopping bags, but still, it’s a continuous process and though I can see a decluttered flat, I can’t see this process stopping, as the two of us, though rather frugal, aquire one or two “things” a month, which would accumulate if you didn’t declutter at least as much as well.

            • Life happens Sanna and at times we have very little control over that. You have taken the right approach though. Work it out together, come to some compromises and revisit the situation later on down the track. In the meantime keep decluttering the things you are both comfortable parting with and keep a tight rein on the stuff you can control coming in. So long as you stay aware you will be about to keep in under control.

    • Amen to that!

    • Not to mention that with each round of decluttering does your perspective change. What you couldn’t bear to part with under no uncertain terms a year ago now seems like the next likely candidate to nix today. Hobbies change. Fashion styles change. Even what you are willing to cook changes thus the related cooking products changes. Your willingness to continue to put with being the good steward to items you no longer love, like or even know why you own it anymore changes. Plus your sentimental value you have placed on certain items changes over time.
      I recently got rid of all my own baby clothing I somehow kept all these years (I’m 45 now). I took photo’s of the tiny little dresses & tops then sent them on their way. It was quite like taking a breath of fresh clean air too. I rarely if ever looked at those little dresses & in fact had them stored deep in the attic. Not sure why I kept them this long, but it just became crystal clear that I no longer felt compelled to keep them. Taking photos of items kinda lets you “keep” the item & thus the memories associated with it….but you don’t have to haul around or designate space (phsyical or mental) for the items anymore. It’s quite freeing actually.

      • Exactly right! I had that experience over the weekend! Not the baby clothes, but ruthlessly decluttering stuff that I’d carefully stored a year ago. As soon as I saw it, I was ticked off that I was having to deal with it again!

  28. Hi Colleen!

    I just wanted to share that this year’s birthday presents didn’t involve much clutter. Just one vase and one cup. Apart from that only wanted books, lots of flowers, cake and chocolate. I’m really happy about that!
    Just need to figure whether I need that vase or not…

    • Hi Sanna,
      you must have done a good job of letting your family and friends know how you feel about gifts and they kindly respected your wishes. My friend who can’t help but buy me gifts at birthdays and Christmas time bought me a box for storing tea which was too nice to have hidden away in the pantry but I have no space on the counter for it. Knowing me as she does, she gave me permission to return it if I wanted. That is exactly what I did and exchanged it for some lovely tea. She doesn’t realise that I used some of the exchange value to get her some tea as well. That can be our little secret. 😉

    • go and buy yourself some flowers. if you like them inside the vase its good, if you dont, try to repurpose it (as a storage for pens, change, spaghetti, etc etc etc), if you cant, get rid of it…

      and happy belayed birthday!

      • The thing is: I just decluttered about 20 vases throughout the last 3 months… 🙂

        I have just come down to those I like the very best and that are reasonable (different sizes for diefferent flowers, not 10 vases for a single rose and nothing to put a bouquet in)

        So I had to laugh about unpacking a vase. You’re right that I should try it, especially as I think the shape looks odd. If flowers don’t look good in it there’s no use keeping it.

        • lol – thats this beautiful irony of life.
          I dont see the point of those things anyhow except for repurposing. I dont own myself one, if I get flowers (very rarely) I put them into bis glasses or mugs, the bavarian beer glasses are quite good for that job.

          • That’s what I find so interesting. Even when I reduce my stuff to one suitcase, you bet, I include pretty pottery or a vase.
            On the other hand, I don’t need to own any recorded music or movies.

            And I don’t own a beer glass, just for the record. 🙂

          • haha. amazing. pottery or vases would be one of the last items I would pack. I have a “Mass” at home. being from bavaria, I somehow need to keep the clichés alive 😉

    • Here is something novel my friend did – and I’m not saying that you need this idea – but it was the most novel idea for this tall glass vase that she had. She decided to let go of weight, and each week after weigh in, whatever she had lost, she’d weigh out in rice and pour into the vase. If she put on, she had to take the equivalent out. If she was having a hard week staying on the wagon, she’d put it in the pantry. Eventually she reached goal weight and we all went around for the visual on her achievement. As she’d made a lid of sorts for the top, she proceeded to use the rice for cooking.

      • The vase is maybe a little too small for a thing like that. Apart from that I decluttered all diet thoughts even before I decluttered stuff.
        (I’m normal weight, so I decided, I just won’t think about one or two pounds more or less. Anyway, my weight hasn’t changed much since I was 16… )

    • My local florist does hire vases for weddings etc – she was delighted to take two vases off me when she heard that I wanted to get rid of them. She gave me a posy as a thank you. (yes I still had another vase)

    • I actually won a vase at a baby shower today and then came home to read these comments. Funny. 🙂 The only vase I have holds my wedding bouquet (silk flowers and quite beautiful as well as handmade by me) so I’ve needed another one. I’m quite pleased, actually.

      • Then it is a good thing! Have just heard my parents are coming up to spend the Easter weekend with us 🙂 but mum has found some of my stuff that she wants to bring with her, I left home 20+ years ago, so I’d rather she just threw it out. But apparently amongst it is the icing flower spray thingee from our wedding cake 19 years ago. No idea what I am going to do with that.

        • Eat it!!! Icing flowers last and last and last!!! Hahahaha go on I dare you!

          • Mum would probably have a fit! Ironically after their 40th anniversary party a year ago we accidently came home with the icing flowers of the cake I had done for them, and was thinking when they announced they were coming up YAY I can offload that to them (its been sitting in a tupperware in the top of the pantry). Maybe I could convince her that they belong together in her house…….

  29. After spending a fair chunk of the weekend working in the garage, and a brief foray into ceiling storage area – CAMPING GEAR is my new pet hate.

    On a positive note, 2 car boot loads to the local recycling pickup spot, and two kleensaks full ready for rubbish collection (nothing recyclable in those I’m afraid).

  30. Colleen, I also like the idea of a post dealing with other family members who are not on board with the decluttering. It gets very discouraging when I’m so excited about getting rid of stuff and others get a little grumpy about it. I just wish they could understand the freedom they would feel in not being tied down to things. I would also like to read about people (maybe even you, soon) who downsize into much smaller homes. I like hearing all of the tiny details about everything they’ve gotten rid of and everything that they have kept.

  31. Hi Colleen and 365’ers

    My suggestion for a post would be ‘Krazy Krap Korner’, run it once a week or more often and also it can tide you over when you can’t think of something! Everybody can tell us their craziest bits to declutter. It’s probably been noted somewhere along the line but it could be a fun thing for your ‘newbies’ and us to have a laugh at and realise we have all ‘been there done that’ and still ‘doing it’!! 🙂 🙂 🙂