Friday’s Favourites ~ 9 Mar 2012

On Fridays at 365 Less Things I share with you my favourite comments from my wonderful readers and my favourite web finds of the week. I hope you will enjoy them as much as I did.

Favourite Comments. Enjoy!

Here is Moni’s clutter/declutter story.  Thank you for sharing Moni it all sounds very familiar.

In this comment Sabrina lets us in on her thought process while trying to downsize her belongings to fit in a new much smaller home. Good luck Sabrina my mind is very much on the same process at the moment.

Some of you may not like Jane’s view on photos in this comment but you would have to admit there is an element of truth in it. Even with three avid photographers in my immediate family I feel inclined to side with Jane on this one. The though of ploughing through the thousands of photos on our computer does my head it.

I liked Kristen’s attitude in this comment and her advice to Lena was good too. Recreational activities should be just that, if you are no longer enjoying them why continue with the task.

Favourite Web Finds. Happy reading!

I was sent this link by one of the people responsible for producing this blog and I am suitably impressed with the posts I have read so far. They have some great practical advice on living deliberately. ~ Do-you-love-this-thing

Here is motivation to keep you house tidy. Thanks Cindy for this link. ~ Teenager wins £53000-on-lottery after finding ticket when mother forced him to-clean bedroom

Here is the latest offering from Becky, one of our regular readers. I can relate to this one because I made a bit of a mess decluttering in my own craft area yesterday myself. ~ Art table decluttered

Seriously who has room in their kitchen for one of these ~ ~ Unitasker  Wednesday – Karate lettuce chopper

Here is a little decluttering advice from ~ 18-five-minute-decluttering-tips-to-start-conquering-your-mess

Thanks to Wendy here are some Aussie links to mattress decluttering and buying recycled mattresses ~

Today’s Declutter Item

Not only have I decluttered this storage system from my craft room but most the items in it have also been decluttered. I vowed to Lena that I would have this craft clutter knocked on the head by June and I am well on the way.

Craft room clutter

Something I Am Grateful For Today

Having a lovely afternoon with two girlfriends sipping cocktails and chatting. Of course I will have to make up for that laziness tomorrow but c’est la vie.

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow

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Continue reading with these posts:

  • Book Review ~ Give it up Give It Up! ~ A year of learning to live better with less by Mary Carlomagno Unlike the title might suggest, this book isn't about decluttering the material things in our lives so isn't […]
  • Day 197 Gogol’s declutter approach Yesterday at about 10:40pm I was finally getting around to reading the new comments on my blog when I found one from Gogol who hadn't commented before. I enjoyed it so much and I thought […]
  • Day 167 Take your time, learn as you go. If you have been reading my blog for a while you will know that my take on decluttering is " slow and steady wins the race". One of the advantages to this approach is that you can start […]
About Colleen Madsen

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


  1. Oh no, that storage caddy is EXACTLY what I am looking for to organize my sewing stuff! I don’t have any storage stuff and lots of stuff I am actually working on that I would like to organize in some way. I just clicked over here from Joann’s, looking for something exactly like this!

    I’ve been checking freecycle and craigslist with no luck. I really don’t want to spend a bunch of money on a storage bin, but I suspect that is what I will end up doing. A bunch of other stuff will have to go out if I do that. Luckily, I spent an hour or so decluttering my closet and have three piles of clothes waiting to be boxed up and taken to Goodwill.


    How do we ever get through all of this? I guess one thing at a time!


    • I think I bought that storage system at Joann’s way back in the day.
      As for how does one get through all of this. By continuously decluttering and by not adding new clutter to the old clutter. If this is what you do you will make progress. If however you stop and start and buy more stuff then there is no hope of ever finding the light at the end of the tunnel. So just keep decluttering Chelle and no shopping.

  2. woopdi. friday again. first thanks of all the cool links again. I will check them out later, and second: congrats. empty storage container again. very proud of you!

    I got a bit frustrated today: I decluttered my bathroom and found 5 items I even didnt use up during my ‘use it up’ operations. so I started to find a shelter where I could donate it. I made some calls, people were nice, but it was EVERYWHERE a thanks, but no thanks. Turns out, they dont need small amounts of special items, but only shampoo and towels. So I will end up with the friends again: asking around who could be in need of this and that… But I got an offer for a book I am selling, so hopefully I will get out one item soon.

    • Hi Lena,
      as you are in Germany: For selling bigger amounts of books, cds, dvds and some other media things try and Prices sometimes are lousy (and should be compared because the two differ surprisingly on some items). But sometimes they are not. And you can just make a big package, send it off (postage paid by momox or rebuy) and it’s gone. On Amazon you get top prices (for some things) but it may take forever or it may not sell at all. Plus: you need to ship every single item …
      Maybe similar services exist in other countries? I am only familiar with the two mentioned but I am glad I discovered them through a friend.

    • Thanks Lena, I was fishing for your praise. There is more to come soon too.
      Too bad about your attempts to give away the toiletries. I bet if you went down to the shelters and offered the items to the people personally they would be keen to have them. The organisation probably doesn’t want to single out people to give one-offs to but you can bet someone would be happy to have them. When we lived in America I used to put little care packages together of useful little bits and pieces and give them to the homeless folks who begged for money on the freeway on-ramps. I would give them the things and a few dollars and make their day. One cold day I took a hot meal to one guy that was always at the off-ramp near my work. I had put it in an old takeaway container and gave him plastic utensils. He was so happy. It made my day to see his beaming face.

      • I am very excited to see your craft clutter leave your house. and I am very looking forward to the moment where you consider your area done.

        I got rid of the iron-capsules (didnt work for me because my level of iron is obviously so low I need the high dosed meds) and gave them to a friend of mine. He will use them I guess. I dont feel comfortable going around and asking homeless people to take my old stuff. like I force them to say yes. Dont get me wrong, I do give money and also food/coffee. once I even gave a punk who was begging for money a bottle out of my sixer. you should have seen his smile 😉 But thats different than handing out a sunscreen for kids. dont ask me how I ended up with it – and no I wont use it for other purposes, because I really dont like to put anything on my skin…

  3. Thanks for the link to the zenhabits post. Leo is one of my fave writers but I’d gotten out of the habit of checking his page.

  4. Hi Colleen and all 365’ers

    I think Moni might be my long lost twin sister. Sounds like me as I was all those years ago, well it seems like forever.. I do desire to have a zen like home, I have achieved a zen bedroom and my lounges are also the same, kitchen is still a bit of a disaster behind cupboard doors but that changes today. I have taken a break from my undersink cupboards throughout the house to check in on ‘Fri Faves’. I have decided that today is the day that I clean and purge the cupboards and I am taking photos. I also have just realised what a phenomonal job you do by taking pictures of everything.. Honestly I got bored after the 4th shot but I am taking the time to do it.

    I wholeheartedly agree with Moni about the ‘Evolved Packrat’ as I was/is one. All my stuff is/was stored, stacked, placed neatly and shelved in lovely storage areas in my house. I saw to a lot of that a while ago during a big purge, so yes I can commiserate with many who have been through this chapter, I too got caught up in the ‘Homey look must haves’. Since I found the light I can’t believe how much I enjoy hearing an ‘Echo’ and I can’t wait to leave this house in under 4 hours and my goodies in 4 boxes (apart from furniture items) That’s my plan! I think from memory we moved into here over a 4 day period (working and sports committments meant we were doing it when we could) and I think we moved in here with around 100 removalist boxes in varying sizes. Don’t quote me I may have already commented here somewhere on how much we bought with us and that was after purging at the other house!! “Oh my Sainted Aunt” I truely could bang myself over the head with a frypan I’m about to declutter because I have 3!!!!!! “What The”. Seriously though thanks to everyone for their little snippets of fun.

    Back to my undersink cupboards! (by the way this is the 4th time through) hahahahaha if I don’t laugh I may just cry “WHAT THE” I’ll leave the last bit off. 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • Hi Dizzy, 365’ers I like that I may call my readers that in future. I’ll have to run it by everyone first to make sure they approve.
      I was the same as you and Moni with my clutter neatly tucked away and not even considering it to be clutter. That is why I am still decluttering after 2 years. Like you, on your forth go through the cupboards, I am still finding things I would not have considered clutter two year ago. The longer I am at this the more ruthless I get. That is why slow decluttering works better than short bursts because you really get more minimalistic and realistic about what you actually use the more you focus on it. So never mind the “WHAT THEs” better that they occur than not my friend. If you weren’t still looking you would still be up to your eyeballs in it.

      • I couldn’t agree more – “you become more minimalistic and realistic about what you actually use the more you focus on it “. I’ve been decluttering for the last three years and I’m still finding things to declutter even though I thought I had done the “definative declutter ” three years ago . I’ve just put in my donation bag a jamie oliver thingie that is supposed to grind spices – it rattles and has an egg shaped thing inside – lovely red colour BUT I’ve used it ONCE- years ago- and it annoys me every time I pull out the plastics drawer it rattles and wobbles . Well – its gone – along with the expensive Scan Pan egg poacher which “helpful husband ” bought and which was a pain to use because we never clean up the litle egg containers properly . If we want poached eggs we can do them the old fashioned way in water . Love this blog – have sent an email comment but not sure if it made its way to you Colleen!

        • Hi Judith,
          we certainly agree on this point. Every day I get more and more realistic.
          I often wondered how well those Jamie Oliver spice balls worked. Obviously not well enough for you to put up with the noise it makes.
          I have searched through my email but can’t find where I received one from you. I did respond to a comment you left before here. Is that what you are thinking about or did something get lost in the ether. Send it to me again if it is still in your sent file.

  5. The Other Lynn

    This doesn’t belong here, but I wanted to cheer for my little milestones: I emptied and defrosted our chest freezer today. We are going to be away for a month, so we’ve been using up stuff in the freezer to turn it off. And I’ve been using up our pantry items as well, so we’ll return from vacation to an empty kitchen, I’m afraid! AND I have my truck full of clothes and household items from my father-in-law’s house to take to the homeless ministry we support. AND I have three boxes of kids stuff that I pulled out to get rid of. But I never did get those plants taken care of this week. I think I need to try that one again!

    • Woo Hoo to you The Other Lynne,

      I wouldn’t worry too much about when and where you mention de-clutter milestones, I haven’t and Colleen hasn’t shot me yet! It’s all the great little tips that get mentioned here that spur you on! I’m sure everyone including the Boss will agree with me.

      Good for you and I dare say the plants can wait a little while longer. But not too long! 🙂 🙂 🙂

    • Never mind the plants Lynn, it sounds like you have been busy taking care of other clutter so well done you. The plants will go when you are ready.

  6. Hi there! Thank you for this week full of wonderful blog entries.
    I think, for this weekend, I’m back to my wardrobe again.
    I still have way too many shirts and other tops. And way too many skirts. And socks. 🙁

    I’ve been doing so well with my limited wardrobe and now I started sorting through everything, already took a glance at the spring and summer wardrobe and am completely flubberghasted. 😉 This is twice the amount I need. Still, I didn’t work out whether I should keep the items and wait until they look worn or whether I should just donate them now.
    My wardrobe has already been decluttered and it’s all nice what’s left in there.

    • Hi Sanna,
      I have mainly only decluttered clothes that no longer fit with my way of life. I got rid of all the black clothes I used to wear to work, clothes that were better suited to the colder weather in Seattle or clothes that I had long ago stopped wearing. Most other things will just be used until they are no longer presentable. And it is getting to a point where some of those are getting a little shabby and may need replacing soon.

  7. Hi, Colleen…Thank you for the blog mention. I look forward to reading all the interesting-looking links you’ve gathered for us this week.

    I SO agree with you, for all those who are feeling frustrated, about the advice to keep decluttering and stop shopping. That was one of THE biggest things that helped me when I first taught myself to declutter.

    • Hi Becky,
      it is always my please to drawer attention to other decluttering and minimalist blogs.

      I am glad you agree that decluttering is going to be an endless cycle unless a person stops the clutter from coming in. It is the logical truth.

  8. Thanks for the mention, Colleen! 🙂

    For these feeling frustrated, just remember it’s a journey. That’s one of the things I love about this site – you do have to take it one thing or one type of thing at a time. But that’s one of the best things about it, because then you become really conscious of everything: of what you have, of what you use, of what you like, of what you want. Sometimes I like that decluttering forces me to slow down, to think. I don’t want life to go by too fast. 😀

  9. First, the decluttered stuff from this week. A square four-drawer white wooden craft unit. It had all my ribbon in it. I divested myself of a bunch of the ribbon and put the rest on the wall in a ribbon holder. Now 1/3 of the surface of my side craft table is clear. Decluttered a sack full of scrapbook paper, stickers, etc. plus a Design Runner and 3 cartridges. Put 3 plastic storage units with drawers in the back shed for the yard sale. Sent some more books out the door. Sent a couple of tops out the door. All of it was given to others who need it except the Design Runner. It was given to a friend.

    All the comments and links were good too. I would comment but I have lots to say and no time to type it all. It’s just one of those days.

    • Hi Deb J,
      wow! What a great craft declutter effort. That must feel like a huge weight lifted of your shoulders.
      I have emptied an eight drawer 12 x 12 storage unit by decluttering or redistributing the contents. I am putting it up for sale along with some sizzix dies this week. If the dies all sell I will rehouse the rest and sell the stand they were stored in. My goal is to reduce my craft area to only my Crop-n-style modular cubes with nothing sitting on top so I have plenty of work space and far less aspirational clutter. I am not far off my goal. I keep photographing this are as it deminishes and one day I will share it with all you 365’ers. I look forward to that day.

      • I am not planning to get mine down that small but close. I have a goal to get everything to where it fits in the drawers that are the supports for my two desks and a drawer in my cabinet. I’m getting there. I’m hoping to trade out 6 storage drawer units for two that are actually made for scrapbook supplies. Ah, how nice that will be when I get there.

        • I think you misunderstand Deb, I have ten 17″ x 17″ crop-n-style craft cubes which include 2 x 12 x 12 paper file drawers, 1 set of three drawers, 1 set of two drawers and 6 open cubes with removable/repositionable shelves/dividers. There is a laminated shelf approx 5′ long that span two stacks of two cubes to form my desk space. That is as far as I plan to reduce to storage for now although I do intend to continue decluttering the contents because it is pretty crammed. I may have to rethink that when we eventually move into a smaller home but we will face that hurdle when it comes. Although you know me, I may just get more and more ruthless and end up with a whole lot less before I am done.

          • Ah, it sounds more like what I have now but what I am working to reorganize in in some cases declutter. When I first started scrapping I had not found my own style yet. I tended to follow what others were doing in the magazines I subscribed to and the online classes I took from During that time I also had a very good job so thought nothing of browsing through a store and getting what struck my fancy feeling that I would eventually use it. Now I realize that some of the things are no longer to my liking because while beautiful they aren’t something I will really use. So I am gradually sneaking some out of here and giving it away to friends who do want to use it. I’ve also realized that with my life the way it is now, I don’t really have as much to scrap as I did so will not need as much of the stuff.

          • Deb, my craft area now takes up half the space it used to so you can imagine how much stuff I had to begin with so this is a huge improvement for me. I didn’t buy a lot of supplies to begin with and developed my own style fairly quickly. I hate scrapbook pages that have so much “fluff” on them you can barely find the important part, the photos, among the clutter. Like everything else in this crazy world I am sure this busy style was formulated by companies hell bent on selling as much product as possible. Busy pages cost so much to create. Surprisingly enough I like a more simple style of scrapbooking. I tend to make all my own embellishments too. But that didn’t stop me from accumulating lots of stuff just because “I might use it someday”.

      • wish I was that strong.
        After doing aunt’s flat I have’nt got the energy at the moment but the intention is there.
        I want to make a couple of cards but the pile on the craft desk wont allow for it.

  10. Colleen, I have a much more simplified style now too. Like you I think they can put too much on a page that has nothing to do with the subject. Occasionally I will have a page with one photo and more fru fru but only because it is a special memory or something. Most of the time I have several photos on a page and will write stories about them in one journaling area. I think I would like to cut the one long table I have in half or less and Just have it there to hold my Cricut and camera dock. I’m really tired of all of the clutter.