Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Decluttering Inspiration

I’ve been really inspired to declutter this year, possibly because of the huge amount of baby paraphernalia that has entered our home. I kind of had no choice. It was get rid of stuff, or buy a bigger home, or start suspending things from the ceiling, but since we’re both quite tall, that wasn’t an option.

This website - The Simple White Rabbit - has inspired me.  I really like her goal – gradual minimalism. She basically focuses on simplifying your life slowly in little steps. She has posts that go through each room of a house, plus features minimalists in history and full length books written on the subject of minimalism and decluttering.

Empty shelves!
Six garbage bags plus a few boxes of stuff went out the door earlier this year. I couldn’t believe I had so much excess just lying around our small two bedroom apartment. Granted, I did this mainly because we brought back 4 suitcases full of stuff from our trip to America over Christmas, so it was basically a case of replacing old stuff with new.
But even if I don’t pare my wardrobe down to 30 pieces or get rid of all of my books (you may gasp here), I think minimalism is a good thing to keep in mind, and a good goal to have. It helps me when I go shopping now – is this item really going to add value to my life, or is it going to suck up my time and energy to store it, clean it, organize it, etc.

Right about now my mother is probably snort-laughing and falling off of her chair. This is because my parents are coming later this week for a visit…with three (four?) full suitcases of stuff, mostly for Moonpie, mostly stuff I ordered. She’s still so brand new that I haven’t felt the need to declutter any of her stuff yet, and it’s not out of control...yet. I can see if you got a few of these kids around how it could get pretty non-minimalist (maximalist?), though. I think back to how my brother and I completely took over our family room with Barbie houses and piles of toys. Sorry, mom.

Space in the pantry!
Anyway, the point is, I like the goal of gradually simplifying. This past weekend I decluttered my kitchen pantry. There were 2 grocery bags worth of stuff that was expired, or stuff I could combine and throw out the excess packaging, or stuff I knew we would never use at home, but could get used at work (How did we get so much instant coffee in our house?). I should have taken a "before" picture, but it is a fact that something fell out every time I opened it. I also tackled my wardrobe over the past month, and we have two empty shelves on our bookcase. This is in a home of two people who had two full bookcases when we got married!

Where are you in the process of decluttering? Having trouble starting? Going gradual like me? Or are you slash and burn, get it all out at once?


  1. My husband and I have moved 6 times in the last 3 years (once across the country), and we donate things every time we move. As we unpacked the last time, I also built a new donation pile that included things (mostly clothes) that I don't want to store for the possibility of "someday" (as in, "someday I'll fit back into these jeans from high school). It was good to let it go. :) Good luck with the decluttering. Even if you ultimately keep most things, at least you know they're there!

  2. Thank you! There's nothing like a move to inspire decluttering!