If you have lots of clutter, this is usually a good indicator that you have more stuff than your space will allow. Which means that it's time to pare down. So I'm here to help you reduce your stuff by 10% in just one weekend. Read on my friends...
The first thing to tackle is your clothing and accessories. First, remove everything all at once so you can assess the situation. Removing things one by one only wastes time. Separate everything into four piles:
- Keep - Anything you've worn within the last year is okay to keep.
- Fix - These items may need alterations or, if you're like me, you may have plans to upcycle certain pieces.
- Donate - Bring anything that's in good condition that you haven't worn in the past year to Goodwill or your local second-hand store.
- Trash - Toss clothing that is torn, badly stained or irreparable.
Once you have created your piles, it's important to follow through with each one. Place all the "keep" pieces on non-slip slim line hangers (try these) and fix anything that needs fixing. Put your "donate" boxes right in the car so you aren't tempted to leave them in the corner... and bring everything to Goodwill on your way to work on Monday morning. Find more organizing tips here and here.
Next up is the kitchen. Start with the same technique we used in the closet - remove all of your cookware, serveware and utensils so you can see everything. The key here is to find duplicates and keep only what you need. Unless you're a culinary whiz, you probably only need one of each type of pan. Give or throw away any doubles. Did you find something you haven't used in months? Odds are, you probably don't need that either. Toss it.
Do you have 15 mismatched plates, but never use more than 5 or 6 at a time? Donate the 6 you use the least. Same goes for glasses and coffee cups. Tupperware is a big problem in most kitchens too; throw out anything that's in bad shape. Want more inspiration? Check out these products.
Pantries and cupboards hide lots of unused items too. Check the dates on everything and odds are you'll fill up half a garbage bag with expired items. Did you buy something for a party, but know that you'll never use it? Toss it or donate it to a food bank if it is unopened and not expired. Find more ideas over at Country Living.
The last area of your home to tackle is the bathroom, particularly the medicine cabinet. If you look through everything in your bathroom, I guarantee you'll find at least a few things that are expired. Or in my case, a rather large pile. Toss any medications that are past their date, and most cosmetics shouldn't be kept longer than a year (mascara only lasts 3 months). Consolidate things like shampoo and body wash if you have multiple bottles of the same brand. For more medicine cabinet organization tips, head over to Useful Beautiful Home.
You should be feeling pretty good right now! If you have any motivation left, here are a few other things you might have laying around that are easy to get rid of:
- Take any old batteries/burnt out CFL bulbs to Home Depot for proper disposal
- Throw out any junk mail that may have accumulated
- Recycle magazines and newspapers that you've finished reading
Hopefully your space feels a bit more organized now... enjoy your new and improved home!