1. Creating space starts with decluttering
For the last few months I have re-evaluated each room and its furnishings as I packed up everything for the new floor. This week I want to talk about our “stuff.” I have found that I love being in a room with less furniture and decorations. I have given away and thrown away lots of “stuff”. If you feel like your home is cluttered, disorganized, or has too many unwanted items, then it’s time to clean it out. A home that feels spacious and minimal makes for a more comfortable, less stressful environment. Decluttering can also be a somewhat therapeutic process, helping you eliminate things you no longer need from your life and start again. You should aim to declutter regularly to help keep your living spaces clear and your drawers and closets organized. Use a checklist to help you declutter every room of your home and be prepared to get ruthless with your decisions over what to throw out and what to keep. I’ve made a basic De-Clutter Checklist by room – fill free to update with other rooms and types of items. It is available as a PDF for you to download and print.
Decluttering your home is easiest by tackling one room or space at a time. The Spruce has a fabulous post, How To Declutter Every Room in Your Home. Start with 5 boxes to sort items:
- items to keep and put away
- items to be thrown away
- items to be recycled like paper, cardboard
- items to be fixed or reused or sold
- items to donate to charity.
Photo The Spruce
Donate or sell any items of clothing you’ve had for more than a year without wearing. Get rid of any shoes that are broken beyond repair, worn out or missing a mate. Can’t remember the last time you wore a still-good pair? Donate to a thrift store. Kids’ toys outgrown? Donate usable toys. Ditch the cardboard boxes and plastic bags that go with your cereal, snacks and dry goods. They’re ugly, take up lots of space and don’t keep your food fresh. Instead, opt for glass jars (like HGTV Magazine did here) or airtight food storage containers. Their article on 50 Things To Get Rid of Right Now is eye opening.
Photo HGTV Magazine
Remove items from a space to the 5 boxes or bags. Then arrange the Keep items in the space. I find I have to do this frequently in kitchen drawers. I also like to use the clean out to make things look prettier or more shabby chic in liners and other utlitarian items. I’ve relined all my kitchen drawers with the Dollar Tree drawer liner that matches the shabby chic Contact paper. I actually enjoy using the drawers more even if the a lot of the liner is covered with little boxes.
2. Learn to make use of storage
Photo via Amazon: Set of 2 geometric floating shelves designed of durable metal wire and rustic paulownia wood
To create more space in your home, you’re going to need to learn to make better use of storage. If you find that you’re often out of space to put things or there are things that you’d rather were put away, you need to start investing in extra storage solutions. Check out Buzzfeed’s 42 clever storage ideas you can use all over your home that will help you to keep spaces clear and help them look neater.
Add shelves and invest in furniture with storage whether it’s a bench with baskets, an ottoman, or a Murphy bed. I’m seriously considering replace my twin bed frame for one with drawers. That looks classier than just sliding stuff under the bed like I do. Clothes, shoes, cosmetics, and jewelry are common items that can take over your bedroom.
Photo: Ideal Home 8 Things Cluttering Up Your Bedroom
3. Sell unwanted goods
Use your decluttering as a challenge to make some money. Using eBay, Amazon or other services like Craigslist, you can get rid of your unwanted items and make some money from them. Large items like an old motorcycle in the garage or a sofa you no longer need are easily shipped with Shiply to help make it easier for you to get rid of them. A garage or yard sale are other ways to help you get rid of your unwanted goods and make some extra money too.
Better Homes & Garden has lots of information in 6 Essential Steps To Sell Your Stuff Online Quickly & Safely. Get the info and be smart to stay safe while selling. The basic action to sell online is a good photo. Items with good photos sell much faster.
4. Upcycle the things you have
Good Housekeeping’s post, 38 Genius Trash to Treasure Crafts, has great ideas for DIY crafting.
While it may be tempting to bring new things into your home, there’s actually a lot you can do with your older items to make them look fresh and new again. Upcycling is popular on Pinterest and Instagram, and you can get some great ideas on how to turn your old, worn goods new again. It’s easy to add a bit of a shabby chic while organizing, and you’ll be surprised at what you can do with some paint and a bit of fabric.
Recycle jars and tin cans.
Reuse boxes and old toys.
Photo: HGTV Upcycle Your kid’s hand me downs Make a toy garland for a child’s room or party. Use clear mason jar to pencils. Upcycle create a cake plate. The options are endless.
Remember creating space in your home doesn’t require an extension or completely removing everything, but there are ways you can make a room look more spacious through decluttering. Tackle your home’s unwanted clutter and look forward to having more space to help you feel happy and relaxed in your home.
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