Update on cluttering project after one year

It’s been a year since I began my mega-decluttering project. I am happy to say it has been a huge success. I managed to clear out so much mental and physical space, make some money, and curate what we have so that it is just right.

I am continuing to look at what we use and don’t use, and every second Friday I send off some things to sell. The number of things to sell is getting smaller and smaller but that is proof that we are on the right track with our ‘one in, one out approach’. We are not totally rigid and do buy some things just because we love them but generally if we do buy something it has to be something we don’t already have a slightly different version of, and something we will really need and use.

The most interesting thing is my wardrobe. This week I took some things to the tailor for dry cleaning (my spring trench coat) and alterations (one pair of black tuxedo trousers to be let out, one dress to be repaired, one pair of jeans to be taken up). Previously, I would have tried to find new clothes instead, but I love these ones so much and they are such good quality that I want to continue wearing them. Both the trousers and coat are designer, bought cheaply brand new but pre-owned, and so well made they will last for years.

It is interesting to note that for the first time since I can remember, I use and love almost everything in my wardrobe, and I have no desire to buy anything new. I have a list of things that would be nice to have for summer (a crisp white shirt for example, another pink t shirt) but as it is, I have enough outfits to last me through an entire summer without getting bored. My best friend and bonus mom both gave me some beautiful summer clothes when we were in South Africa and I will think of them whenever I wear them.

The best investment I have made over the past year was buying really nice slim-legged black trousers for work. I have four pairs in different tuxedo-like styles that are comfortable, washable, and professional. It makes getting ready for work a no-brainer and can be perfectly styled with different tops. In winter I wear them with ankle-boots, and between seasons they look nice with loafers, brogues or ballet pumps.

My task for this week will be taking expired medication to the pharmacy, and taking shoes to be resoled.  I like to restock the medicine cabinet once a year (plasters, allergy tablets, headache tablets).

A vital thing to remember if you wish to downsize, declutter and clear out – wait until you are ready to let things go. If you find yourself unable to get rid of one or two things even though they serve no purpose, keep them until you are ready to let go. If you cannot let anything at all go and you are surrounded by clutter then you may have another type of problem, but if it is just one or two things – keep them until you are ready. Don’t act on impulse either – seller’s remorse is awful!

Author: Janet Carr

Fashion, beauty and animal loving language consultant from South Africa living in Stockholm, Sweden.

One thought

  1. Well done on your decluttering. I find the hardest thing where I live is trying to find charity shops to take things too where you can park the car close by if you have a lot of stuff. None of them collect anymore and I find myself taking numerous and expensive bus rides with just a small amount. So frustrating when I’d love to do a big declutter.

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