Friday, March 27, 2009

organizing 101

Where Do I Begin? in the past 7 years, i've helped people organize their houses. first thing most people want to do is go out and buy all new containers and storage bins...i tell them to hold on to their britches cause we aren't at that point yet. first, we are going to go and peek into your closets and drawers. because lets face it that's where we store most of our unused, and unwanted...crap...mixed in with the stuff we use on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis.
so here's your organizing 101 for the day. your first step to getting organized is:
GET RID OF CRAP.
a good place to start is your closet.
*get rid of clothes you don't wear
*get rid of clothes that don't fit you
*get rid of your old glory jeans from 1998. trust me even if you could fit into them again you wouldn't want to.
***but you have to honest with yourself. you can't just say "oh but i'm going to wear that." or "i might need that." if you haven't already worn it in the last 6 months or last season...you ain't going to wear it. and if you haven't needed it in 6 months you ain't going to need it anytime soon. GET.RID.OF.IT.
***so here's your challenge. pick a closet, or drawer, take out it's contents and only put back what you use. box the rest and take it to your local goodwill store. go on... you know you want to. and if that feels good...go to the next closet and drawer. it can get addicting.
have a great weekend.
see you monday.

41 comments:

Shiree said...

Hi Vanessa, I so know what you mean, And I don't really think of myself as a hoarder either.We are moving house in 3 months so I am very much in need of a clean out! wish me luck...I will put your challenge to very good use in our garage this weekend.

Cathy said...

Funny I opened up your blog to read this morning. My closets are ok it is my fabric scraps I was looking at last night. I need to get them organized into colors and figure out a place to keep them all. Can't throw anything away there.

The Blue Ridge Gal said...

My closet was much neater when I lived where it was warm year round. Now I need clothed for 4 seasons and the "getting rid of crap" gets a bit trickier because I now need more crap than I did in Arizona. Oh, and my closet is smaller in this house too!

Di
The Blue Ridge Gal

Mrs. Trixi said...

I plan on doing alot of this over the next year. My project list just keeps getting bigger and bigger.

Nanci said...

At the cottage, the main is 600 sq ft, the two bunkies have no closets and are small too, and whenever we pack for the cottage, all the stuff we take up seems to assimilate into the walls. I swear it does!
At home I am doing what you are advising, one bit at a time and the closets are the best places to start.
I keep my kitchen stuff to a minimum because I learned a long time ago that I didn't need so many pots and pans, and cutlery and all the empty jars and the extra cups etc. It's so easy when one can in fact see the forest and the trees.

rachel griffith said...

old glory jeans from 1998.
hahahaha.
:D

Melissa said...

I heard a tip that you should hang all of your clothes with the hanger backwards (open side of hook facing out) and when you wear something you can turn it around. In 6 months, if a hanger is still the wrong way, get rid of it. Good tip. Thanks for the 411 in 101 Vanessa. PS, I'm going to make some of your cute eggs next week!

Ann-Marie said...

A friend sent me a link to this post. As a personal organizer myself (whose own mantra is Clean Out the Crap), I enjoyed reading it.

Plus, your site is just so dang pretty!

Mindy said...

I love getting rid of unused things! It really does feel good. Your closet looks gorgeous! I'm right now mourning the fact that my 114 year old house doesn't have closets at all. :(

Tracy said...

I so did this last Friday. I took a whole day off from work just so I could 'Spring Clean'. Well I'll have you know it took more effort than I had saved up to finish!! Our house, oh god bless it, is a teeny tiny piece of... paradise. Really, it is, it's just extremely old and mismatched!

I even took the life sized cardboard cut-out of John Wayne down to the bunk house. He must not care too much about it, he still hasn't said anything!!

KimberlyGanir said...

I think that's what I'll do this weekend. And we bought a house!!! So I do need to start getting rid of stuff. Sometimes I feel like I just want to throw everything away and start over, but I won't.

I also like the turn the hangers around idea that someone made a comment about! I just might try that!

Anonymous said...

Oh how I wish you could come and clean out my barely able to walk in closet!!! Loved your ideas, it's just doing them that is hard for me. I ALWAYS find something else I would rather do. The hanger idea is a great one. I may even do that one.

Pamela Adams
Snuglewmn@aol.com

Anne said...

I am officially a V Wannabe!!! Thank you for this bit of advice. We are beginning our spring break and I am going to make an effort to do a little every day. I'm off to my craft room to do a little organizing in there!

b davis said...

I guess you knew just what I needed... A kick in the tush to get me moving on my closet.

Thanks for encouragement & ideas.

Anonymous said...

I am going to do this. Thank you.

Your recent posts have been fantastic - love them.

Still trying to figure out how to work in an encouraging poo throwing comment for my husband...

--Vicki K. (another v and co.)

resmith said...

This is something that I have been saying I need to do. So maybe now I should just do it because then I would have more room.

Nash said...

i was just telling my SIL that i used to be so organized and i feel i have lost it. i think i am fairly organized but i want it to the MAX. my excuse has been that i want great containers. HA. i cracked up when i read this. i am good about throwing things out on the plus side. i just feel i keep re-organizing. i want to do it once and be done for awhile.

goldenbird said...

Thanks for the good advice. I'm moving this weekend, and really needed to hear this. No need to move the crap I never use or wear.

Casey said...

I love going through old clothes to giveaway and also finding things I forgot all about! I need to do it this weekend too

belladella said...

I organize to relax. I also clean. Hubby is also an organizer. He thinks he's better at it. We are constantly going behind one another redoing the fridge and pantry.

I so have to get some of those wooden hangers. They make me happy.

Have a great weekend. This was a great post.

Hugs,
Kim

At Home In Georgia said...

I would love to get addicted.

I did finish my 1st shaggy raggy quilt last Thur. before things went crazy here...thank goodness...but can feel and addition to that already. I bought the Mary Engelbreits recipe for friendship by Moda...the layer cakes to try to make something fun now.

Thanks for the organizing tips!

amylouwho said...

great reminder! I try to get rid of similar clothing items when I buy new ones. Makes space in the closet and keeps things neater.

I just wish I'd saved some old clothes for all my painting projects!

Arleen @ Seasons for All at Home said...

I need to tackle a closet or two with a "get rid of it" approach. Thanks for this encouragement.

And LOVE your blog header! I have a huge collection of quilts. They are so charming and cozy.

~Arleen

lisa said...

I have been really trying to get reorganized for a while now. I have been working on putting some of my old clothes into a yard sale pile. I thought I would try a tip from Peter Walsh were you turn all your hangers backwards. When you were an article of clothes, turn it front words. That way you know what clothes you are really wearing. Now if only I could get my husband to try it!

Marci Simonini said...

Oh I like your thinking, I love to purge my closets too. Sometimes I even get a little carried away! My husband pokes fun at me because of how happy a tidy linen closet makes me. The kids and I are going to make some fabric covered eggs this weekend, thanks for the tutorial.

Jensen's est. 2005 said...

loved this post! i really need a lot of help when it comes to organizing, i hope that you will do some more posts on organizing. thanks for sharing, i love your blog, you are very multi talented!

Misti of Studio M Designs said...

Okay, you would just die at my house. I told someone earlier today that I have EVERY card ever given to me (and my boys) all very neatly organized in hat boxes tucked away AND...every piece of clothing and shoes that my boys have ever worn! All neatly organized and boxed away in our attic. Some things I just bear to part with!
~Misti

Imelda said...

your photo inspired me to finally change my hangers...i've been meaning to do it for the longest time...thanks for the challenge

Elise said...

Can I just say that I am your newest, biggest fan?? My friend, Jen, sent me your link after seeing my I HEART Other People's Junk post{I finally found a bench}, and I am in LOVE!! I could just move right on in your home!!
Elise

Mal* said...

Thank you for tackling this question!

Rachel@oneprettything.com said...

Old Glory from 1998...mwahhahahaha! I soo remember those! Last year I bough some gorgeous wicker baskets to organize my closet shelf. I told myself I couldn't use them until I weeded out everything that didn't fit anymore. It was so hard but it worked! Nothing calls to me like reorganization.

Kritta22 said...

Oh okay! I'll do it!

But only because I want new tubs and bins!

Laurel @ Ducks in a Row said...

I heart wooden hangers (and storage bins). Organized closets make me happy.

Pearl Maple said...

Followed your link from the Inspired Room, what a great post and good reminder for us all.

Am in the middle of moving and still trying to figure out how everything fits into the new space.

Team Clark said...

Not that your ever going to read this because I believe this is comment #35 on this post, BUT...
Yeah - we bought a BUNCH of big storage containers a couple of months ago in an attempt to get organized and they're still in a stack in my bedroom...I wish I read this before we did that... :)
Love you and miss you, Vaness -

sodizzymomof 5 said...

I just came across your blog and I think it's great! I had just cleaned out my closet a few days ago and it felt so good to be able to see the floor again inside the closet. I needed this fresh motivation to tackle the closet in my two youngest boys bedroom. Thanks for the inspiration!

At Home In Georgia said...

So after reading this the other day I told my hubby I needed his help on going through our closet..it's big with lots of stuff, half his. He said it's not as bad as I make it out to be. He told me...(okay my 6 year old needed to be put in the hospital for a few days)...I was plenty organized because while I was at the hospital I could walk him and other people through my house and tell them in what drawer and where in each closet and item was that I wanted brought up to us. That made me feel so good! But I still need to work on it!

Mrs. B. Silly said...

I love your blog! Thanks for the inspiration!!!!

Rue said...

Good morning Vanessa :)

The 1998 comment... ouch! That hurt. I guess that IS 11 years ago.. (whimper)

I need to do this, but I keep thinking... what if I somehow manage to fit into a size 4 again? Almost 40 and 2 c-sections later, probably not, so I'll do it... I'll clean it out.

rue

Mara said...

I'm currently (to my sweet husband's delight!) purging my magazine stash. I have a ridiculous amount - even more than I thought now that they're all out on my living room floor! I'm so ready to get rid of them. Does you have a good suggestion for what to do with them though??

~ Mara

Mama TAVE said...

You inspired me! I finally took the plunge and purged winter clothes (17 items) that I haven't worn in at least a year and probably wouldn't have worn in the next year. On to my daughter's room... I was able to get rid of three bags (!) of clothes. Now, my craft/sewing room is staring me in the face and I am totally overwhelmed. Baby steps...
Thanks again.

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