While trying to find one of my favorite shirts in my closet the other week, I realized I HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF. Clothes I don't wear anymore. Books I've already read and won't go back to again. Scraps of paper everywhere. Despite doing a big Spring clean earlier this year, it seems that I just didn't get rid of enough. Desperate times call for desperate measures, so I took the advice of Lisa from I'm An Okie (love that girl!) and went on a serious purge.
I first started dragging everything out of the closet, and I mean everything. It looked like a war zone. Whiskey was lucky that he was staying at my parents' place that week or he would have been very concerned about all the confusion going on. All the clothes came off the clothes rack. Every box was dragged out of the back of the closet. No drawer went un-dumped. It was total chaos and my initial thought was what have I done, but I soldiered on and focused on the end goal of a cleaner closet.
I tried on every piece of clothing and really thought about every object I pulled out and thus began the sorting process! Everything that I liked went back in the closet, but everything else went into these tagged bags I made:
TO MEND: I am always more inclined to mend something than just replace it, but I'm really bad about remembering to do it. I'll go to grab my favorite purple sweater, only to remember that there is a hole in the arm. I'll pull on my new jeans and realize I forgot to hem them. Enough is enough. Now I have a bag hanging in the closet and when I see something that needs mending, I toss it in. When a movie night comes around, I pull out the bag and start mending. This week I've already fixed three sweaters and Whiskey's dog leash. Bam. I'm on a roll.
GIVE AWAY: If I pulled anything out of the closet that makes me think of someone, I tossed it in this bag. A nice sweater that goes with my friends favorite shirt or even books that I loved and want to pass on went into this bag. If the people don't want it, it goes onto the next bag...
GOODWILL: I ended up having about four bags like this, which felt really good. Anything and everything that I don't want, can't mend or don't have a home already, goes in this bag. I only included things that are in good shape. I even gave away an old printer and a DVD player that were both in good condition, I just didn't need them anymore. I also went through the food cupboard at this time and looked for things to give to the Food Bank while I was at it.
GARBAGE & RECYCLING: I had a bag set aside for anything that needed to be trashed and a large box for recyclable things.
In the end I got rid of lots of junk, but I think I'll need to do this again in a few months, because I was still wishy-washy on some things. Its hard to break up with objects that hold sentimental value, but I'm starting to get there. Overall though, this was a great process and I'll be using it again.