Joe and I have spent a decent amount of time cleaning the apartment – sort of like a Fall
cleaning purging. When we moved in, we somehow crammed nearly two bedrooms worth of stuff into a one bedroom apartment. Sure, we donated or passed along a lot of stuff, but we still brought more than we should have. I think it’s that mentality of not wanting to toss something, only to buy another after you move.
Regardless, a lot of stuff has not found appropriate homes. After being here for nearly seven months, the de-cluttering process was long overdue.
We had actually started purging when we moved in, filling up two medium-sized boxes with miscellaneous home items (one of them is hiding under those lamp shades in the photo above). I’m embarrassed to say that these boxes sat in our apartment until Labor Day. Since Joe was going to drop them off that weekend, we decided to start tackling other areas of the apartment.
Last month, I began taking a serious look at my closet. It’s never empty, but I always feel like I have nothing to wear – or I end up just wearing the same stuff over and over. Rather than surround myself with the wrong clothing, I decided to start purging. Joe decided to do the same. When it came to cleaning the closets out, we basically yanked everything that:
- Didn’t fit or flatter us
- We hadn’t worn in quite some time
- Was kind of rough looking (holes, stains, etc)
Once I start cleaning, I really start cleaning (it takes a lot for be to get sentimental when I’m on a cleaning spree). I immediately started pulling clothes off hangers based on the above criteria. If I’m being conservative, I’d say I pulled at least 50% of the items hanging. Anything I thought my mom and sister might like was put aside but everything else got tossed into a spare hamper where it hung out for a month. This gave us (ok, fine – just me) time to decide if I actually was okay with letting these things go. Turns out, I was able to donate or toss almost everything I threw in there. The only items I held onto were a shirt I want to use for a pattern and a skirt that has a matching jacket – which I’ll grab from my parents’ before donating the set. Everything in that hamper was neatly folded and put in a bag for donation… along with the hamper (how we had three of those I’ll never know).
My closet almost looks empty now, but that might be because I’m hoping to build it back up soon.
After tackling our bedroom, we started on reorganizing the closet/office in the living room. The above photo is a ‘before’, but it’s fair to describe it as a disaster. It was meant to be a hidden office, but the shelves above it were completely disorganized and crammed with crap. Basically, it didn’t motivate us to be productive at all.
Side note: I would love it if my closet in the bedroom was this size.
To remedy, we purged.
There were a lot of random items like unfinished craft projects, old IKEA chair covers, and extra bed sheets. Those are all gone now. What remains is our old comforter (since those are expensive, I wasn’t ready to part with this yet), Joe’s tool box (it’s empty since all of the tools are in his card catalog), and a SALMA storage box from IKEA for all of Joe’s electronics. Eventually, we’d love to go back and grab the smaller boxes to hold computer wires and acrylic paints (they were sold out on our last trip), but for now, this does the trick.
At the moment, there’s a ton of open space on that shelf. My first instinct is of course “What else can I store up there?!” but I’m doing my best to control myself. After all, filling it up would just lead to another de-cluttering post.
One great thing about this closet is it’s height. There’s a second shelf – which you can’t see unless you walk into the closet – and primarily use for holiday stuff. It’s great because it’s out of the way but totally accessible when we need it. Case in point, while we were cleaning out the closet, Joe took down the box of Fall decor – which resulted in me immediately unloading and then decorating the apartment (which I shared last week).
The box is back up there, though a little lighter.
Granted, there are still closets to go through, and we’re still debating selling some furniture that just doesn’t fit here, but I think we’re in a good place right now. It’s nice when your home is organized.
Has the cool weather encouraged you to do some cleaning/purging at your home? What’s your favorite organization system your closets?