On we go to part two of the challenge, where things get quite a lot more challenging! I finished off the kitchen with a review of the fridge, then moved on to the linen cupboard, my sock drawer and clothes wardrobe, and then to my new study area. With those areas I managed to get to twenty. How are you all doing? Remember, every single item counts, no matter how small!
Here is my tally from the next ten days as inspiration for your clear out:
Eleven items from the linen cupboard and my sewing box including six old towels and five spools of thread in crazy vivid colours that I’ll never need.
Twelve (!) paint sample books from various paint manufacturers.
Thirteen fabric samples from when I was choosing blinds and curtains. I can order them again if I need to.
Fourteen used bubble envelopes. (Why am I so compelled to keep these?!)
Fifteen old store loyalty cards from stores I rarely frequent.
Sixteen books and magazines. (Nine books, and seven old magazines)
Seventeen items from our hall cupboard and charging station including: One pair of broken sunglasses (I didn’t get around to repairing the arm last year, so probably wont ever!), one wallet, one broken umbrella, three pairs of shoes, and eleven other random bits and pieces (Its been quite a while since it looked as neat as the day it was installed!)
Eighteen items of clothing including: socks, pants, tights, tank tops, t-shirts and very worn cardigans.
Nineteen bits and pieces from my desk area and the medical box including: Ten expired pills and potions, three pens, two memory sticks (I still have four!), and four paper files.
Twenty items from the bathroom cabinet.
I’m not sure how many more days I’ll be able to go on for, but I’m determined to beat my past record. I still have the cupboard under the stair where we store all of our DIY things and the loft to go through. Both of those areas have become dumping grounds for things that we don’t want to make an immediate decision about, so I’m sure I’ll at least be able to find at least twenty one things there… I think its also now time for me to enlist Alex’s help to see if he can find anything to recycle or donate to charity.
(Photos continue to be from the empty and windswept landscape of Dungeness.)
Things got pretty hectic in the last few weeks before our little one’s arrival and we didn’t quite get everything finished in time in the nursery. Consequently, I haven’t yet made any ‘full view’ posts about it. However, over the past few weeks we have managed to find an hour here and there to complete the finishing touches.
Before the big reveal though, here is a photo I took back in August last year when I was planning things out. It is a teeny tiny room so we wanted to make sure there was enough storage and that we would make best use of the space. To decide which IKEA storage units would fit best I made little cut outs of everything and moved the furniture blocks around a drawn up plan of the room – old school style!
This is the layout we settled on with a chest of drawers by the window made of three, three drawer units which will double as a changing area.
This year I started the challenge in the kitchen, going through each drawer and shelf one by one. Each drawer took just 10-15 minute so I was able to de-clutter them while I waited for my toast or for the kettle to boil. By de-cluttering the kitchen alone I managed to get to day ten! How are you all doing?
Here is my tally so far for inspiration:
One Packet of old straws (when will we ever need these?!)
Three felt place mats (past their best)
Four bottles of old alcohol of questionable origin (from parties past)
Five fabric shopping bags (they multiply rapidly because of conferences I attend)
Six glass jars (I must stop saving them…)
Seven old cooking items including: one measuring cup (we had two), one muffin tray (we had three), two roasting trays (rusted and past their best), one scraper, one spatula, and one dodgey shaped cookie cutter.
Eight random pieces of plastic cutlery (saved for picnics and then never used now that we have a garden)
Nine more random things in our kitchen including: two bags of dried out wet naps for picnics, one jug, one insulated bag, four mugs, and one pen from the junk drawer (I did well this past year to keep them from multiplying!)
Ten expired pantry items including: two cans of food, four spice jars (one from 2013 – oops!), and four other random dried goods
Go on, you know you have a few of these culprits in your kitchen that you can get rid of!
(Minimal themed photos from Dungeness to accompany my minimalist challenge report)
When we got our master bedroom, top floor hallway and study floorboards all sanded and finished we had to leave the guest room out of the mix as we needed somewhere to store our furniture and to sleep while the work was done. A month later in October we again played ‘musical chairs’ with our furniture and finished off the job.
Every January, for the past three years, I have participated in the 30 day minimalist challenge. On day one of the de-cluttering challenge you throw out one item, on day two, two items and so on. It starts off fairly easily, but very quickly becomes quite difficult by around day 10. I find the challenge is a really great thing to do to keep things from getting out of control. I managed to get to day 20 in 2015, 2016, and 2017 so will have another go this year. Although it is difficult to find blocks of time in my day to do this, I’m going to have another go as it seems as though when you have a baby you accumulate things at an even more alarming pace!
I’ve chosen a fairly sparse and minimal photo that I took in Dungeness last year as inspiration to see where this year’s challenge will take me. I realise its a somewhat bleak image to start the new year with, but there is something peaceful in it, (after all the Christmas excess), just as there is something calming about a clutter-free tidy space.
I will give you an update with how I am getting on every 5-10 days or so. So… who is going to join me?!
Our little bundle of joy is occupying most of our ‘free’ time at the moment, but we did manage to get these oak robe hooks up in our master bedroom. Neither of us had dressing gowns until we found ourselves padding around a cold house in the (very) early hours of the morning. With the purchase of dressing gowns, came the immediate need of somewhere to hang them. And a mini DIY task was formed!
I bought these floating coat hooks here from the Wood and Design Shop on Etsy. They come in Oak, Ash and Sycamore. I opted for oak in the end so it matches the other fixed items in our bedroom including Kvadrat wood brackets for our curtains and the oak handle on our Klint Lights. It feels vaguely annoying that the bed frame and the bedside tables are Ash – but the floor is white washed pine, and tonally I feel it all hangs together. Besides, sometimes its nice not to be too ‘matchy-matchy’ and a little more ‘relaxed’.