Alrighty my peeps, it’s about to get real up in here. I did a post a little while back about cleaning out some of the closets in the house (you can check it out here) but we’ve been busy going wellllll beyond that.
What has a pickup truck load of garbage, a pickup truck load of donations and a a whole wall of shelving units in common? Our basement storage area, for reals. Ugh and those are no exaggeration! We literally had a pickup truck full of garbage in the way of carpet rolls we used as rugs in the basement of our old house (that was over 6 years ago!), broken items and bags of random garbage! Then we had a separate trip to Goodwill with a literal truck load of stuff, everything from baby toys to clothes to furniture to camping cookware.
This was a purge of epic proportions and I feel like I’m not done yet. This lady is on a roll! Luckily I only have 2 more small closets to get through and a bunch of bookshelves, I can see the light at the end of the organize and purge tunnel.
Anyway, on to the tips to help make this whole process a little bit easier!
Tip number 1: Get a fave beverage and a can-do ‘tude cause folks, if your area is anything like ours was….you’re gonna need it.
Tip 2: be prepared with lots of large outdoor trash bags for the ridiculous amount of broken items or just plain trash you will inexplicably find. We found rock solid dried out play dough (a whole bin full!) along with broken toys and ripped up clothing. I mean who saves that stuff? (As I pretend I didn’t just out myself as saving all that stuff)
Tip 3: Make areas where you can sort it all out. Have a donate pile, and it doesn’t have to be pretty. Ours was in the downstairs living room on the other side of this wall and it just became a giant pile where you couldn’t tell what was in it by the end. We also had the large box of outdoor garbage bags sitting on a side table in here where we kept pulling them out as needed after we filled up the previous one. We then set them aside in a separate pile until we hauled it all out to the truck. Lastly the items we kept.
We didn’t just get rid of a ton of stuff but ORGANIZED the stuff we kept like a mo fo. Everything was put into sections. This is my paint section organized by projects and spaces along with stains.
Here you can see one large section of shelving that is organized with the bottom right being all of my stored pillows, above that is tree stands and seasonal like halloween buckets and easter baskets. Then there is my hubs beer brewing equipment and kegs with hunting and camping above on the top shelf. The left side is all of my project materials from wallpaper scraps to paint to brushes and rollers.
The totes all have what is inside them written in sharpie on top of the lid. This side is children’s clothing, shoes, drapes and keepsakes.
It’s not pretty but dang it looks gorgeous to me, especially given what it looked like before we started. And I’ll spare you that image. It’s incredibly embarrassing (and I didn’t think to take before’s).
My only leftover pieces of furniture not currently in use….the green one is my first antique purchase EVER, the old workbench I picked up from a flea a number of years ago, a vintage leather ottoman and a cradle that was made for me when I was but a wee babe. As my kids like to say, “wow it’s from the 1800’s?!” The few pieces we aren’t going to part with.
After the basement I just could NOT stop without attacking our closet. I had so much in here that was ready for donating and selling. From bedding sets to handbags to clothes, the shelves were overflowing with stuff we rarely used.
Here is our closet all cleaned out. It still looks like a lot but it’s all stuff we use. The top shelves are cleaned out except for luggage and a box of pics. Otherwise it’s all organized. Fun fact, my hubs has WAY more clothing than I do! hahaha
It’s a long process but SO worth it once you get through it all. When you drop those bags off for donation and get the garbage out while organizing the rest it’s like a giant weight is lifted. You have so much more space and can see things you forgot you had.
Especially since it’s a new year, I can’t think of a better way to start it than with a giant purge!! Do yourself a favor and let it ALLL go, well maybe not all but all the stuff you don’t need/use/want!
What’s your fave tips for organizing/purging? Have you done one recently and doesn’t it feel like the best thing ever?! I always love to hear from you!
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