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Those of you who have downsized,

Those of you who have downsized,

Old 06-11-2014, 12:06 PM
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Default Those of you who have downsized,

do you have any regrets either way? For example, do you regret giving up too much stuff? Or do you regret not getting rid of more before you moved?

We are getting ready to downsize, and I'm finding it really difficult to get rid of stuff. Last time we moved I just moved everything we had and didn't try to weed things out. This time I really only want to move the stuff we will actually use. My biggest quandries are over my sewing and quilting items -- quite a few plastic bins of fabric stash, many small plastic bins of "to do" quilt projects, my 10' quilting frame, tons of batting, etc.

I remember once getting rid of all my black fabrics, only to then find the perfect pattern for using it. Makes me worry about getting rid of fabric, although I have a lot of calicos I can't imagine ever using in the future.

Anyway, I'm just wondering what kind of advice those of you who have "been there, done that" might have for me. It won't be too long before dh and I are in our 70's, but we are active and in good health (so far).

Edit: I should add my mil is 98 and still living in her home of 60 years. My dh is going to have his hands full cleaning out that house some day! Lots of knick knacks and bric-a-brac that are not our style. She did sell her old hats to a lady who runs a vintage clothing store......
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:26 PM
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When I downsized I got rid of things I hadn't used in years. I took all my sewing room contents with me. Just recently I had a sale for quilters and xstitchers. I gave away a lot of unfinished projects and material I had saved for specific projects, sold books and material I couldn't remember why I liked it. I haven't missed my of it. I figured after I downsized I would have lots more time to play in my sewing room. Good luck on your next endeavor.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:28 PM
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A friend of mine downsized. She got rid of all her fabric, but did keep her sewing machine. Now she's buying like there is no tomorrow. She has said she should not have done it, so hardly. We tried to tell her to take it slow, but she wouldn't listen.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:33 PM
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i have to downsize right now. i will not get rid of any of my sew/quilt/knit stuff. i'll just find more creative storage solutions. i'm switching from a queen bed to a twin [but i'm sure that won't work for you and hubs LOL ] luckily my daughter can take a lot of furniture... some with family history. now that i won't have a house, i'm getting rid of most of my tools... way too many of those any clothes that i've been thinking i'll fit into again one day are also out the door!
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:35 PM
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It is really hard to say. I have tried to downsize since I had to help clean out my mother's house after she passed. We would tease my parents that the family motto was, "Never throw anything away that might have future use." Let me tell you about the bags full of bags we found, but lets say there were at least 10, upstairs. And those wonderful little plastic boxes you get with salads, or pastries, or other wonderful little food items - we stopped counting when we reached 100. They had more books than a small library.

So when I came home I started thinking if I hadn't used it in a year it was time to get rid of it. Went thru my dresser and got rid of a lot, but not as much as I planned. Went out to the garage and found old planters we haven't used in over 15 years, and various other items in boxes. My husband was thrilled since I was making more room for his things. And then there was my sewing room, scraps that people have given me, that I was sure I would never use, other fabric that I saved and lots of flannel. There were several larger pieces that I bought years ago and though I still liked it, there were no recent plans so off it went. And who doesn't have left over batting? A friend was over playing with my embroidery machine and I was getting ready to throw out my bits and pieces of batting, she said her daughter wanted it to make purses and bags. Yeah!!! It went to good use and out of my house.

I am not sorry that I got rid of anything. Because I still buy more books than I can read in a month, I only subscribe to one quilt magazine and when i see that fabric I can't resist - it comes homes. So next month after my daughter moves out it is time to do it again and hopefully go through a few more cabinets.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:38 PM
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I would definitely keep the blacks and other solids that you would use for trim or shadow like for Attic window patterns or such. You could break it down to yardage such as 3yds max and only those fabrics you really like to work with. As for the 10' quilting frame do you have room for it. I would put the small bins of "to do" into one large bin. You can always throw a cover over it and use it as a side table. Just keep a few yards of the calico that you can fit into one with other fabrics you don't use much and only a few yards of those. I only keep my stuff in clear containers. Saves my sanity! Have a craft/ rummage sale. It would help recoup any loss.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:41 PM
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That Peter guy from Australia has videos on how to downsize. He also says if it hasn't been used in between 6-24 months send it out get rid of it. If you bring something in get rid of something.
Originally Posted by quiltingcandy View Post
It is really hard to say. I have tried to downsize since I had to help clean out my mother's house after she passed. We would tease my parents that the family motto was, "Never throw anything away that might have future use." Let me tell you about the bags full of bags we found, but lets say there were at least 10, upstairs. And those wonderful little plastic boxes you get with salads, or pastries, or other wonderful little food items - we stopped counting when we reached 100. They had more books than a small library.

So when I came home I started thinking if I hadn't used it in a year it was time to get rid of it. Went thru my dresser and got rid of a lot, but not as much as I planned. Went out to the garage and found old planters we haven't used in over 15 years, and various other items in boxes. My husband was thrilled since I was making more room for his things. And then there was my sewing room, scraps that people have given me, that I was sure I would never use, other fabric that I saved and lots of flannel. There were several larger pieces that I bought years ago and though I still liked it, there were no recent plans so off it went. And who doesn't have left over batting? A friend was over playing with my embroidery machine and I was getting ready to throw out my bits and pieces of batting, she said her daughter wanted it to make purses and bags. Yeah!!! It went to good use and out of my house.

I am not sorry that I got rid of anything. Because I still buy more books than I can read in a month, I only subscribe to one quilt magazine and when i see that fabric I can't resist - it comes homes. So next month after my daughter moves out it is time to do it again and hopefully go through a few more cabinets.
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Old 06-11-2014, 12:57 PM
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"Clutter's Last Stand" by Don Aslett is a book I highly recommend when one wants to start getting rid of clutter (and/or downsizing.
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Old 06-11-2014, 01:31 PM
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http://www.peterwalshdesign.com/#&panel1-3

thanks for reminding us about Peter Walsh. Mr. Stitchnripper and I used to watch Clean Sweep - just the parts where he went through the "stuff" with the homeowners, to help them decide how/what to purge. He was not an advocate of getting rid of everything, but had some great ideas. He has helped us over the years to decide what goes.

As far as downsizing, I am thinking about that as we approach "that age" - what do I really need and want? I do keep a donation bag going and work on keeping it full. Good luck with it all. Not easy.
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Old 06-11-2014, 05:46 PM
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Every so often I go through my stuff and get rid of what I haven't used in a year, I pass it on to my guild, gw or to someone who needs it. Once in awhile I look for something that is gone but if it is really needed, can go find something similar to use. It also gives me a reason to find new stuff.
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