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Thread: Real success stories in organizing

  1. #1
    Super Member Lilrain's Avatar
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    Real success stories in organizing

    I would love to hear from anyone who has had real success in organizing, changing years of habit, and had lasting success. Any tips or encouragement appreciated.

  2. #2
    Super Member GEMRM's Avatar
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    Start small, pick one thing, work at consistently doing it and then when that has become embedded as a habit, add another (one) thing....
    A husband is the perfect confidant to tell your secrets to - he can't reveal them to anyone else because he wasn't really listening when you told him!

  3. #3
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    Try moving. Whittling down is the best way to get rid of things that you haven't used in years. You really don't miss these "things" and if you do, just buy new ones - at least they aren't old, dried out and fraying.

  4. #4
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    Marie Kondo is well known in the "decluttering" world and she has a new book out. I have it on reserve from the library. Anyway, one of her tips is that if you don't feel joy in holding a specific item, donate, recycle or pitch it. It may be a bit extreme, but it has helped me to identify some quilting items for my guild's next silent auction. Very liberating!

  5. #5
    Power Poster ManiacQuilter2's Avatar
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    It just takes time to reorganize. I am slowly making progress that my cleaning lady notice that she could actually see the top of my work table. Unfortunately, I can't just work on one quilt at a time which can easily make a lot of clutter.
    A Good Friend, like an old quilt, is both a Treasure and a Comfort

  6. #6
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    A note on the Marie Kondo system: look at her end result and see if that is what you want your home to look like. I prefer far more clutter than she does.

    That said, 1 place to clean up each day is the way to make progress. For example: clean one drawer today. Do another drawer tomorrow.

    I agree with ManiacQuilter2:<I can't just work on one quilt at a time which can easily make a lot of clutter.>

    We are creative people with lots of "parts" to make our finished project. Don't beat yourself up over it.

    I just came across a quote that represents my viewpoint: "A Clean Home is the sign of a Boring Family"

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    Pasovasz I had to laugh at your quote. Back in the day, we were getting approved as Foster Parents so we could do respite care for friends who were adopting kids through the foster system. They came to inspect our house and I asked them to come after our cleaning lady came. She told me that wasn't necessary. When she got to our house and saw our kid (and other) clutter all over she said: Oh I'm so relieved. People who have perfect houses do NOT make good foster parents. You're (cluttered) house looks great! It was then I stopped worrying about the clutter.

  8. #8
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    I hate clutter in my house which to me is unnecessary items taking up space. Keyword is 'unnecessary". I get rid of stuff that is 'unnecessary" If I need something then so be it. If it isn't needed then it usually gets donated. I do like things organized.

  9. #9
    Super Member llong0233's Avatar
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    A friend once gave me so advice, about 35 years ago, that I faithfully apply today. We were in a shopping mall at lunch. I found something I liked that was on sale...her advice was that no matter the "deal", IF YOU DON'T LOVE, DON'T BUY IT. I apply the theory many places in my daily life. Especially in my quilting room. I still have too much stuff, but the method works. So I suggest you ask yourself the question every time something is in your hand...DO YOU LOVE IT?
    Quilting Makes Me Happy...

  10. #10
    Super Member Onebyone's Avatar
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    I go through and purge every so often. This keeps the clutter down. I never feel guilty tossing anything I'm not using or want anymore.
    I love my life!

  11. #11
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    I'm purging using the Kondo method right now. She claims that none of her clients has ever rebounded )(I.e reverted to a cluttered home). House stays tidy ( or takesless than a half hour to straighten). I'd recommend her book. She has a system and sensible reasons to support it. I've purged the first category already ( clothes) and am a fourth of the way through the second (books). Already feels better!

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    I am expecting visitors in two days. The top of the guest room bed had been piled high with books, genealogy info, misc. magazines, out of season clothes and photos. Today, I chose one thing to accomplish.

    I sorted through only the pictures on top of the bed. Portraits automatically went in archival sleeves and empty picture frames of high quality are boxed together for recycling when I choose to redecorate. I sorted dozens of 4x6 photos.

    If the photo was of poor quality, it was immediately discarded, but not torn up. Photos were placed in piles according to subject: certain wedding, house remodel, etc. Then, I selected one subject area to resort. Only the best images representative of the occasion were saved. Larger greeting card envelopes were dated and marked with contents.

    At a later point, I can go back to the envelopes and label individual photos. Discarded photos were destroyed.

    No one wants to see every picture I have taken throughout my lifetime. I am cutting clutter, lightening the load, and will be selective in what would be important to my family when I am gone. It is easy to do this with digital photos, as well.

    If I can't find a home for the remaining items on the bed within the next 60 minutes, they will be hidden in a box put in the closet. It's not moving everything to a new place. Purge, purge, purge on one area and get 'er done. It works!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by zozee View Post
    I'm purging using the Kondo method right now. She claims that none of her clients has ever rebounded )(I.e reverted to a cluttered home). House stays tidy ( or takesless than a half hour to straighten). I'd recommend her book. She has a system and sensible reasons to support it. I've purged the first category already ( clothes) and am a fourth of the way through the second (books). Already feels better!
    When I reread this, it sounds line I mean my house stays tidy and only takes a half hour to straighten up. Hahaha!!' I meant to say that, after I do the Kondo method which should take six months (she says), that is the outcome.

  14. #14
    Super Member newbee3's Avatar
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    I REALLY never heard of this method you are referring to. But that is what I have been doing one drawer at a time then one shelf so it is getting better still have clutter my home is lived in

  15. #15
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    Organizing my sewing/quilting room reminds me of the old joke: How do you eat an elephant? Take one bite at a time! Ha! Ha!

    It really does work, though. I managed to get involved in a couple of major projects at one time. Even bloodthirsty tornadoes would avoid my room if they chose to come near here. I got a couple of boxes and bags and put them where I could easily insert pattern pieces, fabrics, notions, or whatever. It took a couple of days, but the job was accomplished with not too much effort.

    If you need to clean or organize, do it a little bit at a time so you don't feel overwhelmed with everything at once.
    Sometimes I try to act "normal," but it gets boring so I just go back to being myself.

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    With respect to Kay Carlson's comments...let me just say I have spent many hours over the last 3 days sorting through thousands of photos from my SIL's house. She passed away 2 years ago and her son (our nephew) just a few weeks ago. Hubs and I have had the distinct displeasure of going through their home. In some cases there were no less than 20 of the same photo. I can not tell you how many photos were tossed because they were totally over/underexposed. Her line about folks not wanting to see every photo of hers that she has taken in her lifetime is absolutely true. People who we (or other family members) have no clue as to who they might be, etc. We've pared it down to various family-member piles and those now just need to be distributed.

    It gives me a renewed sense of responsibility to continue this process with my own photos.

  17. #17
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    Red face

    Quote Originally Posted by quilttiger View Post
    Marie Kondo is well known in the "decluttering" world and she has a new book out. I have it on reserve from the library. Anyway, one of her tips is that if you don't feel joy in holding a specific item, donate, recycle or pitch it. It may be a bit extreme, but it has helped me to identify some quilting items for my guild's next silent auction. Very liberating!
    My sister and I have been reading her book and started doing some of the exercises. I rearranged my sock drawer and my socks are so happy now and it gives me more joy in the morning when I am getting dressed. I want to rearrange lots more but still working full time and cleaning out another house where I've found lots of items for Goodwill.

  18. #18
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    That is basically the Kondo method. But I agree with pasovasz, Kondo's end result would drive me nuts.....absolutely no clutter.

  19. #19
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    I went to Walmart yesterday looking for some containers and as I trying to decide which ones to get, I am also trying in my mind to decide what to get rid of. I wash pushing around an empty cart and another woman was trying to decide which clear container to get. I spent more than 10 minutes and decided to leave and offered the cart to the other woman. She was grateful and I was still saving money by walking out empty- handed. Came home and rearranged a couple containers. Before I knew it I had 3 empty containers and freed up a lot of space. the containers were 64 qt./62 L. Made a trip to Goodwill.

  20. #20
    Super Member quiltinghere's Avatar
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    If I don't have a large amount of time to sew/quilt, I use the short timeframe to clean up and put things away. Then when I do have several hours to sew/quilt, my studio is inviting and everything is in it's place!

    How do you eat a x-large pizza? One bite at a time!

    Nan
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    My GOAL is to ALWAYS ENJOY EVERY STEP of the quilting process....

  21. #21
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    I do not like the fold and roll method Marie Kondo uses, when I put the t-shirts on it looks like I slept in them. I do agree with the nostalgia part, just go through the box, do not look back, do not read every card and letter. Toss out things you don't love. Do not save things you think your family may like or want after you're gone. Ask them now if they want photo's, letters, cards., etc. The best thing is if you haven't worn it, used it, looked at it then toss it. You haven't used it, probably didn't remember you had it so get rid of it. I hate clutter, it just looks untidy to me.

  22. #22
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    I posted my reorganization to the board not too long ago and have to admit I was feeling quite smug. Then yesterday I went to get the netting I had bought to repair a quilt and remembered that I had taken it out of the china cabinet where I had put it (no idea why, that was just where I put it) and had tidily put away in the newly re-organized sewing room. Of course I cannot find it so went to Joann's and bought new netting. My thought was if I wait for the neatly put away netting to resurface, I will never get the quilt repaired. The only good thing was the netting was on sale and I did not need too much.

  23. #23
    Super Member tuckyquilter's Avatar
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    I use the when was the last time I really Used/Worn/Needed ____________! You fill in the blank. Have bags or boxes labeled Keep, Give Away, Throw away. My Spare Guest room is pretty naked, so I'm making progress.

    May sound silly but I have a list of friends that will inherit my fabric. Daughter will have the list that is in my Estate Plan document. SO even that is technically taken care of. If my daughter decides to sew, then she can have it. The machines stay in the family.
    Jackie
    Lover of Scrappy, Chocolate and Wine

  24. #24
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    A non profit recently opened in my city that promotes reuse of anything that can be used in crafts. I'm cleaning out my sewing room and brought a car load over. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I came home with almost 30 yards of fabric, all for less than $30. Check out their website: http://austincreativereuse.org/
    Maybe your city can start one.
    As for cleaning out the sewing room, I took an honest look at all my stuff. Some things I donated I had for 10 years. I figured if I haven't used it in 10 years, I probably will never use it.
    I have also donated craft supplies to our local elementary school art department.

  25. #25
    Super Member rryder's Avatar
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    For general de-cluttering I keep a cardboard box in the upstairs hallway and put things in it that I no longer need/want as I come across them. When the box gets full I take it to Goodwill. I end up making two or three trips to Goodwill each year using this method. It doesn't take the place of a full-scale decluttering, but I figure every little bit helps.

    Rob
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