Simplifying and Lightening the Load
Every January is the same for me.
I’m feeling the need to lighten the load by cleaning , organizing, and most importantly… purging my craft room. I’m feeling the need to simplify… and rescuing my creative space is a big part of that.
From what? you may ask.
Take a look… and I warn you… it isn’t pretty.
This room need to be rescued from stuff… too much stuff.
And it’s way too disorganized for my liking, and it’s time to do something about it. When this room is in such an incredible mess it weighs heavy on my brain. There’s a saying about a cluttered house is a cluttered mind. In my case that goes for this cluttered room.
It’s time to reclaim my creative space. Permanently. Once and for all.
When my outside world is covered in snow and I’m feeling a little claustrophobic I need a feeling of calm and spaciousness not only in my home, but also in this little 8′ x 11′ room where most of my creative time is spent.
I’ve never been much of a spring cleaner because once spring arrives I want to be outside as much as possible… enjoying the gardens coming back to life… and the planting of flowers… and breathing in the warm fresh spring air.
The last thing I want is to be stuck inside cleaning and organizing.
So for me it all happens in the winter. A bit backwards maybe, but that’s just how I roll.
It’s no wonder I’ve been avoiding this room and haven’t been feeling very creative lately.
I mean look at it. Yikes!!!!
Storage in this small room is a challenge for several reasons. I have to store things for my etsy shop, for my wind chime and garden art making supplies, and also just generally fabulous stuff that I find for future repurposing projects.
And, as if that wasn’t enough, this room is also my office where all the un-fun stuff happens like paying bills etc.
That’s a lot to ask from this one little room, which is really quite charming with its high ceiling and original baseboard and window moldings.
Time to start asking myself some hard questions so I can reclaim this room back from the chaos, and make it a place where I want to be again.
So whenever I purge I ask myself three questions about every single item. Let’s use this Paint by Numbers kit that I’ve had for over 20 years as an example.
First Question: Do I love it? No. I like it, but I don’t love it.
Second Question: Do I need it? No.
Third Question: Can I sell it? No… it’s too awkward to ship.
So it’s outta here… to the thrift store it goes.
Notice that Do I want it? isn’t one of the questions. At this point in my life simply wanting something is just not good enough anymore.
If something doesn’t answer yes to at least one of the above three questions it gets donated, probably back to the thrift store from whence it came, lol, but that’s OK. Since I probably thrift 90% of my stuff the odds are pretty good that’s going to happen sometimes.
Here’s another example…. this fabulous pig chef I just thrifted.
Do I love him? Yes, absolutely.
Do I need him? No.
Can I sell him? Yes, I think so.
Two out of three yesses… so the pig stays.
For me the trick to being a successful purger is to be brutally honest with yourself about every single item, especially when it comes to the need question. Sometimes I think I need something when the reality is I just want it. Well, no more. I have to change my way of thinking just a bit.
I’m going to start asking myself these three questions when I’m in the thrift stores now, and I’m going to try to consider how I’m going to store things before I bring them home.
Salty had to inspect the purge pile before it went to the local Salvation Army store. I got rid of miscellaneous picture frames, sheer curtains, puzzles, craft supplies, grapevine wreaths, tablecloths, fabrics, some newer craft pattern booklets, and other odds and ends.
I’ve had most of these items for years, and have never even thought about them let alone used them. I’m always feel better after purging, but now it’s onto getting my room back together because…
Here’s the stuff I’m keeping that has to go back in the room… two repurposing project bins, my egg beater collection, one selling bin, one craft supply bin, and one fabric bin also with 2 pillow forms.
I couldn’t take everything out of the room because I just don’t have the space to put it… even temporarily. So I removed about half of the stuff so I could start reorganizing with some space to move around.
I did my craft room makeover a couple of years ago and I’m still totally loving my pink and green colour scheme so this is not going to be a decor makeover. This is all about getting reorganized.
Do you have the urge to purge and reorganize your creative space? If so, let’s get through it together. I’ve challenged myself to get this room back in shape by the end of this month so I can get back to feeling inspired and creative again. Are you in?
I’ll be sharing my craft room storage projects over the next couple of weeks, using repurposed things to help me with organization… so stay tuned.
Thanks so much for reading and until next time… keep on keepin’ on..
I probably start cleaning my back room at least once every couple of weeks and then give up because there is just too much stuff in there. I at least straighten it! It has stuff from my closed Etsy shop, my current Etsy shop and various decorating items for my house. I am embarrassed to say there is baby stuff from my son and he is 17! I love your three questions so I will hit it again with those in mind and see where I get!!
I find the more I edit stuff the more I edit stuff. lol. It kind of snowballs for me, and once I get in the groove I just keep on going. Good luck with your cleaning.
Thank you for sharing your organization challenge. I feel better about my own now, and feel encouraged to persevere. I find that I spend all my time cleaning and organizing, and no time crafting or creating. That kind of defeats the purpose of having so many craft supplies…
That happens to me too, so this time I’m trying to put things in place to keep me organized permanently. That’s the goal anyway. lol. There’s always hope.
Oooh, I’m so with you girl!! My room looks a lot like yours as far as stuff…everywhere…I’ve started going through my stuff too. I can’t wait to see how you organize it all!!
Thanks so much Tania! It has ended up being a bigger job than I thought it would be when I started. One thing leads to another… you know how it is. That’s OK. I’ll be so glad when I’m finished and hopefully I’ll be so organized even I won’t be able to mess it up. lol. That’s the hope.
Tuula, great job!! These are awesome questions to ask before and after bringing things home. It looks like you’ve accomplished quite a bit. Btw, I love the color scheme for your workroom!!!
Thanks so much Keri! The pink and green is definitely not for everyone, but it’s very inspiring to me… especially in the winter.
Oh. my, I never knew you had a mini Horror Monster hiding in your craft room. YIPPEE! for purging. I am on my own quest to downsize. I hope I am as successful as you were.
Oh yes… Horror Monster, the Canadian version. Purging is good for the soul, and the craft room. I’m going to do my second edit of stuff this weekend and maybe I’ll be able to get rid of even more.
Those questions are a really good idea! I just finished…well, almost finished, organizing my craft/sewing room. Still more to do, but had some sewing jobs come in that have to be finished. So it’s an ongoing project! Good luck with yours!
Isn’t it always an ongoing project Dona? lol. It seems that way for me. This time I keep telling myself this is it once and for all. I’m getting organized and I’m sticking to it. It’s so nice to get organized, but it would be even nicer to stay organized.
Great minds think alike! I have been reorganizing and purgning in my craft room all weekend! I had today off for Martin Luther King Day so when I wasn’t helping the hubby on the bathroom remodel, I was in muy craft room which is right beside it. I got a LOT done! I’ll be sharing soon, Have a great week!
It seems a lot of us are doing the same thing this month. It always feel so good to get reorganized.I’m looking forward to seeing yours.
Yes! My space got very cluttered leading up to Christmas. I’ve made progress (now I have a big donation pile to get rid of!) but need to buckle down and finish up!
Yes, I hear ya Cecilia. I really have to buckle down too. This turned out to be much more work than I thought, but it’ll all be worth it for both of us. I think I might have to purge a little more to gain even more space.
I really need to purge my craft room. I too have way too much stuff… some of it is utter rubbish too. Yes I could use it but in truth it can easily be replaced. On with the purge methinks.. x
I think it’s been over a month now and I’m still purging. It’s been great though. I’ve gotten rid of a lot of things that I’ve been keeping for far too long. It does feel good.