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(36 Posts)
mollie Tue 21-Jun-11 11:52:27

OK, I think we've discussed this before and I know I would declare myself anti-clutter but I am sitting here, in a spare bedroom that I've claimed for myself, surrounded by the contents of a built-in cupboard. I can identify the pile of things that are going to charity and the pile of things that are going to the tip. I've got an overflowing bin of ordinary rubbish but it's the rest of the stuff that I'm worried about.

This is the cupboard that holds all the memories - old photos, documents, stuff from my late father and my late son, all the cards my husband has ever sent me not to mention the craft things I've been meaning to do something with but never got round to...I have a passion for paper and notebooks and thank goodness I didn't succumbe to another purchase yesterday - I've just found nine unused books calling out for my words... I started out this morning hoping to reduce the stuff down to perhaps one full shelf-full but I think I was too optimistic... am I the only one?

mollie Thu 23-Jun-11 19:41:38

Pompa: the only memory I have of my parents actually doing anything together (apart from arguing) was hooking a redicut rug! I think they actually made two and I know they lasted for years and years... Oh happy day!!!!

Hunt: I'm a sucker for anything to do with paper and ink...hate to admit it but there were more than nine notebooks in the end, all different sizes and mostly decorated in some way. And funnily enough, I was thinking of a story about a gang of people who met through a forum...'s OK, was a fleeting thought!!!

Hunt Thu 23-Jun-11 17:36:57

Mollie! Nine note books- I think you should write a novel!

grannyactivist Thu 23-Jun-11 17:11:05

Just sorted most of my kitchen and utility room cupboards and two kitchen drawers - you know the ones where you put everything that doesn't have a proper place, birthday candles, ribbons from bouquets, bottle stoppers, furry sweets, old pebbles confused (they must have seemed worthy of keeping at one time!) etc. I filled one drawer with plastic take away containers and sorted items into them. It creates so much more space that three containers are empty. grin

pompa Thu 23-Jun-11 16:54:23

I can remember Mrs. P and I making a Redicut rug kit when we were courting. Trouble was we started at opposite ends and were working the wool the same way as each other, luckily we realised the mistake after a few days, so didn't have too much to undo.

baggythecrust! Thu 23-Jun-11 16:27:07

A nine by seven foot wool (latch) rug that I made twenty-nine years ago is in my sitting-room now. It features Chinese dragons because I was in a dragon phase at the time. I still like it. smile

harrigran Thu 23-Jun-11 14:50:58

Just a word of warning when emptying wardrobes etc and giving clothes to charity, check the pockets. My mother gave away my father's clothes and someone found £200 in a trouser pocket .. they brought the money back.

beachcomber Thu 23-Jun-11 13:35:07

Joshnan, my late husband got more and more attached to his clothes as they [and he] got older and shabbier, particularly if they were 'hand-ons' or from Oxfam - and if I disposed of them there would be a huge row.

I remember one pair of trousers in particular, someone gave him these white linen flared pants which were at least 2 sizes too small, he looked so dreadful in them that I dropped them down the back of a chest of drawers so that I could honestly declare that 'I definitely haven't thrown them out- you must have them somewhere?'

After he fell off his twig I found several other hideous garments behind various pieces of furniture, which I had hidden over the years and then forgotten.

Oxon70 Thu 23-Jun-11 10:46:24

My sister still has a round rug that my mother and I made in the 50s. I still have a rug hook - but it's in the bathroom to hook the manky hairs out of the plughole!
Books are to KEEP.....stilll, I don't have as many as my sister does.
I don't have many cupboards here, so I put up two sheds, one for gardening stuff and the other - to keep the remains (I did declutter when I moved) of the stuff that was in the loft in the last house....

What I wish had not been thrown out - all the photos, apparently, that my grandparents had. Now I'm into the family history, can I make a plea not to throw away your history - photos and letters particularly. I have gained so much from the items that family members have kept.

harrigran Wed 22-Jun-11 22:46:30

Rag rugs, that takes me back to my grandma's house. Cast iron fireplace with the big black kettle on the side. When I cleared my Mam's house all the rug making equipment was there including the frame to stretch the rug canvas on. I still have a rug my husband and I made before we were married, half moon shaped, red roses on a white background. That rug was new wool though.

crimson Wed 22-Jun-11 21:58:36

Hadn't thought of that; thought it was a 'tripping over them' health risk. Getting the urge to make one, now...useless at sewing and knitting but rag rug making seems a bit simpler [I think].

HildaW Wed 22-Jun-11 21:25:20

Rag rugs are alive and well here........I'd like to see the EEC pinching mine!

pompa Wed 22-Jun-11 21:11:36

Crimson, we saw rag rugs for sale at Beamish a few weeks ago, and they are available on the www. Perhaps it is the source of the rag that is controlled.

crimson Wed 22-Jun-11 20:30:46

The former; it looks like an instrument of torture! We used to get suit sample books fom a tailors to cut up to make the rugs. think the EEC banned rag rugs as a health hazzard a few years back confused.

Elegran Wed 22-Jun-11 19:03:13

I do! I do! We used to make rugs. I used to have one of those but I don't know where it is now. Is it the one that pinches the rags to pull them through, not the one with a hook and a latch for doing a sort of semi-crochet act with wool?

(sorry to pipe up without coming in and introducing myself. I peeped in as I was passing)

crimson Wed 22-Jun-11 18:26:25

My daughter throws things out all the time; if you do so you don't miss it but if you try to throw something away several years later it hurts more. A friend said to me that she thought it was something to do with being poor as a child, and feeling that if something gets thrown out you won't be able to replace it in the future. I also like looking at old things. I've got a drawer full of old cameras, because I'd like my grandsons to see the sort of cameras we used to use [box cameras etc]. I've even got a rag rug maker that was my mums; like to quiz people with a 'bet you don't know what this is for'....

harrigran Wed 22-Jun-11 11:32:38

I got tired of all the stuff belonging to other people cluttering my house. I bagged it all up and delivered it to people concerned telling them to keep it or bin it but if left with me it would be disposed of. When my son got his bags he discarded 99% of the contents, why could he not do that 20 years ago ?

gma Wed 22-Jun-11 09:40:44

Well done Beachcomber-I am going to be even more ruthless now. You must be very proud of yourself and your daughter will bless you for it (Not for ages and ages yet we hope!!!)

Valkyrie Wed 22-Jun-11 09:25:17

I do wish charities would collect the bags I leave out for them when they've posted a collection bag through my door.
I have a full one now waiting in the cupboard under the stairs.
I will transfer the contents to the next collector. Shouldn't be long because I get a collection request about every other week!

mollie Wed 22-Jun-11 07:15:00

Beachcomber, I think that is at least half the reason why I continue to declutter, declutter, declutter. The other half is that I moved four or five times in almost as many years and that was no I aim to keep only the essentials...however, one woman's essentials is very different from another woman's as Crimson neatly points out...

crimson Wed 22-Jun-11 00:55:00

Can't throw anything away. My mum threw all of my stuff away when I left, books etc and I would so love to see some of them again. My kids lecture me about it, but I have everyone elses stuff here...sons, daughters, ex husbands, ex husbands dads, sons ex girlfriends...I could go on, but I think you get the picture. Went onto a forum called unclutterer once, but that didn't help. I am beyond help, alas.

joshsnan Wed 22-Jun-11 00:06:31

It must be declutter day for everyone today as I have emptied my wardrobes and drawers and filled 5 bags full of clothes, some of the clothes still have the price tags on ( I'm ashamed to say ) put a little weight on and know I wont wear them, and I'm still stuck for room. Ive had to store the bags in the spare room so my husband doesn't see them, till I can take them to the charity shop on Thursday. He is a major hoarder and it does annoy me when he refuses to let things go, like books for instance....hes read them all, but wont let them go... hes read them why not give someone else the pleasure of reading them. He still has the wedding suit in his wardrobe that he wore 35yrs ago when we got married hmm I could go on and on about the things he hoards....Ive finally decided to take a couple of things at a time to the dump in the hope that he doesn't notice. Sorry rant over. grin

beachcomber Tue 21-Jun-11 22:45:25

After helping her sons clear my best friend's house after she died tragically at the age of 60, I decided that I could not inflict this on my daughter after my death. I have been totally ruthless, putting my financial affairs in order, organising a power of attorney, revising my will, filing documents.

Also clearing useless odds and ends from my drawers, wardrobe, kitchen, bathroom, and [not very successfully so far!] disposing of far too many clothes and shoes and fabric remnants.

A marathon job, but life is so much simpler now. I am far more relaxed, and on the whole I now know where everything is in the house.

From being the worst hoarder ever I am now determined never again to collect all that 'stuff'.

goldengirl Tue 21-Jun-11 21:08:04

Oh Hattie64 you could be talking about our house - though ours is a two storey! My husband is a major hoarder and I'm a minor hoarder though I'm making every effort to at least start a clear our of my desk drawers in the spare room, but that room is now full of papers to be shredded! And of course there's the children's stuff and the grandchildren's stuff. Someone visited me and thought I ran a creche!!!!!!! I do chuck out clothes every so often - but even the bags hang around until they get taken to the charity shop. I crave the luxury look of those houses in magazines such as 25 Beautiful Homes, but alas I think that is one dream I won't be able to fulfill. I am still renting at great expense a storage unit for my parents' furniture as I've not had time for a good sort out yet. At least I can never use the excuse that I've nothing to do grin

Hattie64 Tue 21-Jun-11 19:35:14

My problem is that though all my 3 children are married with children, they still have 'stuff' in our home. My youngest Son is the worse, he even has clothes, shoes and even slippers here. His wife now has a spare dressing gown and her slippers here now!!! There are also a lot of his Beano/Dandy annuals, toys, oh all sorts of things.
In fact there is far too much 'stuff' in the house. Of late we have started talking of downsizing, which has shocked the family. We live in a four storey house, with loads of cupboard space which is crammed with loads of 'stuff'. I think all I would like to keep now is all the photographs. I am bad with clothes though, the rule of thumb is if you don't wear something for 3 years, find a new home for it. The problem is when you turf out all these clothes and start trying them on, they then go back into the wardrobe.

HildaW Tue 21-Jun-11 19:08:29

I think if you are not quite sure about something...........stick it in a 'not quite sure' bag or box...and if you dont miss it 6 or 12 months later..........dispose of it!