Decluttering support thread



  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    Daisydaisy, you're a marvel (and possibly a loony). It would take major contemplation for me to undertake sorting a wardrobe, and I haven't got any broken legs.

    We need that "notworthy" icon back ...
  • Oh I'll accept loony, thank you
  • ThomasinaThomasina Shipmate
    I went round the garage yesterday - and nearly wept! All the tools my husband had collected, used and looked after are all there, in cupboards and drawers. What do I do with them? Hundreds of differently sized screws, nails, you name it. Everything you could imagine for a DIY-er. Suggestions for finding good homes, please!!

    But at least I now know where the pliers are!
  • I would bet someone starting out in carpentry would love a collection of tools to get started. Is it worth talking to the local colleges?
  • DiomedesDiomedes Shipmate
    Thomasina - faced with a similar problem, we found a local collection point for a charity called 'Tools with a Mission'. I'm sure they can be found via google and it seems there are other groups with a similar aim. We were particularly pleased that old bicycle fixing tools, hand-powered carpentry tools etc could be the means of someone else running their own business and providing for their family.
  • There's also Tools For Self Reliance (who I'm connected with) who are similar to TWAM
  • HuiaHuia Shipmate
    Thomasina - no suggestions from the other end of the earth, :votive:
  • There's yet another tool charity Work Aid - Tools for Life, which have a number of collection points across the country.
  • ThomasinaThomasina Shipmate
    Thanks everyone. When we get around to the garage, and my daughter and grandsons have taken what they want (though neither grandson seems keen on DIY!) then I'll contact some of those links. They sound a great idea!
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    I might bear those in mind (or at least mention them to my siblings) - Dad was a very keen DIYist in his time and the garage and workshop at his old house are chock-full of things that I'm sure he found indispensable, but the rest of us mortals don't see the point of at all.
  • If you unearth a Singer hand cranked sewing machine then TFSR would welcome it, and I think TWAM do too (the 2 charities are linked, I think they might have started out together) - they (like the other tools) get refurbished and sent to projects to give to recently qualified craftspeople who also get business training.

    Possibly the opposite of decluttering but..... Anything the projects don't need (we only send them what they ask for - sometimes that means a hunt for it!) gets sold to help fund the shipment and the training. If you are ever looking for any tools (gardening, engineering, haberdashery, sewing machine [only certain models get asked for], woodworking etc etc) do have a look at the websites of these charities to see if there is a sale near you - you can pick up a treasure/bargain.
  • Re non-electric sewing machine:

    A guy here in town used to take a treadle (foot-powered) sewing machine on a cart into a poor and dangerous area. He'd set up shop on a sidewalk, and do repairs and such for free. Way cool!

    Re donating tools:

    Some places have tool libraries. (Sometimes connected with the public library system.) They'd probably be happy to get unwanted tools.

  • Those firms where one can input an ISBN number and get an (ok, Small) amount of money for books.....have relieved me of two boxes of CDs and books.
    The money will come in handy for holidays.

    Space was desperately needed.

    It's a little bit more rather than less books have made the journey!

    And the boxes were picked up from my front door this morning by our local delivery person so we had a nice chat as well.

  • Be careful what you declutter if a move is in sight. DIL packed up a large amount of my stuff some weeks ago. I did not realise she packed all shoes except what were on my feet at the time. I could buy more, but have plenty and don’t want to.

    Then yesterday I had to put new SIM in iPhone as my provider was being shut down and I needed to switch. Large new provider sent SIM by courier but it is not packed with the nifty gadget to open SIM try. None in my place, all bits off my desk had been packed. All sewing needles etc also packed. Eventually found an heirloom cameo brooch which had a strong pin on it. I was careful and it worked.

    Shoes were an oversight by both of us, but new SIM was something entirely unforeseen.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    When we moved to Fredericton it was mid-July and the temperatures were in the mid-20s. We packed what we thought we'd need, limited by the number of suitcases we had and the size of the Pigletmobile (a Nissan Micra), never thinking it would take us until February to sell our house.

    When winter set in, our belongings (including all our winter clothes*) were in storage, so there was nothing for it but to raid the local charity shops for a winter coat and a couple of sweaters - we were damned if we were going to splash out on new things that we just didn't need.

    * and our winter tyres, although the storage people took pity on us and got them out for us.
  • Piglet--

    Is this the kind of storage space you don't access directly? I wondered, since you said the storage people got the tires out for you. There are some businesses here that bring you a storage container; let you fill it up; they take it to your storage place; and they'll bring it to you if you need it. Some places even let you check on your stuff by online security cam.

    The kind of storage space I'm familiar with allows you to directly access your stuff, any time within scheduled hours.

    Just curious.
  • Lots of YayLots of Yay Shipmate Posts: 42
    I have removed hard drives from two old laptops and dropped them off, along with a handful of old mobile phones, for recycling. Then I have fixed up and wiped a third old laptop to give to one of my colleagues who doesn’t have a computer. In the process I discovered that the keyboard was playing up so am also offloading a spare keyboard that was sitting around being clutter.

    My other decluttering moves have been a) to pay the council for a larger general waste bin for a year - I figured the cost was less than a skip bin and means I can sort and throw things out gradually. And b) I bought a Dyson vacuum cleaner to either celebrate or as comfort for my recent exam results. It ended up being to celebrate. But anyway, knowing there is all that dust to vacuum under my clutter makes me more likely to excavate down and throw out stuff to get to it.

    If anyone wants me to come vacuum their house with my Dyson, just let me know. It’s my new hobby. :smiley:
  • BoogieBoogie Shipmate
    Well done @Lots of Yay - and you and your Dyson are very welcome!

    I’ve properly retired - hurrah! I’ve been taking work stuff back for the last few weeks - just two more trips then I have a study to myself.

    I taaught art so I used to order equipment and bring all the brushes, paints etc etc home and took what I needed for the day. Teachers are useless at looking after art equipment.

    So all is now being returned.

  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    @Golden Key - As I understand it, the removal people who took our stuff from Newfoundland to New Brunswick had it in some sort of container, which we paid them to store at their premises while we didn't have a place of our own. We rented a tiny flat for three months and then did a house-sit for another three months; half-way through the house-sit we sold our house and bought one here.

    We had our stuff moved in as soon as we could, but didn't move in ourselves until our house-sit people came back - we were also looking after their cat, so it made sense to stay at their place. It worked out rather well, as it gave us a few weeks to get things sorted out in the new house - and get rid of a few pieces of furniture we didn't want (and didn't have space for).
  • HuiaHuia Shipmate
    Lots of Yay - Thanks for mentioning getting a bigger bin from the council - that's a brilliant move which I might copy because, unlike a skip you don't have to sort it in a few days.

    My focus at the moment is decluttering old clothes, none of which are good enough for an Op Shop, so they are going into a local rag bin.
  • finelinefineline Kerygmania Host, 8th Day Host
    I have removed hard drives from two old laptops and dropped them off, along with a handful of old mobile phones, for recycling.

    I need to do this. I have three old laptops that no longer turn on, so I can’t wipe them the normal way. May I ask, is it relatively easy to remove the hard drive? I have never done this before.
  • Lots of YayLots of Yay Shipmate Posts: 42
    For my 2003 windows laptop it was easy. There was a hatch just for the hard drive. The 2006 MacBook was much harder but this is because my tiny screwdriver broke so instead of extracting the hard drive via the battery compartment I took off the keyboard and it was a lot messier.

    You will need some of those tiny screwdrivers. Mine cost $2 at a discount shop. Which might explain why they gave up on the MacBook.
  • finelinefineline Kerygmania Host, 8th Day Host
    Ah, that’s good to know - thanks. One of mine is a MacBook Air. Though I’m not sure about the size of the screws. I do have a little set of tiny screwdrivers of different sizes though.
  • Yesterday I sorted my scarves. Ashamed to say how many I had, although as an excuse some were gifts.
    I am hanging on to one of each color and the rest are being donated to the thrift shop.

    Today I started on the file drawers. I tend to file things and then just keep adding to the paperwork without throwing away the outdated stuff. No more I feel a good purge coming on, but first I need to get off the ship and restart my "unfiling." I believe I have just invented a word.
  • That is a job scheduled for after I move. I have a filing box which is overflowing. I know where all the important stuff is but there is a lot I can throw out. DIL was looking for something for me for ID purposes and was horrified at the mess.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    edited July 2018
    I'm not at all sure that scarves, like wire coat-hangers and supermarket carrier-bags, don't breed if you leave them to their own devices. When we sorted out all our stuff after moving, I discovered I had enough scarves of one sort or another to fill a whole drawer in my dressing-table.

    I'm determined to use them more often when the weather gets more scarf-friendly;* a scarf can really lift an outfit.

    * probably not any time soon, as the temperature's going to be in the 30s for the next week and probably not much below 20° for some time after that ... :flushed:
  • finelinefineline Kerygmania Host, 8th Day Host
    Today I discovered a good use for scarves in this weather. If you wet them and put them in the freezer, and then put them around your neck, they cool you down nicely. When you are at home, that is - not sure going out with a frozen scarf around your neck would be a good idea!
  • Curiosity killedCuriosity killed Shipmate
    edited July 2018
    Scarves are a necessity as added sun protection, Not really enjoying having to wear them in temperatures over 30°
  • finelinefineline Kerygmania Host, 8th Day Host
    True. I see people wearing them draped so they are covering both their neck and their arms.
  • Piglet wrote: »
    I'm not at all sure that scarves, like wire coat-hangers and supermarket carrier-bags, don't breed if you leave them to their own devices.

    Do NOT leave t-shirts unattended in a closed closet. It's quite obvious what they get up to in there, since their offspring were multiplying like crazy. I have a box full to take to the thrift store this week.

  • I need to do a scarf-style purge on 2 drawers of sweaters - trouble is I love them all, each one is different, but some of them haven't seen daylight for years. But decluttering of sweaters is best left for cooler weather - or at least that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it.
  • ThomasinaThomasina Shipmate
    I have sorted, and got rid of in various ways, my late husband's clothes. All except about a dozen really thick coats. Have shut the wardrobe door on them until about October, when there will be more point in taking them to a charity Shop. I gave 4 big bags to Clothes Aid, who told me they were collecting for Action for Children, or something like that, which I googled and found is a Methodist charity, very well regarded, so that was OK. But then I thought to email Clothes Aid to find what they actually did with their clothes.

    They weigh what they have collected and the money goes (on a regular, agreed tariff) to the Charity. Then the clothes are sent off to Eastern Europe and sold. Apparently they are greatly admired over there!!!

    I was a bit surprised by that. Not sure I approve, though quite what is wrong I can't put my finger on.
  • It's a bit like the way they go to Africa, isn't it, @Thomasina ? I disapprove of that because it disrupts the local garment trade, but what else should happen to the clothes I can't tell you - I do know that the local clothes bank always had far more ladies' clothes than they actually needed and had to sell the surplus or anything too scruffy to wear. Some go for rag, but there's always some left over.

    Mrs. S, puzzled
  • There was recently a news article on the BBC news website about how Rwanda has refused to take bales of used clothes from the USA as part of trade deal that they lost as a result - they stuck to their principles because of how these bales have almost (completely?) killed off the fabric and clothing manufacture industry. Other African countries have caved in to the pressure. It just shows how complex decluttering clothes can be. When I was in Zambia and Kenya I saw the industry around these bales arriving and dispersing into markets, and the income it provides as well as access to the items.

    My decluttering of the booze cupboard continues - Pimms anyone?
  • Cleaning files is going slower then I planned. It keep reading things and getting side tracked, butI did find several things that I had been looking for.
  • PigletPiglet All Saints Host, Circus Host
    My sister and brother are up in Orkney at the moment, and have started the declutterment of Dad's house: they've emptied the wardrobes (contents to go to the Marie Curie shop) and the cupboard with all Dad's video-tapes (contents to go to the tip) - for which I think my brother deserves a medal.
  • Canonisation, at the very least!
  • Catching up on some things.

    Hugs to all of us! And to anyone who doesn't have support for decluttering.
  • PeppermintTeaPeppermintTea Shipmate Posts: 5
    This week I decluttered a few books and most importantly a dinner service that I have replaced. Unfortunately Mr Tea decided the new plates were too large for his breakfast and has insisted on keeping some of the old ones. Hey, ho.
  • CathscatsCathscats Shipmate
    This week I decluttered a few books and most importantly a dinner service that I have replaced. Unfortunately Mr Tea decided the new plates were too large for his breakfast and has insisted on keeping some of the old ones. Hey, ho.

    I so get this! Mr Cat will not use the new cutlery (1960s vintage) inherited from my mother, and very nice, but insists I set him the 1930 stuff inherited from my grandmother, and discoloured and bashed around.
  • {{{{{all of us, our spaces, and our stuff}}}}}

    Making some progress. :)
  • Golden Key wrote: »
    {{{{{all of us, our spaces, and our stuff}}}}}

    Making some progress. :)

    Amen and well done!
  • Thomasina wrote: »
    Thanks everyone. When we get around to the garage, and my daughter and grandsons have taken what they want (though neither grandson seems keen on DIY!) then I'll contact some of those links. They sound a great idea!

    A note on tools (to readers in general). If you can find a charity to donate things to, and that's what you want to do, then great. But if you can't and you have a shed full, at least find a dealer to give them to. Old tools often cost an enormous amount of (inflation adjusted) money, are still fit for purpose when compared with modern cheap stuff made of cheese, and as a result still hold some value - even though fewer and fewer people know what to do with them. I've seen some terrible waste at our tip, where to get things away you now have to be quick and avoid the attendants.

    Heck, if you're want to know what you have lay some stuff on a sheet, photograph them and PM me.

  • We have progress!

    I took CK's excellent advice cleaning up for him to a level of cleanliness he could cope with and spent an evening when the North East Loon wasn't here making a start, whilst listening to a 3 hour radio drama on feedback. I emptied two of his bookcases, dusting as I went, then moved the empty bookcases and hoovered thoroughly. Then I put everything back exactly as it was, apart from moving stray pens etc onto his desk. (I took "before" photos, to ensure that the "after" was unchanged.)

    He came home and noticed the hoovered area (I didn't mention the bookcases) so he moved his armchairs out of the room, picked up all the piles of books on the floor and hoovered. He meant to do more but ran out of time, but once the chairs were back in, it still looked noticeably better.

    I'm planning to do another two bookcases before his next visit and hope this might be the start of a process.

  • Well done, NEQ - progress indeed!

    (CK often gives very good advice, I find :wink: )

    Speaking of bookcases, we finally got (most of) our new ones last Thursday. We emptied all the boxes that have stood in the corner of the dining room for two months, trying to sort them into vague categories (I used to work in libraries, so they have to be organised to some extent) and then put as many as we could on the shelves.

    Sadly that still left two or three drawer-fuls to go in the drawers under the divans upstairs...

    The remaining bookcase, to go under the window in Mr. S's study, *should* arrive today. But the first supplier went into liquidation and the latest one has sent the wrong one twice now :angry: so we don't hold out a lot of hope for a successful resolution today.

    Mrs. S, quietly despairing of customer service these days
  • Fingers crossed for the right bookcase to arrive in grand shape today!

    Yay! for all the decluttering yay/progress!
  • It did! (much to our amazement :smile: )
  • Yesterday afternoon we were due to have the loft insulation checked and replenished, which seemed a good moment to declutter what was up there. Apparently I was the only person to clear out the roof space, and the only flat with no need of new insulation, just a bit of tidying up; I suspect the two things are not unconnected - I haven't been trampling over the 300mm drifts of fibre glass or weighting it down with piles of crap. If I don't want something it goes out: charity shop, recycling, bin, large rubbish collection, wherever, not into the roof space.

    There isn't a lot: mostly polystyrene boxes to package Ship mugs, some Christmas decorations and a couple of boxes I wanted to check. Those boxes contained my daughter's school books, craft projects and early "artworks". Her reaction: I didn't want you to keep them at the time; mine: I've lived without them for 15 years, really not needed.

    The likelihood was that the Christmas decorations had absorbed the all-pervading stench of cannabis that permeated the flat throughout December; the (plastic) tree reeked so badly that it was dumped at Epiphany. Cautious opening of the boxes was accompanied by skunk fumes, swiftly followed by the disposal of the Christmas stockings we've both had since our respective childhoods along with most of the tree decorations we've been making/collecting over the years. One very decluttered roof space with only one small box of decorations and additional lightweight insulation from the polystyrene boxes.
  • I’ve completed my clearing out of work stuff :mrgreen:

    I now use the shelves to keep my clothes neat and tidy :mrgreen:

    Now to get back to all the other clutter 🙄
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