My office/craft room is a disaster.
Somehow, in a very short time, it’s gotten completely out of control. When I don’t know where to put anything–in the office/craft room it goes. Now I can barely walk through it. It’s seriously interfering with my creativity. I can’t even reach my sewing machine. I have a craft room where I can’t find the crafts.
It’s always hard to figure out where to start when things get bad, but I made up my mind to start with the closet where I have all kinds of clothes stashed that I never wear. Clothes on hangers, clothes in baskets, clothes everywhere. Clothes that I never wear.
I made the first pass through the closet and came up with a mountainous pile. Only the closet looked almost the same. (How is that possible?) I took a break, reflected on the meaning of life and all this excess clothing that I never wear.
And I took a second pass at the closet.
And a third.
Then I let Morgan pick out whatever she wanted.
She took like four or five items. I found her pickiness very inspiring. I thought about Ross, carrying everything he owned away in a seabag. And I was inspired. I thought about an entire closet to organize and store things I might actually use and I was inspired. I made another pass at the closet, and another. Weston’s girlfriend came over, and she took a couple of pretty dresses that she liked.
Morgan was a real helper. She made fun of almost every piece of clothing. (“That looks like something an American Girl doll would wear!” etc.) She helped bag the clothes up and said “NO!” when I considered keeping something. We went through all my drawers, too, and all the baskets and piles.
In the end, I took out almost every single item of clothing in the closet.
What was I doing with all those clothes anyway? I rarely wear anything but t-shirts and jeans, and the few times in the past year that I’ve needed something dressier, I usually went out and bought something new because I have no desire to wear any of those old clothes–they either don’t fit, are desperately out of style, or have various other issues (a tear, a stain, missing buttons, and so on–and none of those issues are worth correcting because I don’t like any of the clothes enough to make the effort with them). Some of the clothes were actually mistakes when I bought them and I never wore them at all. Whatever the case, I don’t want to wear any of those clothes now or in the future and most of them I haven’t worn in at least 5 years if not 10–so why was I keeping them? That is not how I want to live, surrounded by purposeless excess.
I did think about whether I should save some items just for the material. You know, for crafts! Who knows what craft project could come up 15 years from now where I will need just that exact piece of material. I might need that. And that. AND THAT!!!! Who knows what piece of material I might need over the next 30 years! OH MY GOD, WHAT WAS I DOING? PUT IT ALL BACK IN THE CLOSET!!
Then I stopped myself before I fell back into the black hole of hoarding. I saved a very small percentage of the clothes, things I remembered wearing at least within the past year or two, and bagged up all the rest of that crack like a drug addict determined to get clean.
And I gave it all away.
It’s one of the most liberating things I’ve ever done.