Decluttering discussion thread: share your wins, ask for advice, inspire each other!


We have a barn for this, but I’ve accepted I lost the battle when he used tons of old construction material in building our house and saved us thousands of dollars. Also that barn is roofed in 40-year-old tin my father removed from his barn but saved because it was “still good.” Turns out it was, and I have no hope. But it all lives in the barn, not the house! :slight_smile:


I would love it if my dad’s collection could do something like that! Right now, it’s a lot more like “rusty old tools” and “broken furniture that is intensely difficult to repair” and “forty year old climbing gear that’s probably no longer safe.” :frowning: I suspect a lot of it is about holding on to the past – on to who he used to be as opposed to who he is now – and I just really hope that he’ll be able to use some of that stuff more once he retires.

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Today was the closest-to-my-house household hazardous waste dropoff event in my city.

I was going to take a picture this morning before I left (because I packed it up last night in the dark) but I forgot! So imagine the entire back of a small hatchback full of paint and varnish and sealant and paint thinner and deck stain and gasoline and paint stripper and batteries and light bulbs and who knows what all else, all from at least three, but some documented to be more than ten, years ago. All this shit stuff was left in the house when I bought it, and I, as usual, kept it, thinking maybe I would use it. If I do any handy work I am going to buy new materials. Seriously, who knows how old some of that stuff was.

Next I am going to throw away all the random bits and bobs that were also left in the basement. It’s ok to risk having to buy new stuff sometimes.


My partner is pretty resistant to getting rid of stuff. He even saves his old underwear and I guess it worked out because he ended up using some to patch jeans with!


So far this month:

A butter dish to be brought to my mom next time I travel home (it’s a nice heavy ceramic one)

A shirt that is either gonna be returned to active use with the power of OxyClean or turned to rags

I gotta get on it. Time to sort the stockings.


My progress has slowed down over the past few days. Committing here to find at least 30 more things by the end of the weekend.

I really hate having to follow up with people who don’t pick up Buy Nothing items. Whhhyyy would you go to all the trouble of communicating with me to set a time, then never show up??


I am paranoid about responding quickly and being on time for Buy Nothing gifts! I’m never on time, but like, they are giving me things for free. Be cool, yall.


I have, a couple of times, completely forgotten that I was meant to pick something up :expressionless: I’m not proud. But the frequency with which it happens to me as a giver makes me think a lot of people just never pick shit up…?


Me, too! I have to put pickups on my calendar so I don’t forget. Also when I have to set things out for others to get.


You guys, I had a successful Buy Nothing experience! I gave away the cat bed that my cats ignored. I decided to do porch pickup - we’ve never had problems with package theft, and honestly, it’s a free item; if someone steals it before the recipient gets there, yes, it sucks for them but I’m not terribly fussed about it.


I gave stuff to someone who was giving away kitchen stuff. As I trudged the mile back home with a heavy kitchen appliance, I vowed to be more selective about my Buy Nothing scores from now on.

Then I walked by the remains of a BN yard sale, and now I have two yoga mats.

I don’t do yoga.


I can’t tell you how many times I’ve gone through boxes and wondered where the heck I got something, that I totally didn’t need and haven’t used, then realized it was from a free pile in Portland :rofl:


Oh man, about half my clothing in college came from free piles (couldn’t afford much else). Bless the free piles.


There are seriously SO MANY FREE PILES. I am very good about not buying things, but free things are my kryptonite. Next to today’s yoga mat was a pile of clothing. I had been thinking it would be useful to have extra shirts to sleep in, and warmer pants to hike in, and a couple jackets… And now I have those things. Including a rad faded Led Zep tee.

… And a strapless dress that is a bit impossible to wear because I need a bra. BUT WHAT IF IT’S HOT AND I WANT TO BE STYLISH WHEN I AM LOUNGING IN MY HOME???

Sorry everyone. I’m a bad example. Once I can wash this pile and try things on properly, I’ll give some of it away.

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I’m up to 333 items out and 103 in, for a net loss of 230. Still have a long way to go to get to 500 by the end of May.


Oh, and it’s Ewok’s birthday this coming week. So I anticipate we’ll receive quite a few new things and have to declutter even more to get anywhere.

I’m glad I set myself a goal; trying to reach 500 is motivating me to keep pushing through.


Lol free stuff I am terrible with, but at least it’s easier to give away as I don’t have any guilt of spending money on it. I did get rid of a pair of boots that I thought I could get one more winter out of but the sole disintegrated on my feet.


So I don’t know if we accidentally decluttered them thinking they were a different set of sheets, but we CANNOT find out cotton summer sheets anywhere to save our lives. Ripped everything apart in the apartment multiple times, and gave up yesterday and bought a new set. So frustrating! $50 gone, either through a decluttering mistake (during the move I’m sure) or through being so disorganized I can’t find it? It’s just extra frustrating- we really haven’t accumulated much while living here (just mat clothing) and in fact have continued to give things away. But now we can’t find something fairly large like a set of sheets!

I suppose my ‘organization challenge’ is proving itself to be very necessary!


This week I threw out many clothing items that were too ratty to donate.


You know you’re obsessed with getting your house sorted out when you make lists of what to declutter next on your phone while you’re at work…