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I shared our story about decluttering a while ago and it was a post that seemed to resonate with so many of you. It would seem a lot of us are craving a less cluttered existence, and to think as I explained in my last post, decluttering our home happened purely by accident.

Quick back story, we were moving house and our belongings needed to go into storage, we vowed not to pay storage on anything we didn't need or love, hence the great decluttering. It turned out to be one of the best things that could have happened and we have found a less cluttered home makes busy family life so much easier and enjoyable. 

Many of you asked how best to tackle clutter in your home, and seeing as I'm not an expert in this field, more an accidental declutterer (is that even a word? I don't know, but let's just go with it!), I thought I'd share with you the things we found that worked, and more importantly the things that didn't.

Let's start with a big DO NOT. I wouldn't recommend decluttering an entire house in one go like we did unless you really have to, ie moving home, or if you're insane, both of which we were qualified for at the time. It's an exhausting task and you will quickly tire, and the last thing you want to do is give up part way. I know had it not been for our impending moving date I would have absolutely spat the dummy and given up and forever lived in a pile of clutter. No joke.

Instead I would recommend starting off small. Choose an area in your home that would really benefit from decluttering. The kitchen is a good place to start. It tends to be the place where we have the most cupboard space and the most amount of clutter.


When I was sorting through our kitchen it was beyond ridiculous how many duplicates we had of everything. Like mugs, will I ever really need to make 20 cups of tea in one go??! Tea party anyone? I sure hope not. 20 wine glasses however, is a different matter ;).

Simplifying how much you have of one item is a great way to start decluttering. I whittled down all of our mugs, cups, plates, cutlery etc, to a max of eight, you can go lower or higher depending on how many live in your home and how frequently you entertain guests. You'll be surprised by just how much space this simple task will free up. Then apply this method to the rest of your kitchen. Go through all your cooking equipment and utensils, if you have lots of duplicate items that you don't need, get rid of them. By whittling down all these items you'll be freeing up valuable cupboard space in your kitchen. If you're wanting your kitchen surfaces to be clutter free you can then choose the items you use daily to remain out, everything else can now go into your freed up cupboard space.

DO BOX & BAG AS YOU GO. As you start to declutter for a moment it can feel like all you're doing is making a big old mess, and that can be pretty disheartening. It will become all too tempting to just give up and tidy everything away. Therefore have you're bags and boxes ready before you start, label them BIN, RECYCLE, DONATE, SELL. Be honest with yourself about the SELL box, if you don't have time to sell items put them in your donate pile, with the knowledge that it will be benefiting somebody else. As you declutter make sure everything is going straight into the boxes.

Once the boxes and bags are full deal with them there and then if you can. You've gone to the hard work of decluttering don't then have the boxes clutter up your home. Pop them into the car and at the next available point drop them off to be recycled or at your nearest charity shop. Then pat yourself on the back knowing your clutter will either find itself a much needed new home or be recycled. It will no longer be clogging up your house collecting dust.

STORAGE & CUPBOARD SPACES. Poor use of storage space definitely leads to excess clutter spilling out into a home. I have an awful habit for shoving unwanted items into cupboards which then leaves little room for the things we actually need and use. It's all very well storing seasonal or occasional use items, but anything you don't need or ever use should go. Free up that space for the stuff you really need storing.



COLLECT MEMORIES NOT THINGS. I have this quote up in our home, and for an old sentimental gal like me, these are wise, wise words, in the larger but also smaller sense. I used to keep EVERYTHING. Cards, postcards, letters, ticket stubs, receipts, magazines, you name it. Most of these things were kept for sentimental reasons but the sheer quantity of them was unnecessary. I now choose my keepsakes wisely, because once a sentimental old soul, always a sentimental old soul.

This quote and the whole decluttering experience has really changed my view on what I purchase for our home too. I no longer have this incessant need to fill my home with stuff. Instead, I want our home to be filled with memories, and I want our belongings to reflect those memories too. From the ABC tall boy cabinet in Caleb's room which we bought whilst pregnant with him, from the hooks in our dining room which my granddad pulled out of a skip when they were tearing down my mum's old primary school. See, I told you I am sentimental. Do not mistake decluttering for having no sentimental value on things.



I hope this has shed some light on how we decluttered, and I really hope our experience is of some use to you. Please let me know if decide to declutter and if you find any of these tips useful. I can't express how much this has been a positive experience for us. If you decide to declutter remember it should be a gradual process as you're likely to be working through a lifetime's worth of possessions, which you won't just magically sort through overnight. Once you start though, you'll realise the benefits that can come from decluttering your home, and you can slowly work towards having less clutter.

If you missed my last post about decluttering you can find it here!

8 comments

  1. Oh Claire!! I ABSOLUTELY LOVE THIS!! Having visited your home a few times you know how I have been so desperate for you to do this post. It’s such a calm space and just reading this I feel super motivated to get cracking and have a massive spring de-clutter, room by room, starting with the kitchen! Love you xxx

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    1. Ahh thank you. darling! I've so wanted our home to be a calm space, well as calm as it can be with two young boys, ha! So you saying that makes me so happy, that you get that vibe from our home.

      I adore your home, you're living my country home dream xx

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  2. Claire! You would fall over if you ever stepped foot in our flat... the clutter would hurt your eyes!! Love this post so much - gosh you have no idea how much we NEED to do this. I think when we move in the near future this will be when we tackle this properly and I'll for sure be re-reading this and chanting your memories quote!!!!! fab post darling xxx

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    1. Thank you, darling! I think big shake up moments in your life like moving led itself to a big declutter. Just start plenty in advance, you don't want to do it how I did, ha! Promise me you'll forever keep that mug game strong ;) xxx

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  3. I love this Claire!! As a sentimental soul like you the fact that you have those hooks from your Mum's old primary school is actually making me well up! My dad made us a candle holder out of one of the beams of the house I grew up in. All these tips are brilliant and the fact that you decluttered in on go is sensational. It took me 5 house moves over 6 years to eventually get to the point where I actual felt like I'd finished!! xxx

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    1. Oh my goodness, that sounds like one beautiful candle holder. What a truly amazing keepsake. I think this proves you can still be totally sentimental and live in a less cluttered home. I still get shudders thinking about all the stuff I sorted through when we moved, it was not a task I relished, but the rewards have been huge. Thanks so much for reading xx

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  4. Love this post! I went on a big declutter bender last year as most nesting pregnant mamas do, and it felt amazing. I am still going strong but can always use realistic tips, this post is so great. From your photos your home looks clean, cosy, and calm. Love it!
    Jules
    xxx

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  5. Yes, yes, yes!!! Been waiting for this post, you are such a pro declutterer and again I can't wait to get stuck into all my cupboards. You have such a beautiful home and you always inspire me so much! Love that those hooks came from your Grandad, I've always adored those! Fab post darling xxx

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