Declutter Step 1 Front Closet

Declutter – to remove unnecessary items from (an untidy or overcrowded place).

Seems easy right?

Decluttering is hard.

What if I need it?
So and so gave it to me.
It cost a lot of money.
I’m sure I’ll use it someday!

Does this sound familiar??

You think you need the stuff or that maybe you will really use it at some point.
But the reality of it is it just sits there and gathers dust.
You don’t use it you just can’t part with it. How do you rid your house of it?

Firstly, ask yourself do I use it, do I love it, does it make me happy? If the answer is no it goes.

I started this section on my blog to keep me accountable. Hopefully, I will inspire you along the way!
Don’t get me wrong I have held on to things way longer than I should.
It’s all good. Let’s go through this together. Help each other. We can do this!

So, today I’m starting in the front of my house and working my way through it.

The Coat Closet
The Coat Closet

This is a constant pain in my declutter process. I have reorganized this closet multiple times over the 16 years we have lived here. So the “bones” are there. I am hoping to do this on a 25.00 budget. Normally I like to do this on a zero dollar budget since downsizing isn’t about buying more things it’s about getting rid of things. But in this instance, I really want to get rid of all the cheap wire hangers and plastic freebie hangers that break under the weight of winter coats.
I do live in Ohio so we have some heavy coats.
The weight of winter coats have broken and bent many a hanger in my day so new hangers are a must.

The first thing to do is to remove everything.


In the real world, this would be step one.

But in my world….

Step one, remove things from the top shelf slowly. Decide one thing at a time, Don’t overwhelm yourself. This is my reality. While it may not be the way some want to do it this is the way I prefer it isn’t overwhelming. Having your closet throw up in your living room isn’t my idea of a stress-free situation. So I do it slowly. One thing at a time, decide, save, toss, or donate.

While doing this I ran into this…

My first problem exhibit A:

Family Memories

I need to handle this properly. These are important memories.
While I still have the camera that plays these I have somehow misplaced the cord to be able to play these and I have also misplaced the video player that I can use to put these in the VCR so I can record them on DVDs.
This, my friends, made a one-day project turn in a week long process. These little tapes threw a wrench in my plans. I have spent hours looking for a replacement cord which of course JVC thought it would be wonderful to have their own cord that can only be used on JVC equipment making it impossible to find a cord.

So I decided I better set these aside or the closet will be forgotten. Don’t worry I will investigate further…

Sometimes, my friends, you need to do this just to be able to move on.

Since I didn’t get to finish it on the weekend it sat all week and I did, however, make myself take out one thing at least every day and either donate, throw away, or find the proper home for it.

When I say find the proper home I don’t mean just move it to another place to get it out of the way. It didn’t belong there so it is moved to its proper home. Such as, extra school pictures. They were put in their proper home where they can be kept safe.

After much deliberating, I decided to get new hangers I spent just under $16.00 for enough hangers to hang the remaining coats after a large purge of coats with extra left over for when people come to visit so they will have hangers to hang up their coats.

Empty hangers were left where we keep the vacuum cleaner on purpose. This is where guests can hang their coats. That way there are no coats in the way of pulling out the vacuum on a regular basis. There is nothing worse then when you pull out a coat and the vacuum falls on your foot! True story! This has happened many times! Let me just say OUCH!

Now fast forward to this weekend.

We have a kitchen garbage bag full of coats, mittens, hats, purses, and hangers. We donated everything to a local church that passes them out to families in need. We also have a bag of shoes to donate as well. Nothing makes you feel better than knowing you are giving your unloved things to someone that will love them.

For Christmas one year we had made a tag for our dog Tobie. We couldn’t find if for like a year. It was finally found in the closet. Can I just say DD was very happy to find it! The tag has his name and my cell phone number on it in case he gets loose or lost.Tobie is now proudly wearing his tag so everyone will know who he belongs to. See what decluttering can do!

Today there wasn’t putting it off anymore it has to be done!

To finish, I purchased some command strip hooks that were $9.00 for a bulk pack. These were used these to hang up DH’s hats and my purse that I don’t use on a daily basis. To be honest, my purse hung on a dining room chair all the time. Not a pretty site 🙁 I know. My DH would walk past the closet and hang his coat over the dining room chair, I guess I was kind of doing the same thing with my purse. We must lead by example right??

Here are the after pictures.

Right side all the boy’s coats.

Sorry so close.

Left side/ girl's side
Left side/ girl’s side


Full view without the doors

I want to say the brown bag hanging up in the back isn’t my purse 🙂 it’s my grocery bags, I don’t use plastic bags instead I use reusable bags. Love them! You totally need to invest in them. They are great and save the environment. If you really don’t want to use them please recycle your plastic bags at the store.

What you can’t see very well in the pictures is that there are 2 shoe racks hanging side by side I use these for mittens, hats, scarves, I also put my flip flops in some of the cubbies since I won’t need them for a few months and shoes I don’t wear very often.

The top shelf is empty on purpose. For one, when going to sell, the more empty a space is the better. Secondly, I can store things we use daily up there like DS gym bag he uses it three days a week. This is a temporary thing but space is available.
Total cost just under $25.00 total.

Got questions? Ask them I’ll tell you what I did.Any ideas love to hear them!

Work it, Dream it, Discuss it here.