The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

drawer 1

05 Apr The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

 

Perhaps you’ve read The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up subtitled the Japanese art of decluttering and organizing by Marie Kondo. Recently I reached my breaking point of being disorganized.The only area in my home remotely organized was my sewing room.

LCMOF TUP

I got a taste of the book on my flight to Scottsdale inspiring me to keep my suitcase organized while there, but I read the book in its entirety on the flight home and have been tidying up for the last four days…….. in my bedroom. It’s a must read book for anyone desiring to get organized which takes approximately six months and starts with clothes. Now that my clothes are organized I’m ready for more, but first I want to share my progress with you.

Getting rid of clothes is extremely difficult for me since nearly every item is a potential refashion opportunity, but Marie’s philosophy of letting go eventually penetrated my desire to keep everything. The two-fold magic happened during the folding process as I examined the condition and quality of clothes, AND as I learned a new organization method. Marie teaches clients to fold sweaters, knit tops, scarves, PJs etc… into rectangles which are stacked vertically.

My drawers went from this

drawer 1

to this.

001 facebook_cover (1)

Scarves, shoes, jeans, dresses, tops, and all clothes are not only organized but easily accessible without disrupting the other clothes.  It is life changing and my guilt is gone.

I suppose I could have finished organizing my clothes a day earlier if I didn’t sew.

One of the questions one is to ask before keeping or discarding an item of clothing is whether or not it brings you joy.……  I own many clothes that bring me joy that needed some TLC. Lots of buttons were replaced and many stains were removed but below are a few favorite saves.

1. Bedhead Pajamas

I could not discard one of my favorite Christmas gifts from 2011. The bottoms were ripped in the abs through the drawstring. The top was missing buttons. After adding a triangle shape of fabric to fill in the rip, replacing buttons and pressing the piping my favorite PJs are ready for bed 🙂

White triangle repairs rip.

White triangle repairs rip.

Note how pressing the piping added length back to the left leg :)

Note how pressing the piping added length back to the left leg 🙂

BEFORE

BEFORE

AFTER

AFTER

2. An early favorite –  Simplicity 2497 . My unprofessional hem had fallen out and was replaced with a new narrow hem.

IMG_0015

AFTER

AFTER

3. Tunic sewn from Grandmother’s Sheet.

I originally made the tunic with a back zipper which distracted from the overall appearance of the top. I also thought the length of the sleeves were in no man’s land, plus they wrinkled when I bent my arms.

WITH ZIPPER    WITHOUT ZIPPER AND SHORTENED SLEEVES

WITH ZIPPER WITHOUT ZIPPER AND SHORTENED SLEEVES

IMG_0051

 The one rule I could not follow was throwing away random buttons. 😉

Organizing anything brings about a time of reflection for me, but as a sewist, every garment was scrutinized regardless of its destiny! Sentimental reflection segued into technical examination confirming my sewing strengths and weaknesses, the advantages of sewing and exposing me to a few RTW details, especially in shirt construction.

Best of all ……  now that my life has been changed ………. I can passionately return to my favorite hobby with clarity and purpose!

So here’s to the life-changing magic of tidiness  – may it improve your sewing and all other life pursuits 🙂

goodbyevalentino
goodbyevalentino@gmail.com
95 Comments
  • Sarah Jo Harris
    Posted at 21:04h, 05 April Reply

    Your tunic from Grandmother’s sheet is how I found your blog! That Cynthia Rowley pattern is one of the first I sewed! A Google search for help led me to you.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:31h, 05 April Reply

      Sarah Jo, You have confirmed that my effort to repair my favorite clothes was worthwhile 🙂 Many thanks!

  • Art Attack
    Posted at 21:10h, 05 April Reply

    W.O.W. I am ordering this book this minute and one for my sister. She and I were just having a discussion about “stuff” this afternoon so your post is most fortuitous. I need a life changing nudge to get me on the organization path. Thanks for the good chi!
    Hugs,
    Dorca

    • Art Attack
      Posted at 21:11h, 05 April Reply

      misspelled my own name…lol

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:32h, 05 April Reply

      I think you’ll love this, Dorcas – an entirely new philosophy and process to getting and staying organizing!

  • Mary Funt
    Posted at 21:18h, 05 April Reply

    Organizing and decluttering: something I desperately need to do.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:34h, 05 April Reply

      LOL! Clutter has been part of my life for way too long – I’m thrilled to be getting a handle on reducing this stuff, Mary 🙂

  • Julie Starr
    Posted at 21:21h, 05 April Reply

    Count me among those who also desperately needs help in this area. The contents of every drawer, closet and cupboard in my house (with the exception of my sewing room) could easily be reduced by half and I’d never miss a thing. Thanks for the inspiration to take charge and tackle it:))

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:34h, 05 April Reply

      Julie – I believe you’ll find the book immensely helpful 🙂

  • Eileen
    Posted at 21:25h, 05 April Reply

    Those organized drawers look great! Time for me to tackle mine…..let me know when you find the book
    that inspires us to KEEP them organized. Great post. Time for Spring cleaning.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:35h, 05 April Reply

      LOL! Marie’s philosophy is so fresh and practical that I think it will work 🙂

  • Karen Harris
    Posted at 21:27h, 05 April Reply

    Great tips I going to apply to my closet. Thanks for sharing.
    Karen

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 21:36h, 05 April Reply

      Good luck, Karen 🙂

  • Sew, Jean Margaret
    Posted at 21:29h, 05 April Reply

    There must be something in the air. I have just finished a huge declutter and tidy up of my wardrobe, inspired by Project 333 and The Vivienne Files. It is amazing how much better you feel after a good tidy up. Sounds like a wonderfully helpful book.

    • Angela
      Posted at 23:07h, 05 April Reply

      I just read about Project 333 last week, but I’ve never heard of the Vivienne Files (time to google, sounds interesting). Honestly, I think I already do the Project 333 idea simply because I have SO few clothes. Truly, you’d think I was a broke college student the way I dress. I need to lose 20 pounds, so I keep putting off making new clothes while being depressed about my current clothing. OY!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:56h, 06 April Reply

      Very interesting, Jean! I just googled both of these topics which seem like an excellent way to declutter 🙂

  • Stephanie
    Posted at 21:46h, 05 April Reply

    i read the book last weekend and with one week left before going back to work I Konmari’d my entire house! I feel so much better now and I couldn’t believe how many trashbags and ‘donate’ boxes we dragged out of the house! I just hope I can keep it this way 🙂

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:53h, 06 April Reply

      Congratulations, Stephanie! I bet you can keep it tidy after all of the hard work you put into the project. 🙂 Good luck!

  • Dilliander
    Posted at 22:36h, 05 April Reply

    Sounds like a great book, your newly folded drawers are so neat!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:51h, 06 April Reply

      Thanks, Dilliander! I believe the folding process can be applied throughout the house 🙂

  • Angela
    Posted at 23:03h, 05 April Reply

    LOL, it is hard to imagine that any part of your life isn’t organized to military perfection!

    Anyhow, I finished this book about a month ago, and I’ve been working my way through my house using her principles. The idea of only keeping what “sparks joy” is such a different focus than trying to focus on what to get rid of… and her discussion about how things that cause a struggle come from an attachment to the past or concerns about the future. The end result has been that by focusing on things that bring joy I’ve been able to clear out quite a bit more from the house and I am not done yet! The amount of things that I have kept because of …. well, any number of reasons…. but not because the item gives me joy… has been astounding! No wonder I walked into my closet (I’ve started in there, but haven’t’ finished) and felt down and kind of sad.

    So, I have more work to do, but I am excited! For so very long, I’ve wanted to sew more (my sewing time has been so very small) but felt like I always had things to clean up in the house. It isn’t dirty, just cluttered, and I could never feel comfortable doing much sewing when I knew that in the loft/closet/etc. was a mess.

    About the folding – when first I read her thoughts on folding i raised an eyebrow…. then thought about it awhile …. and decided to give it a try. First victim – my teenage son, who owns so many T-shirts that were stacked in his drawers, and rather shoved down. He wore the few on the tops of the piles over and over because well, he is a teen and not one to go searching through piles of T-shirts. After folding them so they stand up and rearranging his drawer – he is wearing a much more varied wardrobe! And indeed, the clothes don’t have as many wrinkles. Go figure.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:50h, 06 April Reply

      Many thanks, Angela for your email! I could not make or buy another item of clothing until I addressed the issue of my closet……. which led to the book and now my 6 month journey to tidy, BUT I will sew in the process.
      I thought about starting with hub’s t-shirts, but eventually decided to focus on my mess. How I LOVE this new folding process 🙂

  • Andrea
    Posted at 23:05h, 05 April Reply

    Love that book! I’m an organizer and cleaner by nature, but even organizers and cleaners can have their Achilles heels and little areas that get cluttered. Folding and hanging clothes neatly just feels better, doesn’t it?!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:45h, 06 April Reply

      Boy, do I ever feel better! Having a plan and a system for tidying is also new to me 🙂

  • Rosaline
    Posted at 03:13h, 06 April Reply

    I both he book last Friday in dutch (living in the flamish part of belgium). I’m 65 now and my house is full of things from my own, my mother and my mother in law.
    My sewing room is full of textiles, papers, cards, magazines…
    I have so many plans for sewing but every time i go in my sewing room i spent an hour by making space on my table.
    So it is time i read the book.
    I wonder if it will help me to see the difference between things to hold as souvenir and things that are not worth the space they have in my closets.
    I Don’t think it will be easy
    Rosaline

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:40h, 06 April Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Rosaline! I think projects like this are difficult in the beginning but get easier as you move along. This is why Marie recommends starting with clothes and leaving sentimental items for last. Good luck!

  • Jenny L
    Posted at 03:53h, 06 April Reply

    I have my name down on a reservation for this book at the local library. There are many ahead of me and I would like to buy it but I am trying to declutter my books as well as my home. I have made a start with my scarves though.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:39h, 06 April Reply

      Thank you for your comment, Jenny and good luck with the book. I could not believe the difference and effectiveness of tidying my scarves by folding and stacking vertically in a shoebox 🙂

  • Karen B.
    Posted at 06:47h, 06 April Reply

    Thanks for the encouragement on decluttering. A nasty illness,”a weight loss and a fitbit have changed my perspective on a lot of things. The yarn that tangled while on the swift (2 hours to untangle!) foretold a bumpy road ahead. Gone. Lots of “doggie” sweatshirts will become a treasured throw. The fabric stash is being used up. I feel like I am no longer suffocating and the deep breath of a, clean space is amazing, empowering and refreshing. Of, and a certain financial guru once said that a good decluttering is often the first step towards a weight loss and control over one’s money. I just went through Aunt Marie’s linens last night…..hmmmm.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:36h, 06 April Reply

      Karen, Thank you for your email and your wise advice. We never know what’s around the corner for sure………
      ……. and I do love the financial guru’s comment on decluttering 🙂
      Hope you have recovered from your illness.

  • Karen B.
    Posted at 06:48h, 06 April Reply

    And don’t forget to use those good dishes, silverware and linens. Enjoy them now. We never know what that next mammogram might say.

    • Meme
      Posted at 11:19h, 06 April Reply

      Best boomer advice I’ve heard in a long time. My aging FB friends agree. Thanks for the reminder.

  • Becry bagwell
    Posted at 07:21h, 06 April Reply

    I want your Pjs!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:33h, 06 April Reply

      You can have them if you really want them! How do you think they would fit you ? 😉

  • Heidi Blanke
    Posted at 07:30h, 06 April Reply

    I read this book a month ago and immediately redid a couple of drawers. Sad;y, I got rid of most of my drawer space a long time ago because I hung all my clothes in a summer closet and a winter closet. (I mean everything but underwear and pajamas.) The concept of loving what I own and thanking those items for their use stuck with me and enabled me to part with items guilt-free. So far, the few drawers I did are still neatly folded. Glad to “talk” with someone else who read this book.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 07:59h, 06 April Reply

      Many thanks for your comment, Heidi 🙂 I delighted to read your drawers are still neat and believe the folding system is the key to success.

  • Meigan
    Posted at 07:37h, 06 April Reply

    I have just finished reading this book too. It is awesome. I was skeptical about her folding method, but wow, what a difference in how much my drawers can hold!

    I totally agree with you about saving buttons. They absolutely should not be thrown out!
    🙂

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:23h, 06 April Reply

      Thanks for the comment Meigan. I really love being able to see everything in the drawer….. and adding to my button collection 🙂 🙂

  • kathi giumentaro
    Posted at 07:42h, 06 April Reply

    I read this book last week. We spent Saturday tidying our clothing. It was amazing to see all our clothing on the floor in our living. we donated 16 bags. It feels good to down size.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:24h, 06 April Reply

      I’m impressed that you tidied your clothing in ONE day! You must be a great decision maker, Kathi 🙂 Congratulations!

  • Vicki Maiorano
    Posted at 07:44h, 06 April Reply

    I have had that book on to read list for awhile and have been rolling my knits as instructed ever since I heard about it.
    sounds like I need to get a copy.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:25h, 06 April Reply

      If you’re making rectangles out of your clothes already, then this book is for you, Vicki!

  • Patti Hall
    Posted at 08:24h, 06 April Reply

    If your library has Hoopla (www.hoopladigital.com), the audiobook is available without a wait. I listened to it while I cleaned out!! When I first started, I thought she was just a little too OCD, but it does make a difference! When I folded and organized my drawers of socks, tights, and exercise wear, I found I had a lot more items than I thought and don’t need any more!! As I change my closet over to spring and summer clothing, I am inspecting it all and giving up what doesn’t “spark joy”. Now on to the rest of the house…

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:27h, 06 April Reply

      Such a great suggestion, Patti! Congratulations on getting your clothes sorted and organized 🙂

  • Cherie McCallum
    Posted at 09:07h, 06 April Reply

    I read this book 3 weeks ago and it turned my thinking up side down. I am slowly making progress in my home and my “home away from home”(aka sewing room) guilt free is great.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:28h, 06 April Reply

      Guilt free and happy to see your belongings. No wonder Marie thanks her belongings for giving her joy when she comes home each day 🙂

  • Tia Dia
    Posted at 09:21h, 06 April Reply

    I have never read the book, but…. Toss random buttons?!?! Never! I have very little room for clutter, so tend to be over-organized in my little house, especially since I have three daughters! Love the neatness of the ‘after’ drawers – you can see everything!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:30h, 06 April Reply

      Well some people are neat and organized by nature, I guess. I’m jealous , LOL!
      Many thanks for your comment Tia Dia 🙂

  • june lovell
    Posted at 10:14h, 06 April Reply

    i bought the book for my iPad Kindle quite a while ago and I have started the process. thanks for your reminder of how wonderful it feels to get those panties/socks/bras/tops folded and accessible.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:37h, 06 April Reply

      …… and thank you, June for the commet 🙂 🙂

    • Karen B.
      Posted at 21:31h, 09 April Reply

      June, I bought the Kindle version too because that meant one less book on the bookshelf. I am making an effort to get pdfs of knitting patterns I like so the books don’t pile up.

  • B
    Posted at 10:42h, 06 April Reply

    I bought the book on Amazon (around $10), read it and am ready to proceed. I first, though, organized my husband’s tee shirts in the new way, he took one look and said, “I love it” (sort of out of character for him to talk that way, so he must have been impressed). Going to start on my stuff soon,. leaving my sewing room to near the end because it will be the hardest. We moved a couple of years ago and my sewing room and closet area were cut into 1/3 of the space I had before. My Mom was a sewist, I have all of her and my mother-in-law’s fabric, must have 6 pairs of scissors, etc. Am looking forward to letting go of the clutter. Thanks for your post.

    • Angela
      Posted at 15:49h, 06 April Reply

      I understand leaving the sewing room until the end … and having many pairs of scissors! LOL! I went through and did get rid of a bunch of fabric, but I need to weed through an embarrassing amount of sewing books, notions, etc. and I dare say – another run through the fabric. Thankfully, I know someone here that will gladly take it – they are teaching girls to sew and are always happy to get donations to work on. I KNOW I will be happier when the sewing room is decluttered, but that will be one of the more difficult areas for me.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:40h, 06 April Reply

      Oh wow – you have your work cut out for you with TWO inherited fabric collections!
      Starting with you hub’s t-shirts was a great way to enter in to the process. Good luck 🙂

  • VictoriaR
    Posted at 10:57h, 06 April Reply

    My husband recently got the book, but we are doing a lot of thinking before diving in. My husband is a life time saver and re-purposer so it will be a long journey for us. I’m glad to see what results from applying Marie’s ideas.

    • Angela
      Posted at 15:50h, 06 April Reply

      I am quite impressed that your hubby got the book and read it – wouldn’t happen here. However, he is such a clutterholic that I wish he would read it with an open mind. Well, I’ll keep hoping that my decluttering will wear off on him someday without me saying anything.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:43h, 06 April Reply

      My husband has a tough time letting go of things, but he voluntarily began tidying this weekend and seemed to enjoy it. I was stunned but very pleased!

  • Donna Ribinson
    Posted at 14:01h, 06 April Reply

    I almost picked up this book last week and your post convinced me to go ahead and buy it – and follow it. I’ve been going through my closets and still trying to decide what to do with some items. This may be the key to making decisions. Thank you for a great post!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:44h, 06 April Reply

      Donna, If you are already ready to tidy then the book will quickly step up the process!
      Good luck! 😉

  • Rosie Sparkleneedles
    Posted at 14:11h, 06 April Reply

    Oh thanks so much for writing about this book! I was given it for Christmas as a not-so-subtle hint from my mum, but haven’t read it yet. This is just the kick up the posterior I needed! xx

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:45h, 06 April Reply

      Thank you for the comment, Rosie – Mum will surely be proud 🙂 !!

  • Susie
    Posted at 14:55h, 06 April Reply

    Good to hear it is helpful. I have read a lot about the book, but not the book itself. I really need to do something about my closet, also! I did use the “spark joy” phrase while helping my daughter clean her closet last weekend, and she filled two large contractor bags.

    I imagine it is hard to pitch things with the mentality that there is a second (or third) life for them with refashioning. And I would keep the buttons, too!

    Perhaps I will buy a kindle edition. My bookcases are overflowing.

    • Angela
      Posted at 15:52h, 06 April Reply

      Yep, I bought the Kindle version also! Same thing… after getting rid of a couple hundred books at least, I couldn’t bring myself to purchase another physical book (about decluttering no less!) when the Kindle version was available .

      • goodbyevalentino
        Posted at 17:51h, 06 April Reply

        We have not done books yet……… that’s going to be tough 🙂

        • Angela
          Posted at 19:43h, 06 April Reply

          Books are very hard. Very. But – those open spaces are so freeing mentally!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:50h, 06 April Reply

      I also learned of an audio version. (see Patti Hall’s comment). The only reason I’m glad I bought the book is because my husband has picked it up and started tidying too 🙂
      Many thanks for the comment, Susie and good luck!

  • Sandra Parker
    Posted at 15:33h, 06 April Reply

    Funny how the universe listens… just this morning, I walked into my closet and thought to myself that I really need to do a full inventory of what I have and discard/give away or keep. This after the realization this weekend as I was folding laundry and putting it away that I have a ton of t-shirts! I also filled a large plastic trash bag of clothes I made when I started sewing (3 yrs ago) that I no longer wear because they are awful and poorly made. I think I kept them because I felt bad in giving them away (throwing them away!) because I felt emotionally attached. During lunch today, I went to B&N and bought the book. I also realized that most of my work trousers were given to me by sis-in -law (she lost weight and they no longer fit) soon after she bought them. In fact, some were never worn. That was almost 4 yrs ago.
    Now that I sew and am perfecting the fit on shorts, I can make pants! I also realized that last year, I only bought 2 RTW jeans and underwear the ENTIRE YEAR!!
    I can make my own clothes!! Looking forward to reading the book and taking action.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 17:54h, 06 April Reply

      Congratulations, Sandra! I too, threw away some me-made clothes that just didn’t work. I have come a long way on the sewing scene though and found I really like many of my self made clothes better than the RTW. It was a great feeling !

  • Denise Dooley
    Posted at 16:20h, 06 April Reply

    My sister gave me this book after we spent weeks going through our mother’s house after moving her to assisted living. In the last week I have been working on clothes and now love how my closet looks. I want to have the rest of the house look like the closet. I will likely do my sewing room last, after mementos. I know there are patterns and fabric which will not “spark joy.” What are others doing with sewing supplies? Are there any good organizations out there who would benefit?

    • Angela
      Posted at 17:11h, 06 April Reply

      Yes – I do understand! While my parents are still in their home right now, they are talking about moving to a small condo or something because the house is getting to be too much, and my mom really doesn’t get up and do anything. My siblings and I have discussed the need for us to all get together and try to start tackling things now, because waiting until the last minute would be a nightmare. The house is just stuffed to the brim, and that is after we’ve worked with her and gotten rid of bags and bags of extra clothes, books, etc. The dread we have about this is enough to motivate me to NOT leave such a mess for my kids later on.

      • Denise Dooley
        Posted at 10:26h, 15 April Reply

        Angela, it was very difficult to work with my mom on her house. We ended up moving her and some of her belongings, then working on clearing it out. We hired an estate sale company who did an excellent job, even directing a lady attending the estate sale, who loved the house, to the real estate agent. We now have a written offer, before it was even on the market. All this produced additional funds to help with any care my mother may need. Since moving to assisted living, her health has improved drastically. She is much more active and social. She was not happy in the beginning, but now loves the place and people. It inspired an aunt and uncle to decide it was time to also find less stressful living situation. I just visited them while my cousins were there trying to help clear out the house. It is very stressful and we all developed some sneaky ways to get rid of items, but it is all worth it to see the quality of life improvements. Good luck to you.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 18:09h, 06 April Reply

      Many thanks for the comment and great questions, Denise! I too want the rest of my house to look like my bedroom and closet! 🙂

    • Angela
      Posted at 19:48h, 06 April Reply

      You could ask on FreeCycle / local homeschool groups – I found a homeschool group that teaches sewing, and they love getting anything sewing related.

    • Angela
      Posted at 19:50h, 06 April Reply

      You could offer on FreeCycle or ask any local homeschool groups – I found a homeschool group that teaches sewing, and they love getting anything sewing related. I’ve given them quite a bit of stuff – not junk, honestly, but also not things that I wanted to bother sewing either.

  • Maggie edger
    Posted at 16:33h, 06 April Reply

    Grandmother is bragging on you. I remember the sheet. How special! She loved her grandkids!,,

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 18:07h, 06 April Reply

      Thanks so much, Maggie! I’ve been thinking about you and hope all goes well 😉

  • Samina
    Posted at 17:49h, 06 April Reply

    I’ve read this book and it IS inspiring – I did some trial vertical-folding in the drawers and totally agree with Marie Kondo (and you).
    One thing I draw the line at — talking to my house, to my possessions, and emptying my purse every night.
    Other than that, I’m looking at my closet with new eyes.
    Thank you for this encouraging post.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 18:06h, 06 April Reply

      Thanks for the comment, Samina! I haven’t started talking to the house yet….. just figured that happens when I’m finally finished six months from now 😉

  • Jean W
    Posted at 18:10h, 06 April Reply

    I haven’t heard of anyone who has read this book and not loved it and has been changed! I need to order a copy now and get reading. Love the way your drawers look now.

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:17h, 07 April Reply

      Thank you, Jean! Best of all the drawers are still tidy 🙂

  • Anna O'Day
    Posted at 18:26h, 06 April Reply

    Love this! I’ve been toying with the idea of reading the book. This has pushed me over the edge, I think. Now reading about it is one thing and doing it is another. I’ve been engrossed in the Elizabeth Leichty book “Fitting & Pattern Alteration.” It is like reading a novel to me!

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 09:17h, 07 April Reply

      Thank you, Anna! You are reading a book I would really like read 😉

  • Mitzi Richardson
    Posted at 13:13h, 07 April Reply

    I grew up the neat child of chaotically disorganized parents. While you could not safely perform open-heart surgery on my floors, I do like things clean and orderly. Five years ago I fell in love with and married a perambulating mess who is also the kindest, sweetest, most loyal and loving man in the world. We are both old, so we just laugh, and he is getting better, but we both know that we are just different and that’s ok.
    I love organizing books. Thanks for sharing about this one. Two principles that I find very useful are open space and containerizing. Everything on my shelves and in drawers is in some sort of box, bin, tray, etc. This keeps stacks from toppling over and makes retrieving items and cleaning dresser tops, shelves, etc. so-o-o-o much easier. Open space is not *nothing*. Shelves not crammed to overflowing not only look better, but also nothing gets lost and everything is easier to get to.
    Best wished to you on your organizing adventure. It is kind of fun, isn’t it?

  • Nancy
    Posted at 14:00h, 07 April Reply

    Isn’t this funny – or maybe not …. I just finished a spring outfit and decided I need to stop sewing for a couple of weeks and do a closet purge. How appropriate that you would write this post. I think I shall tackle my clothes first and then my son’s closet. I love the drawer organization., This could be a wonderful solution for my son’s dresser as well as my own. Thanks so much!

  • Claire
    Posted at 19:29h, 07 April Reply

    Your drawers look great! I really love that idea of not “disrupting” other clothes. It sounds like the book teaches readers to respect the “dignity” of stuff through this “joy” exercise. Im hoping that this will help build a long-lasting organizational mindset, as opposed to viewing organization as something we deign to attack once and then check off our list. I sure hope so, b/c i’m very much in the latter camp. I resent how much precious evening/weekend time I spend organizing/re-organizing/cleaning our small apartment. I can’t even imagine taking on an entire house. Best of luck!

  • Wrenaissance Art
    Posted at 12:42h, 09 April Reply

    Congrats on getting your closets in order! Somehow I always find that things that *ought* to go to Goodwill manage to sneak into the “wait 1 more season” storage box, lol.
    Remember books can always be donated to a local library or school! Community colleges can often use even older books on sewing and fashion for their vocational programs. A year or two ago, I gave away most of my art and art history books to a local design college that was recently opened and needed to stock its library shelves.

  • Karen B.
    Posted at 21:40h, 09 April Reply

    The one idea from the book that I have embraced is holding an item, thanking it and telling it that I am sending it along to someone who will love it and cherish it. I had the doll clothes patterns that my mom used to make clothes for my dolls, and it was so easy to part with them after thanking them for joy in my childhood and telling them that they needed to go to someone who would use them to give joy to another little girl.

  • Ginger
    Posted at 11:09h, 12 April Reply

    I can’t get rid of random buttons, either! I get such a high when I’m able to use one to finish off a new garment! 🙂

  • Sue Bateman
    Posted at 08:26h, 13 April Reply

    Hi Sarah, I have read the book and am following your lead. . I am organising my whole house one room at a time saving my sewing room to last 🙂

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:53h, 15 April Reply

      Congratulations, Sue! I am also saving my sewing room for last although it is (was) the most organized room in our home 🙂

  • Sheree
    Posted at 02:26h, 14 April Reply

    Having read about this book on various blogs, I finally felt inspired by yours to buy the book at the weekend. Fired with enthusiasm, I got started. I love the simplicity of it and to open the drawers and see all my neatly folded socks is wonderful. Same with all my t shirts – now all in only one drawer instead of three.
    I have a niggling doubt though. When life gets really busy and I have a pile of washing to put away will I still have the time and patience to do all that folding?

    • goodbyevalentino
      Posted at 06:52h, 15 April Reply

      Hi Sheree!
      I asked myself the same thing and so far so good 🙂 My drawers are so easy to maintain now that I am inspired to keep it up and hope you can too!

  • Cindy C.
    Posted at 08:20h, 15 April Reply

    Just the upright, folded tops in a drawer would be enough to lower my blood pressure. And to think that all of us routinely paw through stacks of stuff in our drawers to uncover the one thing we know we own and want to wear that day. That’s a low-level frustration that we accept as normal because it just hasn’t occurred to us that there is any other way, both in that and in other storage challenges.. I can hardly wait to get this book and achieve its “new normal.” Looks like the entire home environment could be totally revolutionized with those methods. And, as a visually disabled individual, I could certainly use the help! Thank you so much for sharing this book with us!

  • Barbara Speer
    Posted at 20:02h, 23 April Reply

    Your blog inspired me to buy the book. So far I have done my clothes and it seems to be a miracle. I gained about 4 feet of closet space just by folding tops and putting purses inside of one another. Thanks so much. Love your blog, it goer me back to sewing.

    Barbara

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