The Great Purge of 2018 (Part 1)

Here goes, the post you’ve been waiting for if you’re anything like me…

…an itemized summary of The Great Purge of 2018!

Now before we get going, I do want to disclaimer that some of the items departed my possession prior to 2018. I’m still counting them, however, as they left after I made the goal to get rid of 50% of my belongings, and they only left prior to 2018 because of my emergency move. I’d also like to correct myself – I said I had 745 items in that post, but the move revealed some items I forgot to include. My actual total was 756 prior to the purge.

I’ve debated how to share the Great Purge stats with y’all. I was going to share room by room, but things have continually shifted, so the data wouldn’t reflect accurately. With that being the case, I’ve decided to share by genre. I think this will help keep things on the up and up and provide a neat and tidy overview of the result!

Let’s dive right in, shall we?

Genre: Furniture

November 2017
March 2018
Bed Frame 1 Bed Frame 1
Box Spring 1 Mattress 1
Mattress 1 Desk Chair 1
Bedside Table 1 Wingback Chair 1
Wingback Chair 1 Couch 1
Jesus Chair 1 Coffee Table 1
Couch 1 TV Stand 1
Book Case 1 Memory Chest 1
Coffee Table 1
Memory Chest 1
Blanket ladder 1
Table 1
Chairs 2
Shelving Unit 1
TOTAL: 15 TOTAL: 8

As you can see, I did away with my dining table and chairs, the book shelves (no longer needed due to my substantially smaller book collection), and the Jesus Chair. Unfortunately the chair was falling apart, so it had to go. No worries though, I still get ample Jesus time. 🙂 I was also able to part with the dreaded box spring — and holy cow lemme tell you what a workout it is to destroy one of those things. Took about half an hour and the aftermath was carnage, sweat, and blood (loads of splinters y’all-  get some gloves if you’re gonna tackle this). I also realized that even though I had a bedside table, I was never using it. It just sat there taking up white space – so adiós it went.

Genre: Storage/Organizing Containers/Things

November 2017
March 2018
Storage Baskets 4 Storage Baskets 6
Storage Jars 9 Storage Jars 2
Storage Boxes 2 Storage Boxes 1
Storage Bin 4 Tooth Brush Holder 1
Storage Container 2 Shirt Hangers 28
Shower Caddy 1 Skirt Hangers 6
Tooth Brush Holder 1
Shirt Hangers 50
Skirt Hangers 10
Desk Organizer 1
Slide Shelves 2
TOTAL: 86 TOTAL: 44

Okay, so that was boring and doesn’t need much commentary. Suffice it say that downsizing stuff means downsizing your need for places to put stuff. I will say that I’m about to do another purge of my clothing, so I believe the hanger count will come even further down. I’ll update y’all when I get to wardrobe. 🙂

Genre: Electronics

November 2017
March 2018
Triofit 1 iPhone Charger 1
Triofit Charger 1 Laptop 1
Extension Cord 1 Laptop Charger 1
iPhone Charger 1 iPad 1
Kindle 1 iPad Charger 1
Laptop 1 DVD Player 1
Laptop Charger 1 Router 1
iPad 1 Hair Dryer w/ Diffuser 1
iPad Charger 1 Curling Wand 1
DVD Player 1 Outlet Multiplier 1
Router 1 Fan 1
Heat pad 1 Lamps 4
Hair Dryer w/ Diffuser 1 Remotes 2
Curling Wand 2
Printer 1
CD-ROM Player for Laptop 1
Outlet Multiplier 1
Extension Cord 1
Mouse for Laptop 1
iPhone Case 2
Kindle Charger 1
Fan 1
Humidifier 1
Remotes 2
TOTAL: 27 TOTAL: 17

I was actually able to get rid of a lot here. My Triofit and charger were no longer necessary as we did away with the program at work. I’m pretty sure the numbers were always off as well, so keeping it as a Fitbit was pointless. I also chose to sell my Kindle as I really didn’t need both it and the iPad. I went back and forth on the decision a lot, since the Kindle didn’t have the harsh lights you’re supposed to avoid before bed. It came down to just being honest with myself: I don’t read in/before bed, and I’m not likely to start. I also got rid of my printer and humidifier, both were big eye sores that I just didn’t use.

Genre: Sentimental

November 2017
March 2018
Pocket Watch 1 Pocket Watch 1
Journals 4 Journals 2
Snowglobe 1 Snowglobe 1
Photo Albums 3 Photo Albums 2
Bibles 3 Bibles 3
Stuffed Animal 1 Play/Drama Recordings on DVD 3
Play/Drama Recordings on DVD 3 Dad’s Pastoral Mantle 1
Dad’s Pastoral Mantle 1 Diploma & Degree (grouped in one display binder) 1
Diploma & Degree (grouped in one display binder) 1
Folder of Letters 1
TOTAL: 19 TOTAL: 15

I don’t really hang on to things for sentimental purposes. I have a small memory chest that I keep some things in, but if I’m being honest, I rarely-to-never look inside. This go around, I was able to get rid of a couple of things: the stuffed animal my dad brought home to little-kid-me from one of his trips, the folder of letters (too private to go in detail here) that now just hurt to read, and two of the photo albums I get negative vibes from (though I replaced one of them with an album of my travel photos). Oh, I also got rid of 2 of the journals by combining three into one. 🙂

Okay, this post is already getting too long and I’ve barely started. This is just a mere glimpse at the purge that has taken place. Hey, I’ll admit it! I’m a coward and did the easiest genres first. Still to come:

  • Cookware/Eating Utensils/Kitcheny Supply Things
  • Reusable Cleaning Supplies/Tools
  • Blankets/Pillows/Decor
  • Outside the House (my car and what’s in it, stuff at the office, and items in my purse)
  • Wardrobe
  • Miscellaneous (everything else)

But honestly, I just love how clean my home feels. I love not having clutter. I love being able to breath when I walk in.

It’s kind of funny; my mom always comments that when she comes to my apartment, she just wants to sleep. She’s not the only one who has commented on this. I truly believe the cozy atmosphere is because the lack of clutter frees up the mind to rest.

Anyway…

STATS SO FAR
ORIGINAL COUNT: 756
ITEMS STAYING: 84
ITEMS PURGED: 63
PERCENTAGE PURGED: 8.33%

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Wardrobe Clear-Out (because It’s Overdue)

I’ve begun the edit of my wardrobe. I compiled a list of everything I own, everything I wear, and everything I feel confident when wearing. Unfortunately, that gave me an end result of the following:

IN MY CURRENT WARDROBE
Tops Skirts Dresses Outwear Shoes Other
Short Sleeve Shirts 5 Long 3 Long 2 Coats & Jackets 2 Boots 2 Robe 1
Long Sleeve Shirts 3 Short 4 Short 3 Vests 2 Booties 2 Scarves 2
3/4 Sleeve Shirts 1 Cardigans 9 Sneakers 1 Hats 4
Sweaters 3 Hoodies & Sweatshirts 3 Flats 1
Tanks 7 Sandals 1
Heels 2
Slippers 1
Total: 19 Total: 7 Total: 5 Total: 16 Total: 10 Total: 7
TOTAL (11/28/2017): 65

Now, for a lot of you, this may not be much. It might not even be on your radar to have 10 pairs of shoes, or a 5 skirts. But for me, this is a pretty big number – especially when a lot of the items making up that number are pieces that I never reach for or only wear because the pieces I actually like are all in the laundry bin.

If I take away those items, I’m left with:

WHAT I LOVE USING
Tops Skirts Dresses Outwear Shoes Other
Long Sleeve Shirts 2 Long 2 Short 3 Vests 1 Boots 1 Scarves 2
Short 1 Cardigans 3 Booties 2 Hats 1
Hoodies & Sweatshirts 2 Sneakers 1
Sandals 1
Total: 2 Total: 3 Total: 3 Total: 6 Total: 5 Total: 3
TOTAL (12/05/2017): 23

As you can see, I’m not left with much. A couple of outfits and then I’m out of luck. I am a minimalist, but that doesn’t mean I’m an extremist. I’d like to have more than 4 outfits to my name.

I’ve always loved the idea of a capsule wardrobe. For those unfamiliar with this, it’s a wardrobe compiled of a set of high-quality basics used year round. Those basics are then buffered by a few seasonal pieces that you swap out every couple of months (this is the morphed version of the original capsule as proposed by its inventor, Susie Faux). My one issue with this was the idea of swapping out pieces each season and storing the remainder. I hate storing clothes. Storage bins are clutter (believe me, I have enough of them to know). I prefer to have all clothing hanging up year round.

Which led me to a similar idea: the 333 Project is a challenge in which you use only 33 items of clothing for 3 months. Now, again, this project involves swapping pieces out at the end of 3 months- but the idea is to only swap pieces you realize you’re not entirely adoring or that are not getting enough use out. This seems much more suited to my idea of minimalism. Not to mention, I’ve always loved the idea of that beautifully rounded 33 number.

I’ve concluded that I will attempt a version of the two that will (hopefully) equip me to minimize my wardrobe and still allow me the freedom of more than 4 outfits. I plan to take Susie’s capsule wardrobe idea and fill it with 33 pieces (comprised of items for all seasons) in total.

I am using the pieces currently in my wardrobe as the basis for this project, but I still need to purchase several items. I also want to replace some of my existing pieces with better quality items that will last much longer (when you have fewer clothes, they tend to wear out a lot quicker). For the most part, my wardrobe will be primarily black – and I’m 105%  okay with that. I’m confident and comfortable in the colorless color, and I’m embracing that with vigor.

For the inventory lover in you (or is that nerdiness only something I can claim?), here’s a spreadsheet of what I plan to have in my wardrobe (please note that I’m not counting my gloves or purse as I only have one of each and don’t really consider them negotiable wardrobe items so much as needs):

IDEAL WARDROBE
Tops Skirts Dresses Outwear Shoes Other
Short Sleeve Shirts 1 Long 2 Short 2 Coats & Jackets 1 Boots 2 Scarves 2
Long Sleeve Shirts 3 Short 2 Vests 2 Booties 1 Hats 1
3/4 Sleeve Shirts 3 Midi 1 Cardigans 2 Sneakers 1
Sweaters 1 Hoodies & Sweatshirts 2 Flats 1
Blazers 1 Sandals 1
Heels 1
Total: 8 Total: 5 Total: 2 Total: 8 Total: 7 Total: 3
TOTAL: 34

And for those of you who prefer graphics, here’s an image of the entire wardrobe (minus the beanie which I didn’t feel like taking a picture of after all this collage work) all planned out (images are from Amazon – I do not own rights to any of them and will not receive any compensation for sharing them here):

UPDATE 12/12/17: I’ve already discovered that several of the pieces I had planned on won’t work out for my minimalist wardrobe due to fit or color issues. You can keep up with my wardrobe as it changes via my dedicated Pinterest board. Once it’s all set in stone, I’ll be sure to do an update post. 🙂

Have you ever attempted a capsule wardrobe or the 333 Project? What are your thoughts on minimalist wardrobes? I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

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Am I a Minimalist?

Soooo, I did a thing. I inventoried my apartment. Every belonging and possession was counted – every. single. thing. (er, minus stuff that gets used up like soap, feminine products, cleaning stuff, food, etc.)

And I kept track of all of it via excel on Google drive. Here’s the list if you don’t believe me:

Disclaimer: I grouped items that come in sets (like bobby pins) together as one item.

Now I know what you’re thinking. “Rachel, I can’t see the categories and numbers and stuff.” (Or maybe you’re thinking that I’m over the top.. I never claimed to be less than over the top.) Well here’s the most important thing: as of November 28th, I own 745 things. That number includes furniture, my car, reusable sacks, storage bins, etc. For the rest, don’t worry, I plan to bore you with declutter posts broken down by category so you can know exactly what I own. 😉

I call myself a minimalist, and I have since my first “great purge” back in 2015. I was going through a time in my life when most things were not great, and something I could control was getting rid of crap. The high I got from parting with stuff that had previously held the proverbial leash to my life was definitely addicting.

Ever since that time, I have regularly (at least once a month, generally more like twice) purged everything I own and bid adieu to whatever was obviously not getting use. Still, somehow the number of things I own continued to climb at a rate faster than I purged. Some of that is due to the generosity of friends and coworkers (I have a “mom” at work who brings me things all the time – love that woman! ❤ ), and some of that is due to my desire to entertain at my apartment (board games). But a lot of it, I could do without.

When I first moved into my apartment, every single one of my belongings could fit in my little 98′ Honda Accord. As you can probably guess, my current list of belongings would definitely not fit in my now bigger car, a 14′ Toyota RAV4. That’s a freaky feeling for me.

Which brings me to a mega goal for 2018:

I intend to get rid of 50%+ of everything I own.

I’ve already been on a purge kick of late. I’ve departed with a trunkload of goodies (one gal’s trash is another gal’s treasure) in the last month, and that old familiar rush of tingly freedom is beckoning for more. But that trunkload was not included in the 745 number, and that is making me feel a little… suffocate-y.

Now, I could jump on the bandwagon and start getting rid of crap IMMEDIATELY (which I’m sorely tempted to do), but I know that if I use that approach, I’ll end up getting rid of stuff I still need/want. I have a tendency to become crazy with my purges and get rid of tons of crap, then regret one or two things after and end up re-buying.

So the plan is to wait.

And wait.

And wait..

Until January 1st. Then I can begin purging.

And during the waiting, I’ll be carefully analyzing my google doc to see what I can live without and what I’d rather have stick around.

No worries, I’ll be sure to post about the purge as it happens.

Do you ever feel suffocated by stuff? I’d love to hear your thoughts. 🙂