Instead of buying new – Take a new look at what you already own!

Whether you start with the clothes in your closet or the furniture in your attic — Check around your home to see if you can re-purpose what you already have! It may involve some decluttering, but you could ultimately clear up space in more than one place.

Repurposing an item or simply moving it or using it in a new way, can give you a whole new look.

Spring is a great time to declutter

With our fluctuating NC weather, winter clothes are probably still out and mixed in with your spring/summer wardrobe. This makes it an easy time to assess and declutter what’s not being worn or doesn’t fit.

Look in the back of your closets and storage spaces for little used or forgotten items.

Keep a box or tote nearby for donations

Since I keep an extra-large, very old L.L. Bean tote in my closet year-round for donation ready clothes and linens, I always start the process of decluttering there.

To Begin — Create 3 Piles

Gather boxes, bins and/or bags for 3 basic piles (bring them from room to room as you sort). The 3 are:

  • trash and recycling
  • donations / give away
  • things that need to be put back where they belong


On areas where things get stashed away: closets, drawers, cabinets and other storage spaces. Don’t forget the coat closet!

Keep only what you love! Getting dressed is easier because anything you choose is a favorite!

One room at a time

Move through your home, one room at a time. Look for items that either weren’t worn or used this year. Include items that are in good condition, but you just don’t love anymore. Don’t forget to take a look at your high-traffic areas like the family room and kitchen — decluttering can make your space more welcoming and efficient.

Embrace the mess!

Recognize and embrace that you’re probably going to make a mess in the process of decluttering. The good news is that there will be less to put away when you’re finished — and more open space so that you can organize well.

Crank up the music

Involve your family, friends or housemates in the process, too. Make a playlist and crank up some music. A lively tune and some company can make it fun.

A few notes

When it comes to recycling and donating, please research local guidelines and thrift stores. Wire hangers can usually be returned to the dry cleaner. Goodwill has an electronic recycling and donation program with more information here. Habitat Charlotte Region is always looking for donations — click here for LKNConnect’s interview and guide to donating.

You don’t have to do it all yourself!

Local businesses to help with cleaning and organizing can be found here. For information on customized organizing systems and closets, visit Impeccable Closets.

Downsizing or Moving?

If you need to declutter because you’re moving, relevant tips on decluttering before a relocation can be found here and here. There are also tips on getting organized to move, as well as moving and packing. 

Pick your favorite colors and the clothes that make you feel happiest.

Some Perks of Decluttering

Inspiration to redecorate

A fun part about decluttering is that as you can achieve a whole new look by shifting furniture and home décor items into other places and rooms.

Easier getting dressed

Simplifying your closet should make it easier and more fun to get dressed. When you donate what you don’t love, that means choosing from more of your favorites. 

Celebrate when you’re finished

Age appropriate fun might be pie from the Buttermilk Pie Shop in Birkdale, pizza and beer from Brickhouse Tavern or wine on the lake at Lake Norman Cottage. And, as it is with most chores, it’s more fun when you can keep it light.

Photos courtesy
Marni Cummings

Marni Cummings is a local Midlife Coach and Encourager with Thrive Unscripted. She helps people navigate new places and chapters, figure out who they are and where they fit in and find renewed purpose. Marni enjoys exploring the LKN area with her husband while their son enjoys college life.

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