Minimalism: Closet|Makeup|Jewelry|Hair Care

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Over the past few weeks i've taken an interest in the methods of minimalism. I wasn't going to create a post until I had completed my own project & had prepared a list of what I did/how I did it. But since this project has proven to be quite large (literally taking over our bedroom) I realized it would be better to share in segments on my blog, creating a few posts centering around the topic. So with this first post, I will share how I became interested in minimizing our possessions, as well as the influences & inspirational minimalism posts/videos i've learned from. I'll also share my own notes on the subject & what action i've taken so far to begin this journey! 
Over the past few months i've realized just how much stuff I own. The majority being clothes, shoes, accessories, makeup & hair products. I've also realized that I get anxiety from the amount of things I have & having too many options when deciding on what to wear. I also get anxiety from the guilt over not using what I do own. One afternoon I decided to finally go through my jewelry & make an 'I haven't touched this in years' pile. Before I knew it, I had a pile of things I love & things I had completely forgotten about. I cleaned this pile with jewelry cleaner & returned it to my standing jewelry case which my mom gifted me a few years back. I was so pleased to fit most everything in the case & have just enough left over to fill a little organization piece to place on top of it. It made me feel organized & relieved. 
After this project, I then realized I could complete the same task around the entire apartment & sell what we do not need to put toward debt payoff. I did multiple searches to find blog posts teaching on minimalism as well as Youtube videos which do the same. I started a notebook of minimalism ideas & thoughts as well as criteria to go by when ridding the apartment of clutter as well as bringing new items into our home. Below are some notes i've taken:

--3 month rule (throw it out if it has not been useful in 3 months)
--No duplicates (i.e. no 2 items which are the same)
--Sell or donate items.
--Bring 1 new item in, take 1 item out.
--Have clothes/shoes for seasons.
--Only have things we use.
--Be purposeful when asked for gift lists.
--Clean up computer desktop/keep organized with folders.
--Have external hard-drive to scan/keep important documents.
--No 'what-if' items.
--Just because it was expensive/gifted to you doesn't mean you need it.
--Take care of what you do own.

'Fill your life with experiences, not things. Have stories to tell, not stuff to show.'
'Don't let happiness depend on something you may lose.'
--CS Lewis.

After the jewelry clean-out, I moved on to hair products & other miscellaneous items in the second bedroom. The room is used more or less as a 'get ready room' for the both of us. Josh uses the closet in there since I filled our walk-in with my own things, but also because he gets ready so early in the morning & doesn't like to wake me up before I need to get up for work. So it holds all things hair/makeup. I tackled my makeup collection by tossing all expired items. I also rounded up the random beauty bags i've collected over the years & plan to donate those which aren't used. I threw out the hair product items which i've stored for years (I had things from 2006 on my shelf!) I had an organized basket of products by the end of my haircare roundup.
(This isn't the cleanest state it's been in, but each product type has a place & it is SO much easier to get ready. My mom is currently building a large vanity for this room so this is the make-shift corner until I can set the vanity up.)

Next, I moved on to my closet. I had attempted to take on the task of cleaning it out in the recent past & removed a handful of very worn, faded items & donated them. However, the amount of clothing & shoes I had was overwhelming but also unnecessary. I hadn't worn the majority of what i owned in YEARS & the clothing varied in sizes from way too big to way too small. I knew it was time for an overhaul. With the guidelines I set up for myself, I started removing items which were no longer useful in my life. Before I knew it, our bedroom floor had large, overflowing yet organized piles of tops, dresses, skirts, jeans, etc. that could be donated or sold. My closet? Still full. I couldn't believe it! After ridding it of the overwhelming amount of items I thought I needed all these years, I still possessed more than enough. 
  Seeing it in pictures does it no justice--our floor was overflowing with items to get rid of. I hadn't touched this stuff in 6 months-4 years.
 The 'after' of the closet. It hasn't been organized yet, but it is so much easier to choose what i'll be wearing for the day. Certain items will be removed once I upgrade to higher quality pieces.
Through minimizing my shoe collection, I removed an entire 2nd shoe rack which Josh now uses & I have a few open spots on this once full shoe rack.

Through my closet cleaning process, I realized a number of things:

--I purchase random items on a whim when they are on clearance (still with tags in my closet).
--I settle for items which don't fit correctly.
--I purchase multiple items which look the same.
--I purchase items which may not be of quality, but get me by for a few months.
--I rarely invest in quality, lasting pieces.

After realizing my downfalls when building my wardrobe, I took to a Pinterest chart I had saved to help with new ideas when rebuilding my wardrobe to be a non-anxious place of quality items which I love to wear & which fit correctly. (Chart below)

Chart found on Pinterest via
(Another great read I found regarding closet space--HERE)

I loved the idea of bringing in basic, timeless & quality items which will last for years, but also pieces that I love to wear. Of course I will have items which don't fit this criteria staying in my wardrobe (I have a leopard print obsession & will most certainly get use from those items) but it is nice to have a list of items to search for.

The current stage I am in is the 'selling/donating' stage. I have all closet items set aside to prepare for these 2 tasks, but am still figuring out where to sell & how to do so. I've sold to shops like Plato's Closet in the past & I know from experience they don't give you what the items are worth, so keeping with the plan of paying off debt with the selling of these unused items, I want to figure out the best way to get what each item is worth. Ideas? Suggestions? I'd love to know!  
(I found a great Youtube account which walked me through a lot of the stages of minimalism, including ideas on how to sell unwanted items--watch HERE)

One other thing i've noticed in this process is that each person has a different minimalism journey & purpose. Mine was to clear clutter, become more purposeful, defeat anxiety & grow more dependent on the Lord while taking glorification off of material possessions.

'Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.'--Matthew 6:19-21. 
'No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.'--Matthew 6:24.
'But if anyone has the world's goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God's love abide in him?'--1 John 3:17.

 I look forward to sharing more of my experience with minimalism on this blog! I'll keep this space updated on every aspect of the journey & also what I learn along the way.

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