Decluttering my inspirations

Every now and again I toy with decluttering. A room will be targetted and I am ruthless for about half an hour, which is as long as I can stay resolute. Any longer and I lose momentum. If I stick with half an hour, then anything surplus-to-requirement goes. Otherwise three steps forward turns into two steps back.

One decluttering rule I do adhere to is that if I buy new clothes or shoes then something has to be recycled. One pair of shoes in, one pair of shoes out. Easy.

One area that is harder to clear down is my craft supplies cupboard, (includes some recycled things from the decluttering, if I’m honest). I’m always looking for practical ideas to use what I already have squirreled away. I have finally taken the plunge and joined Pinterest.

My boards are filling up with inspiration. Before, I’d probably not have found the idea, or bookmarked it in my browser, which is like a black hole. Never to see the light of day again. Now I can organize and do.

My pins are modest in number at the moment. It did strike me that I’ve just shifted the problem and added another area that will need decluttering eventually. How will I find the idea among a sea of pins? Or should that be a needle in a haystack?

Sorting them into individual boards help, but I am in danger of being distracted by other interesting projects. I know me. So I need to be ruthless. For me, it is no good collecting ideas without actioning them. I need to do and delete (or at least move the pin to a board called “Done and Dusted”).

First project was the inspirational Lilla’s shoe box garage. TF loved this craft project. He is so thorough when he paints. We made a little work bench with drawers for car maintenance tools to be kept in.

Once dry, he played with it for hours. His sisters joined in too. Monday is Show and Tell at school. He took his garage in, minus the ramp as he was afraid it might not survive so many children playing with it. The teacher tells me that it was a huge hit with the other children. She was quite happy for him to leave it in school, if he wanted. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if it inspired other children to make one at home. Would that earn multiple points for the one pin?

Just goes to show, yet again, that cardboard boxes are one of the best playthings that a child can receive. They are still playing with the pirate’s treasure chest that we made together. Time spent making with my children is never, ever wasted time. Thanks Lilla.

My “Done and Dusted” board has its first pin!


  1. That is so wonderful! I just wish I still had smalls small enough to appreciate such things. My daughter used to love making model bedrooms using shoeboxes – one actually had a swimming pool!

    Pomona x

  2. I am also on a decluttering spree at the moment, but – I confess – I am leaving my crafty stash until last. Currently, it has expanded from its cupboard (I can’t open the door or everything falls out) to on top of the bookcase, where it rears its ugly head towards the ceiling. It isn’t just that it’s far too big, but that it’s stored in old tesco bags. Not inspiring.

    1. I need more room too. Not to store more, but to store it better. I agree tesco bags are not inspiring. They start to disintegrate too. First time I found one, I thought a mouse had got in! Good luck with the decluttering.

  3. Ah Cheryl, I am always decluttering….I can’t stand clutter, it makes me antsy 🙂 Pinterest is great. I’m learning how to use it effectively, I hope, he he. Fantastic garage, my biggest boy would love it (if the littlest didn’t get to crush it first)…now I have something to do next weekend (I have the apple pies to make this weekend) You keep me busier than Pinterest lol! 🙂

    1. The garage has been a big hit. It takes pride of place in his bedroom still.

      I have a love and hate relationship with clutter. I love the space, but I just know that I’ll want whatever I’ve thrown out the next week. When I buy, I try to think about how I’m going to dispose it in the end. Definitely helps!

    1. Cardboard boxes are so useful and versatile!! I’ve had more conversations with mothers about their children and cardboard boxes than I can count. The favourite toys that they have made and the children have loved. Humble it may be, but oh so loved!

  4. I recently helped out at a preschool where the theme for the week was “Transport”. We made taxis (as these are proudly South African) from old cardboard boxes that had been used to pack apples (being quite sturdy, they work wonderfully for small hands that HAVE to “touch to see”). With four paper plates for wheels, a bit of glitter, paint and the children’s amazing imaginations, an absolutely fun afternoon followed – with not much of the original packaging left over!

    Give a child a cardboard box and you give him a learning opportunity. That which an adult regards as “useless trash” becomes priceless memories with wonderful playthings made by a child proud of his or her own work. Maybe we (i.e. adults) should turn to our little successors for a lesson in recycling and re-using with resourcefulness. To quote Picasso: “Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”

    Happy decluttering!

    1. Cardboard boxes are like clean slates. You can make almost anything out of them, with even a little imagination. I love seeing children create. Often with so much concentration that they forget to smile until they are all done! They tackle a project with gusto and, yes, I’ve noticed that they don’t leave much over. I can imagine that your afternoon was full of fun.

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