I posted a few days ago about why we chose to complete the KonMari method in our home. We’ve made it through the clothes, which is the suggested first step. Here are some takeaways from our process.
I also want to offer some suggestions on how to handle getting rid of your no-longer-loved items in ways that are responsible and conscious. This was one part of the process that gave me a little bit of anxiety, and I’ve seen feedback from others people about it. I connected with the concept of gratitude and joy so deeply that I want to keep that energy going forward as we clear things out.
A disclaimer: We had recently gone through our children’s’ clothes because I knew my family was going to be getting our children a lot of clothes for Christmas. So, our piles were not the massive mountains we’ve all seen on the Netflix series. This was absolutely the easiest part for us.
Here are some pictures of our process:
I would like to have matching or coordinating baskets on the top shelf. I think we need a shoe rack, and I’d like to eliminate the over-the-door shoe hanger. I’m going to wait until the entire process is finished before I upgrade organizational accessories. I’m looking forward to it as a reward for all of this effort.
Here are a few ways we got rid of the clothes that no longer spark joy and some ideas in case you’re like me and can’t imagine just throwing all of this away.
This is probably the most common way to responsibly discard the clothes. We chose to drop them off at a thrift store in our area that we like. This shop has a retail shop for women who are starting over in their lives (for any reason). I think it’s a great program to support and was excited to donate my items there. For my husband and the children, we actually scheduled a donation pick-up. My favorite site for this is Donation Town. It’s so simple to use, and has a list of many organizations you can choose from. We chose The Family Place and they had a truck in our neighborhood the following week. All we had to do was put them out on the porch the morning of the pickup.
Another creative way to donate is by searching Go Fund Me pages and Facebook groups. Sometimes a crowd funding campaign will come across my news feed, I’m affected by the story and want to share, but don’t always have the space for a monetary donation. I have had success in the past by contacting the organizer of the campaign (which you can do right through the donation link) and asking if the person needed additional help with clothes, housewares, etc. This approach might require a bit more work, but definitely keeps the energy of sharing and gratitude in the process of letting go.
2. Try online consignment.
Have you tried services like ThredUp? This is an online consignment shop that has a simple and free process. Sign up for a free account and request a donation bag. Once the bag arrives, pack up your items and send them back. In the case of ThredUp specifically, they offer you a cash payout or give you a credit to use in their store. It’s very similar to a brick and mortar consignment shop, except from the comfort of your own home.
3. Sell them.
Why not make a little cash for all of this effort? A garage sale or yard sale is a great way to pass the items along, and they’re fun. If you don’t want to have an outdoor sale in the winter or you can’t imagine putting that all together, try posting on Facebook sales groups or neighborhood social media groups.
I’m planning to do a little of each depending on the items. For my kids’ toys, I will be consigning them at a local Just Between Friends sale. Being a part of this type of sale is a lot of work because you price and tag all of your items yourself, so it depends on your personal situation. I haven’t had a lot of success selling clothes in this sale, but I always make a few bucks selling toys. Plus, toys don’t have to go through the inspection process (except for electronics) so you basically can show up on drop-off day and just place your items in the right categories. Check it off the list!
My biggest takeaway from the process of tidying clothes, though, is what I described in my first post. Now that I’ve lived with a new way of folding and storing my clothes, I am dressing differently. I impulsively choose things that make me feel happy because everything in my closet and dresser sparks joy. I get excited to wear my clothes, which is an energy I haven’t felt in a long time.
It also helped me to consistently remind myself that this process isn’t just about getting rid of things in a big purge. It’s about taking a moment and making a connection with the things we surround ourselves with and ask if they’re a contribution or not. It’s liberating.
Next up, I’ll be posting about our process in the kitchen.
Until then – here’s to more JOY every day.