Craft Closet Clean Out | Spring 2015

I’m back with another installment of my home purge series today, this time sharing how I cleaned out my cluttered craft closet.  This closet sits inside my home office and houses not only crafting supplies but also office extras and filming equipment.  I decided it was time for a big sweep since I no longer craft as much as I did in my twenties and the space could be better utilized for storage.

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I broke my craft closet clean out down into two parts: paper memorabilia and crafting supplies.  I first tackled my many boxes of paper memorabilia that I mentioned in my paper purge post.  While this process was time consuming it was actually relatively easy since I had already decided in my heart that it was time to let go of most of these things.  My paper memorabilia consisted of 10+ years worth of birthday cards, theater programs, and airplane tickets, all neatly arranged in ziplock bags by year and sorted into bins.

I used to place great importance on saving these sentimental bits, although I’m not sure I ever had a plan of what to do with them.  It was only in the last few months that my perspective shifted and I realized my memories aren’t tied to material things and that letting go of these many pieces of paper didn’t mean I would lose those memories.

I decided to take the time to sort through every last piece of paper to be certain I wasn’t letting go of anything I’d regret.  In the end, I think I purged about 98% of what was in those bins.  What I am left with are a few things that mean the most to me and easily fit in a small memory box.

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Purging my crafting supplies actually turned out to be more difficult that I originally anticipated.  I didn’t consider that it might be a bit tough to part with past hobbies of mine that I still love but no longer fit into my lifestyle.  I choose to dedicate the majority of my time to my online content now, which leaves less room for crafting pursuits.  I am content with the way things are, but I still had to make a conscious effort to let go of things I no longer make time for despite how much I enjoy them.  There’s only so many hours in the day!

In my early twenties I was interested in trying all sorts of crafts, as I’ve always enjoyed making things.  I loved to scrapbook, make jewelry, work with fake flowers, pour soap, etc.  I kept all of my supplies neatly stored by category in bins in my closet.  Over the last five years of being a YouTuber and then a blogger, my crafting pursuits waned and those bins have sat untouched for too long to justify holding onto all of that stuff anymore.

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I went through each bin and tried to be as honest with myself as possible if that particular craft was something I realistically saw myself doing in the next year.  If so, I went through each item and whittled it down to the essentials.  If not, it was time to let it go.  Fortunately, I am able to donate much of what I purged since everything is in good condition and usable.  I put aside yarn and knitting supplies to go to a local nursing home (1), kid-friendly crafting supplies for a youth program or daycare (2), and the rest to general charity (3).  I am left with lots of empty bins (4) and a closet that now holds only items I see myself using in the near future.

If you’d like to see more about my craft closet clean out, check out this video:

While my closet is feeling much lighter, it isn’t organized at the moment for optimal storage.  This project’s purpose was to simply purge, not reorganize.  In my past purges I was able to reorganize along with my clean outs, because those projects didn’t require a lot of thought as I stuck to similar organization systems as before.  I am hoping to do a bit more dedicated reorganization in my home office, including my craft closet, over the summer so the space functions and flows better for me and suits my needs at the moment.  You can be certain I will share once I do so!

I hope you enjoyed this peek at my craft closet clean out.  I’d love to know if you’ve taken on any home purges lately and how those pursuits have gone for you if you care to share.
Happy cleaning!

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* This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are genuinely my own. *

26 comments

26 thoughts on “Craft Closet Clean Out | Spring 2015”

  1. Hey Jen. First off I just want to say I just adore u. I have been watching since daily vlogs.
    I miss those do bad but I understand.. but I still enjoy the videos you post on a variety of things. U help me when I am trying to organize or just feel better about my self I hop on here and watch your latest (of course) videos and some past ones.
    I have learned alot from u and one of the biggest things I admire is you take care of decorative Sedona things and store them so properly that me 35 with two teens and two tweens never took the time to do just so amazing how u have stuff for years and years and they still look new.. I live in NC so probably won’t meet u but we’ll wishes and really hope I can one day.

  2. Hi – if you are getting rid of your knit crate minis, I am willing to make you an offer for them. Please let me know.

    Katherine

  3. Jen, thanks for sharing this. I am a strong believer in purging. My mother kept us in a cluttered home and as I grew up I decide des I never wanted to be that way. She just couldn’t let go of things. Purging helps you astetically and also frees the spirit. Hope you enjoyed the purge and can’t wait to see more.

  4. Hi Jennifer, After catching up on quite a few past posts in one sitting, I am even more excited to see your new brand reveal. Also viewing your updates to your creative and home spaces and the tone of colors you were photographed in for your new images, I am more convinced that you need to have your own planner that features you and Don and Winnie as the theme. Oh my gosh, the funny things you both have said could be captions. A food crawl section with places for new recipes and favorite restaurants to try, “It’s Donut Saturday!” An organizational section for keeping track of seasonal To Do Lists. A pet section, a section for what to take lists for camping, traveling, overnighting. The list goes on and on culled from all the wonderful posts you have shared with us. I would definitely buy that planner!!! I can’t begin to list all of the “Organized Like Jen” tips I have incorporated into my every day. You are just fun wrapped up in the most fun blog ever! Thanks for it all!

    1. I’d love to make my own planner someday, but there’s also so many great ones available out there. I’m happy you enjoy my blog 🙂

  5. Fab video…I’m a hoarder of stuff to scrapbook too..,I’m trying to take on board the whole enjoy the memory but don’t need the physical memorabilia in order to clear out too! I also liked a tip I saw recently about photographing tickets etc as they often fade over the years anyway? I’m in the middle of a sort out of my craft stuff too and have a local nursing home who are looking forward to the supplies to play with so if the school don’t want them then the nursing home might? I know a lot of people with Dementia/Alzheimer’s are encouraged to scrapbook their memories in the early stages…just a thought 🙂 Thanks for sharing Jen! Really love the purge series…I best get in purging now!!xx

  6. If you’re still looking for a place to donate, our school just donated extra school supplies to the Gary Comer Youth Center in Chicago. It’s wonderful facility for kids, and I’m sure they’d find a good use for all those supplies!

  7. Love all your post. When I started to watch YT your channel was the first one I watched. My question is I need help in buying luggage we are planning a trip to Walt Disney world next year and I would like to buy a new set for my family. I have seen several of your videos and you have several different sets we are also planning to take trips every other year either in the states or aboard and I would like this set to last for awhile. Any help you can give . I am from CA and have been to Disney here a lot of times and I know you guys have gone to FL one what would you suggestion we see while we are there this most likely be our only trip there for a long time the one in FL

    Thank You
    Diane

    1. Luggage is a personal thing and what works for me and my family might not work for yours. Personally I’ve been a fan of hard sided luggage lately and there are lots of brands and price ranges to choose from. Over the years I’ve also loved Eagle Creek soft-sided luggage and L.L. Bean wheeling duffles.

  8. Hi Jen, I was really looking forward to the paper and craft clean outs because I am doing this too. But I would like to know more about what items are going where as this is ‘where’ I need inspiration. The yarn sacks are clear enough, but it would be really useful to me if the items that are kid-friendly and for adult charity were spread out so I could see better the sort of items you judged should go in each category.
    Similarly, my sticking point on going paperless is not knowing how. So it would be really useful to hear more detail on the details! In other words, do you download statements of utilities, banking, investments, medical, insurance, or just navigate to the sites? Does it vary by category? What was kept in paper form and why? Do you scan in receipts and invoices for repairs done for a warranty period or for the house improvement file? When people used to show how their filing systems were set up all those things were generally clear from the description of the files and bins, but I am having more difficulty following the total systems and the thinking behind them in this era. The thinking is key because we all organize differently but it is hard to think of everything that I need to consider. Many perspectives lead to better decisions.
    Thanks. And love to WInnie and Don.

  9. Hi Jen! You’ve inspired me to clean out my tons of scrapbooking and jewelry making supplies. I, too, have wedding and honeymoon photos and memorabilia I wanted to scrapbook, and we got married almost 12 years ago! So it’s definitely time for me to decide what to do with them. Can you please tell us where you bought those gorgeous floral-patterned collapsible bins?They’re so pretty, I’d love to get some. Thanks!

  10. This installment was one of my favorites from your purging series. I actually make a living out of crafting jewelry, so I have to keep a lot of supplies but that can easily go overboard! This video was a good reminder to not keep some of my older supplies that i barely touch. I have gathered a few to give to my young niece, i’m sure she’ll use it more than i do! It was actually fun going through all the stuff and re-organize. i was not in bad shape but still found those unused items!

  11. Thank you once again for sharing a purging video! I HAVE to clean out my craft space…I am a scrapbooker and I have way to much. It is over whelming! Your video and your blog post has inspired me to start on my room. I do wish I had a supervisor like Winnie to help me clean out my memorabilia! Have an awesome week!

  12. I love watching the thinning things out videos. I am reading the same book and am considering starting a business as a home organizer. Have you thought about taking out the bottom shelf at the rear of the craft closet and sliding the elfa drawer units to be flush against the rear of the closet? The doggie dryer would fit perfectly out of the way to the left of the closet opening, flush against that wall. Just a thought!

    I was looking to see if the Erin Condren give away winners were announced… Can’t seem to find that information. I’m a EC devotee and need to buy my next year’s Life Planner… and loads of tickers to keep me organized. Would love, love a EC spree!

    Cheers on a fabulously organized life! You are an inspiration.

  13. Loved this! Can you tell me where you got the jars that you have your bows in? I have a wrapping closet as well and I just love that idea and have been trying to find jars but can’t seem to find any big enough. Maybe yours just look bigger in the video than they actually are. 🙂

    1. Those were from Martha Stewarts line at Macy’s 9 or so years ago. They have sadly long since been discontinued.

  14. Hi great job with crafts room. Look great. Okay questions. Where did u get those drawers I like to pull out and use it then done and put back in

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