I keep reading that purging old stuff seems to be the craze in life "simplification" techniques. I will wholeheartedly agree that clutter can "kill" but if we bought the stuff or saved it for some "reason" then why not find ingenious ways of using it instead of pitching it out. OK, I'm not talking about true trash, but I am saying if you find you have something that is useful and LOVE, find a way to use it.
I am in a new home since last year, and honestly it has taken this year to figure out how I want to see it decorated and made functional. I think this is true of anyone moving into another place, especially if the floor plan or space offered is different from the previous abode. So it's taken this time for me to decide how and what I want to do...so in the mean time, I didn't pitch out all my stuff that is potentials for our home's look. I am still deciding on some things, like a silly pair of kitchen curtains. I have two windows; one that is a full sized window, while the other is a shorter smaller version. I also need to have a curtain for under my sink~my style is old timey farmhouse, so my sink base is open under the center for a box of cleaning supplies (old antique apple crate on casters) and the trash can while the pipes are present for the sink and dishwasher as well...so hence the "look" is needful.
I have recieved from Freecycle a muslin pricilla curtain with a huge ruffle, that I thought I might remake into a plain muslin curtain (NO ruffle), but after serious consideration: I hung the thing up and LOOKED at it for several days, I don't like the color with our paint scheme....ha! So....now what? Well, I am looking into my fabric "stash." Yes, I have one of those...and any serious seamstress or crafter has a stash of the items of the trade. So I've pulled some green plaid~light gray-green with white! This is just fabric so curtains will have to be made, but BEFORE I go to this effort, I am going to hang the fabric at the window and LOOK AT IT for a few days to see if it will be the "bomb" in my kitchen... I have gone through telling you about my process, so you can understand why I think hanging onto things we love or have use in our home will save tons! Obviously if storage is a huge issue and creative ways aren't possible to make storage, this will not work for you, but all of us who have a stash of good useful STUFF I say USE IT~now what am I gonna do with that muslin set of HUGE curtains? I am planning a quilt and it would make a lovely back. Sound silly? I own it~it is a good color for what I'm planning, and IF this doesn't work, I can either donate it or make cleaning rags! There's a good use for my curtains for sure~and I'm glad this "pack rat" didn't pitch everything that wasn't IMMEDIATELY known to be useful or else I'd be shopping this morning SPENDING MY MONEY on a set of curtains instead of writing you and planning a sewing project. There are many pluses for sewing projects: one is cost savings when you have a much of the items needed already AND as homeschoolers, this can be a teachable moment. I have curtains "on the brain" anyway, because Girl Thing One is learning to sew by crafting curtains out of $4 flat twin sheets for her bedroom. Incidently it's $4 PER WINDOW verses the $20 from WalMart. I priced them for her at $10 per panel which would equal $40 for the room~ha! We are doing two pair of curtains for $8!!! Amazing what a little STASH and know-how will do for ya...
So don't just THROW it all out...Find ways to store and USE and repurpose items! I had to laugh at a recent thrifty recipe for a desert that while was semi-homemade (all the items are processed: cake mix, candy bars, fluffy stuff~choc syrup and more) when I calculated the cost...ha! What expense when totally homemade is healthier and less costly! The art of truly cooking and making do is soo lost, but will yield WONDERFUL benefits for our family is savings!
Here's a recipe for a truly HOMEMADE chocolate cate desert:
Chocolate Cake from scratch
I wouldn't recommend bought icing for this cake, but researching
All Recipies.com Chocolate Cake section for some truly homemade frostings~
YUM! and cost effective as most of us already own this stuff, plus it is "healthier" ~ OK..how do I justify chocolate cake as healthier?? hahaha!
So I am off here to get that green plaid fabric up on the window...I need to SEE before I sew!
Working on that STASH of STUFF that has SAVED me!