Out with the Old...

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Well my broads, it's been a while since I blogged and that is because nearly all of my free time has been away  from any kind of computer and amongst  the stuff that collectively fills my home. I've not made any major announcements, but let's just say this broad's family is growing from a family of three (fur baby included) to a soon to be family of four. Yikes. Not only has this been an extremely exciting time in my life, it's made me really reevaluate just all that stuff a broad acquires along the way. Albeit living in a modestly-sized 2 bedroom San Francisco apartment, I really curated quite the collection of $@#!. I've always prided myself in being a good purger of things throughout the year, not just in the spring. However, being faced with needing to turn a guest room into a nursery and, more importantly, losing that room's closet space and furniture, made me realize I have a huge problem letting go of things. I am proud of the accomplishments made - all the trips to Goodwill and the Container Store, eliminating nearly all items from a desk and two closets, clearing out entire dresser drawers to instead fill with much smaller clothes, sharing more space in my main closet with my baby daddy - they have been worth it. I feel less weighed down, less cluttered by unnecessary STUFF and I can see the light at the end of the almost completed nursery tunnel. More to come on that soon. 

For now, I'd like to share some lessons I've picked up along the way in my month of ultimate purging. May these 3 tips help other broads as well.

1. How many do you really need?

TCB debating which votives, glasses, jars and vases to keep or purge...
I remained in this spot with this expression for at least an hour one evening.
Have I mentioned I don't always make decisions well?
I've shared my thoughts on the arsenal every hostess should have. While I am sticking to that, I have realized that my mistake over the years has been collecting too many of these types of items. Does one really need 12+ milk glass votives or fleur de lis glasses or vases in every size and shape? The answer is no. Go through your items, and reduce.

When choosing what stays and goes, the order should go as follows: sentimental items or family heirlooms, most used and/or versatile items (remember a pitcher can pour water and work as a vase), and lastly, those that take up the least space. Get rid of the rest. Last time I checked, stores still exist if you needed to buy one item down the road (though be careful as collecting is a vicious, dangerous cycle). And keep this in mind - The probability of an entire party being ruined because you were missing a certain item is... let me see.... carry the one... ZERO.

And this doesn't only apply to home decor items. Whatever your collection vice might be- coffee mugs, catchall trays, candles - this advice will work.2. Let go of the packaging

I know. No one appreciates a nicely wrapped item as much as I. It pains me to throw away nice boxes of any sort. And shoe boxes? Forget it. I literally had 18 in my closet because I not only loved the way they looked but I felt as though it made my closet somewhat organized. I also held on to them since it was a reminder of my hard earned dollars that bought nice shoes that I felt were deserved. Well, Guess what? I forgot about certain pairs all the time because I could not see them. And the boxes literally took up 4 times the amount of space that the shoes did. So, alas, I took every pair out and bid adieu to the lovely boxes. What seemed so tough on recycling pick up day hasn't bothered me in the slightest since I made the decision to let go. If you really can't part with all of them (The Pour La Victoire boxes were the hardest for me), then find a use for it to store things under your bed, in a linen closet, etc. But they don't need to hold your shoes.

Since I was in the business of maximizing the space I had and reducing clutter, I resorted to the over- the-door hanging shoe racks and I must say that being able to see all of my options has really made me don some of my previously neglected shoes as of late.

If you have more space, here are some drool-worthy ideas for shoe storage and display

Display ledges, whether they're inside a closet (above) or on the wall (like below), make your shoes look like the pieces of art that they are.
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Though an idea better suited for those who are not lacking space, I love the idea of using an old piece of furniture to display shoes. {image via}
Closet stock full already? These slim shoe bins hide everything away nicely and take up little space along the wall.
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Remember that shoes don't need to only live in the closet or bedroom. In fact, if it can work in your space, taking your kicks on and off right before coming and going is ideal for lots of reasons (convenience, cleanliness, etc.).  If your entry way has space for slim bins, make your entry table or console a sneaky place for shoes. Did I mention these are from Ikea? The swedes do it again.
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Need more ideas? Check out these 16 Smart Ideas from Babble.

3. Shop Like You're French

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I once had a co-worker tell me that I shopped like a french woman. I immediately thanked her, and then asked what that meant. She said that unlike us gluttonous Americans, french people (and really many other cultures both within and beyond the EU) buy quality over quantity. It's not rare to see someone in the same gorgeous, high quality piece over and over again.  I again thanked her and secretly thought that I didn't shop this way at all but I should. This could not be more true when it comes to cleaning out closets and drawers. The items that always fall in the "keep" pile are those that are timeless, higher quality, well made and fitting, etc. I literally have cashmere sweaters that are 10 years old that will forever go to the "keep" side of things. While items may have been higher priced upon initial purchase, one equals the 20 trendy tops that were bought and lasted a season or fell apart. Keep this in mind as you shop and your closet space will thank you.

Here are just a few of those timeless pieces I am talking about..

Cashmere can stand the test of time. While this example is black, don't steer away from a fun color or pattern like stripes.
{100% Cashmere Sweater, Vince via Nordstrom}
In my dreams, I own this shoe. Sexy, Flattering, Good Quality (read: Also Comfortable!) Shoes will remain in your closet for years.
{Manolo Blahnik Nude Pump, via Nordstrom}

Can't go wrong with an LBD. Splurge once on a style that is flattering and makes you feel better as soon as it's zipped up and it will get you through countless weddings, cocktail parties and anything else you're attending that you're just not sure what to wear...
{Dress by L'Agence, via Nordstrom}

I am happy to say that after a month of organizing, purging, storing and donating, this broad's second bedroom is well on its way to being a nursery...

....More to come on the finished project soon!