The second part of this series is dedicated to cleaning out my jewelry and keeping only those pieces that I love to wear. I was determined to give away anything that I didn’t wear or had lukewarm feeling about, so I actually ended up donating about 80% of my necklaces, bracelets, and earrings. Continue reading “Minimalist Maintenance: Jewelry”
For some people minimalism comes naturally. They easily remember to remove what is not needed, used or loved and their space is always organized in a way that thoughtfully showcases only their most precious possessions. They also don’t keep bringing clutter into the house.
I wish I was like that!
Last December I did a clean sweep of my entire house, room by room, and posted about it on my blog here. But here I am six months later and I’m beginning to feel that I may need some “Minimalist Maintenance”!
I’ll be posting weekly the different areas that I am pruning down, and this week is a small project: Nail Polish.
To be fair, I think a large part of the reason why I feel I could use some maintenance is not because I’ve brought in a whole bunch of things, but because what I realized when I spent the large part of this Saturday cleaning out my room was that I was ready to part with things that I wasn’t ready to part with six months ago. Suddenly I was ready to throw away, donate or sell jewelry, clothes, makeup and other cosmetics. I had absolutely no plans on doing this; I started with my nail polish and from there it kept going.
I didn’t have a ton of nail polish but the way they were thrown into a big makeup bag made it a pain to see the colors clearly and quickly. Plus, it was obvious that I needed to organize them because I found this:
Two clear polishes from the same company. I remember buying the second one a couple of months ago because I couldn’t find the other one even though I was sure that I still had some left.
After some humming and hawing, I separated what I was going to keep and what I was giving away. All of the ones that didn’t suit me, never used, or didn’t like the formula got the boot:
And now I am left with a small variety of polishes that all fit snugly inside of a small makeup bag that was previously not being used:
Now I can see exactly what I have so that I don’t have a repeat of purchasing anything twice and I’m excited to use some colors that I haven’t in a while. I also was able to use the bigger makeup bag for my actual makeup storage, which really needed it more than my nail polish did.
This small project was a great way to motivate me to tackle other areas that would require more thought and care like my clothes and jewelry. Next week, I’ll post my jewelry maintenance. I’m very proud and excited about the new way I’ve organized it all!
Today I thought I would offer a size comparison of the Hermès Ulysse notebooks in the PM & MM sizes. This notebook is nowhere near as popular as the Filofax, Traveler’s Notebook or Moleskine so it was difficult for my to get a sense of the sizes while I was searching through pictures online. The Ulysse notebook does not follow the usual “personal” or “A5″ standards of most agendas which makes it even more difficult to convert sizes as you’re thinking about what may or may not fit inside of it.
Below are pictures of the notebooks side by side to each other and other more commonly known notebooks. I also made a video of the notebooks, click the link in the post to view it. I’ll finish with some quick thoughts about the notebooks themselves.
MM size: 9.1″ tall x 7.5″ wide, retail $765.00
PM size: 6.3″ tall x 5.3” wide, retail $555.00
The MM size is almost exactly the same size as a standard composition notebook. The composition notebook is around 1/2 inch taller, but the width is the same.
The sizes are not easy to pin down, but those pictures should give you a better idea. I also made a youtube video of the sizes if you’d like to see them in action:
Overall, the notebooks have yummy leather and wonderful colors. However, there are two aspects that you should be aware of:
- Flexibility of the leather
- Refills prices
If you’ve used any other agenda like a Filofax, Traveler’s Notebook, Leuchtturm or Moleskine, you will know that you can use the agenda itself to write against since the leather or the cover will offer support. The Ulysse notebooks do not share this in common. This was something that I did not even think to consider until I had already purchased it and realized just how floppy the leather was. In the video I give you a good idea of what I’m talking about. This is not a problem if you are at a desk or another hard surface to prop up the notebook.
Secondly, the refills are very high-quality but also high priced. Here are some prices from the website:
MM plain notebook refill, $65.00
PM lined notebook refill, $75.00
PM Annual agenda refill, $90.00
If you use these agendas as much as I do, this will start to add up. A lot of Ulysse notebook users refill using an alternative that will fit in the same plastic strip. In the video and at the moment for my MM size I am using the Minimalist JournalBook but as I explain the video, the width is not exactly ideal. After I’m finished with the current refill I plan to use the TOPS Sophisticated Business Notebooks since the width is just a bit shorter than the other one. Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to find an alternative refill for the PM size, so I’ve been purchasing the Hermes ones from the website.
I hope that this helped if you are considering purchasing these notebooks. There are a couple of drawbacks, but overall the leather quality is unparalleled and the colors are stunning so I would recommend purchasing these if you can overlook the refill price.
The storage room. The room that I was dreading the most to clean out. Partly because its full of things that I don’t want to sort though but mostly because its in a dark and drafty part of the house that I’m afraid of being in alone.
We moved into our house this summer and since then we’ve acquired all sorts of odds and ends that go into maintaining a house. We’re also using the room as a holding place for anything that we don’t know where to put or aren’t sure of what to do. It’s actually started to overflow outside of the room itself, so this purge is definitely needed.
My goal at the end of this is to know what is actually in that room, throw away the things we won’t use, and bring some organization to the area.
Stepping into the room I see the work before me. There are boxes of things I’ve forgotten, spare blankets and comforters, plastic bins of electronics, paint cans and paint brushes, roller blades, and so many other things.
First thing I do is get rid of the empty boxes that I thought I would use one day but probably never will, which frees up a lot of space. The bins of tools and painting equipment are set against on side of the room. Since I’m not quite sure what tools we will or will not be using in the future, I decide to keep them all since they are already organized into a plastic bin and don’t take up much space. I examine the plastic bin full of electronics and wires and I’m glad to see that I can actually discard most of them. The bins are mainly filled with random computer cables and headphones which I know we don’t use. The comforters and blankets I will keep. They were given to me by my grandmother and now that I have 2 spare bedrooms they will be used once the rooms are set up. The paint and equipment I will keep because we are actively painting and touching up various areas. The suitcases I will keep as well, since they will be used in the future.
…and with that, the storage room is done. Surprisingly, there wasn’t that much that I could get rid of. Maybe because I avoid going into this room, I don’t really put that much in it. I mainly reorganized what was inside and at least I now know what there is if I need it.
The last area that is left to purge is my closet. This is where I keep my clothes, my shoes and my beloved purses. It’s my favorite part of the whole house and its going to be tough to part with my purses, but I just have to keep asking myself if it is something that I use, value or love and all that remains will be a space that I adore even more.
Continuing in my office, I headed straight for the boxes of craft paper, office supplies, and notebooks.
I threw away any notebooks that I knew I would not use because they were used up, torn or otherwise in pretty bad shape. I kept the rest since I knew that either my husband or I would use them eventually out of necessity. In the same pile, I got rid of a whole host of plastic accordion file folders, paper folders and binders. I like buying different types of organizational tools if their style or patterns catch my eye, but you can only go through so many of those before they start to add up.
I also had a box of pens, pencils, pencil cases, paperclips, erasers, binder clips, stickers, and different types of post notes. It was hard for me to choose what to get rid of with the pens and pencils because there were quite a few that I had spent a tidy sum of money on because I only buy and use rollerball pens, but only the .5 millimeter size — so all the .7 millimeter sizes could go. I ended up giving them to my husband because he is not as particular as I am with pens. I now only have office supplies consolidated in a box and only those supplies that I know I love and will use.
I’m a planner junkie, but there’s only so many planners you can use at one time. Lately, I’ve been trying out using my iphone as my planner (it’s okay but I still prefer writing things down and will switch back at the start of the new year) so I had a spare arc system notebook with all of the inserts, a personal filofax with all of the inserts, two 2016 week on 2 pages planners and midori traveler’s notebook in both sizes. I tend to acquire a new planner whenever I get bored with life and want a lift in my routine. I threw away the two 2016 planners since they were half used and listed the filofax and the arc system on eBay since they were barely used and decided to keep the midori notebooks. I’d had them for a over 5 years and they had a lot of sentimental value to me although I don’t use them at the present.
A while back I got caught up in the whole planner decorating kick, but it has long since fizzled out. I just don’t have the time or desire to do it and my tastes run more simple than that. However, I had purchased a laminator, a paper cutter and a set of Martha Stewart decorative paper punchers that I used perhaps twice, so those went on eBay too.
With that, my office is done. I now have my makeup items in one corner, a box of all of the notebooks and office supplies that I decided to keep in storage, and my desk with just the right amount of supplies in it. It feels good to get rid of what I don’t use and to know that I love what I have so that I can make smarter purchases in the future.
Next up is the storage room. I can’t even remember what’s in there at this point, but I have a feeling I won’t have trouble remembering once I’m done!