Tackling The Clutter!!!

WARNING – this post is not pretty, but something I know most of us have to deal with every once in a while.  I de-cluttered my basement over the weekend and I can tell you that it is liberating now that it is behind me.   I still have more to do, but this was one of the biggest problem areas in my house.

One of my readers Eileen, wrote to me after I posted about my resolution to “edit” more this year.  She simply stated that “clutter”  is exhausting.  I could not agree with her more and had to start tackling some of the visual clutter in my house.   You may have noticed that I didn’t have a post last Friday. This is because I am sticking to my goal to edit, edit, edit.  It has taken me all weekend to get my basement back into shape.

Here are the “BEFORE” photos.


But wait – there’s more…Basement Clutter Zones 3, 4, and 5!


Yes – it is everywhere – the basement a.k.a… the dumping ground.  It was driving me crazy and I had to take the time to get it under control before I move onto anything else.  I had to make the decision to edit and keep at it to free my mind so I can concentrate on new projects. I edited – until I was left with this-

Basement organiaing-After

The furniture in the finished section of the basement is going to go to my daughters who will both be getting an apartment come Spring/Summer.  I plan on helping them paint the furniture to their liking and set them each up using lots of hand-me downs as well as some new stuff.  What they don’t want or use will then be donated.

Below is the unfinished section of the basement – for storage.  I still have lots of “stuff” as I am not sure if we will have to move or not and I may want some of these items.  Living in limbo is no fun.

Some of the stuff, I am sure my daughters will take – my youngest already has dibs on the big blue floor vase.  I know where everything is now and have separated it into departments so that when I go down to my basement now,  it will feel  like a shopping experience :)  All the florals and wreaths are hanging from the ceiling in marked bags – fall – spring, etc.  All my painting supplies are in the back corner and separated in baskets.  On the opposite side of this wall is a workbench and a wall of tools and a row of little cubbies of drawers for nails and stuff.  The fabric area – is hidden. It is under the steps in a little cubby area in the wall behind where the bags are hanging.

Basement organizing

This metal shelf  (the leaning tower of craft) holds all crafty stuff that I use.  Each basket has a certain type item in it.  I hate throwing any of this away, as it is the little bits and pieces that always come in handy when doing a project that save me a trip to Michaels or Lowes.  Since creating is my business – I need this stuff and hope to organize it better soon.   I didn’t want to spend money to buy any new organizing totes – I just used what I had and still have a few empties on the top.

Basement organizing

Under all that clutter – there was a desk – a very pretty one that I found one afternoon while driving down a neighboring street.  It was placed at the curb in front of a house with a sign that said – FREE.   I had to stop and take a look – it was perfect – except for the color – which I know some of you would like, but I have a new vision for it.

When the homeowner saw that I was interested, she came out of her house and helped me put it in my car. I told her I would give her some money for it, but she said, “No, please just take it – you are doing me a huge favor”.  As the saying goes – “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure”.


I love the shape and it has a big drawer in the front.  I plan on switching the big partner’s desk in my studioffice with this.

Pretty Desk

I am sooooo excited about this project.  I plan on starting very soon.  If we have to move, I will have to stage my studioffice and the big desk would have to go anyway, so I am getting a head start.  If we stay, I will get to enjoy my newly designed space.

I have always wanted a pretty desk and am going to re-design my studioffice to try to get it closer to my vision of something like this.

Home Office - Domicile Interior Design  houzz

Or this-

Pretty home Office from House Beautiful

House Beautiful


All the unwanted clutter is bagged up and in my car. As soon as I press “POST” on my computer, I am off to the trash, consignment, and Goodwill to unload the bags and bags of stuff I cleaned out.

How are you doing on your resolution or word for the year?  If you would like to read about how others are trying to make their lives better you will find tons of inspiration over at The Lettered Cottage.  Layla is having a link up about “words” for the year.  Going through them makes you realize we are not alone in our quest to fulfill our goals and dreams so we can create better lives for ourselves.  I enjoyed reading them.

Tomorrow I have a announcement that I think you will <3 and a box of goodies that I am giving away to one of you– till then.





  1. Denise says

    Oh that desk Diane, I loooove it! What a great find! I see it painted a glossy white with a glass piece cut to fit on top. I can’t wait to see what genius thing you do to it.

    You have inspired me to CLEAN OUT AND GET RID OF this weekend. I never thought your basement would look just like mine does but hey, you are human just like us.

    It really does feel so nice to clean out all the unwanted junk, it seem to clear the mind. The problem with me is that I drop my things off at Goodwill and then go inside to see if they have anything. Of course I leave with a bag full of goodies!

    • says

      Hi Denise-

      I am going to go to the glass place tomorrow to get an estimate for a piece of glass for the top. I think it is going to be expensive, but for what I want to do – I will have to splurge. I moved the desk up in my studioffice today and am sitting at it right now. Everything is moved around. It is a mess, but I am LOVING it – so much more room now that the partners desk is history. :( A little sad about that, it served me well. I will post a photo in tomorrows post. :)

  2. Sheryll & Critters. says

    Hi Diane,

    Home Depot a while back used to cut glass, but you need the edges beveled and smoothed so they are not sharp to cut yourself. It is very expensive to have the glass made safe on the edges. I know, cause I wanted an expensive wall mirror I had for many years cut after it was broken by me barely falling into it while playing with my furry babies. Seems my walls have nothing behind them but the paneling….. grrrr.

    Well, I am so ashamed of my cluttered (more than cluttered) guest bedroom that I am really, really going to work on organizing it this week.

    I have a tiny concrete block house, on a concrete slab, in the shape of a rectangle. NO storage space at all. So, guess I will be making some hard decisions (for me anyway) of repurposing. I know I can clear some stuff in the linen closet, by making old towels into cleaning rags and such, but the kitchen……. I am sinking…….. forget the horrors of the guest room.

    Wish me luck and send me some spiritual energy?

  3. says

    Ah well at least I’m not alone : ) My garage and attic are so cluttered it makes me tired just to look at it! One day really soon I am just going to get up early, roll up my sleeves and tackle it. I know I will feel so much better once it is done.

  4. denise says

    hi Diane!!!!
    oh my gosh..I think we’re long lost sisters! Right now I’m tackling my giant basement full of ten years of “stuff”, and let me say all really good stuff..of course noone else thinks so LOL. I recruited my two young teenage nieces the beginnng of the summer and we are still working on it. boy are they tough trying to get me to really get rid of some stuff. Funny how the word hoarding kept coming up!!!! We have had a lot of laughs this summer and are really making a dent in the organizing, it’s really starting to shape up. I had to laugh and really enjoyed your site when I stumbled upon it! I was starting to get weary and you have given me the final inspiration to finish up! Happy,happy crafting! XOXO denise

  5. sherryanne says

    Declutttering is a major issue in my family. Especially where it comes to the point that at the end of the day you are just the step-mum. I tried having my step-kids get rid of stuff and I’m known as the bad guy. They have a bunch of stuff that just lies around the place and no one seems to be using them and I’m like “hey guys, would you like to donate this to an orphanage, kids there would really appreciate it” and the reply is “No!My mom gave me that, I can’t give it away” yea my bad. So we came to an agreement to have these stuff boxed and place in a storage. Thanks to A-1 Moving & Storage, the job was done and I can finally call my house a home.


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