Property crunch

The inspiration you need to downsize


I ain’t no Imelda Marcos but…
(photo via

It took breaking up with my boyfriend to get organized and downsize.

My current apartment is a spacious 1200 sq ft glass palace filled with a lifetime of treasures: art, furniture, tableware (so many serving trays!), clothes and shoes. Everything has a place, but not for long.

I will be moving into a new studio apartment that is designed like a hotel suite, tiny. No kitchen just a mini bar and space for a desk, chair, side table and bed.

After years of reading interior design magazines with themes like “big ideas, small space”, I’m excited by the challenge to create a functional, warm home out of an urban shoebox. Of course I will miss having two floors and enough room in my bathroom to do yoga, however I am comforted and inspired by famous minimalists like our Founder and CEO Brian Scudamore and Tumblr’s founder David Karps.

Here is some of the organizing I’ve done already. Hope it encourages you to get going!

      1. Finally sorted my printed photos from back-in-the-day and threw-out doubles and any pics that didn’t mean anything to me anymore. After sorting into times and places, I still had a big box of photos so I’m going have them professionally scanned into digital copies. I will be keeping the originals in storage. Google “photo scanning service” to find a service in your area. Bulk scanning may not work if your photos are fragile, so beware!
      2. I stepped into the closet for my next purge. I divided my clothes into wearable, donatable and consignable. There were some tough moments when it came down to my old Elvis Costello t-shirt or my first leather jacket, but the farewell was made easier by gifting gems to someone who would love them. I am no Imelda Marcos, Carrie Bradshaw or Puff Daddy, but I had way too many shoes. I sorted them the same way as my clothes and went from 30 pairs to 8. It’s still too many, but I just couldn’t say good-bye to any more.
      3. Bath products. Yes, I’m the dude who can’t resist a new bottle of cream, bubbles or hair goop. I also have a drawer full of mini bottles that I swore I would use on my travels. Here’s the thing though – when you travel you collect this stuff from hotels, you don’t use it. I donated all my unopened bath stock to WISH, a local non-profit that supplies women with toiletries. I also reconsidered what I’ve been buying after learning of the toxic ingredients found in my favorite brands. I decided to eliminate all toxic ingredients from my beauty *ahem* regime. Here’s a useful wallet size guide that lists all the bad stuff that’s not meant for the human body. It will help you downsize and detoxify!

Up next: kitchen ware!

Our 1-800-GOT-JUNK? blog is full of useful organizing/decluttering tips. Search “decluttering” and “tips and suggestions” for more!

Andrew Sutherland is PR Manager for 1-800-GOT-JUNK? and You Move Me. 1-800-GOT-JUNK? inspired Andrew to regain space by saying good-bye to 1/3 of his possessions. Andrew is a mountain man in training who appreciates an awesome view, a good story and organized closets. Connect with Andrew on Google+ or LinkedIn.

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