Thursday, September 25, 2014

"Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful."

It's a famous quote from William Morris, the 19th century artist and designer, but am I able to apply it?

I'm trying hard but it's not easy. What about the thing, for example, that is useful but I know I'm never likely to use. I haven't used it for the last ten years so I'm not likely to use it in the next. But then again I might. Better put it back in the drawer. 
And those bits of ribbon. Well, they might come in handy one day. For something. And those candles with the burned down wick. Seems a waste to throw good wax away.

And so my argument with myself goes on and on. But at least with useful it's a little easier to persuade myself than it is with something of sentimental value. Then my problems really start.

As I said before, Daughter and family will be moving in for a while when they return to Swansea so I've been trying to make drawer space for them, hence the necessity to make decisions I'd rather put off, preferably until I'm dead and it becomes someone else's responsibility. Someone who won't have the sentimental ties that bind me. 

I have at least a cupboard full of ornaments I don't particularly like but they belonged to my gran or my great-aunt and I'm loath to part with them. I'm not going to display them or use them so the voice of reason says, 'Charity shop,' but the voice of my heart says, 'Ah but ...'

I currently have the rug on the hall floor covered with items I plan to take to a charity shop TOMORROW. How many of them will get there is another thing.

And speaking of other things Daughter was telling me I should get rid of some of my books. She has done this recently and found it liberating. I don't think I'm quite ready for that yet.


Katney said...

Books? Oh, no. Even though I mostly read on my Kindle these days.

mrsnesbitt said...

Yep on it!

Ole Phat Stu said...

I hang on to books too. Now we're at over 7,000 :-(

But the nice thing is, Liz, that when visitors ask "What a lot of books, have you READ all of them?" I can answer "No, I wrote nine of them.... ;-)"

Liz Hinds said...

I still haven't got into reading on my tablet yet, Katney.

Go, Mrs N!

Good plan, Stu. I'll have to do that!

Rose said...

Oh yes, Mr. Morris forgot "or has some meaning to you." This is one of my winter projects--I've vowed to go through the house and get rid of some stuff. I'm bad enough about hanging on to stuff, but to my husband everything is useful or sentimental! I sneak things out when he's not looking:)

nick said...

Apart from not liking clutter and wanting as much space around me as possible, I think of whoever might have to clear the house after I die and how tedious it would be if the place is stuffed from top to bottom with unused knick-knacks and odd bits of string. My mother's old house was crammed with assorted junk and I was dreading having to clear it out, but luckily she did the clearing-out herself and moved to a one-bed sheltered flat.

We regularly prune our book collection but we still have around 1000 we just couldn't part with.

Liz Hinds said...

Rose, we must compare notes in the Spring to see how much we've decluttered!

I do often go through my book collection, Nick, and discard those that I'm never going to read again - or for a first time - or that have no particular association for me.

Anne in Oxfordshire said...

I am quite good at de-cluttering my stuff, but my hubby is not!! Especially when I move house , though I have not moved for 8 years, and I doubt if I am likely too in the near future :-(

My mum is the same as you , I say to all the time, have you sorted the spare room out , got rid of all your clothes etc , NO , I might need them !! Doubt it. She has stuff from years and years ago.

I only have trouble with books.