Beach Cottage De-Clutter Mission & The Organised Housewife

Thu 16th, Feb, 2012

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G’day lovely Beach Cottage girls, hope all is well….woohoo we have a few Beach Cottage De-Clutterers in the house from yesterday…so glad you are with me!Here’s how I got on yesterday morning…




I am smokin’ with this ladies…it’s been brewing for a while…




yesterday I got cracking on the open shelving and if you follow me on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram, you will know there was a whole lot of vintage china and dishes put through its paces…I came across some vintage treasure I had forgotten about…



I put on BBC Radio 2 and the Chris Evans Morning Show, turned it up loud baby loud, sucked in his pommie accent, listened to the traffic problems on the M1, grooved to Adele and de-cluttered with 99 Red Balloons going by…oh man that tune brings back memories of me a similar age to one of my kiddos, a million years ago when I was hanging in a carpark in Manchester via the M1 and bored out of my brain…..this came on the radio every other hour..

…anyone for a vintage mixing bowl…I came across FIFTEEN of them

20120216-05-IMG_9244 20120216-06-IMG_9248


or how about a vintage platter…any shade of cream I could do you…times by thirty three, cough




Man oh man, do I ever recommend you joining me in this if you have stuff and too much of it…it is amazing when you actually get stuck into it, firstly how it doesn’t actually take that long to start culling the crapola, and secondly JUST HOW CLEANSING this whole exercise is.



The thing is, I go in fits and bursts with clutter…I think if you are like me and you love ‘collecting’ things for your home and you find no better way of spending your time than rummaging around in charity / op shops / Goodwill I think that probably clutter is par for the course….if you collect vintage treasure, you, unless you are super super strict on the whole bring-one-thing-in-throw-one-thing-out, will need to regularly edit this collection, otherwise, you will be over-whelmed.

But I also think you need movtivation and inspiration…

So, I decided that in the Beach Cottage De-Clutter Mission for the next two weeks I would get a few little Guest Posters on this here blog to help me, and us…girls whose job it is to edit and de-clutter and organise and provide mere mortals who aren’t born organised with some help

And so, please, let me introduce you to the lovely Katrina, a beautiful Australian lady I met recently…oh my this girl knows how to organize it…boy, she has a whole very popular blog about it…it’s no surprise that it’s a very popular blog because as I always say, she is blogging what she loves in her unique voice…

With that, I will give you over, my Beach Cottage friends, to The Organised Housewife and her tips that will help you if you have ear-marked the next few weeks, like me, to do this mission and Love it or Beach Cottage Lose it ;-)


The Organised Housewife’s tips on getting rid of your clutter



G’day Beach Cottage readers, my name is Katrina and I blog over here at The Organised Housewife, I am so pleased to be over here today at Sarah’s place!


Clutter…we all have it, a junk drawer, a corner of the house or quite possibly a spare room that has become a continual dumping ground. Usually items found in these areas are little bits and pieces, unwanted gifts, clothes or projects that need finishing.

Now that your clutter pile is growing it’s time gain back control and declutter!

Put on some of your favourite music to keep you motivated and have fun during the process. Remembering the end result is going to be a beautifully organised space you will enjoy.

Tips on decluttering your home

The process: allocate time, sort, clean, organise and enjoy

1. Dedicate some time to clean your areas, for example, 30 minutes to clean your junk drawer, 60 minutes for the corner or 90 minutes to make a start on the spare room. Don’t feel you need to finish and create a perfectly organised space in this time. Split your time into 3, sorting, cleaning and organising.

2. Choose the area you are going to de-clutter, concentrate on finishing this area before moving onto the next. When cleaning a room I usually stand at the door and go left to right.

3. Label tubs to help sort your clutter:

CHARITY – Give this box to your local charity for somebody else to enjoy

SELL – If you no longer want this item, but it’s to valuable to donate consider selling it on Ebay or gumtree, offering to a friend or organise a garage sale

RUBBISH – Items that are broken, can’t be donated or expired. Throw the contents of this tub directly into your bin once full

KEEP – Place items you want to keep in this tub. When you have finished cleaning the room you can then create a home for these items either in this area/room or somewhere else in the house.

4. Don’t organise as you sort, eg the box of photo’s you want to keep but are a mess. Organising while sorting will distract you from the process. Place the box in your keep tub, and once you have sorted and cleaned the room, you can begin the process of organising. Take photo box from the keep tub and organise before placing into its new home.

5. If you haven’t used an item in the past 6-12 months more than likely you won’t use it again, place in your charity or sell box.

6. If you don’t enjoy looking at it, don’t keep it, you only want items in your home that make you feel positive and happy.

7. Keep sentimental items on display, not hidden away.

To maintain this tidy space

1. Don’t allow items into your home you don’t want or need

2. Use a to-do list to help you remember items that need fixing or purchasing for this room

3. Out with the old in with the new, eg. you buy a new platter = donate your old platter you haven’t used for 3 years to charity

4. Find snippets of time to keep it under control, tidy the junk drawer while on the phone or sort through a paper pile while watching TV

5. Keep a continual charity box. When your cleaning and tidying the home and come across something you no longer need place it in your box. Once the box is full place in your nearest charity bin.


Thanks for having me Beach Cottage Girls, I hope you enjoyed my tips


Katrina loves to be organised, bake and spend time with her 3 kids. She is the blogger behind The Organised Housewife, where she gives tips and ideas to create a clean and organised home. With inspiration on organising your kitchen, laundry and creating nooks to keep the school bags organised. A new feature to her blog is the popular ‘The Organised Housewife Daily Tasks‘, sign up to receive one cleaning or decluttering task emailed to you each day, these are tasks that can be easily forgotten such as dusting your ceiling fans.

You can also find Katrina on facebook, twitter and pinterest.




So that’s it from me today ladies, I am still in the breakfast room de-cluttering though I am really on the home straight with this one now and moving on to the next thing…my bedroom and my wardrobe….lordy this one is not so easy but I do have a lady lined up to help me out…

Oh and guess what is hopefully going in today?  Yep the new lady of the house, the bathtub…bring it on








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52 Responses to “Beach Cottage De-Clutter Mission & The Organised Housewife”

  1. Deb says:

    That is an impressive collection of mixing bowls! I did my kitchen a while ago and I still stop and stare in delight and the ordered shelves, occasionally I mean not in a freaky loony way. Roll on wardrobe, I desperately need to do mine.

  2. Stacey (harrimar) says:

    Hi Sarah,
    Its always a wonderful, freeing feeling when you declutter your home, the problem is fighting the urge to fill up all the empty spaces again! Even though I have twice moved countries, I still seem to be hauling the same boxes around full of knick knacks that never see the light of day (old family stuff) maybe I now need to “take the bull by the horns” and just “do it”. Wish me luck x

  3. Nadine says:

    You can de-clutter some mixing bowls in my direction! Love the little ones. ;)

  4. Glennie says:

    Hmm – ignoring all the declutter talk and concentrating on iminent arrival in the bathroom of the new tub – yay! Will that mean you can use it tonight? Bliss …………

  5. Melinda says:

    De cluttering going along at cracking pace – am sorting thru a mountain of papers in office today ( and um other areas of house ) but feeling GREAT!!
    really enjoy a good declutter and LOVING the thought that Im not alone in the process – very energising!

    thanks for making this fun xx

    ps also did under small boys bed today……..what a schmozzle – nice and clear now though!

    • sarah says:

      oooh Melinda, I need to do that too!

      I am loving the though that I am not alone in this too!

      • Melinda says:

        thanks for your comment – was just settling in for a bit of post lunch internet surfing aka muchos time eliminator – No no no its back to decluttering I go !!
        Im on a mission today Mrs BC

  6. Can’t wait to see the bathroom! I’ve gotten another closet done tonight :0)

  7. Alice says:

    I love your bowls! I can’t find anything like them around here and I have been searching for many years… I have a couple of stainless steel ones and a few plastic ones instead :(… I am not a fan of the plastic ones… Never mind…I love your white tea cups too… Very cute… I have a whole bunch of broken/cracked/chipped mugs I have to throw out… I keep holding on to them (and using them) because they were our first set given to us as a wedding gift (part of an equally chipped and cracked set) 8 years ago… I am way too sentimental!..lol… Looking foward to the de-cluttering the bedroom session…. Oh yeah… and the Bathroom reveal! It’s going to look faB!

  8. FLeur says:

    I think the bowls are def keepers, please dont purge them!
    Its really about getting on and doing it. I have found that I spend more time thinking about it, than the time it actually takes to get on and do it.
    XX Fleur

  9. This is such an amazing post, thanks for the great tips! Your pictures are stunning. You’re a wonderful photographer!

  10. teres says:

    in the last photo you posted, there is a stack of 4 white ‘petal’ bowls…i have those exact ones in yellow and orange sitting in my giveaway box to go to goodwill along with a smaller version of the exact same thing. mine are stamped with ‘japan’ on the bottoms. are yours? funny…i would have kept them if they were in white like yours lolol!

    keep at it!

  11. Sandra says:

    It looks like you are doing really well with your declutter! Thanks for the tips from Katrina, I was waiting til my day off on Friday to start, but I’m feeling inspired, maybe I could just do a half hour tonight to get started

    • sarah says:

      yes I think small steps in bursts of time is a very good idea Sandra…that is what I am doing right now…off to do a drawer for half an hour! x

  12. Rukmini Roy says:

    Sarah, I want those vintage mixing bowls. Shamelessly. Or even one of those. Why dont you come up with a giveaway! I am ‘earting ‘em. Btw, I never win you know, ever. I have bad luck with winning things I think…but still, a giveaway would be fun :) i am posting on the declutter challenge today.

    • sarah says:

      well it’s a good idea but to be honest I am just concentrating on getting rid of stuff before that x

      • Rukmini Roy says:

        Haha..yes, I know what you mean! Really, I do. But seriously, I heart those bowls…I wish I was in Australia and your neighbor…I would have helped you a lot. Would’ve taken them all :P

  13. Did this exact same thing a few weeks ago……the kitchen and pantry.
    Moving on to the wardrobes…………………………………………………..
    Where to start…???
    Tania Maree xx

  14. alison says:

    Ooh, I love those mixing bowls. I’m LOVING having a sticky beak through your stuff.

    I got inspired by a book in the 80′s called “Confessions of a Happily Organizes Family” by Deniece Schofield. Some of the ideas may be dated but the basic principles are still there and I still use some of the ideas decades later. One of my dream jobs would be a professional organiser.

    I just took all my knick knacks, plant stands, sidetables etc out of my loungeroom and dining room tonight in preparation for my carpet to be cleaned tomorrow. I must say I am enjoying the pared down look. Maybe the start of something new??

    Hanging out to see your bathroom. I’ve been shower screen, tap and tile browsing this week.


    • alison says:

      PS After I dusted off my copy of “Confessions of a Happily Organized Family” I found 5 books I want to reread and 20 books to send to Vinnies. Thank you!!! That more than covers the 10 items I had to cull after buying 10 items earlier this week.


    • sarah says:

      yep Alice I love that pared down look too…so cleansing

      oh happy bathroom shopping! x

  15. annie says:

    I do keep a permanent charity box but I have a proviso with it. I NEVER look inside to see what was placed in it before it goes to the oppy. I’m just too sentimental. I probably couldn’t tell you what was in there but if I checked I might relent and then it would be back to the drawing board.

  16. Carin says:

    Sarah, I’ve been away from the PC a few days decluttering, and come back to you doing this! How fun! Totally in love with your old mixing bowls, though I too have way more than I actually need lol. Such pretties!

    99 balloons…talk about a trip down memory lane. I love Chris Evans. I still remember when he was at GLR doing this silly “Billy” thing (you had to shout Billy at random people… sounds weird, but it was hilarious at the time). back in the early 90′s. Pre-kids, lazy weekends with my boyfriend (now hubby) in our god awful rented house in the East end of London.

    • sarah says:

      yeah I remember him on TFIF…I used to enjoy that show too!

      I went off him for a while but loving him again after Jonathan Ross left the beeb…one of my sadder moments!

      I vaguely remember that Billy thing too


  17. Peggy says:

    OH I am dying right about now! I see the exact bowls I’ve been looking for but here in the States they are as rare as hen’s teeth! Especially in our neck of the woods!! I have to admit I was shocked at the amount of rubbish in our thrift stores however I did buy the most wonderful manual typewriter recently for $2.24 US. Not my normal colors but I plan on painting it any way!

    Great job on the declutter! I’ve been finding bits and pieces but we got rid of so much when we moved to Alaska and there was no way to replace it. So now I just have small bits and bobs to sort through! :)

    Can’t wait to see that lovely new bathroom!! Have a wonderful day! I’m off for a coffee on this wet grey day… and maybe even a new shirt or two since that is where I did a very thorough cleanse… got rid of ALL the holey, stained T’s so now I have an empty dresser! :) Thrift stores here I come!

  18. Good tips. Love all the cream-colored bowls, even if the number of bowls is proving a challenge for you right now. So, when do we get to see the bathtub in all its glory? :)

  19. Elaine in Laguna says:

    Thank you for the great tips from your guest poster….Can’t wait for Saturday when I have a day off to start my de-cluttering …Looking forward to the bathroom reveal, but concerned that you say there’s a prob…I know you’ll work through it, as you always do!

  20. Candylei says:

    The platters look charming as does everything else. Are you seriously tossing them? ;-)

  21. Claire says:

    I like a good declutter, usually twice a year in spring and autumn. It’s so great for the mind to use or lose it and gain back some ordered space, especially when you have limited storage as I do. I have a sneaky tendency towards hoarding so I have go with the decluttering urge when I feel it!! Your collection of bowls and plates Sarah makes me feel positively minimalist I have to say!!

  22. Anonymous says:

    Sarah – I can’t tell your keep piles from the discard piles – so many cute things! Love that gold/yellow mixing bow!

  23. Ruth G says:

    I accepted this challenge with my garage storage being the most cluttered and therefore the most need of help. But if I had your mixing bowls and platters, my job would be so much harder. How do you decide which ones to keep? Those lovelies would still be sitting on the table staring at me!

  24. Katrina says:

    Wow I’m actually jealous of the space that you must have to be able to store all of this extra stuff…..maybe it’s a good thing that I don’t have any space anyway or I might have filled that…..have just started this morning on the dreaded plastics cupboard….there really is no easy way to do that one….and where have some of my lids gone? Who ate them? One good thing….found some things I used when the girls were swimming full time – 2 food containers (heat or cold) and 2 smaller thermoses….straight on the phone, sent a text to a friend who has 2 young kids….yep she wants them….straight into the car so can drop to her this afternoon….now to try and work out if I want to hang onto my juicer and slicer…..it’s not long until this house will be an empty next (or an empty next during uni terms….things that never used to happen could happen again….think I need to rearrange my office and have a spot for those things….put a time on them….if they don’t get used in the first 12 months of empty nest then they’re out of here….okay so everything is out of the cupboard….now to clean it and do some thinking about what containers I will be using needing….thinking that I might put them to one side as I will use some of them for when I get my cupboard (which is pretending to be a pantry) organised….this is all your fault!!!!!!!!!!

    • sarah says:

      the same person that ate the ones in this house too Katrina!

      I am sorry! I thought that it’s all my blog’s fault when I started hahaha xxx

  25. Linda jenkins says:

    Results so far – pantry cleaned out = 1 large rubbish bag of expired or stale opened food.

    Wardrobe tidy = 1 large bag of clothes for my daughters to go thru before an op shop drop. Have ordered the shoe organizers from benji box – will start with the 5 pack and see how they work out.

    Have booked someone to catch up the ironing for me – one of my most avoided jobs.

    A family meeting booked in for sun night to delegate jobs around the house for 3 teenagers. Time for full time working parents to delegate more jobs consistently!

    Quite a productive couple of days :)

  26. [...] time! Definitely not my favorite time of the year! Sarah takes on the de-clutter challenge (2 weeks, 5 rooms), and holy sh*t, 5 rooms… this is quite some [...]

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