Storage is a desired commodity in this house. We yearn for space for towels and blankets, a pantry, more built-in shelves, and bigger bedroom closets, and with three of us living in this house now, we’re even more aware of the items that we don’t need. If having a yard sale in late October in New York was to be a productive use of our time, I think we’d have half of our belongings boxed in the driveway because this month, I’ve really begun to notice that I have a lot of things that I don’t want anymore.
It’s not enough that we’ve donated many, many garage bags full of clothing, jackets, and shoes as well as created a better storage space in our attic for out-of-season wardrobes, but it’s time to start finding a better way to store our (my) home decor, or its off with its head.
What’s more amazing about Mission: Find Every Item A Place In Our Home is that there is a lot of stuff that I’ve acquired and accumulated over the years that never even made it on display. If you’ve moved often enough, I’m sure you have your own home decor skeletons in the back of the closet (not even meant to be an encroaching-on-Halloween-ism). As a matter of fact, the limited space or lack of spacial organization probably contributes greatly to the fact that I have very, very few holiday decorations to speak of. Because where would they be stored the 11 months of the year that they’re not in use?
What are your skeletons? Mine include:
1. This Ornate Lantern.
Once upon an apartment (this house and two apartments ago) this distressed metal and glass lantern hung and retrofitted to light my entryway. It was a great $20 find at a local vintage store, and it was an adorable accent. In my house however, it’s not quite right and never found a home. I’m still in denial four years later that someday I’ll use it again. Anyone have guesses on its age? I’m curious.
2. These Anthropologie Planters.
Who’s not going to buy a trio of hanging planters from Anthropologie when they’re discounted from $48-to-$12 each? My set has been displayed from time to time, never as a trio but usually independently with or without plants. Like when I began to store frames on my dining room wall:
Side note: Did my dining room really look like that only one year ago? If you need a reminder of what it looks like now, wander over here when you’re done with this post.
The orange, wicker-wrapped planters are lovely, so I don’t actually want to get rid of them, but in two years of hanging planter ownership I haven’t found the right place to display them and that makes me feel like a lame-o for spending $36 on them in the first place.
My real beef? The drainage hole on the bottom eliminates the ability to plant directly within and hang inside, and the opening on the top of the planter is so narrow that not even the smallest of plastic pots can be squeezed into that space. I’d basically have to plant my indoor hanging plants in non-draining yogurt cup, and that’s not enough space for lush growth. And as for hanging them outside, they’re just not the right proportion to hang off the large pergolas.
3. These frames.
Enough with the picture frames. It’s an addiction, I tell ya. Once upon a time when I was a pre-teen I had a poster frame filled collage-style with mementos and photographs of friends, and ever since the day that my parents denied me the request of buying 5 more identical poster frames so that I could completely cover a whole wall in my bedroom with a collage that I’d inevitably regret (how’d they know that?), I’ve hoarded every last one that I’ve been given. And adopted every inexpensive garage sale frame that I could with open arms, and then began making my own barn wood frames. In addition to the 17 filled frames that I can see from my position on the couch as I write this, no exaggeration, there is a whole unused stash of frames in the attic.
Cough, and filling my sideboard, cough.
I think the real question is: Will I ever use half of these frames again? Should I continue storing them?
4. These vases.
These vases will never look right in my house, and probably not in any future house for that matter. I gathered these mass-produced vases one-off for years and then hit the jackpot finding a box filled-to-the-brim at a garage sale for a few dollars. Regardless of how much I actually paid, it was a few dollars too much if you ask me and ever since that mindless day, they’ve been taking up space everywhere.
5. The best unused light ever.
Someday this little yellow pendant will hold its own in a room, but for now, the West Elm fixture has been sitting folded and unused for over 6-month. What gives, and why did I buy it without a specific location in mind to hang it? I already have an exposed bulb pendant that I like a lot thank you very much, so this one is waiting in the queue for the perfect opportunity.