Thursday 26 January 2012

To keep, or not to keep...

A great deal of my Sunday was taken up searching for my old broken camera lens... (I could divert here into a long story... but let me just say we now have two broken 50mm lenses, urrgh, and no working ones, so my photos are all going to be wide angle for a bit)!

I found the lens, eventually, on Monday in the bathroom cupboard. I know, that isn't normally where you'd expect to find a camera lens. I seriously need to de-clutter and get organised. I just don't know where to start, so many boxes and piles of STUFF, it's all been moved from pillar to post, and now the problem is well and truly scattered all over the house.

The hard Evidence...

Exhibit A (on the left)
This is a classic example of a box of mixed randomness. At the top are are few muji photo albums one is labelled 'clothes tags' (I don't know what I was thinking) and another 'Tickets 1997-2002 Various'. Mixed in are small home-made books, notebooks, an old passport. The colourful folded papers are a selection of old Shoreditch Maps from around 1998/99.
I've kept it all this long, so it would be a shame to chuck it all now?
Reading that sentence back... keeping it all feels like madness.

Exhibit B (on the right)
A shelf of empty boxes... they might come in useful one day though?

Exhibit C
Box of stuff.
Feat. one of the broken lenses, some other broken stuff (kids necklace, wallet with broken zip), some useful stuff, some business cards for a job I don't have any more, some stuff wrapped in newspaper... a paper throwing toy thing... a camera film of undetermined vintage, possibly used, possibly not.

A lovely leather trunk with a handy tray for keeping, um, scraps of paper...

And underneath; more empty boxes.

Should I be like Annabelle, who threw away all her teenage diaries, or like Polly, who can't help keeping jars and jars of stamps?

Whichever way it goes, it's about time I got organised. Jules of Pancakes & French Fries is inspiring me with her William Morris project... purging her life of anything that is not either beautiful or useful.
But there is something very beautiful about an empty box, isn't there?
Maybe I should just get out more...


  1. Throw it away!!Whilst moving house a few times over the past 10 years I've noticed that nothing works so eliberating than throwing stuff away. I always think...what would I save in case of a fire or, less drastic...what haven't I touched, worn or looked at over the past year...all the rest can go. I know...easier said than done ;-)

  2. Ah ah! As weird as it sounds after writing the post you mention here (thank you by the way ;) ), I can't really advice anything to you because part of me would say like Leen, and part of me would say keep it somewhere if it means something to you. This is an eternal debate that I have with myself. And then once in awhile I throw a lot of stuff away, and I must admit, most of the time it makes me feel much better (except for this great green trench that I had and still hate myself for not keeping it when we moved)... But I would love to get rid of all the unnecessary things we keep... It's a constant battle against... memories, fear of death, need to possess? I'm with you!

  3. Gosh it's funny you mentioned the Shoreditch maps, we used to pick these up every month too around the same time as you I guess. Reading your post I thought I must find our maps - but alas they've gone, at least I can't find them in any of the places they should be!