Weekend Projects

One Weekend Decluttering Project That’s More Fun in Winter

published Feb 22, 2019
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(Image credit: Katy Cartland)

Apartment Therapy Weekend Projects is a guided program designed to help you get the happy, healthy home you’ve always wanted, one weekend at a time. Sign up now for email updates so you never miss a lesson.

In her most famous book, Marie Kondo revealed that she keeps her personal collection of books limited to less than 30. That statement got convoluted and incorrectly quoted as Kondo prescribing the same limit for everyone else in the world. The truth is, Marie Kondo doesn’t care how many books you have. But you should.

You need to be thoughtful about your books, or any other media. When left untended, it’s far too easy for those collections to get out of control, and for what began as an enlivening home library will quickly veer into something that looks closer to B-roll from the TV show “Hoarders.”

The gospel of KonMari implores you to keep only what sparks joy. I’m just suggesting that you go through your bookshelf every once in a while. So that’s what we’ll do this weekend…

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)
(Image credit: Chloe Berk)

This Weekend: Organize and declutter your bookshelf.

Take some time this weekend to go through your books and consider them for a bit. If you have time, I suggest removing all the books (and other knick-knacks) from the shelf, then placing the books back one by one.

If you find any books you don’t need or want any longer, set them aside to be sold, given away, or donated. Some public libraries accept donations, or you can look for a Little Free Library near you. Or donate them to local shelters, or prison libraries—the American Library Association keeps a list of prison library donation programs on their website.

If you get distracted by something, that’s ok! The whole reason we’re doing this is to make sure you’re keeping a fulfilling curated collection of titles. So let yourself indulge. There are worse ways to spend a winter weekend than getting lost in a book you love.

If your bookshelf isn’t a bookshelf, address wherever it is that you store your books. If you don’t have many books, maybe you can decide to work on a collection of DVDs, or records, or something like that.

You can catch up with weekend projects right here. Share your progress with us and others by posting updates and photos on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtag #atweekendproject.

Remember: This is about improvement, not perfection. Each week you can either choose to work on the assignment we’ve sent you, or tackle another project you’ve been meaning to get to. It’s also completely okay to skip a weekend if you’re busy or not feeling the assignment.