8 Things You Can Get Rid Of Before Spring

published Mar 15, 2020
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Spring is coming—it officially begins on March 19. And I’ll give you one huge reason to declutter before the season starts to turn: Getting rid of stuff makes it so much easier to clean when spring cleaning time rolls around.

Decluttering things you don’t need means that everyone in your household will have a little more room—literally and figuratively—to move around. You’ll enjoy the extra space, but you’ll also feel lighter and freer to choose activities like an evening puzzle over finally organizing that disaster of a pile in the middle of the garage.

If this sounds good to you, here is a list of things to get rid of before spring:

Patio furniture and decorations you don’t need or use

Before you set out to clean your patio decor, make sure you’re only hanging on to what you need, enjoy, and actually use. It’s easy to fall into the “but I might need it” trap when it comes to patio furniture, specifically. But extra patio furniture is too bulky to store unnecessarily and too big to overlook when it’s an eyesore. “Extra” could mean a lot of things. It might refer to redundant pieces that crowd your patio or items that are broken beyond repair. Maybe it’s the umbrella stand that’s missing a corner or the umbrella itself that was irreparably damaged when it got left out, open, during a summer thunderstorm last year.

Forever-empty plant pots

If you enjoy gardening or houseplants, you probably have a stash of pots for transplanting, placing outside, and sticking that plant you just couldn’t resist getting at Trader Joe’s into. But you don’t need that tower of plastic pots you’ve saved or the ceramic pots you don’t like anymore. Whittle your collection down to a few pots you love and re-home the rest. (Recycle all but maybe two plastic grower’s pots.)

Kids’ winter clothes

Before you start bringing in the swimsuits, shorts, and sundresses, take out winter clothing that your child won’t fit into next year (could be all of it) and pass it along to someone who can use it. If you’re passing it down to another child in your own family, put the items in storage but make sure to get rid of anything that’s worn out. Keeping kids’ drawers and closets from becoming overstuffed goes such a long way in helping them keep them neat.

Credit: Joe Lingeman/Apartment Therapy

Excess cleaning tools

These have a way of multiplying. Culling your collection down to the best, favorite, or necessary tools before it’s time to spring clean serves two purposes: For one, you’ll have an easier time grabbing what you need when you need it. And two, You’ll have a clear picture of what you need to replace or buy before you spring clean.

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Credit: Anik Polo

Whatever books you’re ready to part with

I’m not going to tell you to KonMari your books down to 30. Of course not. But wouldn’t you like to shuffle those three-star reads out of the house to make room for new reads to keep you company?

Extra vases, if you have too many

Don’t put cut flowers that make you happy into vases that don’t. Whether it’s an awkward shape, a color that no longer fits in, or a style you just don’t enjoy, donate all but the vases you can’t wait to use for those fresh-from-the-garden blooms that will blossom soon.

Credit: Amelia Lawrence/Apartment Therapy

Winter bedding

As you’re putting away the down comforter and washing and folding the throw blankets you won’t need once warm weather comes, reassess what you have and see if there’s anything you can get rid of. Maybe it’s the threadbare Christmas flannel sheets or the comforter no one wants because the feathers poke out of it. Get them out of your linen closet and free up valuable storage space.

All those holiday cards

You’ve taken them down but they’re still stashed in a pile in your desk drawer. Thank them for reminding you of your loved ones and let go of the guilt as you toss them in the recycling bin. You’re behind on your own family photos. Really, what are you going to do with other people’s holiday cards?