Right-Size Reading Materials
Melissa George, Polished Habitat
Keep your office organized by creating a magazine file for catalogs you want to keep for later reference, and another for incoming new magazines. It keeps the magazine clutter out of the rest of the house, and if it’s in the file, you know you haven’t read it yet.
Pare the library down with these ideas to declutter reading material:
- Assess magazine subscriptions. Issues that are devoured within a day of hitting the mailbox are fine, but cancel subscriptions to periodicals that you don't really read.
- Set limits. When a new catalog arrives, recycle any older offerings from the same firm. Store magazines in magazine holders. When the holder is full, recycle the oldest issue to make room for the newest one. A roomy (but not too roomy) basket provides active storage for current magazines. Place unread issues in the basket; when it's full, weed it of older editions.
- Store where useful. Issues of Threads are most usefully housed in the sewing area, while Popular Mechanics can be assigned to the car repair area of the garage.
- Say no to catalogs. In the U.S., register with the Direct Mail Marketing Association's Mail Preference Service to remove your address from mailing lists (for further information, visit www.dmachoice.org). Alternately, call the catalog company directly and ask to be removed from the mailing list.
- Borrow, not buy. Reduce book clutter the old-fashioned way: borrow reading materials from the local library.
- Sell online. Use online sales sites to recoup your investment in hot titles that you've already read — somebody out there will pay a respectable price to read that blockbuster, so sell it after you've read it!
Houseworks © 2006, 2010 Dorling Kindersley Limited
Text copyright © 2006, 2010 Cynthia Townley Ewer