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4th Annual Clutter Challenge – Week 1: Luxury & Designer Items April 5, 2018 Tags: , , , , , ,

April is here, which means it’s time for the Annual CMFTO Clutter Challenge, now in its 4th year! A few weeks ago, we asked you what areas you needed help addressing, and you replied. So, to get things started we are going to focus on luxury and designer items.

When working with clients, we get asked this a lot: “What do I do with all my ___________?” Fill in the blank with:

  • jewelry
  • designer clothing and shoes
  • luxury accessories
  • artwork and high-end furnishings
  • silver items

CMFTO - Luxury BrandsThe list could go on and on, but you get the idea. These are the items that we no longer want or need, but aren’t good candidates for dropping off at Goodwill, recycling, or tossing in the bin. So, what DO you do with your unwanted luxury and designer items?

We have a solution:

  1. Share the wealth. We all have friends or family that might enjoy a little surprise treasure. What’s “old” to us can be “new” to them. This is the easiest way to address luxury and designer items, as you know it will be going to a good home and someone who will appreciate it. As an idea, instead of buying something new (probably made in China), make a gift of a special piece, a scarf, or even a jacket that they have admired.
  2. Consign. As a relatively new industry, luxury consignment now seems to be available almost everywhere. Most places have guidelines for the items they will accept (such as: condition, seasonality, category), so it’s important to check out their information before making an appointment. At CMFTO we have two favorite locales in Chicago and Los Angeles that we refer clients to when asked: North Shore Exchange (Chicago) and Ampersand Boutique (LA). Both accept a wide variety of merchandise and both support local charities through their work. Alternatively, The Real Real is a national web-based luxury consignor that works with you individually to consign your items. It’s definitely worth considering local luxury consignment when it’s time to thin out your closets.
  3. Private Buyers. This option is typically reserved for specialist pieces, like artwork, furnishings, and precious metals or jewelry. Auction houses are a good place to start when dealing with artwork or luxury furnishings. While it may be harder to find, it’s worth the effort for your rarest pieces.

We have just outlined a list of what to do with your unwanted luxury and designer items, but how do you decide what goes and what stays? We have guidelines for that, too:

Let go of damaged and/or ill-fitting items. (Damaged jewelry, such as gold, can be sold by weight.)
Let go of items that no longer serve a purpose in your life. (You used to go to numerous black tie events, but now live on a ranch in Northern California – you probably only need one tux and one or two dresses.)
Let go of items that you simply don’t like anymore. (We all go through phases in life, especially when it comes to designer trends. It’s ok to keep one or two pieces, just in case, but if you know you’re really not going to like wearing something again, let it go.)
Keep the items that you enjoy, that you use, and that would be impossible to replace with something else. Decluttering is not about living a minimalist life, rather it’s about maximizing your enjoyment with what you have. If you love your fur coat, and only use it once a year – it’s ok to keep it.

Finally, if you want to learn more in person, Claudia will be presenting her “CMFTO Road Show” in two weeks at the Sheridan at Green Oaks in Lake Bluff, IL. (An invitation will be sent in next week’s newsletter.) Learn and understand the difference between valuing things like silver and silver plate and see how it applies to numerous other categories of “luxury” items in your life.

We hope this week’s topic has helped shed some light on the best way to address clutter in your home. As always, the CMFTO team is here to help should you need assistance in editing, organizing, and/or figuring out what to do with all those items you no longer want or need.

All my best,

PS: If you’re new to our annual event, or want more information on past clutter challenges, you can check out our archives, by category: 

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