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Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Professional Advice: The Pre-Reno Purge

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So you’re about to embark on a kitchen renovation. You’ve met with your kitchen designer (or consulted your favourite kitchen blog), selected your appliances and have all other materials chosen and ordered. You’ve even made cooking arrangements for the duration of the project and have moved your furniture into a Pod. But have you purged?

One of the biggest concerns I hear when re-designing a client’s kitchen is whether or not they’ll have enough room for all their place-settings, cutlery and kitchen gadgets. Current cabinetry is much more efficient in how it uses space, so finding room for everything is rarely a problem.

But rather than assuming there’s room for it all, redoing your kitchen gives you a terrific excuse to go through the contents of your kitchen and figure out what is truly essential, and what is best for the Good-Will store. You have to empty out the contents of your cabinets anyway, so why not use that opportunity to give your kitchen a good purge?

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Be honest about the purge as well. Sure that fondue set was a lovely gift from your Great-Aunt fifteen years ago, and yes it is in good condition. But when was the last time you used it? Do you really need 3 turkey basters? How much Tupperware does a family of four really need?

Of course there’s no hard and fast rule for the purge, but I follow my own version of the 5 second rule: If I can’t think of the last time I used something within 5 seconds it goes into the “purge” box. Some of the items in the box are still useful (just not used) and are packed into a box and stored until they are needed. The rest are given to charity or are recycled.

I’m not trying to turn your kitchen remodel into an episode of Hoarders. But when you’re updating your kitchen cabinets, it makes sense to update the contents.

5 comments:

  1. Very well said, Arne! I tell all of my customers this, some take my advice, some don't. I know that I am a pack rat, so I have to do this periodically, myself, with all of my stuff. That is why moving so much in the last 2 years has been realy good oportunities to purge and let go of so much *junk* that I had managed to collect since the last time I had moved, over 23 years ago.

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  2. Great advice! Thanks for sharing :)
    -Jessica & Holly
    Etsy.com/shop/chezjolly

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  3. Thanks for the feedback everyone.

    Lovely photos of Paris Jessica & Holly.

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  4. Arne, I can purge all over the place! But the kitchen? I love each and every item! It's genetic - my mother had a love of kitchen ware and gadgets. But I do *try* to follow the "one thing in/one thing out" rule whenever possible.

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  5. Thanks for dropping by Jean.

    I know what you mean about genetics ... my trouble is my father was raised by a woman who grew up in Depression-era Arkansas. Translation: NOTHING is thrown out. I've become the opposite of that, but I still have to fight those tendencies.

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