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Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Downsizing

Like many of you, I subscribe to numerous shelter magazines and have done so for years.  From House Beautiful to Elle Decor to Veranda to Southern Accents (RIP) to Cottage and Coastal Living to Domino (RIP) to Metropolitan Home (RIP) to Dwell (blah I never liked it much) to Southern Living, Country Living, Better Homes and Gardens, etc, I have always subscribed to about 10 a month.  That is 120 shelter magazines a year times five years is well over 600 magazines that I have accumulated.  There are certain magazines I always keep (Elle Decor, Veranda, Architectural Digest, and House Beautiful) and certain ones I always toss (recycle) after one reading, but the stacks of "keepers" has been growing out of control.  I decided to spend some time and downsize. 

Here is about 1/4 of the magazines I wanted to keep.  It is just too much, and to be honest, when I see a shelf full of them, I don't usually have the inclination to pull one out and flip through it.

Because let's be honest.  As much as I love shelter magazines and am fully aware of all the hard work that goes into production of each issue, the reason I keep certain issues isn't the market pages or recipes or trend spotting sections.  It's the 5-10 pages towards the end of the magazine that include photographs of beautiful homes.  Those pages that capture gorgeous interiors and rooms are the "good stuff," the real part of the magazine worth keeping.  The rest of the magazine is fun to read once or twice, but it doesn't really remain as relevant over time.

So I bought a 3-ring binder and some sheet protectors.

I placed a fabric remnant in the front sleeve of the binder to make it cute.  A wallpaper sample would be fun to use as well.

Then I went to work flipping through my stacks of magazines, page after page, ripping out photos of homes I love.  It could be a floor plan or a color scheme or a particular piece of furniture or accessory that I love, or it could be anything by Meg or Miles or Ruthie.  But I pulled something from nearly every magazine.

I put the pages in sheet covers.

And now I have hundreds of interior photographs right at my fingertips, neatly stored in a 3-ring binder.

The stack of 600 magazines is much smaller now. 
I'll be working on these remaining stacks over the next few weeks when I have moments here and there. 

What used to take up multiple bookshelves has been condensed to a 3-ring binder, and I am happy to be gradually lightening my load, little by little...

What magazines do you keep?  Do you have shelves full of them?

*My set of Dominos remains fully in-tact, and I have no plans to change that!*

11 comments:

Erin said...

Great idea- I really need to do something with the giant stack of magazines I have, too...

Jenn @ Living Luxe for Less said...

MOS I can't believe we were on the same wave length this week wanting to downsize our ever expanding magazine collections! I love how magazines can look on a shelf in something simple like a lucite frame, but lets be honest when you have 100 magazines on a shelf how can you even begin to remember why you saved the mag in the first place?! This is a great idea! I'm definitely going to copy you...I think I may organize my binders by room though. Like a binder for each room of the house. How do you plan on organizing all these beautiful images?

Julie said...

I'm so impressed you've taken the time to do this. Great idea.

designchic said...

My daughter did this very same thing. Not only is it a great way to cut down on the magazines, but such a concise way to look at favorite images...love the zebra fabric on the front!!

Me, Ed and Pea said...

This is a great idea!

kayce hughes said...

I do the same thing except I just use a 3 hole punch instead of sheet protectors. I have at least 5 books now.

Ruth said...

Did you know there is a special issue of Domino magazine coming out on 4/17?! Check out dominomag.com

The Pink Pagoda said...

So smart! I'm tired of all of the stacks on closet shelves. This is the perfect project for the carpool line!

JT said...

So fun to see someone else do the exact same thing as me! Great minds think alike :) I love going through my old binders to get inspiration. And also recycle those old stacks taking up space :)

Andrea said...

Yes, I have stacks on my shelves that I started to do the same thing with! (I may also have a huge stack as tall as my nightstand that I haven't shelved yet.) But my Dominos are perfect, too! Just can't cut them up.

Vicki K said...

Thanks so much for the great idea, and I love, love your blog!

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