My collection of jewellery is not exactly the crown jewels. There are things in it that are precious to me but worthless, and even more things that are worthless to me and the rest of the world too! These tips will help you get rid of the useless baubles that are cluttering up your jewellery box.
If you are thinking about decluttering precious metals please do some research first. Ask for advice in at least 3 jewellery shops and read this guide to selling gold by post on the Money Saving Expert site.
This article will help you cull the jewellery that has very little financial worth.
Value can be subjective
I’ve got a broken bracelet, handwoven by me on a trek in Indonesia where I was taught how to make them by a very patient local. I’ve long since forgotten the instructions, it is unmendable as the material was specific to that particular region and therefore useless as a bracelet, but to me it is time travel. Picking it up shoot me back to being 20 and trekking in baseball boots. My Blue Peter badge, hard won by non heroically getting my auntie to collect about a million used stamps from her workplace in the ’70s, went through the washing machine and is just a shield shape, but it is still a coveted Blue Peter badge to me!
If the broken, valueless, tatty stuff makes you happy and reminds you of wonderful times then keep it! If not then why not get rid of it so you have room to appreciate the nicer stuff?
Dont make decisions about the good stuff yet
If you have a big tangle of jewellery it is easy to get carried away and declutter valuable stuff in the moment. If you declutter slowly, just a few items a day, you minimise that risk. After a short time of tiny daily declutters you will be able to think more clearly about the more costly items.
I’ve got a couple of small bits of gold that I can trace back through the family photos. Even though I never wear them and don’t like them a great deal, they connect me to my past and sort of glue me to the planet. In the future, someone else from my family might enjoy them more than me so I’m keeping them.
Questions to ask yourself
If you look at your collection of jewellery there is a good chance that a few things will stand out as being substandard. These questions will help you decided what you can get rid of easily.
- Is it broken and not worth fixing?
- Is it chipped and tatty?
- Does it give me a rash?
- Do I ever wear it?
- Does it have any bad memories or associations?
- Does it tarnish quickly and need a lot of cleaning?
The idea here is to ditch the obvious rubbish so you give the rest of your jewellery space. Edit out the junk before you start on the more difficult stuff. And remember that tastes differ, the necklace you hate might be loved by someone else so give it a second chance by donating it to charity.
If you like the idea of gentle decluttering but just don’t know how to start I’ve written a book that will talk you through the whole process. The Elephants in the Room is non patronising and helpful with concrete strategies to help you say goodbye to the useless and build habits to stop clutter returning.