Jump Start January: Week 2: Day 7

Are you having a good Jump Start January? We’re now onto day 14, the last day of Declutter Week. Today’s job is to make a start on sorting out your clothes by decluttering your underwear drawer. By the way, how are you liking the artwork?

One thing I’d suggest today is this – don’t try to go through all your clothes in one go if they’re a bit of a mess. In fact, a wardrobe’s-worth might be too much too. Do a bit at a time.

jump start declutter underwear drawer

Here’s the declutter:

  • Empty the drawer and give it a good dust out or wipe down.
  • Add liner paper or dividers/boxes to the clean, dried drawer (optional).
  • Sort out your clothes: ‘keep here’, ‘keep but put away somewhere else’, ‘keep but mend’, ‘sell’, ‘recycle’, ‘give to charity’ or ‘bin’. Underwear doesn’t last forever – be ruthless if it’s worn out.
  • Don’t spend too long on the sorting. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit or flatter you.
  • Fold the ‘keep’ items neatly and put everything back in the drawer, grouped by type or by colour. Pair up socks, and store matching items together.
  • Empty the bin and the recycling immediately, and mend/sell/give the rest to charity within the week.
  • Make a list of anything that you urgently need to buy or replace, and make your purchases this week.

I’ve retired some snagged tights and stockings to the bin, and put a couple of sets of everyday underwear onto my shopping list. No grotty undies here, phew. Now for a little online shopping…

Is it safe to ask you about the state of your knicker drawer?


There are additional resources and tips in the bestselling Jump Start 2013 ebook. Please buy a copy and help support this site.


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  1. My house is slowly filling up with stuff, the majority of which I don’t use. I’m not blaming my wife but it seems like every other day a new box arrives from amazon or the like, and I think “please no more stuff”. Plus my little boy (2 and a half years old) has more toys than a small toy shop, but I dont have the heart to throw any of his stuff away (or take to a charity shop). Any suggestions on how to deal with my wife’s and boy’s excess stuff?

  2. Hi Julian – I think you should maybe have a chat with your wife about this, first and foremost. Tell her how you feel, in the most tactful way possible. Honesty and openness are the best way forward here, especially if you want to spend your joint household funds reaching other goals (goals and aims are a positive way of approaching this – rather than simply being critical, look for something good to build towards together).

    Also, having interesting toys and variety is good for child development, and kids often get emotionally attached to toys, so a toy declutter is also a delicate subject. What you could do is lead by example, as you are a key role model. For example, you could have a family discussion about giving things away to charity and helping those less fortunate than yourselves. You could then ask your son if there’s anything he doesn’t like much any more that he would like to donate to charity, along with anything you’re donating yourself. As he gets older, you could also have a discussion about household space and storage – if he wants new things there could be an understanding of ‘out with the old, then in with the new’.

    You could also look for a ‘toy library’ scheme in your local area, where toys are lent out and then returned so that you get plenty of novelty and interest without the clutter building up over time.

  3. Hi Julian,

    I agree with Penny, talk to your wife first. What I would suggest is that everytime something new is bought something old will be binned/given to charity shops/sold. This will keep you from “over-cluttering”. Maybe you can also agree to reduce ordering new things to only once a month or so.

    Another suggestion is to look through your belongings regularly to avoid a major clutter build up. It can start with small stuff like books, DVDs, CDs, etc. Decide what you want to keep, bin, sell or donate.

    You could also try to pack the toys your son doesn’T use (at the moment) in a box and bring them out again in, let’s say, six months. He will most probably forget about them and will have something “new” in the future.

  4. What I forgot to mention, as an incentive for selling things you could tell your wife that you will use the proceeds for a night out.

  5. Hi Penny and Anja,

    Thank for both for taking the time to offer some suggestion. You are both right this a delicate subject. I have mentioned it a couple of times, e.g. when a new box arrives I’ve said “do we really need anymore stuff?” but I probably need to sit down with my wife and explain my concern in a little more detail.

    Thanks for the advice, and yes suggesting we use the money for a night out might just work.


  6. We need more of the “All the…” man from week one! I think he’s the funniest thing I’ve seen so far this year.

  7. Hi Meg, I like the ‘X all the things’ meme too, he will be back in due course. Meanwhile, Jump Start January has a new theme every week, and the artwork will be changing every week to go with this.

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