Over the last few days of Jubilee celebrations, whilst we’ve all been enjoying street parties and stuffing our faces with cream teas and champagne, it’s been fun to watch the odd television interview with ‘ordinary people’ across the land who have a great fascination with all things Royal. I saw one piece on a lady (in Australia I think) who was clearly HRH mad and every room in her house was devoted to some form of Royal memorabilia, including the toilet (the throne – of course) and her front garden which was surrounded by large plastic Royal Guardsmen!!
This got me thinking about items that people collect and at what point do these collections turn into clutter?
It’s quite common for people to start with a couple of items that they enjoy, which turn into 4 or 5, then 10 or 11, and so on, and before you know it the collection has grown into several hundred items! Depending what the collection is, storing and displaying them could be an issue if you don’t have sufficient space. And just think about when you come to move house!! The packing considerations would go through the roof – just like Peter Elston here in the picture.
I guess that you’d consider your collection as being clutter if it starts to impact on your everyday life; getting in the way of your normal routine & space, and stopping you from moving on with things. And to be honest, if only part of your collection is on display, with the rest in boxes, spread across several rooms in the house & garage, then it’s not really a collection to be enjoyed, is it?
So here are my tips for looking after and showing off your prized collections;
- Remove duplicate items – 1 of each is usually enough.
- Consider slimming down your collection as a whole – what value and enjoyment does looking at several (hundred) items at once really give you? Can you really see the best items if they are surrounded by so many others?
- Only display a selection of items that give you the most pleasure to look at – store some of the others and rotate your display every few months.
- Photograph your items – group by type, size, date, etc, then you can quickly view & show them to others without having them in the way of your day-to-day life.
- Think about the value of your clutter collection. By selecting only a few treasured items to display and selling the remainder onto another collector, you could make yourself some money and buy back some of your valuable space! Using a site such as eBay is a great platform for transferring collections from one collector to another, or contacting a local auction house might be an option.
And if you just can’t help but to add to your collection, then look out for items that might have some real value to them in years to come! Lorne Spicer (antique expert) suggests that you look for
- Restricted items (where only a few were produced)
- Rare items (where only a few will remain in the future)
- Rubbish items (where items were produced to be thrown away – and thus may be rare in the future)
I hope that you enjoy the wind-down of the Jubilee week and take some time to view & enjoy your memorabilia! If you want hands-on help and support in clearing or organising your collection, then I’m here to help you – just drop me a note via the website and I’ll take it from there.