Keepsakes You Should Keep Safe and What You Should Let Go

8:00:00 AM

Hello darlings!

I have a question for you. Do you hold on to your memories? It could be cards from past partners, your child’s first blanket, your grandfather’s hat, perhaps even more valuable heirlooms. If, like me, you enjoy looking back at times gone by, it can be quite overwhelming, both emotionally and occasionally physically too.

But sometimes you might feel like they’re taking up too much space in your home; they’ve become unmanageable and need sorting through without any regrets. Sound familiar?
Here are some of my tips on how you can decide what to keep, how to store it, and what to get rid of.

Approach it Carefully
There’s no need to rush into it. This isn’t like regular de-cluttering. This is more personal and emotional than that, and so, it needs to be approached carefully. In other words, don’t expect it to get done quickly.
Set some time aside once a week to tackle one box (or drawer, or whatever) at a time. Don’t overdo it, and if you feel like you’re getting upset, just enjoy the memory and leave it for another time. 
Try not to get sucked into simply working your way through your keepsakes soaking up the memories, and try to focus on these questions:



How much room do you have for keepsakes?
Your aim is to whittle your keepsakes down to one box, or one beautifully styled vintage suitcase. Keep this in mind while you look through your keepsakes.

Is it your memory, or someone else’s?
Things like the invitation from your best friend’s wedding or the programs from your niece’s budding theatre career can go straight away. These aren’t yours to keep, as ruthless as it may sound.

Does it need to be stored securely?
If, on the other hand, you have items that are particularly valuable to you, then consider storing them more securely. A jewellery safe, for example, could provide protection from loss or damage in an affordable way, while a bigger safe could comfortably secure most of the items you’re looking to put in safekeeping.

Does it make you feel good?
Your keepsakes shouldn’t be associated with negative emotions. If a photo of you as a teenager makes you feel bad, then perhaps it shouldn’t make the cut.

diamond necklace

Was it inherited?
These items once belonged to someone close to you, and now they’re yours. If you want to get rid, then there’s no need to feel guilty.  The person who gave them to you would not want you to keep something you don’t like. Something like a tea set can be sold or passed on to another relative who wants it. Or if you don’t feel like you can part with all of it, keep a teacup and saucer and donate the rest.

How old is it?
Things like gig tickets, birthday cards and invitations can be kept for a while, but they don’t need to be kept forever, unless it is a reminder of a particularly spectacular event.

Can it go on display?

Most keepsakes aren’t valuable to anyone else, so it could be the perfect way to honour that memory and make use of that keepsake. You could create a shadow box dedicated to that particular occasion; it could get hung on the wall as is, or it could feature in a charming vignette on the console.

Some of my most loved keepsakes are on prominent display in our house. That way they are safe, they are honored and I can look at them to my heart's delight! What about yours?

Lot's of love




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64 comments

  1. I hate this problem sometimes. Sometimes i want to keep mementos of special events but then I just end up chucking it out because it takes up space and can make the place look messy.

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  2. I know....but sometimes it's so hard to get rid of things. I usually end up tucking stuff away in my basement.

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    1. The trap of having space to store things, lol.

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  3. So true but many times I wish to keep & not wish to keep as they remind it of many instances. But yes those with negative emotions, should not be kept.. Nice post!

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  4. It's very hard for me to let go of my mother's possessions, no matter how trivial. Thank you for the push.

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    1. It's the sentimental ones that are harder to let go, I know!

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  5. I had quite a lot of keepsakes from my previous relationship which I didn't want it let go of but slowly and surely I have managed to get rid of that and kept the important things from my family

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    1. That's a great way to do it! Slowly and at your pace!

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  6. I'm slowly working on going through things. I do keep the items that are old and mean something of course. But there are some things that could be described as crap that I need to toss.

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    1. I love tossing things out! My husband makes fun of me!

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  7. I am someone who will find a reason to hold on to anything. I think it may be time to go through my things and declutter.

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    1. It's ok Kaylee, we are all holding on one way or another!

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  8. I have a whole lot of keepsakes I find difficult to get rid of. Thanks for sharing this.

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  9. I have a lot of keepsakes as well. It can be hard to pick what to get rid of.

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  10. "Is it your memory or someone else's" WOW I'm so pinning this article!

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  11. These are great tips! I am such a hoarder, so I have tons of things that I should probably let go of.

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    1. I am a yarn hoarder so I get what you mean!

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  12. My husband is a memory hoarder of the greatest variety. What great questions that he and I should consider together for some of these items. I do try for the most part, make use of everything, like displaying what can be displayed, but there are some things that I just don't have any idea what to do with.

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    1. My toughest things are related to my university years and I don't really know what to do with them too. :)

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  13. i keep a memory box. if it fits in the box it can stay, clutter makes me nervous and i cant stand it :)

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  14. I used to have a memory box but it was getting a bit ridiculous so like you I went through a process of determining whether I needed said keepsakes. I think the most important one was deeming whether it was my memory or someone elses x

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    1. Yes I think that's the best way to look at it!

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  15. I don't really hold onto things. Appart from books I must admit. So this is not really something I have been through. I believe the best way to move in is to start fresh so I usually don't keep things from bad or sad experiences xx corinne

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    1. You are totally right on the bad experiences!

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  16. I have a small box that is still intact from today which contains letters wayback from highschool up to now. It contains letters coming from friends and family.

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  17. Great thoughts on 'memories'. Sometimes it's important to let go and few other times it's a good feeling to hold on..Unfortunately it's not completely in our hands..

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  18. I have bins full of things from when the kids were little. I need to spend the weekend going through it all and keeping just a few things.

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    1. Oh my I don't really want to start thinking what those bins will look like for me in a few years from now!

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  19. I have a hard time of getting rid of stuff. I have to spend some time going through stuff and getting rid of the stuff that's no longer needed.

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    1. As long as you do it from time to time it's ok :)

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  20. These are such great tips! I always have the hardest time with letting go of sentimental things but sometimes you just have to.

    Ellie | www.scotchandstilettos.com

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  21. Great Post! Thanks for the tips for organizing and keeping my sentimental items. Thank you.
    XOXO //SINCERELY OPHELIA | NYC Petite Fashion Blogger

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  22. I know I really have a lot of things I need to go through and find things that I have to get rid of. I have lived with a hoarder and I just can't go back to that moment.

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  23. Oh wow, I don't keep things. I always get rid of things. I guess I just like fresh beginnings. But I am thinking of getting a little box for things I just can't bring myself to let go. But i think its going to be really tiny Lol

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    1. Tiny is the way to go since you feel like it!

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  24. It definitely depends on the kind of keepsake that you have. I usually have vintage cloths and jewelries that's been with the family for years. Although, if we're talking about something bigger like figurines or paintings, it would be nice to have them displayed around the house.

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    1. Yes I agree about displaying and using them!

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  25. I definitely needed to read this! A napkin can be sentimental to me if I really think so lol I'm a pack rat and need to declutter my keepsakes lol thanks for this!

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    1. You are welcome, hope you put it to good use :)

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  26. Sometimes I feel that I could keep all the memories but it doesn't help! It makes the place messy!

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    1. In the digital era we are living some things can be immortalized forever and not take space

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  27. I have a few keepsakes I store safely. I wish I could keep all of them though.

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  28. I need to send this to my husband! He wants to hold on to everything. I've explained sentimental things are good but not everything has it.

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    1. lol mine is the same way! He keeps everything!

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  29. I don't really keep things unless it's an interesting book I've read thanks for the info

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  30. This reminds me of myself. Soon I think I need to go through my keepsakes and decide what needs to be saved and put them in a safe place.

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    1. I hope this will help you decide what to toss and what to keep!

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  31. WOw I've never really thought about keepsakes and what to keep and not keep. I'm definitely someone who keeps almost everything, but its good to figure out what's most valuable.

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  32. I am a very sentimental person and would definitely keep everything if I had the space, but I realized a while ago that I didn't need a lot of the stuff I was keeping and had a big purge of it, keeping only the most important things. It was very freeing.

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  33. I will happily bookmark this one for my girlfriend! Thanks! :)

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  34. I lost most of my keepsakes when we had a devastating flood. It is one subject hard for me to speak about.

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