Getting Organized For A Bedroom Retreat Rescue & Making Donations

First thing is first: You've got to have a vision and a plan. Whether you want to create a reading retreat in your bedroom, or a sleep haven for a good nights rest - you've got to have your plan in mind to help you stay focused. Next to planning, getting organized is also an important way to save, both time and money, especially if you're wanting to redecorate an outdated bedroom. It pays to take the time to really go through your belongings. You may not need as much furniture as you think you need. Your lifestyle has changed over the years, and so too should your furnishings.

Years ago, yes, the trend was to buy a "set" - the long dressers (usually with nine drawers and double doors in the center) with a pair of mounted matching mirrors, a matching amoire and a pair of matching heavy nightstands. But if you have a walk-in closet, it's not that you need to replace every piece of furniture - utilize your closet for clothing & accessories that would otherwise be kept in that dresser. 

This dresser could be repurposed as a dining space buffet - but this homeowner doesn't need one. Maybe someone out thrifting will.

Really look at what you have, why you have it and for how long. If it's not adding any value to your life, keeping you warm in the winter, and cool in the summer - chances are you don't need it - but maybe someone else does. That's when it's great to donate. For the remaining item, inventory what style and how many baskets and bins you'd need to get them organized, and you can save yourself a return trip of over buying those baskets and bins. Ikea, Ross and BigLots have a reasonably priced assortment of baskets & bins to choose from.

It's nice to give back to a place that has given so much.

Since I had Jeff's truck for a few days, I used it to help drop off donations
for homeowner.
(I'm updating her bedroom)

Reuse pillowcases as sacks for your donations.

Clear the clutter and reclaim your space!

As for those donations, clothing and household items are great to donate to Goodwill, but for sheets and towels, bring those to your local animal shelter or Humane Society. Your home textile donations can help create comfort for these animals. Some animals (especially dogs) even lost their homes because of the homes lost in the floods, so your textile donations can help bring them some warmth and comfort. Even baby blankets make great beds for kittens, bunnies, and ginnie pigs. The pillow cases from your pile make great sacks for these donations, so you won't even need to use an extra plastic bag.

Humane Society
Dania Beach. FL

Curled up cats nap on crochet...

They sleep in shoe boxes and blankets...
They aren't picky over brands or color...

Some pups are here because homeowners
lost their home in the floods...

They're so cute!
But some people just can't care for them...


A nice to place visit after making your donations.

For larger donations (like that old monster matching dresser) the Salvation Army 'may' pick it up - but they may also say it's too heavy for them to lift (I've seen it happen). The Veterans can also pick up furniture donations - just schedule an appointment. But the source I've used in the past to pick donations is a thrift chain called Out Of The Closet.... and trust me - these guys could lift the moon! Out of the Closet is a non-profit thrift chain that puts all their donation proceeds back into the adjacent AIDS clinic attached to their shops. This helps to cover expenses for doctors, shots, vitamins, education and care for those living with (and preventing) HIV.

Out of the Closet, the world's most fabulous thrift store, is a chain of thrift stores in Northern and Southern California owned and operated by AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest specialized provider of cutting-edge medicine and advocacy regardless of ability to pay.

Learn more about donating to Out Of The Closet
by checking their website

NEW location just opened in Ft. Lauderdale on Sunrise Blvd.

Once your space is cleared of the excess items, decide how your new found space will be used. Use slides to shift existing furniture to a new location and get use to the new space. Creating zones in your new space can help you to know exactly what you need for your lifestyle now. Take pictures, and use the pictures as a guide to see what the space could use . Smaller but more open nightstands maybe? Or perhaps a more open console table in a space that use to have a heavy amoire? A console table can easily be transformed into a dressing table... and that relocated amoire could be just the place to set a TV on.

Great finds and prices to turn someone else's trash to treasure.
Donating helps save all these pieces from ending up in a landfill, plus you can help someone else create a new look or start to furnish their first home.

$10 framed over sized floor mirror
spotted at Out Of The Closet
Wilton Manors, FL

Too pretty to be used as a soap dish, these silver shell dishes can work great
to hold homeowners pearls as well as personalize a pretty vignette for her.

Now that you have your space cleared, donations made, and maybe even made a few dollars from donating to a consignment shop, set out to thrift for those pieces you need. Stay focused, and keep some price points in mind when you head out. You know how they say when you think something you can make it happen? The same holds true when you go out thrift shopping. Be reasonable on your prices and don't hesitate to negotiate. By doing these tips, you could possibly score some great thrift finds, save a little money, and personalize your space (with your refinished creation) if you just stay focused.

A $5 end table is great...
But they only had one and homeowner prefers a pair, so I kept on hunting...

Found a pair and only $10 each...
But the style wasn't what I had in mind...

2 solid wood end tables for $25??
At only $12.50 each and they had a more open style, they'll work great in the bedroom retreat rescue - after a little elbow grease, TLC, sanding and paint or stain...

These will be a welcomed change after this...

Too solid. Too big. Too heavy for the space.
After forty + years, this homeowner was ready to donate
and renew her look for her lifestyle today.

Stay tuned to see how I put some more of these tips into action, made some major thrift scores and transformed them to help update this dated bedroom for a retreat rescue!


  1. I can't wait to see the room reveal! We have a bedroom set- tall dresser and a longer one- I'm dying to get rid of the longer one, but I know my parents (who gave them to us) would have a fit. It seems to short to put a TV on and the style is outdated.

  2. Lynda you are so right about giving our junk away, I just recently moved in with my partner so we had 2 of everything. Everyone told me to Ebay everything but quite honestly I couldnt be doing with the harrassment so I rang christians against poverty & they came & took the extra pieces of furniture away. It makes me feel happy tht someone who really needs it gets to benefit. I even had an old pram in the loft (my son is now 11) I couldnt bare to throw it away my mum brought it for me but knowing that someone who generally really needs it now has it makes me feel warm inside. Great post Lynda, have a good weekend



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