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May 10: My Marvelous Coleccion!

I've never met anyone that did not collect SOMETHING! We're all drawn to want to possess something in our life - it can be clothes, jewelry, cars, shoes, books, coins, tea pots, cameras, artwork, houses, etc. - something that makes us appreciate ourselves more and get closer to the "you that makes you you" (as an old friend once told me).

Why do some of us have closets full of clothes, and others of us have minimal wardrobes but crates full of comic books? Why do we collect what we collect? Who knows! It might have something to do with how it makes us feel - but if you want to go any deeper than that you'll have to talk to a therapist! Now on to fun things!

How do you store - and display - what you collect? Some people don't store their collections - they're out on display at all times. Other people "store" their collections haphazardly - without care or order. Some store things properly - in the correct box, acid-free album, jewelry box, garage, etc. because they've learned the importance of proper storage to prolong the life of their collectibles and retain or increase the value (if value is what you're after).

Depending on the size of your collection - and of course the size of the items you collect - you may need to have off-site storage. Check out the cost of storage units or pods, and also consider storing things at other people's houses - people you trust! They may have unused attics or basements that they don't mind sharing with you.

You may want to document your purchases too - when it was acquired, where, for how much - just in case you want to insure the collection against damage or theft. Photographs of each item is also good for this purpose.

My brother and I recently started photo documenting our mother's owl collection, which contains over 200 owls. Most had been cataloged by our mother in a little notebook and this made the work flow much easier and brought order to the process. She loved collecting owls and everyone that knew her knew this! She also liked adding to our collections of favorite things. Collecting brought joy to her and it brings joy to us!

No matter what you decide to collect - and this may change over your lifetime - give your collections the respect they deserve! Keep them organized, clean, documented and properly stored. Make sure you add a rider to your insurance policy if the collection is extremely valuable, or at the very least, keep an accurate record with photos in case you need it.

Collections are usually one of three things: you use them (clothes, jewelry, shoes, wine glasses, etc.), you display them (art, antiques, stamps, coins, etc.) or both (classic cars, silver spoons, tea cups, watches, etc.). If you choose to display your collection, choosing the proper display system can be challenging. If you have a lot of items you may want to "rotate" the items in and out of display. I collect tea pots (among other things!) and have too many to display all at once. I rotate 12 in and out of storage.

Take Away: Have fun collecting what you love to collect! Look in thrift stores, online at Ebay or Craigslist, and at yard and estate sales.... treasures can be found everywhere! Document your collections and include photos. Decide how you want to display your collection, and then change your display when you want to. Remember the loved ones you share an abode with and don't let your collections overpower your home - or your wallet! Everyone needs to be happy!

Tomorrow we'll put the pedal to the metal! Well.... kind of! Is your car organized, clean and regularly maintained? Don't answer that..... just think about it for awhile!

About the Author: L. Sidney Irving is the owner of Sidco Properties, a real estate company dedicated to educating and assisting those that want to buy or sell a home, Sidney loves to organize herself and those around her because she believes that an organized space brings peace and fosters creativity. May the power of organization be with you!

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