Collecting as a Hobby

collecting, books

I firmly believe in surrounding yourself with things that bring you joy. I read that big-hit decluttering and minimalising book from a year or two ago which said anything that didn’t give you joy you should throw out. I threw out the book.  I find collecting something, namely gathering items we have a deep appreciation for from a certain niche can be a fun hobby and add a layer of magic to your home.

Collecting as a Hobby

You may enjoy collecting beautiful antiques, or perhaps genuine artifacts from a prominent period of history. You may decide to follow one artist and collect many original printings of his or her artwork, or perhaps you just enjoy collecting trainers. Books are another fabulous thing to collect, especially if you are looking for a certain set, first editions etc.

A collection is often quite a fun thing to build because it helps you delve into the life of a true enthusiast, respecting and finding the total value of a certain industry or niche you care about deeply. It can connect you to other people who share your love, and serve as an important and passionate project. For example, I am looking to collect all 68 Chalet School books (a childhood favourite). Some are now very rare but there are still groups dedicated to the books and finding them.

Find Appropriate Transport

Transporting your items is essential when adding them to your collection, especially for items that are fragile or yield some historical value. You may decide to research the best furniture delivery companies to help you, and to build a connection with them, having them transport your most coveted acquired pieces. Transporting items with historical or personal value will always be the greatest threat to them outside of a home fire, and so ensuring you have this squared away could be considered the final priority to keep.
Imagine having finally tracked down a perfect piece of furniture for it to be damaged in transit, *shudder*.

Storaging your Collection

Just like adequate transport, we must consider the environment we hold our belongings in, even when stationary. Considering factors like temperature, ventilation access, light levels and many other small variables in a storage room could be very important when it comes to high-value historical items such as original paintings.

Learning the most appropriate storage requirements for your hobby may come as a somewhat intense requirement, but doing so could potentially help you preserve your most favored items. After all, items with historical value, properly preserved, may be a great investment for later on down the line. There are many reported cases of those in middle-age selling their premium comic book collections and toys for gargantuan amounts without them realizing, good fortune alone ensuring the items were held in good condition. I’m sure there are sci-fi toy and miniatures that Roy now wishes he’d kept in the box!


A great and very fun habit of those who steward a collection is to present them in a personal space most pleasing and respectful to their existence. Let’s take the trainer example. Vintage sneakers may be preserved wrapped in dust-busting cloth and placed in a dark, cool place, but the habit of crafting special lit wall-mounts of compartments is likely a dream for anyone who cares about stylish kicks. You are allowed to have fun with your collection, you’re the one investing in it after all. I like to see things backlit for example. I can’t imagine spending time collecting something precious to me than locking it/them away for safe keeping. Where’s the fun in never seeing them?

If you think starting a home collection of any kind is for you and would be fun, make sure you consider storage, presentation and so on.

The Year of Less by Cait Flanders

The Year of Less

If you’re looking a book purely about decluttering and spending less you’ll be disappointed in this book. The Year of Less by Cait Flanders is so much more than that. I tried reading that cult favourite book which asks you to take every item you own and hold it in your hands, see if it sparks joy, then throw it out if it didn’t. That book didn’t spark any joy so I threw it out. The Year of Less has its own electric current and I struggled to put it down.

Cait Flanders is a well-known blogger and freelance writer living in BC, Canada. I’ve been a blogger since 2006 and a freelance copywriter for almost as long and so can tell you, it’s rare to see anyone write so openly, honestly and so compellingly about alcohol dependency, consumerism, mental health and facing and overcoming it all in a brave and inspiring way.

Cait tells us what led to the decision of starting a year-long shopping ban, how the challenge was set up, what she could and couldn’t buy and we live with her through that year, and beyond. We see events unfurl in her life that threaten to break her, we look at things in her past that have shaped who she is today (or during the period the book was written about) and we look at where she finds herself after the year of less, and beyond. This is a personal journey for Cait that she generously decided to share with all of us and in doing so offers inspiration to countless others struggling with the pressures and expectations life likes to heap on top of us.

There are many books out there which tell of how a person has reinvented themselves or found the “true them”. Some are tongue in cheek, some hilarious and some rather dark. The Year of Less offers a lot of this and yet is somewhat unique in that it is written in a refreshingly matter-of-fact way.

This is a beautifully designed book that is easy to read (you don’t want to put it down) which glows with a truth that’s hard to deny. If you’re not sure what I mean by that read it. There’s a little of all of us in Cait Flanders and I for one wish there was more of Cait Flanders’ bloodymindedness in me!

If I was the sort to hand out stickers and give people star ratings The Year of Less would get a solid 5/5.

Find out more about Cait on her website and purchase her book from all major retailers (you won’t be sorry).

Hay House Publishing were kind enough to send me this book to read and review.
My thoughts about the content are entirely my own.

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