Operation Consolidation: De-Cluttering Your Book & Magazine Collection

I know there are many of us out there (myself included) that like to save magazine issues, cookbooks, and other publications. We probably do so not because we covet the entire bound collection, but rather because of a few choice pages that make our hearts go a ‘pitter patter.’ The only problem is that these items tend to stack up. And up. And up. Until our shelves are sagging under the great weight, and we can’t even get to the pages we liked in the first place.

For any of you hoarding such a prized stash, or should I say ‘stack,’ here’s a helpful hint: Grab the best, ditch the rest. By this I mean, physically remove (yes, that means rip out) the pages that contain your favorite recipe/ handbag/ poem. Then feel free to either recycle or donate the rest of the matter.

I know this might sound like a wild proposition, but I don’t think you should feel obligated to preserve the original source collection. Your secret weapon recipe for Peach French Toast will still be just as legendary if removed from its spot in the issue of Gourmet Magazine, circa 1995. And even better: by freeing it from other less signficant neighboring pages, you have the ability to place it in the company of other equally adored notes.

I suggest one of three methods. A binder with plastic sleeves works well to collect and protect loose pages.

A large sketch book can also be used; simply glue in your pages for a kind of custom-made book.

The third option, for the tech savvy, is to scan the respective pages onto your computer. Recipes can also then be uploaded to an online cataloging system such as BigOven, or Evernote.

So that’s my pitch. What do you think?

Image credits: Martha Stewart, moxiefabworld.com, evernote.com



  1. I have a few plastic binders full of magazine recipes, workouts and articles I regularly reference. I also keep a notebook of pictures of things (mainly fashion & design things) that inspire me. It is a great way to control the clutter. http://preserveorganization.com/blog-08-15-2011-clutter-control-magazines/

  2. Hehe – this is so true. I am a blogger, wedding planner and a knitter – so I have stacks of Vogues, wedding and knitting magazines! I get quite protective over my magazines, but you are so right – I am going to make a binder – what a great idea :) xx

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