Whether you’re obsessed with the KonMari Method or are simply trying to purge your home of clutter, there are always those sentimental items you just aren’t sure what to do with. For a lot of us, old awards, trophies, medals and ribbons sit gathering dust because we can’t bear to just throw them away, even though we have no real use for them anymore. Alternatively, you may be looking to make a medal for a family member in the home through a business like Trophy Awards but not have a place to put the new one amid the old. If these situations sounds familiar, then this post is for you. It turns out there are actually a few things you can do to preserve the memories without the clutter.
Step One: Sort through Your Memorabilia
Before you can decide what to do, you need to figure out what you absolutely want to keep and what you can live without. Things like participation awards, runner-up ribbons and 3rd grade perfect attendance probably don’t carry a lot of sentiment, so you can toss these into the purge pile.
If you are someone who is very sentimental, or if you’re a parent that wants to keep every award for your child, consider snapping a few quick pictures of these lesser awards before getting rid of them. This way, you keep all of the memories without all of the clutter.
Step Two: Donate and Recycle
Once you’ve decided what to keep and what to purge, call around to your local custom trophy shops. Many of them are happy to take old plaques, medals, ribbons and trophies because they can easily repurpose them.
If you don’t live near any shops that accept donations, call or email local charities and non-profits to see if they might have a use for them. Organizations like these often hold fundraising events like 5k runs that they need awards for.
Another option is to ask your school if the teachers could use your old awards. Teachers are always in need of ways to reward their students’ achievements.
Step Three: The Keepers
Now that you’re only left with the best, most meaningful awards from your past, what do you do with them?
If you’re someone that likes to keep memories on display, there are a few ways to do this without adding more clutter to your life. One way is with shadow boxes. These come in all sizes and are an excellent way to keep ribbons, diplomas and medals grouped together in a neat, beautiful way.
Another way to display your achievements is with a dedicated wall. For trophies, place a floating shelf on the wall and hang up all of your ribbons, plaques and photographs around it. You can even do this for each member of the family and add to it over time.
Whether you choose to donate, recycle or display, just remember that you have options when it comes to dealing with prizes from the past.