Works For Me: Backwards Edition

Wfmwsmall Today is another edition of Works-For-Me Wednesday Backwards Edition, in which you ask a question of your readers instead of sharing a piece of advice.

Here’s my dilemma:

The DVDs are OVERTAKING MY LIFE.  I’ve told you before that we store our kids’ DVDs in a regular music CD case.  This works great for us–it goes back and forth easily between the car and home.  The idea is working so well that I think we extend the system to the grown-up DVDs (I nearly said "adult DVDs", but can you imagine the rumors that would’ve started?)

The problem is that as nicely as all this works for us, the cabinet where I store all the empty, un-used DVD cases looks like this:


Look at all those empty cases!  That is a LOT of wasted space.  But do you think I can throw them away?  Please.  Someone.  Give me permission to THROW AWAY THE DVD CASES.  Tell me that they serve no purpose sitting there empty and they’re taking up an entire valuable shelf.   It’s not like the original DVD case for Weekend at Bernie’s is fetching big bucks on Ebay these days. 

(Oh, and speaking of completely worthless things…see that clear plastic container on the bottom?  That is my cassette tape collection.  Cassette tapes.  If you enlarge the photo and look closely, you can see the original case for the single of Blame It On the Rain.  Collector’s item, baby.)

Anyway, if you’d like to participate in WFMW Backwards Day, please leave your link below.  Remember to link directly to your WFMW post.  As always, thanks for playing.


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154 thoughts on “Works For Me: Backwards Edition

  1. Jill says:

    One of my claim to fames in life is that I once saw Milli Vanilli in concert. I still have the tshirt. Anyway, uh…throw away the DVD’s. Yeah, I got nothin’

  2. Scott says:

    I give you permission to throw every last one of those cases away.
    Or if that’s too painful, pass that permission on to someone else to do it for you. Maybe someone knows another use to recycle them for.

  3. Ronnica says:

    If you have to keep the cases (which isn’t a bad idea…my mom long ago convinced me to keep the cases to my CD’s which is necessary if you ever want to sell them), why not put them in a Rubbermaid container and put them in the attic, or whatever storage place you have? You won’t need to access them except if you are cleaning out things, and that way you can use that cabinet for more important things like knick knacks and toys. =)
    When you get a new DVD, just stack the cases in there until you have enough to warrant a trip to take them to their permanent home in storage.

  4. Gina says:

    I say toss the cases. For the movies, we put them in a CD book. It saves even more space than the small crystal cases. We “try” and keep them in alphabetical order. This also works great for Playstation games, too!

  5. ~*~ Jennifer ~*~ says:

    WAIT!!! (My friends make fun of me because I’m a saver — just so ya know)… don’t throw them away… You’ll need them there cases if you ever want to do Swap-A-DVD! Get a shoe box storage thing to put them in and shove them under a bed somewheres…
    Or in the attic.
    Or in the garage.
    Or under the eves.
    Or… or.. something… Don’t throw them away!!
    (I know… I’ve got it bad…)

  6. Devildogwife says:

    We gave our old, empty dvd cases to our local library. They go through a lot of cases and will thrilled to receive them. We were thrilled to have the extra space back. I did put the inserts in a box in the attic though. πŸ˜‰
    So, yes, get rid of those cases!!

  7. CanadianCarrie says:

    I bought a binder and some inserts to put the cds/dvd’s in, took out all the papers and the cover papers off the cases, then freecycled them, you’d be surprised who will want them.
    I don’t have a blog, besides my neglected windows live space, but thoroughly enjoy WFMW! LOVE IT!!

  8. Jen says:

    When you throw them away, let me know. I have been trying to get my husband to throw his away. He has probably two thousand DVDs. He is a movie and DVD buff.

  9. Angela says:

    We have our dvds in a locking binder and its so nice. But I was worried about the covers and proof of purchases and just yeah wasn’t ready to toss it all. So, we have a file with the covers of the dvds and then the cases went in the trash. I kept two or three in case we needed them. But we have around 200 dvds and its so not worth keeping them on a shelf. Oh, we also, keep the special features discs in a spindle, like that blank dvds come on, so that its not using up space in the binder. Unless of course there are a few disc 2s that you use a bunch. Oh, just toss the cassettes. Unless you listen to them. If you do, buy the album on itunes and chunk it! You can do it!

  10. phyllis says:

    dump ’em! do it! it will make you feel so good and empowered and awesome…do it!
    we use a book. we are embarking on a new system of organization since the alphabetical one has failed with new additions. it’s going to involve numbers and a database. i’m sure it will happen before my children go off to college. i did win a big coup with my husband by getting him to dump the cases. now i don’t ask. a new dvd comes in, i dump the case, put the dvd in the book and i’m golden.
    go on…dump ’em! (and for sure dump the cassettes. just no point any more…)

  11. Deanna says:

    I wouldn’t throw them out either. I’d like to say you should, but I agreee that if you ever need to loan one out or something, you may need the case. But definately box them up and stick them in a storage spot. not out in the open, but somewhere you could get to them if needed. Good luck!

  12. Angela says:

    Really don’t keep them. You’re storing STUFF! If you feel you need some, save 10 max. Because you’ll buy more dvds that can replenish that stock of 10 if needed as they get used. You may need a couple but it kills me to see people saying to keep them. All of htem. In case you need one. You have kids and a house full of stuff. The last thing you need is a bunch of empty dvd cases. And 10 is a random number. You’d be ok with 5 or less. Really.

  13. Dana says:

    I have a friend who calls herself a “saver”. I call her a “pathological packrat to the nth degree.” She made me a latte’ and I purged her pantry. I went in with empty black garbage bags and came out with full ones, which I took to my car (NO PEEKING!) and drove to the dump. Then I did her utility room, which cost her a pedicure.
    My suggestion is to find someone who’s not attached to your stuff, fix her a latte’ and let her have at it.

  14. Tina in Thailand says:

    I think the idea about giving those empty cases to the library was brilliant!
    We had an un-yardsale before we moved and I put several paper grocery bags of them out hoping someone would take them.
    They did! And I did not have to throw them away myself. I had been resisting it because they do seem so very useful, but if they are just taking up space and creating clutter, they are not useful to you.
    No matter what you do with them, get them out of your house! The pile is clearly bothering you, so say goodbye. πŸ™‚

  15. Makeshift Mama says:

    I would say toss them, but as you do look at each one. If there are movies that you don’t want to keep, keep the cases so that you can donate or ebay them with their cases.
    I recently did this with out CD cases. It was nerve-wracking to throw them away, but I’m so glad I did!

  16. Steff says:

    I just bought a thing @ wal mart for 9$ that looks like a mini file cabinet and holds up to 80 cds or dvds. i am filing all the kids in one, mine in another and C;s in another. it has a place @ the top to write the 2 titles that are in each sleeve and i figure as we play it we can put that sleeve in the front. i plan to donate our cases to the library keeping a few for ones we dont care for(may just donate whole movie to the library) and keep the fronts of sleeves in a pagekeeper type notebook for reference if we ever need/want them

  17. Heidi says:

    When I struggle throwing something away, I take a picture of it so I can look at it IF I were to ever miss it (which I never have, it just makes me feel better in the moment).
    If I still can’t bear to throw it away myself, I have hubby do it. I’m ALWAYS glad in the end.
    BTW~ we’ve tossed the cd cases and I haven’t regretted it once. never thought of the dvd cases. Thanks, they’ll be next.

  18. Jennifer says:

    Throw them out!! I’ve been meaning to get one of those dvd and cd organizers because they get separated from their cases too easily. I must do this very soon and then I to will “Throw them out!!”

  19. Not the Queen says:

    PLEASE toss them! We tossed ours and it’s so freeing! Think of all the glorious space you’ll reclaim! You could even store something else there that you can’t seem to throw away. So many possibilities!

  20. Deborah Li says:

    This is what I do with my millions of CDs and DVDs, take the disc out of the case and place them in those DVD/CD storage booklets. Then Take out the BACK sleeve from the DVD case (because it has tons of useful info about the movie), fold it, than slot it into the same sleeve as the disc. Then THROW THE CASE AWAY! πŸ™‚

  21. Shannon Miller says:

    I store ours in a cd binder thing, too, so I cut off part of the label from the movie and put it behind the dvd in the binder, then through the case away – it was easier once I had the pretty picture to hold onto:) And now each slot in the binder belongs to a specific dvd which makes it easy to see which ones are missing. And the kids know which dvd is which.

  22. Wendy says:

    I can’t with a good conscience tell you to throw them away….I wouldn’t. Cause I have a mom whose motto is, “you might need that someday….” And Lord knows, I just might need a whole shelf full of empty CD and DVD cases someday…..
    Where is the Flylady when you need her??

  23. Q&Q says:

    I’ve seen this tip in your comments already but yes give them to a library. I used to work in one and they will find plenty of uses for your old cases. Or you could off them as a lot on ebay. Resellers sometimes need a nice newer case for their products.

  24. Stephanie says:

    Oh yes, throw those babies out! My hubby had several rubbermaids full of empty CD jewel cases when we got married. Even though he kept the CD’s in CD binders. Even though he never, ever, ever looked at the cases. (However, I’m sure that I have things that he would love for me to throw out, if he could have his way)
    During our most recent move, I finally convinced him to throw them out. Ahhhh… what a relief.
    Get some binders, chuck the cases, and feel liberated. πŸ™‚

  25. Rebecca says:

    Our DVDs are a mess, too… Ugh…
    And I did the Mr. Linky thing wrong. Again. I shouldn’t post 5 minutes after waking up, apparently. πŸ™‚

  26. Andi says:

    I am so glad to know that someone else on God’s green earth is holding onto their cassette tapes too! I still have my very first New Kids On The Block tape that I spent my hard-earned babysitting money on. It was my first cassette, so there’s an emotional tie to it. LOL!
    As for DVD Cases, we have our stored in boxes in the garage. I threw a few away once and later regretted it when I tried to just sell the DVDs at our yard sale. Not one sold. I really miss the .50 those would have fetched me. LOL!

  27. mumo3 says:

    Great ideas! It had NEVER EVER occurred to me to toss the cases. I am going to check out WalMart for the mini file cabinet-y thing-y (comment above). I’m strangely attached to the cases. I just got a little breathless thinking about getting rid of them- obvously bigger issues at work……

  28. Rachel May says:

    I JUST did this over the Christmas break. We had an extra CD-storage book laying around (it’s HUGE), so I put all of the DVDs in that. I tried to sell the cases, but I’m about to put them on freecycle. If that doesn’t work, I’ll try the library (thanks for the tip!).
    It’s SO NICE to not have all that clutter! DO IT. You won’t regret it.
    P.S. We did take some time to go through them and weed out the ones we didn’t want anymore. Hubby took those somewhere and sold them (Half Price Books, maybe?).

  29. Edi says:

    First go through the dvds and see if you really want to keep them all. We have very limited storage space in our home, so like outgrown clothes, toys and books – if a dvd is “outgrown” (Barney dvds for your 13 yr old??) or it was lame to begin with and no one watches it – it gets donated.
    The idea is to only keep around the dvds you know are getting watched and enjoyed. And if these are favorites – I’d hold onto the cases.
    But if the cases are not being used for their original purpose – don’t waste valuable “real estate” to store them! Throw them in the attic, shove them in the basement – somewhere you don’t have to look at.

  30. Michelle says:

    I would not throw them out. We do alot of trading / selling our old CDs and DVDs and without the cases they would be totally worthless. There will come a time when your kids are bored with what they have and when that happens you can easily exchange those for new ones.

  31. Jenn says:

    Blame it on the Rain…classic.
    Throw away the DVD cases. Toss ’em. Chuck ’em. Let them go. They no longer fulfill their purpose and they are aware of that and are ready to let go πŸ™‚

  32. Jacquelyn@Because I Said So! says:

    If you chuck them, guaranteed you will need them for a fundraiser or something in two weeks. Stick them in a box (or two or three), label all four sides and the top of the box DVD BOXES PRIOR TO JAN 2008 and store them together. Add a box when you get enough to fill it. When you come across them in a year, open it, take out half, fill with the matching discs and drop off at the nearest kids hospital and/or rec centre. Do that every year or so. You’ll feel wonderful.

  33. Melissa Markham says:

    Toss them, toss them, toss them! I have put my CD’s in a CD binder and tossed the cased. It’s a bit traumatic for a few moments, but I don’t miss them at all. And toss those cassettes! This is the 21st century gal!
    I need to do this to our DVD’s…put them in cases. Right now, we have two bookshelves full of DVDs. We have been collecting them since the days when you could only get DVDs at Circuit City. We were cutting edge, let me tell you! Our friends love us too! We are a lending library!

  34. Melissa says:

    We did a similar thing with our CDs during one of our “purge cuz we’re movin’ ” days. We took out all the literature, stored those in a photo box and threw away the plastic cases (maybe keep a few in case you need to lend out a DVD or sell or trade in). I think for most DVD cases you can pull out the sleeve from the outside, and the little insert. It’s really the artwork of our CDs we wanted, not all the plastic.

  35. Tara says:

    Never thought of the dvd cases. Before we moved I had a paper sack full of Christmas CD cases. (I had my Christmas music all together in a CD book.) When we moved I tossed the thing out. Hummm, never thought of doing the same with the DVDs! Thanks for the idea!

  36. Sunday says:

    I tend to hang on to stuff like that so I’m not the one to ask.
    But I read above that someone said to donate them to the library? Why would they want them? When the library buys a DVD they just use the case it comes in.
    I say…if they are bugging you enough then put them in a bag and toss in the attic until you discover them and then throw them out. That is usually how it goes in my house. (Just put the decision off). πŸ™‚

  37. Amanda says:

    We are military and move all the time. I finally threw all the DVD cases away and do not miss them at all. Happy Tossing! Amanda

  38. Nonnie says:

    If you don’t think you’ll be trying to sell the dvds at a later date, chuck the cases. Otherwise, pack them up in a box and hide them in the garage rafters or the attic!

  39. pam says:

    I think the consensus has already spoken . . . but let me add my opinion . . . send them flying to the nearest donation center or to the curb in a trash bag. Think of the relief you’ll feel once the space is clean!!

  40. Jen @ JenuineJen says:

    I store my dvds in a DVD case rather than a music CD case. The DVD case allows you to store the papers that come with the DVDs. I throw the cases and the packaging away. I have to say that I cannot remember a time that I have actually looked at the those papers that came with the dvds so moving to a CD case and dumping all that paper would probably be a good idea on my part.
    For what it is worth, you have my permission to throw those cases away. You do not need them. If for some reason you ever need jewel cases for the DVDs, you can always buy a pack of 50 for as little as $15 at an office supply store.
    Thanks for hosting WWFM! Have a happy Wednesday!

  41. ames says:

    I would suggest you recycle them or donate them to a college/library/school/tech business rather than keep storing them (you’ll feel very liberated once they’re gone) or trashing them (landfill fodder!).
    You can check to see if you can find a recycling center near you that takes them, and there’s also technotrash recycling places like, you just pack all your trash in a box and send it to them to deal with.

  42. aimee says:

    How’s this for good timing? What went into MY trashcan last night? All our DVD cases! I liked your idea of putting the kids DVDs into a CD binder that I put all of ours into one. Now that you’ve helped me so much I give you my personal permission to throw them away!!!!!! (Oh, yeah, and all those cassette tapes, too!)

  43. Amanda says:

    Throw all but 2 or 3 away. That way if a movie goes to a friend’s house or needs to travel without the others you have a case for it but you don’t need the rest.

  44. heather says:

    No, don’t through them away. Put them in a box and store them out of reach–since you aren’t using them. However, if you throw them away and decide you are sick to death of Weekend at Bernies you won’t be able to sell them. I would suggest, instead, that you sign up for and put the dvd’s you are kind of sick of up and exchange them for movies you want to watch NOW–which will free up lots of space and mean you don’t have to go and buy brand new ones.

  45. Jes says:

    Oh, I never thought of putting the DVD’s in a CD case like that! What a good idea. We throw away all our CD cases when we get new CDs. it’s just easier. So I would say throw them away. The only think I’ve noticed is that CD’s seem to get scratched easier in those cases that you slide them in. Do you have that problem?

  46. Linda c says:

    I say keep them. I know, it’s radical. I’ve been both routes, the original cases and the temporary cases. Now I wish I had the originals back because you want to switch them out, but you can’t because you don’t have the protective cover.

  47. Amy says:

    Here’s a rule for when you’re not sure whether or not you can toss something:
    Put it in a non-descript cardboard box. Put a date on the outside of the box in Sharpie (the more doubt you have about whether or not you should keep it, the further out the date should be, but aim for a year). Tape it up. Put it in the attic.
    If you are in the attic and you see a box whose date has passed, and you haven’t had to get into it for something, you know you can safely get rid of it without even opening it.
    Do not write what’s in the box on the outside. If you like, write “trash” or “donate,” but nothing more.
    If it’s so important that you’d go searching through boxes for it, you need to keep it. I’ll bet you NEVER get into the DVD box.

  48. Jamie says:

    I am what I like to think of as an Organized Pack Rat so I will be of no help in telling you to throw them out. We keep our DVDs in a giant book that is designed to hold them and look nice on the coffee table (if we had a coffee table, and no one-year-old to get into them.) All of the original jackets are in a storage container in the garage marked “CD/DVD cases”.

  49. Sarah says:

    Get rid of them! I just did it with my CD cases and it was liberating. I felt bad about throwing them away so I put them on Freecycle…believe it or not, I had ten people who wanted the empty containers. Not only is my entertainmnet center less cluttered, but they’re also not in a landfill…

  50. Cyn says:

    Check to see if you can recycle the plastic cases? Then they aren’t wasting space and your not filling a land fill.

  51. Angie says:

    Your question is just the motivation I need to go out and buy a binder for DVDs and a binder for games. I think I’ll keep just a few of the boxes (but pull out all the inserts and put them into a file of game inserts and a file of movie inserts), and then get rid of the rest.
    Thanks for asking this!

  52. allysha says:

    I agonized about the same thing and so I kept a few around in the event I ever needed a case to put one in and take it somewhere.
    Besides, isn’t this the year you’re getting rid of things?

  53. Tickled Pink says:

    Purge, baby, purge! It’s incredibly freeing!
    I did it years ago, and as much as the kids balk (I don’t know what’s up with that), they don’t miss them the next day. When we’re ready to pass the DVDs/CDs on to my brother’s kids I buy a cheap CD case give them in there.
    This year were practicing 1 in/1 out and we’ve already put some media in the give-away-case.
    Thanks for all your inspiration! I can’t wait to hear about your trip to Africa!
    Go Shannon! Woo!

  54. Queen B says:

    Throw them away. Now.
    I keep all of our kid dvds in a binder thing. I’ve also got one for the grown up dvds. For kid music. For grown up music. For Christmas music. For video games (by system).
    Nowhere do I have a case. All in the trash. Throw them out.

  55. Jeni says:

    OK, go get one of those giant black lawn & leaf trash bags, open that cabinet, and rake everything out into the trash bag. Tie up bag, and send child to the curb with the bag for trash pick-up. Now.

  56. Sharon says:

    We also store our DVD’s in a CD case and I have tossed out the cases. It is amazing how much room you have after you get rid of them.

  57. Jenny says:

    Throw them away! These are kids dvds right? They will never be in a dvd swap, they will be too scratched up. Throw away the cassettes too, you can’t even get a penny a piece for those and they deteriorate anyway. Throw it all away!

  58. Nicole says:

    I think if you feel like you should keep them (maybe to sell later), box ’em up & stash the box in the attic or garage. That cabinet looks like prime storage space for things you actually use on a regular basis.

  59. Liz C says:

    Go through the cassettes, and anything you’re desperate to hear, search for on 80’s videos rock.
    Otherwise, Toss the Cases. We’re using a binder now, and I ADORE it. The day we tossed the cases, I cheered. (We also chucked all the ancient software discs that day… it was a landmark period for my DH, who likes to save things “just in case.”)

  60. maria says:

    without reading all the comments before me…
    a) throw out the dvd/cd cases. if you find yourself desperately missing a case you can buy a whole new dvd for $7.
    b) ditch the casettes, i know it’s hard, but in a couple years you won’t even be able to find anything to play them on. d/l your favs from itunes and be done with the clutter.
    I struggled with these issues myself for many a year, and since trashing them I haven’t even missed them.

  61. Hayley says:

    I agree with the idea of tossing all of the cases (you might keep one or two), and keeping the inserts. If you don’t want to use a file for the inserts, either use a binder, or fold the scene guide and shove it in the dvd album behind the dvd. That way you have the scenes reference and you know exactly where your dvd goes (in alphabetical order of course) in your dvd album.

  62. Kirstin says:

    My first thought was, “if they’re empty just throw them away”, so sounds like you now have permission to throw every one away!
    Years ago…like several years ago, our local video store was going out of business and they were selling tons of their plastic “video cassette” cases. At that time that was all we owned and I bought them to better organize our videos. They worked beautifully. I made stickers and if the video still happened to have a case I cut the cover of the case off and taped it to the inside of the plastic container. Worked like a charm and looked much more organized.

  63. Dawn says:

    At first I was going to say to box them all up and store them in the garage or attic, but after reading some of the other comments I think keeping the inserts in a folder and getting rid of the cases is the better thing to do. As long as you have the information that goes with the DVD you don’t need the cases.
    As far as the cassette tapes go, I have no idea. I have a ton of old cassette tapes and even LP’s that I just can’t get rid of. In fact, we even have a turntable and once in a great while we will pull out some of the albums and play them. It is really fun and the kids get a kick out of it.

  64. Dawn @ Baby Addiction says:

    You have my permission to throw away the empty DVD cases. (I know that’s what you were waiting for…)
    If you feel bad getting rid of them, find someplace that recycles plastic and that’s where they should go. Imagine your empty DVD cases reincarnated and set them free!

  65. Mary says:

    I recommend saving them for any you plan to keep. Aren’t they to protect them? Goodwill would love to have any videos you aren’t keeping as long as they are in the cases. I’m with the crate in the attic so you will have them if you need them.

  66. marlise says:

    If you ever decide to sell or donate unwanted DVDs you will want sleeves and cases.
    So how about a compromise? My suggestion: You could keep just a few cases (because you probably won’t ever get rid of ALL the DVDs unless DVD players become obsolete) and all the sleeves/inserts in a small plastic storage container. Throw out, donate, or recycle the rest of the cases. This opens up precious storage space in the cabinet, and lets you have a few empty cases on-hand for selling or donating unwanted movies.

  67. Melanie says:

    I hereby grant you permission to throw them away!! Store the larger notebook style CD/DVD holders in your new space.
    Or you could just keep them all and then blame it on the rain.

  68. Hotomom says:

    I am the wrong person to ask!! I wouldn’t have the courage to toss them either. I am not a tosser! But do what you need to do to have organization. I HATE dvd cases by the way. Be my inspiration… TOSS THEM!!

  69. Devildogwife says:

    “But I read above that someone said to donate them to the library? Why would they want them? When the library buys a DVD they just use the case it comes in.”
    FYI: Those cases get broken all of the time when people check them out, so they’re constantly having to change out the cases. πŸ˜‰

  70. Kellyn says:

    I can’t tell you to throw them away. Mainly because like everything, you may “grow out” of a movie. If you want to sell it, or donate it, most places require the case. Get a tub, label it, put them in your “storage area” that won’t interfere with everyday life.

  71. Carrie says:

    Box them and store them somewhere else. I have mine packed away in the basement. AND now that I have a DVD burner on my puter I will be copying the originals and putting them BACK in their cases and putting the copies in the cd case.

  72. Kari says:

    I am the worst to give advice about throwing things out because I never do (case in point- I still have the New Kids on the Block CD Step by Step- how often do you think that gets into the CD player!?!?!) so I would agree with some of the other responses to put them in a rubber maid container (the big 32 gallon size) and stick it in the attic or the basement under the stairs and then when you feel like you are better equiped to handle it-toss them! Good luck!

  73. Mommy, the Human Napkin says:

    When we get a new DVD, I put it in the CD case with the rest. But if I tried to toss the case right away, my kids would have a meltdown. So I let them keep the case and play with it until they start leaving it out in the middle of the floor (usually about a week), and then I toss it when they’re not looking. Works well for me and they never even notice! Now, I just need to get a new CD case since our DVD collection grew over the holidays…

  74. Ann'Re says:

    I’m sorry I messed up my link. 😦
    We have a binder for all our music CD’s…and we toss out the cases. Now that we’re accumulating so many DVD’s, I’m going to be doing the same thing with them as soon as I save the money for some sort of a case to put them in. It really does keep them organized nicely. Ann’Re

  75. Alana says:

    I give you my full permission to toss them. I bet you are not the only one in your circle of friends who has this problem. Many you could combine all that you want to get rid of and check out – you can get containers to put and mail most type of “techie” equipment to them and they will recycle it. Sort of helps you feel better about the tossing process.

  76. Jen says:

    You can throw them away! Life will go on, and you will have more space. And by the way, I have been desperately wanting a Milli Vanilli cd, and they are quite pricey.

  77. Jennifer in OR says:

    Tough call on the cases, personally I’d keep them…
    Sorry, I realized after I wrote my post that it’s backwards day…so if it’s okay, I have a regular WFMW…

  78. kel says:

    Shannon –
    We keep all of our DVDs in binders, and CDs have been loaded into the computer. I’m with you though – couldn’t get rid of the cases (or the actual CDs…or my Blame It On the Rain tape – seriously). The cases and originals are all stored in plastic storage bins up high in the garage. The attic would work well too… it’s not like we need to get them down ever, just don’t want to toss them yet.
    – kel

  79. TracyMichele says:

    Here’s is MY 2cents… keep the cases but be selective. Because I have littles and the movies they are watching now will eventually need to be sold (how long will they REALLY be into Bob The Builder!?) I think I will want the cases later down the road. If it is a movie you plan on keeping forever (sort of like your tapes.. ahem), then toss the cases. If you think you will sell them later, keep them. Just don’t keep them in valuable storage space in the house. Can you put them in a bin out in the garage or in the attic/basement?
    And really.. get rid of the tapes. You can download 99.9% of that stuff on itunes. πŸ™‚ Just do it, Shannon… and Blame It On The Rain.

  80. Shauna says:

    Ours look pretty much like that!
    Since you’re a grammar maven, I wanted to be a pill and mention that as an adjective, it should be backward, not backwards! πŸ™‚

  81. Ann says:

    Well, in my WFMW post (which I wrote in the wee hours of the morning)my tired mind thought a 27 fling boogie was the best option for those pesky cases…but now after a jolt of caffeine I’m thinkin’ donating them to the library might be a pretty good idea, too! Either way just git ’em gone!
    Just keepin’ it real, though…I still keep the DVDs in the boxes they came in thinking they will magically keep from getting scratched. Is that a problem for anyone else? I hate when I buy a DVD for $15-20, watch it once and then it skips! I’d love to buy a new DVD and burn it directly to a hard drive for safekeeping. I’d keep the original in a binder πŸ™‚ and burn off ‘kid-friendly’ DVDs for the kids. They can use their new DVD to their heart’s content without me standing over them to make sure not a dribble, drool or scratch happens to my new shiny round DVD.

  82. Gena says:

    Just throw them away. You have my permission. I threw all of our away and it was lovely. Of course, 50 more came in to take their place, but they’ll be leaving soon…
    My issue is also my cassettes. I have two small boxes of them in the garage. I have cleaned that garage about 20 times and I STILL can’t throw out the cassettes. Why is that?

  83. Sue C says:

    I say throw them away, BUT take out the colored paper part and put it with the DVD (especially the ones without the identifying colored title already imprinted on the DVD). It helps you know where the DVD’s go if you move one of them and helps identify what is on each DVD (or CD–I didn’t do this at first and am I ever sorry when I try to find a particular song or episode). We did this with all our DVDs and CDs and boy did we save a lot of space. I’m a “keeper” (my DH says packrat, LOL) so I’m not likely to ever want to sell or exchange them, so keeping the plastic case just doesn’t matter. It’s my books I have trouble keeping down in number and I haven’t found any way to condense them, yet. . . Hugs, Sue C

  84. Proverbs31 says:

    Okay, here goes. For our kids’ movies, I bought a zippered DVD case (instead of a cd case – harder to find but well worth it – Amazon has a few, I don’t know about Wal-Mart or Target) which holds the paper inserts as well as the DVDs. This works well for two reasons. 1.) There’s now a picture in each spot for the kids to match up the movies with when returning them back to the case. 2.) I took ALL the paper out of the DVD case and stored it with the movie so that I freed myself to throw away the (completely) empty cases. I kept only 3 or 4, and tucked them away somewhere so that if I ever decide to sell or give away a movie I can put the papers and movie back inside.
    However, don’t feel bad… I’ve done this with the kids movies. I still haven’t convinced hubby to let me do it with his. I think he suffers from no-case-a-phobia. πŸ˜‰

  85. T. says:

    My comment is useless now because I basically agree with keeping them stored away. But this post helped me too! I’ve been considering doing this since your first post on the topic but I didn’t know what to do with the empties either. I think I may store them, then once per year when I’m de-cluttering for the new year I could go through the DVDs. I could then decide which ones we will never watch again, go grab the case and either sell it or donate it. Every year I end up purging old tapes/DVDs because the kids have lost interest or grown out of whatever was their obsession at the time of purchase.

  86. Alyson says:

    Get rid of them!! I really struggled with the same decision about 2 years ago, but in a fit of PMS I tossed them :). I haven’t missed them yet. Of course a few more have come in since then that I need to purge, but I think it’ll be a little easier this time.

  87. Robyn says:

    I like Sue C’s idea of keeping the paper with the DVD in the binder, and just keep a few hard cases in case you need them later.

  88. New Diva on the Blog says:

    My husband has been throwing the DVD covers away for years. At first it gave me hives, I was just sure I would need them eventually. I got over it. I have never needed them and I am so glad to be rid of the clutter.
    Permission granted.

  89. Christina says:

    oh geez. I, Too, need permission to get rid of cassette tapes and CD cases and DVD cases. I think all my cassettes and CD cases are stowed away in BIG shopping bags in a corner of a closet somewhere. I’m never going to sell them, no one wants them anyway what with ipods and itunes out there.
    I tried making things with the cases once. silly me.
    I think I just saw a huge display at anthropologie the other day using old cd’s!!! it was very cool.

  90. Marianne says:

    We’ve done the same thing; most of the “kiddie” DVD’s are in travel zippie cases in Claudine (our van), so I have a bunch of empty DVD cases, too. They’re currently in an empty Nike box in the basement because I just can’t see pitching them in the trash.

  91. Nicki says:

    I say toss them, but if you aren’t comfortable doing that, pack them up in a storage box and put them in storage. They are out of the way, but you can get them if you need them again.

  92. Char says:

    Toss em! Or, if it makes you feel better, put them in a box in the garage, and in six months if you haven’t thought about them or wanted them or needed them, then toss the box!

  93. Briggie says:

    I started putting all of our CD’s and DVD’s in organizers years ago and at first I didn’t want to toss out the jewel cases or dvd boxes but one day last year I realized that no one even touched them so out they went and no one has even missed them and we have amassed hundreds of cd’s and dvd’s over the years. As for one of the comments about maybe selling them one day, you can always get jewel cases at the office supply store and slip them into one of those (it works for dvd’s too). TRHOW OUT THE EMPTY JEWEL CASES AND DVD HOLDERS!!! You have my permission and you will be so much happier when you do – trust me!!!

  94. Mommy Cracked says:

    Shannon, I accidently put the link to YOUR blog instead of mine in Mr. Linky! I added the right one (#202), but #61 is a dud. Sorry about that. I hope it doesn’t mess things up.

  95. Tiffany says:

    I understand your dilemma! I hate throwing things like that. I always think I will need it later. I have just recently started getting rid of that kind of clutter (I am still working on all of the other types of clutter!). Throw it away, girl!

  96. disty says:

    I love the new colors on your blog, but the aqua used for links is REALLY hard to read. Would you consider using another color?

  97. Karen says:

    As much as I normally toss packaging for all types of things, I might save these … you’ll get twice as much for the DVDs you no longer need if you sell them on …. but why not put them in a box in the attic?

  98. Lisa says:

    About the cassette tapes…I’ve been transferring all of mine to the computer and then burning them to CD. It’s fairly easy! I can show ya how if ya want.

  99. TaderDoodles says:

    We finally trashed the boxes. It was hard, but worth it. We had previously had them boxed up in the basement. We keep all of our DVD’s in big cd cases, the zipper kind. The girls have a smaller one that is easy to take to the car or to my moms house when we go on trips. We have a entire bookcase of dvd’s consolidated into a large zippered binder thingy. Hubby even put them in there (sort of) by genre… all the scary ones or “too grown up for the girls to watch” are in the back. And we can see them eight at a time which makes picking a movie for movie night go faster.

  100. lisa (lost pezhead) says:

    perhaps if you recycle them you it won’t feel as bad. but yes, i would just throw them out! clutter clutter!

  101. Thea @ I'm a Drama Mama says:

    Toss ’em. You’ll feel so much better. I found a DVD binder that we love. Each page holds the DVD “book” in a clear cover on the front and the actual disc on the back. That way we have all the chapter and bonus feature information but don’t have the case. Then when we take the DVD player in the car for trips, we just take the DVDs we want and put them into a smaller CD wallet. It works so well for us!

  102. Kelly says:

    I give you full permission to throw away all of those cases!
    When my hubby and I decided to store our DVDs in CD cases, I wanted to keep all of those plastic DVD cases. Hubby convinced me to toss them, and I haven’t thought of them or missed them once. It can be done! I. Promise. πŸ™‚

  103. jp's mom says:

    We had this same dilemma with cd’s and dvd’s. I decided I should not throw the cases away because if I did I could not sell or trade them in at a resell shop, so we pack the cases up and put them in the attic in a box.

  104. Rebecca says:

    I would have a hard time throwing them away, but I also like the binder idea for the covers and freecycling the empty cases.
    Or putting the cases in a big rubbermaid container and placing it out of sight…outta sight=outta mind, right?

  105. becca says:

    As an owner of way too many DVDs I’ll share my filing system with you.
    The DVDs go into a large CD folder and the paper covers come out of their boxes and get put into plastic sleeves which then go into binders. That way if you want to know the info you can look it up, or if you want to sell them/give them away you just need to find an empty box to put them in. The majority of the empty boxes leave my house cuz I need to live here too!
    Of course, I’m a little too into organizing, and have waaay too many DVDs, so I have each CD folder organized by category, and each corresponding binder alphabetized… I also have the CD folders numbered so that I can put that info with the covers i.e. rom-com slot 49 = steel magnolias. (I also have a complete list of DVD titles in a computer file with all their info, but that’s more about insurance files, and being a little over-obsessed).
    My other tip is to keep boxsets complete instead of de-boxing them. Helps with resale.
    But seriously, get rid of the boxes one way or another!
    Becca, UK

  106. Mrs. Bick says:

    As a professional organizer, and as a loyal blog reader, I give you permission to rid your house of those useless DVD cases. If the system you have started is working well for you, then the original cases are simply wasting space and causing you stress. And what does stress cause? Wrinkles and gray hair, and who needs those!
    If you are still having problems with the “toss it” idea, may I suggest Free Cycle ( You never know what people want need.

  107. Crista says:

    This is for you:

    I’m listening to it now. Wow! Does that bring back memories of my freshman year in college. I just realized that freshmen in college this year are half my age, and I feel so old!

  108. Aimee says:

    I didn’t read carefully through all of the comments, but I echo the sentiment of throwing them away. We recently had a house fire with very little fire and a lot of smoke grime. Rather than have someone clean a bunch of empty cases, (we too, put all of our DVD’s and CD’s in the binder holders) we just threw them away and it was liberating. I also gained a new test for keeping things – would it be worth cleaning if it got grimy? If you really think you might regret it, take out the paper and toss the case. You can always purchase a new case and the paper doesn’t take up much space.

  109. Janel says:

    I have no suggestions for you because I keep all of those plastic covers and have my cassette collection in my attic. Of course, some of them are melted and I know I will never use them again, but you just never know. I feel your pain.

  110. Amanda says:

    Freecycle those cases or sell them on eBay as is. This person sold a lot of 600 empty DVD cases with the movie artwork for $255. This person sold 80 for $31. Others sell for less, but whatever — if they’re taking up space, you may as well get rid of them, right?

  111. B. Burke says:

    I find our local library to be invaluable when it comes to DVDs. We can check out great kids movies for a week (just enough time for them to become boring), take them back, then come home with a brand new set. No endless case clutter and it doesn’t cost us a dime.

  112. Laura Boggess says:

    Keep the inserts in the dvds, but toss the cases. if you ever have a dvd case emergency, you can purchase a blank one and put the inserts back in. You can even get a pretty folder of basket to hold the things in! (or toss them in with your tape collection)

  113. HeidiHeidi says:

    I love all the different questions posed here. I love all the support. People actually go out and comment on the subjects at hand. You’ve got a keeper here! And thanks!

  114. Shannon says:

    In the interest of saving the planet, why not put them up as a group on FreecycleTM – there may be someone out there who would like to slide the covers out and use the DVD containers. Either way, it gets them out of your house!

  115. Shannon says:

    OR call your local library to see if they take the cases as donations? They may have to buy them as replacements if something were damaged while a patron had it chequed out?

  116. Homeschool Help Web says:

    I would keep all the papers, plus 5 – 10 cases. Donate the rest, perhaps to a place like Goodwill – I’m sure they get a lot of CDs and DVDs and would like to have cases for them!
    Save a few cases so that later down the road when you do a cull for donating or yard-saling, you’ll have some cases for any you decide to get rid of.

  117. jodi jean says:

    we store all of our dvds, ps2 games and xbox games in discgear selectors, love love love them … but i too have boxes of cases saved (because i might need them)
    maybe we should throw them out together and purge ourselves.

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