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Can You Be a Minimalist in a Large Space?

publikováno 23.10.2018 od New minimalism

Image //  Dwell . Design //  Jessica Helgerson .

Image // Dwell. Design // Jessica Helgerson.

Hi friends, Cary here!

The question — can you live simply in a large home? — is something I've been mulling over since we moved into our first home two years ago.

Cam and I had lived, quite happily, in a one bedroom apartment in San Francisco for 6.5 years before our move to Boise. Our intention for purchasing a larger home was to have space to grow our own family –– babies both fur and human (see below) –– and for family and close friends to visit often and for as long as they’d like.

Truly, I love our home. I love our neighborhood: our kind and active neighbors, the dozens of miles of hiking trails right across the street and our fabulous public school down the block. I love our land: the fruit trees, the garden, the hillside and the bike path running past our backyard. But it was a really strange feeling going from an apartment with three closets (which felt down right luxurious at the time) to a home who seemed to invite us to have too much with a basement, a garage, a guest room, and nearly a dozen closets.

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I'm not going to lie, I had a lot of anxiety about moving into a larger space.

I was worried that the clarity a smaller space enabled me to have would be lost and that I'd become the type of person who just fills up space in order to fill it. Backsliding into consumerism and mindlessly holding onto unwanted and unloved things seemed unavoidable.

And yet here we are, two years later, in a large and simple home.

How did this happen? By deciding before we moved, before we shopped, before we filled our space exactly how we wanted to feel in our home. It’s been our internal boundaries and clarity, rather than external forces, that have allowed us to create a home we love. Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help you stay the course of your version of minimalism.

 

5 Tips for Simple Living, No Matter the Size of Your House


My side of the closet in our S.F. apartment.

My side of the closet in our S.F. apartment.

1. Don't add storage.

When you have plenty of closets and other built-in storage space, don't bring in additional dressers or cabinets, drawers or shelves. Allow the built in storage to be enough. We, for example, have the same coffee table that we used in SF (a glorious Japanese tansu that was handed down to me). In San Francisco we used the spacious drawers to hold board games and candles and things we used when entertaining friends. Here in Boise, we ignore the drawers all together. The drawers are not the easiest to open, nor is opening them conducive to the layout of the space. So we treat the tansu like a solid cube and enjoy it’s surfaces without utilizing it’s storage.

2) Remove storage where you don't need it.

For us, this looked like removing an entire wall of upper and lower cabinets from our garage. While the millions of drawers and shelves might have been “organized” and labeled to each hold one item – camping sporks in this drawer, headlamps and lanterns on this shelf - we didn’t want a complicated system and didn’t need nearly the amount of storage provided. Instead we have two large open shelving units that hold a bin with all our small camping gear on a shelf alongside our tents, camping chairs and sleeping bags. This makes packing and unpacking for car camping a breeze (Step 1: place bin in car; Step 2: camp; Step 3: remove bin from car and place back on shelf). This smaller, open storage also prevents us from hoarding unwanted and unneeded items out of sight.

  Our old pantry in our S.F. apartment.

Our old pantry in our S.F. apartment.

3) Redefine “full”.

We have a laundry room. Yes, a whole entire room dedicated to the act of laundry. It's a small space but it nonetheless has a couple of cabinets and drawers. One cabinet houses our large bag of dog food. Another holds the laundry detergent and white vinegar we use for cleaning. Thats it. Each cabinet could easily hold 10x what it has, but there isn't anything else that belongs in there, so we just let them be.

Adapting to a different version of "full."  When we work with clients we are constantly helping them adjust their mindset to what “full” looks and feels like. For many of us, after years of overflowing drawers and cabinets that jussssst baaaarely close, it can feel strange to acknowledge that full is actually much less than capacity — it’s an amount that allows for ease and optimal functionality. In a large house we’ve taken this a step further even. “Full” in a linen closet might just be a spare pillow and seasonal throw or two. The idea is not to be austere, but to let my internal compass rather than my external storage tell me what is the right amount.

 

4) Go slowly.

When we moved we had neither the finances nor the desire to rush to fill-up our home with stuff. For example, in a bright extra bedroom that we hoped one day would become a nursery, we placed just one comfortable chair. A single chair was really all we needed to take work calls or sip coffee in this room’s morning sunlight. Now that it is a nursery I’m so glad we didn’t rush to furnish the room unnecessarily

The same goes for walls. We'd spent six years slowly decorating the three small rooms of our old San Francisco apartment. Here in Boise, I wanted to be just as thoughtful about adding decor rather than trying to rush around and appear “done” without getting to know the space and how we hope to feel in it. Two years in, we’re continuing to slowly add layers and textures and colors to our home as it feels right. I know some people won't be able to stand the feeling of being "incomplete" but I suggest moving forward with decorating as intentionally and mindfully as you can.

 

5) When in doubt, add plants and lighting.

For architectural or feng shui reasons, there are a couple of spaces in our home that feel awkward or unpleasant when empty. I cannot tell you how many times I thought about how if I'd built this house I would have removed a bizarre nook here or an extra few feet there. But instead of turning my back on these off-putting areas, we embraced them by slowly filling each with lovely greenery and lighting (luckily for me, Cam has quite the green thumb). Plants and light sources give purpose and interest to these spaces without adding the weight or expense of furnishings.

Decor doesn't have to be all furniture and artwork. If you don't need another place to sit, don't just stick a loveseat somewhere. Instead, use greenery and task lighting to make a space feel alive without filling it up for the sake of filling it. 








Image //  @urbanjungleblog

Image // @urbanjungleblog

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New Minimalism Events

publikováno 15.10.2018 od New minimalism

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We are super excited to announce these upcoming events!!!


Professional’s Workshop

Tues. 10/23, 7pm Pacific time

$95.00

Virtual! Anyone can join!

Kyle Quilici of New Minimalism and Shira Gill of Shira Gill Home will co-host a live, 1-hour workshop where we dig into the details of a creating your own successful decluttering and home organization business.  

WHO IT'S FOR

Professional organizers, home decorators and stylists, zero-waste educators, minimalists or those aspiring to be any of the above. 

SIGN UP HERE!

 
Image Via

Image Via


in-home Design Consultations

Brooklyn, NY


UPDATE: 1 spot LEFT on Fri 10/26

$195.00 for 1-hr consultation, plus PDF Design Recommendations

New Minimalism comes to Brooklyn! Kyle is booking design consultations for Brooklyn-based residents! The NM Design consultations have a focus on decluttering and utilize the simple updates that can make a huge impact on a space. Think: a change of a paint color, the replacement of a key piece of furniture, or investing in better lighting.

WHO IT'S FOR

The person who is overwhelmed by their stuff or uninspired with their space. These consults will prioritize your to-do list and jumpstart your motivation to revamp your space!

Email Kyle directly at kyle [at] newminimalism.com to secure your spot!

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Mou inspirací je má babička. Hledá řešení, jak to udělat, aby věci nemusela zbytečně kupovat

publikováno 15.10.2018 od Žijeme minimalismem

ROZHOVOR – Patrik Zouhar v minimalismu rád testuje limity a možnosti, které by napadly jen málokoho. Jak se dá bydlet v malinkém pokoji o rozměrech 1,9 m x 2,1 m. Jak mít jen takové věci a vybavení, aby bylo možné vše přestěhovat v řádu hodin v běžném autě. Nebo jak mít na cesty zabaleno kompaktně,

The post Mou inspirací je má babička. Hledá řešení, jak to udělat, aby věci nemusela zbytečně kupovat appeared first on Žijeme minimalismem.

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Minimalistické prohřešky – aneb čeho mám moc

publikováno 13.10.2018 od Minimalisticky.cz

Píšu o tom, jak mít méně věcí, jak se žije s méně věcmi lépe. To vše je pravda, já tomu věřím. Podkládám to ostatně na svých přednáškách i daty a studiemi. No, ale včera jsem si přinesl tohohle pichlavého krasavce domů z Ekofilmu. Přivedlo mě to k tomu, že napíšu krátký článek o věcech, kterých […]

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Rituály v podnikání

publikováno 25.9.2018 od Magdalena Čevelová

Rituály odjakživa pokládám za užitečné a potřebné. Usnadňují naší psychice přejít z jedné životní fáze do druhé a srovnat se s věcmi, které nemůžeme změnit. Pomáhají nám najít v životě smysl, plnit si sny, vize a cíle i nechat jít věci, které už nám neslouží. Když se řekne rituál, většina lidí si představí něco náboženského nebo čarodějnického. Ale [...]

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Moving In Together? These 6 Decluttering Tips Will Make It Painless

publikováno 20.9.2018 od New minimalism

Image: Studio Firma

Image: Studio Firma

This article first appeared on mindbodygreen

Deciding to move in together is an exciting step in any romantic relationship. But if I've learned one thing through my work as a professional declutterer, it's that when merging spaces, it's crucial to intentionally change the way you look at your home or apartment from a "me" to a "we" mentality. Here are six tips to help make your transition a little more seamless:

1. If one partner is moving into the other person's space, clear the slate first.

The person already living in the space should consider removing all personal items that adorn the home. Remove all the photos on the mantel, the mementos on the fridge, the family photos on the walls. Then, you can reassess those pieces with a more critical eye with your partner—does that wedding invite from seven years ago still need to be displayed on your fridge? In my studio apartment, I had hung one family portrait, and when my boyfriend KG moved in, he brought along his favorite family snapshot so that we could both have one cherished photo hanging on the tiny gallery wall.

2. Enact the "Bedside Equality Act."

Have you ever walked into a couple's bedroom to see that one side of the bed is pushed up against the wall? That position subtly says that one person gets priority access to all the luxuries: the bedside table, the lamp, the reading material, the mug of tea. Meanwhile, their bedmate is bereft on the far side of the bed, stuck between their lover and a wall!

Equal access to both sides of the bed instills fairness at a very basic level. No matter how small your bedroom is, I would argue that the most important thing is making it possible for both people to have walk-up access to their side of the bed, along with a light and bedside table.

If you have an extra-small room like ours, you can save space by wall-mounting a light and using the world's smallest bedside tables. What's even more freeing about this scenario: As the months pass, you have the flexibility to (gasp!) sleep on different sides of the bed.

3. Carve out solo spaces where possible.

In our apartment, we each have our own side of the closet and a small secretary desk for when we work from home. While this seems like no big deal, designating spaces (or even surfaces!) that are solely your own can help keep the peace, especially in smaller spaces.

4. Remember that teamwork makes the dream work.

Working on a fun project together can make a space feel like it belongs to both of you. Right when you move in, decide on a DIY so there's a design element in your home that you both had a part in creating. For us, it was as simple as printing a large image and attaching it to a piece of foam core to hang on the wall.

5. Talk, talk, and then talk some more.

After several discussions, KG and I came to understand what we both liked about our studio apartment, what we would change, and how we would implement these tweaks together. From these discussions, we prioritized what needed to happen: repaint accent walls, find a photo for the focal wall, find a desk solution, decide where to hang the surfboard, etc. Get these conversations out of the way early, so you're on the same page about the plan of action moving forward.

6. On move-in day, don't pressure your partner to declutter their stuff.

Set the example by leading your own decluttered lifestyle, and you may be surprised by how your partner responds. Giving them the space to pause, reflect, and come to decisions about what to keep and what to get rid of on their own is the only way that lasting change will happen.

Oh and here's one last fun idea: When all the hard decisions are made, celebrate with an emotionally cleansing bonfire (or metaphorical bonfire!) using those sentimental papers you're getting rid of as fodder. Best of luck in your pursuit of cohabitation bliss!

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Komu Stačí málo? Reportáž z festivalu o minimalismu

publikováno 13.9.2018 od Žijeme minimalismem

Patrik, Aneta a Alvin. Tři minimalisté z Brna, kteří se rozhodli, že o svém oblíbeném tématu uspořádají celý festival. Díky nim vznikl první průkopnický ročník festivalu Stačí málo. Festival o minimalismu Stačí málo se konal v sobotu 8. září 2018 v Brně v Café Práh. Dorazilo přes stovku diváků, aby si poslechli nejrůznější přednášky o

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Zpomal…

publikováno 26.8.2018 od Žijeme minimalismem

Už hodinu sedíme v autě v zácpě na dálnici. Venku je vedro. Občas pomalu popojedeme. Děti jsou vzadu už nervózní. Já taky. Představovala jsem si, jak budeme už kolem oběda na chatě pod borovicemi… Trochu automaticky a trochu z nudy sáhnu do tašky pro knížku, kterou si hodlám těch pár dní na chatě v klídku

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Konzum, nadkonzum a kompulsivní nakupování

publikováno 26.8.2018 od Minimalisticky.cz

Na mém blogu, i jiných autorů, narazíte nezřídka na tři v nadpisu uvedené pojmy. Rozlišovat mezi nimi je nesmírně důležité, pokud tedy minimalismus chcete pořádně pochopit. Můžete se tak i vyhnout tomu, abyste se stali jedním z těch, kteří nás, minimalisty, častují rádoby vtipnými hláškami, které slyšíme stokrát dokola a plynou jen z nepochopení minimalismu […]

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Decluttering Vs. Organizing

publikováno 24.8.2018 od New minimalism

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While many aspects of the New Minimalism decluttering process developed over time and through practice, there is one condition that we knew from the very inception of New Minimalism: we are not home organizers.

In our process we first and foremost declutter, and we will tell you why this distinction matters.

A home organizer will take all your worldly possessions and perfectly organize, color-code, and alphabetize them. At New Minimalism, however, we have you question whether those items should even be there in the first place. A perfectly organized space does not automatically mean you lead an effortless, clutter-free life. In fact, the need for a complicated organizational system is usually indicative of too much stuff to begin with.

A beautiful, easy-to-maintain, organized home is simply one of many positive by-products of a thoughtfully curated and decluttered life.

When in pursuit of restoring order to your home, look not to the big-box home organizing stores and magazines for answers. Their solutions beckon with promises of order and free time. But in reality, most of those multicolored stacking plastic drawers are where your things go to die. Once you finally haul those drawers home and neatly tuck away all your doodads, those items are now out of sight, out of mind, and pretty much guaranteed to never be engaged with again. How sad!

Effortful and intricate organization systems are entirely against the greater point of having your things work for you. Complicated systems require time and money to obtain, effort to install, and constant energy to keep up.

Be wary of any system that requires a significant amount of your time to maintain. Do you really want to spend an hour of your precious Saturday afternoon maintaining your recipe archives or your tool shed? All for a system that is supposedly making things easier for you? We didn’t think so. And as such we always default to the simplest, easiest systems possible.

If you were looking for the can opener in Cary’s kitchen, it would be in the one drawer designated for kitchen tools. That’s it. No labeled slot the can opener must be returned to. It’s just in the drawer with the six or so other tools she uses all the time. Similarly, Kyle corrals her pajamas in a small basket in her closet. Sometimes the clothes are folded; sometimes they are floating free.

But what allows this version of contained chaos to work is the fact that there are few items in the basket to begin with.

This excerpt was taken from our book, New Minimalism - Decluttering and Design for Sustainable, Intentional Living

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