A Minimalist Approach To Your Home That Works
Posted: Oct 31, 2015
Living in a completely minimalist home may be difficult, particularly for families with young children, but it is possible to use a minimalist ethos in an ordinary home to reap some of the benefits of this style of living.
The key to minimalism is avoiding unnecessary clutter – all those items that you rarely, if ever, use which just gather dust or take up precious storage space. Creating a minimalist environment initially requires de-cluttering but also requires adequate storage space to hide away the items that are actually needed to keep them out of sight but at the same time easily accessible.
The upside to de-cluttering is that you can recycle unwanted possessions either by giving them away or donating them to a favourite charity, which is a much better option for once-cherished belongings than simply throwing them away.
But if the aim of embracing minimalism is to benefit your living environment just what are the advantagesfor the individual and for the family as a whole? And can a minimalist home really work for a young family and provide a lively, stimulating atmosphere for children to grow up in?
The Advantages of a Minimalist Home
Your living space will be more appealingwith clear surfaces and everything neatly stored away until needed. No longer willbooks, gadgets or children's toys litter the floor and other surfaces. No longer will unwanted ornaments be displayed on open shelves. Your rooms will contain only a few select personal items such as photos, thatwill be shown off to their best because they are surrounded by clear space. There will be room to truly relax.
Minimalist living spaces are easier to keep clean because it is much quicker to dust and vacuum if floors and other surfaces are free from clutter. With the majority of items stored in cupboards, less dust will gather on them.
Your home life will be less stressful because it is easy to find everything you need when everything is neatly stored away in an allotted space. No more last minute panics looking for things that have become lost under piles of papers and children will always be able to find their favourite toy or book.
So these are some of the advantages of a minimalist home but how can you attempt tominimalise an ordinary home?
Steps To Achieving Minimalism
- De-cluttering is the essential first step in any plan to create a minimalist environment because it is only once you have de-cluttered your home that you will have a good idea of how much storage space will be required.
- Thenext step is to create adequate enclosed storage to house your essential possessions. Ideallystorage should be as unobtrusive as possible – simple cupboards in similar neutral shades to the walls making use of existing alcoves wherever possible. One of the main reasons why it is difficult to maintain a minimalist living space is lack of storage so always over-estimate the amount you think you will need.
3. Too much furniture in a room can, in itself, create a "busy" look even when there is no clutter so consider what the essential items for each room are. Clearly a certain number of chairs, tables, sofas, beds etcare required, depending on the size of your family and the needs of guests but you may have more than you really require. But the intention is not to make your home uncomfortable so don't get carried away and find you don't have enough seating for guests.
- Introduce something of your character into every room to prevent completely bland spaces but choose ornaments, photos or other decorations carefully. Decorations in a minimalist room could be paintings (they add colour without cluttering surfaces), a simple vase or a structural houseplant. Plants are perfect forcreating a sense of calm in any room.
- Use neutral colours for walls, floor and storage units. Colour can be introduced in soft furnishings but stick to plain fabrics as patterns create a feeling of clutter. Use simple, unadorned windowtreatments or if the requirements of your climate or needs for privacy allow then use no window dressings at all.
The author has written and published articles on a wide range of topics including Small Business Advice, Tax and Accounting, Interior Design, House Renovation and Project Management.