Friday, November 5, 2010

Undecorating

I've been feeling weird lately. My stuff is suffocating me. I feel like I have too much. I want to declutter in an extreme way. (Yes, I have been watching too much Hoarders, but it's more than that). My place is small and my decorating style is already pretty minimal. I really want to go bare bones - think stark contemporary - with the focus on just a few beautiful items in the room. I also want to paint all the walls white, get a fluffy white rug in the living room and a white slipcover - but that is another story.

It's weird because I usually want to lighten up and minimize decor in the spring not fall. In the fall I usually want to make my house feel more cozy, I embrace my colorful decor and actually want to purchase and display more "things". I enjoy decorating for winter / Christmas. But right now the thought of adding things to my environment makes my stomach clench.

A dubious friend suggested that I gather all the items that I want to remove and put them on the dining room table until I can get them boxed up and stored in the basement storage locker. She thinks the desire for sparseness will rapidly pass. I'm not so sure. I removed 7 items from the kitchen, 18 from the dining room / china cabinet, 21 from the living room. I added 1 item to my bedroom and removed 3 pillows and a piece of art.

I'm shocked that I have this much stuff. Most of the items were decorative. Or if they were supposed to be functional, they weren't functioning. If the numbers seem high, look around your space and count your items. I think you'll be surprised at how many you have.

After my extreme undecorating my condo looks naked (I'm used to seeing more stuff but this morning it didn't look as weird as it did yesterday when I finished). It feels much better. In the living room I have only 4 decorative items, the clock and 3 framed artwork on the wall, 3 pillows, 1 candle and 7 live plants. In my bedroom I have 2 decorative items, 1 plant, 3 pictures, 1 piece of art on the wall and 1 decorative pillow. My bathroom 1 item. My kitchen 2 decorative items and 2 items on the wall. It still seems like a lot to me. I need to get several boxes to pack away my removed items. I need to live with them gone for awhile before I get rid of them for good - just in case I change my mind.

Have you ever undecorated your house or gone through a really minimal phase? Did it pass or was it something that stuck? The good news - dusting went much faster today!

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2 comments:

  1. I think your undecorating strategy is a good one. I, too, seem to desire fewer knick-knacks around than I used to. The less clutter, the easier to keep clean is a very true concept (and motivator). My father is totally anti-clutter and he has always advised me in that vein. He lived in Japan as a young man and was just entranced by how simple, and yet beautiful, their spare decorating style is. Less stuff allows more room to breathe, more room for peace of mind and heart. I applaud you (but I would store the stuff, too, just in case!). Thanks for sharing what you're up to with us!

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  2. I am not in an extreme mindset right this moment but I do feel the need to tuck away or hide items so I may need to go on a de-clutter diet and see if I can live without.

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