Tuesday, 15 June 2010

On the warpath

Watch out - I'm on the warpath today!

Saturday night I went to a housewarming party, and besides the fact that my friend's custom-designed house is gorgeous (her husband was the designer - lucky girl!) what I was most impressed by was how clean and neat it felt. Yes, this was due to a couple hours kid-free because she wanted to have the house tip top for the party. But more than that, it was not stuffed to the brim with stuff!

Today I visited with another friend, and her house (which holds 3 boys and a toddler daughter) had the same feeling. It felt clean and open and fresh and peaceful. I'm under no illusion that any house with kids in it can quickly descend into chaos. But what gets under my skin is that even when my house is tidy and clean it feels cluttered.

I was having a conversation about a house that is up for sale in the neighbourhood. Another friend of mine was looking to buy it, but the house is a century home, and as is often the case, the rooms are small. The bedrooms of this house, in particular, were deemed to small by my friend. That opened the conversation to how common that is in older century homes. They simply didn't own as much stuff as we do today, and so did not need tons of space.

So I am on the warpath. My goal: to rid each room of HALF its contents. In my friend's house today, I counted 7 items. That's it. A bookshelf, a couch, two chairs, a lamp, a piano and a toybox. And you know what? It didn't feel empty or missing something. It was just perfect. In my living room right now, there are 23 items that belong there (and another 12 that don't!). The same goes for the kitchen and the toy room. The bedrooms will have to wait for now, but they will be next. I will take a count of the items in these rooms and cut it by HALF!

Drastic? Yes. Necessary? YES! I long for that airy and open feel in both my friend's homes, and I hope that this will finally be the solution.


Jenn said...

Our house was on the market this past fall, and it never felt so clean as when it was "staged." All of the unnecessary "stuff" was put away, and it was glorious! (Mind you, the closets and the storage space downstairs were full to the brim and dangerous to open, but the rooms never looked so good!) I applaud your quest, I often get overwhelmed by all the STUFF...most of which we don't need. (You should do some before and after pictures!)

Terri-Ann said...

I was thinking about before and after photos - but I don't know if it's fair. There's a bunch of stuff in there right now while we fix the basement, so that doesn't really give a good sense of it. Hubby is going out tonight which should give me a good chance to really get some work done!

Erin said...

If you want help count me in...I love to declutter! Espcially other people's stuff!!

heather80 said...

Every time I move, I toss more stuff. I have pared my knick-knacks down to one small shelf of very sentimental ones (like ones from my Grandmother when she died, etc.) SO much better.