Spring has finally sprung in our house hold. The cold weather seems to be relinquishing its grip, and our personal lives are calming down after several hectic weeks. With the arrival of this new found inspiration, we have welcomed something we have been waiting for all winter: utilizing our enclosed porch to its fullest potential.
We have always enjoyed our porch, as it is a perfect middle ground between the indoors and the out. This summer, we decided to decorate the porch a bit more than in the past. Previously, our porch was home to our rather sad reject couch (made from couch cushions and a platform made from scrap wood), and our extra folding chairs and folding table. This year, we added several elements to brighten the space. Noteworthily, we did so without buying a single new item. We took an extra rug we had in the bedroom, a vase we’ve been using as a candle holder in the living room, and flowers my partner was given at her recent graduate art show. Adding these items to the furniture we already had made our porch feel as a second living room; it’s really as if we gained a whole extra room on to our house!
The most interesting aspect of this process was these actions acted as a catalyst for more than we initially expected. We have now realized the rest of our house has become too cluttered for our preferences. This isn’t due to us bringing more in; as my partner explained, it is because we had decorated with the right amount of “kitsch” for the level of stuff we owned, yet then continued to downsize. The “kitsch” we had was never part of our downsizing, and as such it has become overwhelming. Our home decor was out of balance, and thus has started to feel cluttered. As such, we have recently begun a bout of spring cleaning which is focusing on getting rid of items supporting the feeling of “clutter” in each room of the house. Along with this process, we’ve had conversations about which rooms feel too cluttered, and which ones we enjoy. In particular, we want to work on the living room and bedroom. Though we are happy with the bathroom and kitchen, we are not going to ignore them. Instead, we plan to examine these rooms separately. Any decor we do not enjoy, we will donate, and move decor we do like to take its place. This way, we keep the items we enjoy the most from throughout the house as well as decluttering the problem rooms. Don’t be limited with where you’re using a particular object at the time; it can always find a new use and/or new home elsewhere in your house.
We intend to continue to minimize down our possessions as we are comfortable with, yet will be keeping in mind to take the home decor in to consideration in our progressive simplification. As we continue to enjoy simplified lives, we come to prefer emptier, calmer spaces. This will likely continue, especially as we consistently aim for a smaller living space each time we move.