What minimalism looks like to me, in everyday format:
- Never ever buying something on first sight. Even if it’s on sale. A cooling-off period will affirm the need/desire for something. Things that I “need” at first sight are almost always forgotten as soon as i leave the store. If they’re not, then I may buy online after deciding if it’s a truly necessary purchase.
- Using what you have.
- To that point, organising what you have so you actually know what is in that mess of a closet/under the bed/in the garage/car/pantry.
- Thinking about the ethics of mass consumption and what real need might look like.
- Attempting to make things before buying them. I started doing this a while back after ODing on some cool homestead blogs, and now I haven’t bought shampoo in over 2 years. I make mine (well, actually I use baking power… more on that when I feel like really baring my hippie colours). Minimalism extends further than clothing and encompasses everything in your home and life: cleaning products, beauty products, food…
- Fixing things before tossing them.
- Taking a hard look at what you own before going on a minimalist blog-induced closet cleaning frenzy and ending up with the wrong clothes for the wrong seasons. I don’t think minimalism means ridding yourself of everything. It means ridding yourself of the unnecessary. I still have a lot of clothes, and they’ll serve me for several years. Rather, this new way of thinking means I will be much more strident about what I buy moving forward, rather than immediately halving everything I already have.
- Buying secondhand when possible.
- When you do need to buy, going for quality so that it will last longer. I’m only now learning this, in my late twenties, and it’s feeling really good to have graduated from Forever 21.
- For the most part, avoiding the latest and greatest technological upgrades. I am deeply suspicious of new releases and try to steer clear of product hype. Sometimes new products really do add value, but I generally give them a while to prove themselves before even considering considering them.
“One can furnish a room very luxuriously by taking out furniture rather than putting it in.”
– Francis Jourdain