If you like the uncluttered look but don’t necessarily want to give up all your stuff, there are simple ways to still make minimalism work for you. It’s called semi-minimalism and you should consider it and these are some practical ways you can get the look:
1. Create collections
If you love books, guitars, vinyl records, shoes, or if you have a thing for Disney dolls, keep all of them together in a collection. Collections get the thing you love from all over the house, to one room or area.
2. Have empty walls and bare floors
Mostly empty walls and bare floors give a more relaxed minimalist vibe. I personally love how the negative wall and floor space give your eyes a place to rest. You can get the look by removing a few wall pieces and opting for smaller and fewer rugs.
3. Add closed storage
Another way to get the less cluttered look is to put things away in cupboards, closets, and behind closed doors. Many cabinets and furniture can be hacked to create closed storage.
4. Let the light in
Get the “clean” look by replacing heavy window treatments for lighter ones. This will let more light in and feel more minimalist.
5. Get rid of tchotchkes and visual clutter
When you stick to 2-3 colors or neutrals colors, your room will look less “busy” and feel less cluttered. Reduce visual clutter by using storage containers to bring like-things together and get rid of the tchotchkes.
6. Do less bulk shopping
If you’re short on storage, you really have to limit those Costco visits. Even in their cupboards, (semi)-minimalists try to maintain order and limit how much they consume.
7. Decorate for your life, not special occasions
Ever walk into someone’s living room and see it decked out with a three-piece sofa set that leaves precious little space to walk? You feel uncomfortable, don’t you? Often-times the homeowner bought “a sofa set” and if they bought it, think they must use it… and only have that much company on Thanksgiving and Super Bowl Sunday. Two pieces or a sectional is all most apartment-sized living rooms can accommodate comfortably. Rooms should be decorated for your every day, not for special occasions. If you must have a three-piece, consider putting one piece in another room—even in your bedroom. You can bring it out to the living room when you need more seating.
So as you can see, with a little bit of thought, there are ways to achieve the minimalist decor and still keep most of your beloved stuff. You can get the look of clean lines and thoughtful design without changing your entire lifestyle or becoming one of those minimalists.
The payoff is that you’ll begin to enjoy your space more.
Christine is a Life Strategist and Emotional Health Coach living in Los Angeles. She's big on meditation and believes in systems and routines, and in personalizing everything you do to help you get where you want to be.