New England Home

I Want To Be A Minimalist

I really do! I do! I do! I do! But where do I begin? Do I strip my walls of everything until it’s naked. Gone? Poof? Oh, there are so many questions that lie in the world of minimalism and I want to figure out the secret so I am going to my sources…

The Source

Can you picture it? The bottled water that has the label that reads, “Straight from the source.” You only want the water that is pure in all the ways that enter into your precious being. This is true. And if you really dig deep and think about it, is that what you want for your home? Pure simplicity? Or over the eye stimuli? It’s what works for you. But, regardless I need to go straight to the source.

I Asked

I asked the author of The Cozy Minimalist, Myquillyn Smith if she was available to come on to my podcast and chat about it, but at the time she was unable. Maybe in 2021? Let’s hope. She wrote the book on it. If you haven’t had a chance to pick up a copy, you can link straight to her blog from here. I digress, I did the next best thing, which I already had done prior…I read her book and made notes…again…for the third time. It’s true.

Wanting to learn more, I contacted another minimalist source, Brittany from White.Farmhouse. We will have an interview for the podcast coming up. This girl, right here, made a big boo-boo and had the wrong time written down. This is the true realization that, a. I need an assistant and b. I need a better system. But, I have grace and we are moving on from that! Ha!

I Made The Notes

I made the notes, so now I need to act on it. Like truly act on it. But, I continue to distract myself by the need of figuring out how to be a minimalist and the practice of it. So, I began following Brittany and Deb from Vintage Society Co. What is their secret? These are the notes I made on their style…

  1. Paint everything white
  2. Leave the natural rich colors of the wood, but enhance them with stain and poly
  3. Shiplap is classic
  4. Decorate with nature
  5. Live a natural lifestyle and share it
  6. Hone in on the homesteading
  7. Standard vintage pieces can be easily styled when the pallet is clean
  8. Add a sparkly chandelier

What I have learned from Myquillyn Smith, The Cozy Minimalist

  1. An eclectic mix can be fun
  2. Strip the space and start from scratch
  3. Decide what you don’t need anymore
  4. Parse down the seasonal décor into smaller bins
  5. Make decisions on seasonal décor at the end of the season
  6. Find fun solutions
  7. It’s okay to have Bagel Bites sitting on a tray on the stove while you’re making a video
  8. Think outside the box while decorating. Ask yourself, “What would Grandma not do?”

I’m Not Living In A Museum

Just in case you are wondering….I don’t live in a museum. Are you surprised? Hee,hee. My dad always said to me that his dad said, “A home needs to be lived in and needs to look like it’s lived in. That’s what makes it home.” And here is where I’m stuck. I love that my home looks like it is lived in. I have worn out floors and an eclectic mix of furniture and treasures. I have dogs that love the couch and snuggle in on all of the furniture. I need to scale some items way down. It will save me time when cleaning in the long run. But, I seek the simple. I seek the minimalist lifestyle because I am convinced in my thinking that if I don’t take hold of this lifestyle I will become a hoarder. Not really, but I will buy. I will waste money. I will begin feeling like I need to cover up every space and nook and cranny with stuff. With things that don’t really mean anything. Alas, have no fear for me! I think I have found a solution to this wrench in the works. The more I contemplate on it, the more I have realized my solution.

The Secret

Look at the elephant in the room. What is that one area that is driving me nuts? Fix it. Take the items down. Clean it off. Get the cobwebs out of there. Ask myself this one question…”Do my eyes hurt?”

Have you ever walked into a space and it is so overwhelming that your eyes hurt because there is so much to look at? That happens to me in my own house. It’s not brain science in figuring it out, but it can hurt my brain. I need to look at each item and make a decision. Keep it, donate it, toss it. I see it on social media. The wide spectrum on both ends. Swipe through instagram and you will see that there are accounts of influencers and of non-influencers where each wall is completely full, spaces are clogged, and way overlayered on my eyes. Then, others look so bare that they feel cold and sterile despite how much shiplap they have. I need the middle ground and after pouring over accounts and books I think I have figured out my style. The one thing I will suggest is taking a picture of your home. Look at it’s guts. Give it surgery. I also look back on older pictures of rooms that I thought looked so good to ultimately look at it and ask myself how I felt in that moment. I’m a deep thinker, friends. I mean who puts this much thought into things like this? Me. That’s who and maybe you too? So, let’s just cut to it and get going on this secret.

  1. Add a chandelier
  2. Clear the air and add to the air with healthy essential oils
  3. You don’t have to keep every family heirloom
  4. Have a few statement pieces and use them throughout your home
  5. Use nature
  6. Take a picture of your home
  7. Small twinkle lights always do the trick
  8. Treat large walls like a pallet-keep the color neutral to soothe
  9. Decorate with family photos and a crisp gallery wall
  10. Shop your home, get rid of items that you don’t love
  11. Read the room. Use your senses. Fall in love with your home again and again

Should I Care This Much?

In the grand scheme of life and all that there is to it, should I put this much thinking and effort into our home? The answer is yes! For me that is. You might have read through this whole thing and thought…”Alyssa, please! Get a life!” Oh, well maybe you weren’t that harsh, but hey, yes! Yes! Yes!

This home. This space. This is very important to me. It’s where we spend so much of our time and I want to make it as cozy, calm, warm, and less cluttered as possible. Cecelia Ahern said it best…

Home isn’t a place, it’s a feeling.”

Cecelia Ahern

Queen of Clutterdom

If you are striving for the minimalist way. If you are striving for a cozy balance. If you are like me and can tip the scales very easily to clutterdom then, sister or brother, I feel ya and I hear ya loud and clear. Let’s make our homes balance together and when we start to tip, we catch ourselves mid fall and help each other up. WE can dust ourselves off and roll up our sleeves. Anything and everything is fixable. I am a believer. You know that old Japanese Proverb,
“Fall seven times, stand up eight.”

I may have found the secret. I will check back and let you know how it’s going… Carry on!