Even if you are a strict minimalist you don’t want your home to feel cold and uninviting. A way of adding some warmth and texture is using a wool wall hanging in place of a colourful artwork. A monochrome colour palette will maintain an understated look while the natural, tactile texture of wool will help a room to feel cosy and inviting while also improving acoustics in an otherwise sparse interior.
Spend some time looking around your current space and single out the items that you do not use regularly. Why are they still in your apartment? Will you notice them if they are gone? If the answer is no then they need to go. The best way to feel relaxed in your home and for it to look great is to clear the clutter. Same goes for decorative displays, apply Coco Chanel’s outfit maxim – “before you leave the house, look in the mirror and take one thing off” – to your home at all times.
Instead of piling up numerous different cushions and multiple throws of varying quality in your living area select less items but of better quality. One beautifully made, neutral toned, fine Merino wool throw is going to look more beautiful, last longer and keep you warmer than a selection of cotton or synthetic blankets. Similarly with your cushions, just two or three plump cushions with plain colour wool upholstery will be more comfortable to lean on and stand the test of time while achieving an unfussy look.
Minimalism doesn’t have to mean a home feels soulless. You can inject personality into your minimal home without it looking over cluttered. For example, spend time at your local galleries and choose an artwork that means something to you. Or include family photos but have them printed in only black and white and display orderly in matching minimal frames. Fireplaces and bookshelves look best displayed with something other than dust, just don’t overdo it. Choose three to five items in a muted colour palette and display them neatly for a decorative but still calming arrangement.
Inevitably there will still be things you need in your home that are not used regularly so the best way to ensure they are not cluttering up your home is to have appropriate places to hide them away. Whether that’s additional cupboards or wardrobes, under bed storage or an ottoman or coffee table that doubles as a storage chest, include storage space wherever you can to keep your small space neat and tidy.
Illustration: Barry Allen Patenaude
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