Not so long ago the Marie Kondo decluttering craze swept the nation. Up and down the country, we were getting rid of stuff that didn’t “spark joy”. But while for some it was a passing fad, for others it was part of a wider discourse around the joys of living a minimalist lifestyle.
Person holding a cushion
Over in America, Joshua and Ryan of The Minimalists are key voices in this conversation. We’ve been enjoying their 16 Rules for Living with Less, which resonated with us due to its natural fit with living a more conscious life. 
Contrary to popular belief, minimalism isn’t actually about getting rid of all your stuff. As Joshua points out, “Minimalists don’t focus on owning nothing—they focus on owning only that which adds value to their lives.” It echoes that oft-quoted William Morris advice: to have nothing in your home that you don’t know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.

The Minimalists argue that everything you own can be divided into three categories:

  • Essentials - the things we need to survive, such as food, clothes and a roof over our heads.
  • Non-essentials - things that add value and make life more comfortable or enjoyable, such as furniture or books.
  • Junk - the stuff that doesn’t add value or bring joy - stuff we think we like, but actually just clutters up our homes.

If we’re really honest with ourselves, there’s more than a fair bit of stuff in our homes that qualifies as junk, and that’s almost certainly the same for you. In the consumerist society we live in, we’re always being sold something through one medium or another, so it’s all too easy for our homes to fill up with stuff we don’t really need. So how can you begin working towards minimalism and make the contents of your home more meaningful? 

A useful starting point from The Minimalists’ set of rules is to go through your possessions one by one and let go of anything you’ve not used in the last 90 days and won’t use in the next 90. More dramatically, they advise imagining that each possession were to spontaneously combust. Would you be sad or relieved? If the latter, it’s time to get rid...


Kate & Louise

Co-founders now, sit down