The Minimalist Consumer

Is there such a thing as a minimalist consumer? If there is, I am one. If there’s not, I hereby coin the phrase. I am simultaneously drowning in and trying to get rid of ‘stuff’.

Sometimes, I’m all Sarah Wilson ‘simplicious’, sustainable, recylcing and anti waste and all that jazz and sometimes I’m ‘oh my goodness I cannot take another breath unless I buy that perfect tea cup to add to my collection of 454467 teacups’ and I’m finding it hard to strike a balance between the two.

When we bought our cool but tiny two bedroom house a few years ago pre kids, we thought ‘no worries.  Kids can share a room.  This is plenty big enough’.  Fast forward to doubling our family almost overnight and we have way too much ‘stuff’ and I’m starting to fantasise over the amazing minimalist style furniture and storage solutions that I simply must buy to streamline and simplify my life and also wonder if ’90s chic’ is every going to become cool and/or retro or whether we should complete a fairly significant reno that will make us look a bit minimalist and like we abhor waste whilst getting rid of perfectly good cabinets and floors and furniture because it’s a bit dated.

I’m proud of myself for purging the broken plastic toys and coffee grinder that I haven’t used in 5 years, but books, they’re another story (haha, punny!) and I do like to look at them lined up on the wall and remember why I loved them in the first place and think who would like to read them next.

Recently, we’ve been cleaning out our farm house and sorting through what feels like a lifetime of memories.  Prior to starting this, I was of the opinion that if I hadn’t missed it in four years, I didn’t need it and therefore I would just chuck it all out.  But of course, that didn’t happen and I’ve spent the best part of a week lost down memory lane.  I’ve found sugar bowls from my great grandmother, photos from my childhood, awful jewellery from the early days of our relationship and a million things in between.  Some things (like the dreadlocks I had when I was 18) I have happily turfed, some things I have reluctantly parted with and some things I have kept because they provide a tangible link to my past.  I might not ever get to have afternoon tea with my nan ever again, but if I put some succulents in her sugar bowl and put it on the verandah, I can remember her every day.  I’ll never get to ask my dad what he thinks I should do again, but if I keep the letters and cards he sent me, I might get some kind of insight. I found letters from my dearest friend from when she was at boarding school and I reflected on the fact that I feel lucky to have existed in a time when we could write letters to one another rather than send texts and emails.  I kept them and I might read them again one day in eighteen years when I get a spare five minutes.

I’ve decided to keep some of the things and stuff that I have saved in some boxes in the shed.  I don’t necessarily want it to clutter up my ‘on the way to being organised if not minimalist’ house but I don’t want to banish it from my life forever.  There’s some comfort in knowing where I’ve come from and being the custodian of some precious memories.

Now, back to the present, I need to find the ultimate minimalist storage solution for Duplo…

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