Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Simplicity is the Ultimate Sophistication

My husband and I received a visit from my sister and a friend of hers this past weekend. As I mentioned before, they are traversing the country with a final destination of Arizona. One of the things they both did to make this move possible is sell all of their belongings, save a handful of things that they either needed or loved, which they squeezed into their cars. While it seems simple enough to say, “I’m selling all of my personal belongings,” it’s an enormously tedious, time-consuming and labor-intensive job … depending, of course, on how much stuff you’ve collected over the years.

While I have no intention of doing this myself, my friends and family have heard more than a few times over the past few years how eager I am to declutter, shed the excess, unload the junk. I have more than my share of odd, quirky, and unnecessary objects that I neither need nor love. I fantasize about a home that better reflects the essence of those who dwell in it, unclouded by the confusion of things that don’t quite fit. A home where you notice the people in a room more than the room itself or the stuff in it. And as Debbie Millman says, "we can either talk about making a difference, or we can make a difference." And, while my husband has more books than God, I intend to leave them alone. (Though on reflection, do we need two copies of Ulysses?)

This is my goal for the balance of the year, a gift to myself; to streamline my material world until I no longer feel distracted by the visual confusion. I want my home to have room for discussions and ideas, and whatever material things remain are there because they have honest meaning and value.
Oh, and the title is a quote from Leonardo da Vinci.


Anonymous said...

Clarity, frugality and simplicity serve all well.

Pigtown-Design said...

I did that... sold everything I owned and moved to the UK. It was very liberating and in the end, stuff is just stuff.

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