Any fellow minimalists?

posted 2 years ago in Married Life
Post # 18
Member
3291 posts
Sugar bee

Since my mid 20s I’ve begun to realise we really don’t need as much crap as we’re made to believe we need. 

If there’s things in our house we haven’t used in 6 months we donate them. I rarely buy clothing unless I really need it (DH is the same), and when I do buy clothes at least 75% of them come from the op shop. I usually only buy classic pieces that won’t go out of fashion new – but only if they are on sale. I usually get way better quality stuff second hand for less than I’d pay for crap quality new ‘fast fashion’ items. It just makes more sense to me.

We have minimal gadgets and appliances in the kitchen – some people just have SO MUCH CRAP it astounds me! 

When we have kids we’ll only be buying the bare minimum needed too. We know we’ll get a tonne of hand-me-down clothes, we don’t want or need a matching furniture set with cot, change table and glider/chair. The more crap we have in our house, the more overwhelmed I tend to feel!

I’m also pretty big on refurbishing and repurposing old furniture too. 

I guess Darling Husband & I just try to avoid the consumer/materialistic lifestyle. 

Post # 19
Member
2509 posts
Sugar bee

I’m fairly minimal and so is my SO, and also very organized. In fact, we live in about 330 square feet (NYC 1-bedroom) quite comfortably. Excess stuff would make me feel suffocated, but honestly I don’t feel like I need much more space – in fact, I could do a spring clean as is. Ideally I’d have a home with a yard and a dining room and space for kids eventually, but for now, the small space feels fine. I say this as someone who cooks extensively and often works from home, so I’m not one of those New Yorkers who uses their oven for storage space and basically just sleeps at their apartment. I’m careful about what I buy for my home, but aesthetics are really important to me, so I’ve worked to maximize both functionality and aesthetics in each area. I’m a visual person so enjoying my home environment is cruical. I try to adhere to the William Morris adage: “Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” 

ETA: I’ve met both frugal maximalists (e.g. my depression-baby grandfather who hates spending but also can’t get rid of anything in case it’ll be useful in the future) and indulgent minimalists (think the Donald Judd aesthetic). Finances allowing, I am not opposed to spending money on nice things that I’ll use regularly, like well-made clothing, and I upgrade things over time (though keeping the stuff I really love). I definitely can’t imagine looking professional in anything I wore almost a decade ago as a teenager. I like the KonMari approach to this – keep what is continuing to add value to your life, let go of what isn’t. 

Post # 20
Member
5049 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2017

I feel I am a minimalist at heart.  But I think your definition of minimalism differs from mine. I do not feel minimalism is the same as being frugal.  For instance I appreciate maintaining nicely manicured hands.  I’d consider my style to be more so minimalist as I opt for a nude color nail rather than some jazzed up, sparkly or colorful polish.

I too feel less is more when it comes to belongings.  I don’t like the look or feel of clutter. I love simplicity.  It is easy to acquire a lot of stuff so I regularly pair down. I rather have fewer really nice belongings than a lot of mediocre belongings.

Post # 21
Member
74 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: June 2018

I’m an in-progress minimalist with a maximalist personality.  in-progress because there are things I’d love to get rid of but haven’t gotten a chance to sell/donate yet. Maximalist as In I spend a ton of time researching the “perfect” item for what I want instead of impulse purchases. Even toilet paper. I’m awaiting an offer on a job clear across the country, and have been looking at all of our stuff and deciding what to get rid of, what to replace, and I’m excited for the clean slate  

We are, I suppose, those extravagant minimalists. We get quite a lot of flak for our choices. When FI’s car broke down, we finally took the plunge to be a one car household, and the car is a nice but value option. No regrets, but we live in an area where people think we “need” that car. In fact, people think we are financially irresponsible because we’d rather spend that money on a trip to Morocco. We also buy expensive things for our hobbies like a really nice tent we’ve had for years now. But we are crazy because my idea of “decorating” for holidays is changing the dish towels to an xmas pattern and putting up a live tree with just lights which is more about the memories, not spending hundreds every year to add to a Santa collection like family. We also both recently bought two new pairs of pants because the ones we had all had holes.  

In terms of wedding stuff, our total including rings and honeymoon will be six figures. Yep, a lot. But all of it will be paid cash, no debts. We are planning on our honeymoon being a dream trip to the South Pacific. My ring is a fairly large solitaire with just a little detail. We live in a high COL area and most of our wedding budget is going to the important things like venue, catering, photo/video and live band. We aren’t buying unnecessary cutesy things. We live in a one bedroom apartment and just paid $30k towards debt in the last few months and still have more in savings and retirement. So, it’s all about getting the kind of wedding we want and can afford, and prioritizing that over a new shirt. We focus on memories, experiences, and lifelong/heirloom quality items like the rings we plan to buy once and have for life. 

Post # 22
Member
2923 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

j9marie :  You sound very much like me.  My wardrobe is a lot of neutrals and I wear simple jewelry most days.  I’m generally not a RHR type person and my engagement ring is the most flashy/extravagant jewelry I have.  Our home doesn’t have  ton of furniture and we drive our cars for a long time.  I am not sure if this is minimalist but probably a less is more mentality.

Post # 23
Member
296 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2016 - Backyard

xdanielle :  My husband and I are minimalists! 🙂

We believe that life is about experiences not things. Still have things but important things that we use or have sentimental value.

Example:

We bought a 1,300 sq foot house within walking or biking distance of many places we enjoy. We use every space of our house. We didn’t want wasted space on guest rooms, formal dining rooms, etc. It’s a perfect size. And not having a garage helps so we don’t collect things we don’t need. Just a shed for bikes, tools, etc.

 

Post # 24
Member
282 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2015

hikingbride :  ahh, I hear you. My husbands parents are in the process of cleaning out his grandmothers home as she is 94 and its been decided she should live with family. Weekly we get messages or picture tetxs of stuff to “come see what we have found at Grandmas, see if there is anything you want!”.

We live in a 850sq ft 2 bedrm apart..we have everything we need and exactly as many as we need of things. Doesnt matter how often we tell them no thank you they just push.😐

Post # 25
Member
9595 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

Im into it in a different way as some PP. My wedding was not frugal or minimal stylistically and I do have some pricey things in general. We also love nice hotels and restaurants.  I am just trying to downsize the quantity of our possessions. Less clutter, less duplicates. No fast fashion, no just because its cheap/on sale/cute purchases. Every item intentional, needed, loved. Less clutter. Less mindless purchasing, but for me that doesnt mean I spend the least amount possible on every item. I want to focus on quality items that I love, that will last years and those cost more upfront. I dont mind spending on things we enjoy and cherish, but we do not just spend needlessly on lifestyle stuff- set budget for groceries and restaurants, I spend very little on grooming… free haircut from SMIL 2x a  year, do my own nails, no brows, no anything really. Use gym in our building, one car etc but we are concious about all that so we can a) save more but also balance it with b) spending more on quality goods/resturants/hotels aka what we actually love.

Post # 27
Member
145 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

xdanielle :  I’ve got a feeling we might be fast friends. Ha! We plan to be super minimal in our registering etc. for baby, I find the older I get the more I take pleasure in getting rid of things rather than acquiring them. And, as I’ve gotten older I’ve definitely focused more on purchasing items or quality over quantity. 

Post # 30
Member
1123 posts
Bumble bee

xdanielle :  

Ah ok that makes a lot of sense. I’ll definitely be looking into that more when the time comes. It rather reminds me of a story one of ‘The Minimalists’ told where his cat had a multitude of toys and had become bored of all of them, spoilt by the choice in a sense. When he began practicing minimalism he put all the cat toys away except one and would rotate getting a different toy out each day. He noticed his cat would enjoy playing with the one toy that was out much more and appreciated it (the same toys which he had previously been bored of). It is a great analogy for owning stuff in general.

I love the mindset adopted by minimalists that you are not defined by your things. There is a fabulous article called “You are not your khakis” which just makes so much sense. There is also a quote along the lines of “Own stuff, don’t let stuff own you” and it is so true. When we acquire too much stuff it starts to rule our lives. Your days are spent paying the stuff off or maintaining/cleaning/tidying it all. And is all the stuff actually worth the effort, is it bringing any value or giving you anything back for all that work?

I sound like I’m preaching now. I’m actually still quite early on in my journey so by no means an expert but I think it is such a worthwhile concept which can be applied to people from all walks of life, and it is also so flexible and can be moulded to suit your particular circumstance and expectations.

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