With the world’s general population becoming increasingly aware of sustainable living, many corporations, families, and individuals have started to adopt various kinds of everyday practices that help reduce their carbon footprints. One popular lifestyle that has begun as an interior design trend is now being used to promote sustainability as well, and that’s minimalism.
A minimalist home is one that uses only a few key decorative elements, focused more on efficiency rather than aesthetics. It also rejects clutter, which means having only a wardrobe that consists of long-lasting and versatile clothing, and household items that won’t generate a ton of waste. You can have a minimalist home without adopting the lifestyle, but having both is highly encouraged, since the less stuff you buy, the more you reduce your carbon footprint.
If you live in a beautiful condominium unit in Quezon City or any other metropolitan area in the Philippines, being a minimalist is the perfect way to reduce pollution prevalent in those areas. It may be challenging because the city is teeming with shopping districts that may tempt you to buy more than what you need, but by having a strong commitment to making a change, you can adapt more easily and even influence other city-dwellers.
Instead of immediately getting rid of all your unnecessary stuff, start by changing your wasteful habits first. If you tend to buy clothes from brands that aren’t environmentally-conscious, stop patronizing them in favor of sustainable brands. Find companies that sell recycled products, and don’t buy too much of anything. Choose clothes that have a timeless style and those you can sport all year round to avoid needing a whole wardrobe change during seasonal shifts.
Reduce your paper consumption by opting for digital payments and other transactions. Skip the packaging, especially plastic, every time you shop. Buy washable and reusable packaging for all your food, cleaning, and cosmetic products to minimize the waste you produce.
Be skeptical of the eco-friendly labels you see. A company is only certified real eco-friendly if they have a LEED certification, are part of the “1% for the Planet” group, or are Certified B Corporations.
Another habit you must adopt is conserving water and energy. Use LED lights and energy-efficient appliances. If your budget permits, consider shifting to a cleaner energy source, like solar, as well.
To know what items to get rid of, identify which ones you haven’t used for over a year already. Those are typically extra clothes tucked in a corner of your closet, duplicates of products kept and forgotten in storage, and random useless trinkets. Gather them in a box and find them a new owner or purpose.
Furnishing Your Home
Moving to a smaller space like a condominium or apartment is recommended to maintain minimalism easier, but don’t be pressured if it won’t be economical for you. What’s more important is freeing your space of clutter and exhibiting neatness, airiness, and brightness.
Minimalist furniture has sleek, clean lines, and muted colors. An all-white furniture assortment is typical since it highlights simplicity. Just provide pops of color through accessories and other items that are still essential, such as house plants for improving air quality, accent chairs for more functionality, and wall art for added personality.
And just because minimalism is focused on efficiency doesn’t mean there’s absolutely no room for aesthetics anymore. As long they won’t become waste or clutter, there’s no shame in decorating with pretty knickknacks. Throw in some earthen elements like a wood accent wall or furniture, functional statement light fixtures such as desk lamps and pendants, and neutral colored textiles. Being a minimalist shouldn’t eliminate your uniqueness, so don’t abandon the idea of letting your personality shine on your minimalist home and lifestyle.