Friday, April 16, 2010

Don't Put that There!!!

I am a minimalist at heart.  I like clean lines, simplicity and NO clutter.  Sounds good, right?  The problem is that my desire for simplicity and tidiness are completely misaligned with those of my family members.  My husband, 2 kids and dog don't seem to share my heart stopping desire for the simple life.  

From the time you enter our house you see "stuff".  It starts with a pile of shoes on the floor and a mound of shopping bags that need to be returned to the car.  Directly in front of you is the glass table that was meant to be a decorative piece to showcase some beautiful things.  It has now become a repository for Blackberry, iphone, ipods, keys, movies and books that need to be returned, mail to be mailed and several pairs of sunglasses.  Yes, I have a bowl for keys and a tray for sunglasses but those can in no way compensate for the other things that need to find a home of their own. Let me remind you that I have 2 kids and with them come other kids in all shapes and sizes.  They see our messy front hall and pitch their stuff on top or even worse, spread the clutter an extra foot on all sides.  

If you can navigate your way past the shoes and the backpacks you will enter our living room.  We are a family of readers...some by choice and some by brute force.  As a result, we have books and magazines strewn all around.  I have baskets for books but nobody but myself seems to want to utilize them.  Our mid century teak and rosewood coffee table is twice as long as a normal coffee table and is endlessly being  propped and styled, depending upon my mood or the season.  The minute I turn my back, the stack of books so precisely placed are removed and a cash register appears.  My very favourite hand blown glass bowls are shoved aside to make room for the items to be donned in this week's store.  I want to give up.  I want to throw my hands in the air and declare, "you win, we'll never be organized. What's the point in trying".  But that's not going to happen!

I am now on a quest for beautiful and functional storage pieces.  The kind of piece that can look good enough to make you forget that it has a purpose aside from being a thing of beauty.  In the meantime, I will drool over the success of others in their bid to be free of clutter.

This room is clever and sneaky.  Tons of organization with the boxes help to keep things hidden (although I'm not sure there are labels on those boxes??).  Someone has tastefully filled up this desk leaving little room for the clutter of others.  I like that!

This could be a start in my hallway.  It would at least clean up the coats and sweaters.  Somehow I think our pile of shoes might diminish the loveliness of the look though.

Drawers are a winner in a hallway.  That's where a lot of junk can hide.  

I love this hallway.  It's got storage for all the gear that the family needs and as an added bonus there is finally enough cork to hang all of our budding artist's work.

This house has it all in my opinion.  Above the stairs the homeowners book collection is neat and tidy while below the stairs, the liquor cabinet houses all the necessary implements for entertaining.  

This homeowner is brilliant.  Drawers for all the junk and stylishly propped up above so there's no room left for the mail.  Sorry mail, you'll have to find a new home.

Happy Friday to everyone!


  1. Hi Carol!
    It's a great blog.
    I had to smile about your hiding clutter in drawers and attractive boxes used as decoration, I have done the same thing. When it comes to papers, note pads, my crosswords book etc... I use on a daily basis, I have found a very sturdy and beautiful shopping bag with floral designs where all my papers go along with pens and reading glasses, instead of having them spread on the dinning room table (I don't have a desk). I hate clutter as much as you do. I also use a high exotic basket with cover, in the kitchen, to store paper, plastic and glass items to be recycled.
    I love your style and when we get a bigger appartment than the one we have in the south of France we will have you come over to advise with the decorating. I love modern Italian too, perhaps we can escape together in nearby Italy to have a peak at what they offer.
    See you on the French riviera!

  2. Love all of these examples, especially the lonny room {swoon}. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Oh yeah!

    Clutter be gone - I used to lie on my back in the living room reading 'Little House on the Prairie' books and envision moving to the Dakotas in a covered would all (the mountains) of our stuff fit? It stressed me out...

    Love your blog! Love you!



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