We feature a lot of minimalist spaces here at Domino, and each time we do, it gives us hope that decluttering and living simply can be done—and done in style. Our favorite minimalists have perfected the art of marrying design and simplicity, so it seemed only right to poll them for their expertise. Let 2019 be the year we all become more organized.
Of course, true minimalism as a lifestyle doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, patience, and a willingness to part with items you might like but don’t necessarily need. For devotees, Francine Jay’s The Joy of Less and of course Marie Kondo’s book-turned-bible The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up can help; podcast enthusiasts should download The Minimalists ASAP.
It also takes adopting a creative approach to the way you decorate. Thea Hughes attributes the tidiness of her 1,000-square-foot apartment to the KonMari method: “Adding a bit of [it] into your clothing drawers can make a huge difference. No need to go Marie Kondo overload everywhere, but it’s definitely a huge space saver.”
Samantha Litt, whose organic-modern Brooklyn home makes up for in style what it lacks in size, is all about sneaky clutter-concealing. “One of my favorite things in our apartment is our secret medicine cabinet,” she says. “In our bathroom, there are actually two recessed shelving areas; while we love the extra space for our bathroom stuff, we didn’t want the open shelving to look cluttered. So we framed a large print, put the art on a hinge, and hung it over the built-in.”
So yes, going full minimalist won’t happen overnight, but if you’re looking for a jumping-off point, these products can help. We hear you: There’s a certain irony in recommending products for a pared-back home, but the right items will help you organize, prioritize, and manage your possessions—not add to the clutter. These are the decorative pieces and functional storage tools our favorite advocates for paring back swear by, and if you’ve been struggling with decluttering, they’re a great start.
“The Stokke Sleepi has both aesthetic and functionality covered. I don’t like owning more than what I need, so what I love most about this product it is not having to repurchase; it starts as a cot and transforms into a single bed, growing with your child from newborn to 10 years and only requiring one upgrade to a larger mattress.” — Gosia Piatek
“We love to collect our favorite magazines, but sometimes floor stacks on stacks (unless they’re the dollar bill kind) get old fast. I’ve fallen in love with this Kartelle rack that I scooped up at Via Garibaldi 12 in Genoa, Italy.” — Thea Hughes
“I would say baskets are my key to having a clean space—these are my favorite. I’m a minimalist, but I’m not necessarily organized, so throwing things like toys, yoga mats, blankets, and other bigger house goods in big baskets is my way of keeping the house looking clean. Plus, they add warmth and texture to the space, which, in my opinion, is very necessary in a minimalist home!” — Kate Zimmerman
“I prefer to keep my countertops as clear as possible. If I’m going to leave anything out, I try to keep it in my color scheme to avoid the feeling of clutter. In my kitchen, that means only white and wood. This drying rack is one of the few countertop items I have on display—it looks clean and simple, which I think is extra important; it’s a cleaning tool and should look the part.” — Melanie Burstin
“This is a great substitute for a drying rack—you can put [it] out when you need to dry stuff on the counter, and then roll [it] up to store away.” — Samantha Litt
“I especially love this Studio Snng modular console because it’s both multifunctional and flexible. It features open shelving for holding things you want to display but has closed storage as well for organizing knickknacks and all the random stuff you don’t necessarily want to look at. It can be stacked in different ways, so if you’re a city dweller who tends to move around, it can easily be reconfigured to fit into different spaces.” — Casey Zhang
“Paint is huge. I’ve used this paint color [in our 180-square-foot RV] and I tell everyone to use it; it really made our space super cozy and clean. It’s the perfect warm, bright white because it has no undertone.” — Ashley Petrone
“I invest in furniture that promises longevity and I particularly love something that can be modular. My home is quite small and I’m attracted to the ability to change things up without purchasing more. This Arcade Sofa by Simon James is one of my favorite pieces and is made from premium New Zealand wool.” — Piatek
“[This] storage unit has been a life saver. A bit unconventional perhaps, but I came home one day to my bookshelf entirely crumbled, so I’ve opted for stacked books in the Componibili unit instead, and I love it.” — Hughes
“We use these in all our dressers; they are great for dividing space, especially in a shared sock drawer!” — Litt
“Inside my kitchen cabinets, I stay true to my white and wood rule as well. I use these shelf separators in multiple sizes to gain more storage space while avoiding the look of clutter.” — Burstin