Use Minimalist Interior Design to Live your Best Life | Erikka Fogleman | Skillshare

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Use Minimalist Interior Design to Live your Best Life

teacher avatar Erikka Fogleman, Interior Designer

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      Introduction and Course Overview


    • 2.

      3 Easy Ways to Begin your Minimalist Interior Design Journey Today!


    • 3.

      Why Minimalism? Less is More


    • 4.

      Is Minimalist Design Just Contemporary Design?


    • 5.

      Main Principles of Minimalist Interior Design


    • 6.

      Activity #1 - Can you Spot the Minimalist Design Principles?


    • 7.

      Start with the Vision


    • 8.

      My Favorite Decluttering Techniques


    • 9.

      Collections and Sentimental Items


    • 10.

      Everything has its Place


    • 11.

      Activity #2 - Let's Begin Working on your own Minimalist Room


    • 12.

      Choose your Most Calming Color Scheme


    • 13.

      Determine your True Furniture Essentials


    • 14.

      Activity #3 - Identify your Color Scheme and True Furniture Essentials


    • 15.

      Identify your Focal Point


    • 16.

      Include some Negative Space


    • 17.

      Activity #4 - Include your Focal Point and Negative Space


    • 18.

      Include the Finishing Touches


    • 19.

      Achieving Perfect Harmony and Balance


    • 20.

      Activity #5 - Complete your Minimalist Interior Design Plan


    • 21.

      Conclusion and Final Thoughts


    • 22.

      Bonus Lecture - Additional Minimalist Resources


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About This Class

Do you want to learn how minimalist interior design can help to create mental clarity, calmness and increased productivity?

Do you want a home that is beautiful, stress-free, and easy to clean?

Do you love minimalist design but are worried that your room will look cold and bare, rather than stylishly pulled together?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then I encourage to check out this course!  Minimalist interior design is a hot design trend right now, and for good reason.  In this course I will show you exactly why it's so popular today, but more importantly, I will help you translate this beautiful and chic design style into your own home. 

By the end of this class, you will be able to:

  • Use 3 Easy Ways to Begin your Minimalist Journey Today!
  • Understand why Minimalism is such a Popular Design Trend
  • Articulate the Main Principles of Minimalist Interior Design
  • Utilize my Favorite Decluttering Techniques
  • Effectively Deal with Favorite Collections and Sentimental Items
  • Choose a Calming Color Scheme
  • Create a Focal Point
  • Use Negative Space as a Design Element
  • Achieve Balance and Harmony in a Room

This is a great course for all levels of individuals who are interested in learning more about how to use minimalist interior design to improve their homes and their lives.

Join me for a journey into the beautiful world of minimalist interior design!


  • If you are interested in taking most or all of my courses, I have a recommended order in which to watch them (although it's certainly not required).  I would start with "How to Design a Room in 10 Easy Steps" because most of my other courses are in-depth classes of the concepts touched on in this 10 step class.  Following the 10 Step Course, I suggest moving on to "How to Use Color Like a Pro", followed by "How to Work with Interior Design Styles Like a Pro", then "How to Use Lighting Design to Transform your Home", and finally "Design is in the Details".  My other two courses, "How to Use Minimalist Interior Design to Live your Best Life" and "Use Eco-friendly, Sustainable Design to Green your Home" are both stand alone classes on specialty topics within interior design, and therefore, can be taken in any order.

  • Please be aware that this course, or any of my courses, is not intended to provide all of the knowledge needed to become a professional interior designer.  As with any professional field, there is a significant amount of education and/or experience that is needed to achieve competency in this field.  My intention with these courses is to provide some solid foundational knowledge to assist either those individuals interested in "DIY" interior design to work on their own projects more effectively, or to provide supplemental education to both interior design students and professionals.

Meet Your Teacher

Teacher Profile Image

Erikka Fogleman

Interior Designer


While Interior design is my main career and passion, I also absolutely love to teach others, so I am thrilled to have found Skillshare so that I can share that passion and knowledge with others just like you.

Are you a design enthusiast yourself?

Do you wish you could design rooms in your own home that are both beautiful and functional?

Do you wonder how interior designers make it look so effortless?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then you are my ideal student!

Through my classes, I show you how many areas of interior design can be broken down into simple-to-use processes and formulas. In every class, I share some of my favorite processes and formulas so that you can be successful in creating beautiful and functional rooms all on you... See full profile

Level: Beginner

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1. Introduction and Course Overview: Hello, everyone. My name is Eric of Fogelman, and I want to warmly welcome you to my course how to use minimalist interior design to live your best life. I am personally and professionally, so excited to teach this course to you. Minimalism and more specifically, minimalist interior design is a journey that I have been on for a while now, So why should you consider joining me on this journey? For me, it's really quite simple. Minimalist interior design, done well, is the pinnacle of exceptional interior design in the world of design, which is traditionally dominated by consumption. Minimalist interior design is the counterbalance to that world. It's a design style and design philosophy that is based on editing, editing and mawr editing. The goal is to have a home that is perfectly designed in every way perfect harmony, perfect balance and perfectly edited by Onley, including the items that a room truly needs to be both functional and aesthetically pleasing. And if this sounds like it's challenging to achieve, you would be absolutely correct. As I have learned in my own journey, this is truly one of the most difficult styles to pull off well, but the rewards for doing it well far outweigh the challenges, I promise. And the rewards air. This studies have shown that a minimalist home, foster's mental clarity and calmness. Additionally, cleaning your home becomes easier and quicker, as there's less the clean right. And because the style demands a ruthless level of editing, you are left with only the highest quality pieces that unequivocally loved Onley. Those items that truly matter to you sound too good to be true, I assure you, it's not. At least it hasn't been for me and many others around the world who have embraced this design trend. So if a stress free, easy to clean, beautiful home sounds like something that you would be interested in, then you are really going to enjoy this course. That is the big picture. Now let me share with you some of the specific topics that I will be covering with you. Throughout this course, you will learn three easy ways to begin your minimalist interior design journey today, which is sometimes the hardest part. You will learn the name principles of minimalist design and learn how to easily spot them through a guided exercise. I will share with you, my favorite tried and true techniques for decluttering everything that is not essential in your home. And then I will be walking you through step by step, how to put together a well designed minimalist space. By the end of this course, you will have a complete plan for a minimalist interior design for a specific room of your house because I truly want to try this out in your own home now before we get started. For those of you who do not know me, I am the owner of Erica Don Interiors, an interior design firm located in Southern California. This career is truly my passion. I feel very lucky to be able to both design beautiful spaces for a living and have the opportunity to teach others like you who are interested in this field, whether for personal or for professional reasons. That being said, thank you so much for joining me and let's go ahead and dive right into the beautiful world of minimalist interior design 2. 3 Easy Ways to Begin your Minimalist Interior Design Journey Today!: curating a beautifully designed minimalist space. Consumptive times be a long journey, as it's generally accompanied by a significant amount of decluttering, at least her most people. Because that process can seem overwhelming. I want to share with you three easy ways that you can begin your minimalist journey today. Three easy ways to both. Create a positive impact in your home and get your start on the path to your minimalist dream home. Throughout this course, you are going to be seen beautiful pictures of well designed minimalist spaces. Please note that these are what most would consider the ideal. Your ideal may or may not be the same. The goal for you is to keep on Lee what you consider to be essential and create your ideal home around that concept along those same lines. I want to encourage you to think about minimalist interior design as a spectrum meaning, while a perfectly executed minimalist interior design does have a specific look and feel, you can choose where you want to be related to that end goal, no matter how far you go with it and how close you get to a classic minimalist home, Congratulate yourself from making progress on creating a home which Onley contains the items that truly matter to you and your family. That said, Let me share with you three easy things you can do today to get you started on creating your own minimalist paradise. My first recommendation is to create one inbox in your home for every piece of paper that makes its way in. Why is this a valuable step to take? Because paper is often one of the biggest causes of clutter in our home, particularly in areas like our kitchen counters, entryway, console tables, desks and home offices. Everything from mail and homework to receipts and flyers is extremely easy for our homes to get overrun by paper very quickly. So by simply saying up, a central inbox in one part of your home, such as your kitchen or your entryway will make a huge difference in corralling that clutter. Then set aside some non negotiable time each day or week to go through the inbox and process each piece of paper. That means either it gets processed in some way and then filed or just thrown out, preferably recycled. Of course, this is truly a great technique that can work for everybody. It may take a few false starts to stick with it, but I'm confident if you keep working at it, you will eventually cement that you have it. My second recommendation is to grab a box and do a walk through of every room in your house . What is your goal? To get rid of his many duplicate items in your home as possible, many of us have these usually unnecessary and space hogging items. Items like duplicate blenders, measuring cups, cooking utensils, tablecloths for special occasions, dress shoes in the same color, umbrellas, sewing kits, hair dryers, tools. Well, you get the idea in nearly every situation. One of these items is all we need. But over the years, either through sales or gifts, we end up with duplicates for many items in our house that never get used. I include this technique under the three easy ways to get started lecture because most people don't have a hard time party with their duplicates. It's definitely a great way to get started. My final recommendation for you is to challenge yourself to park with three items in your home every day for seven straight days. This is, of course, apart from the duplicate items that you're already going to get rid of just three items, no matter how big or how small. If they are in good condition, place them in a box or a trash bag to be donated. If they're not in good enough condition to donate, then go ahead and throw them in the trash. But I have weighed throwing things away as much as possible. That said, taking this challenge will definitely help you to get yourself on the path to getting comfortable with jettison ing the non essential items in your house and to help you build the momentum you need to tackle each room of your home, which we will talk about how to do in greater detail later in this course and there you have it, three easy ways to begin creating your minimalist dream home. I love these suggestions because they are quick, they're easy and they are extremely effective. I encourage you to give one of these techniques a try today 3. Why Minimalism? Less is More: when I discussed minimalist interior design with someone, it is not uncommon to receive a reaction that could be described at best, as confused, confused as to why I would choose this design style or, at worst horrified. I suspect that their first images of a minimalist room is likely cold, stark, unfinished and just plain uninviting. Or perhaps they have images off something along the lines of a broke college students apartment. That is not at all what minimalist design is about, however, in the Maximus world that many of us live in, particularly here in the United States, where goods are relatively inexpensive. It is incredibly easy to end up with a home that is filled to the brim with stuff, all kinds of stuff, not just furniture and accessories, but books, DVDs, gifts we never use and those items that were keeping for those just in case situations. Believe me, I was right there with many of you. The end result is that many of us feel overwhelmed with the sheer amount of stuff that is dominating our lives. Minimalist interior design, as I mentioned, is a counterbalance to this common affliction, as I did mention earlier It's about being deliberately in what you include in your home, choosing only high quality pieces that are essential to a rooms function through careful editing and restraint. In short, minimalist design is about simplifying your home and by extension, your life in a minimalist room. Each and every piece is allowed to breathe and truly be appreciated. Minimalist design is the perfect epitome of the adage. Less is more, but let me be clear by including less in your homes. You aren't sacrificing style, comfort, balance or harmony. You are simply achieving all of these goals just with less. One of the main reasons I think that minimalist interior design is becoming so popular today is that truly is the antithesis to are often very busy lives. I think we can all agree that our home should be our sanctuary, a retreat for our entire family from the outside world. To that point, a minimalist home creates the perfect sanctuary at the end of a hectic day that immediately lowers the blood pressure and calms the nerves, said another way. Less stuff in our homes seems to help create less mental clutter, definitely something that we can all likely benefit from, and there is actual science to back up what we all seem to know intuitively. Researchers at Princeton University Neuroscience Institute published a study in 2011 showing that the chaos caused by clutter actually restricts your ability to focus and process information because it's so distracting. They stated that the clutter actually competes for your attention, much like a whiny toddler which wears you down mentally, resulting in feelings off frustration that say the least. The researchers used MRI machines to map the brain's responses toe organized and disorganized environments, and they came away with strong conclusions. In short, the studies show that having a clutter free home will result in you being less irritable, less distracted, more productive and able to process information better. So please do not underestimate the positive emotional impact that a well organized, minimalist space can have on your psyche. How's that for a good reason to incorporate some minimalist interior design elements into your home? Another major advantage to minimalist design is the fact that a minimalist home has less stuff to clean, less to dust, less toe wash. Well, you get the idea, which means more of our lives can be spent on Maurin Joe Liable Pursuits. A truly liberating feeling indeed. Along the same lines, Minimalist homes are also less likely to make you sick. How you ask Well, many of us, including myself, have allergies to dust mites. The more stuff you have in your home theme or allergy inducing dust mites. You also are likely tohave as our stuff naturally collects dust. Minimalist interior design helps to create allergy free home. Ah, final note. For those of you who appreciate the history of design, minimalist design is said to have started in the early 20th century but really gained traction after World War Two as a reaction to the consumerist lifestyle that began to take hold during this time. As you can likely guess, minimalism was also influenced by Japanese design. Two of the pioneers of the minimalist design movement are said to be German architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and British architect and designer John Possible. Pozen's 1996 book Minimum became a pivotal symbol for this design style 4. Is Minimalist Design Just Contemporary Design?: Let's be honest. If you Google minimalist interior design, you will be inundated with pictures of contemporary spaces as well a. Some Scandinavian and Zen interior styled rooms with some mid century modern pieces thrown in here and there. But I firmly believe that minimalist design is more about how you execute a rooms, interior design and the principles that you follow, rather than what pieces you use in a room. Minimalist interior design is designed to create a home with Onley the essentials, whatever those essentials, maybe for you. It's also about creating a feeling of space in your home. Yes, contemporary, and the other styles I mentioned do have a lot in common with minimalist interior design. There is no question about that, but they are not synonymous. My goal with this class is to teach you how to create a minimalist home with nearly any interior design style. To that end, all be showing you beautiful and inspirational pictures along the way to show you exactly how this can be done. That said the Onley styles, I think you would be hard pressed to apply minimalism to is likely bohemian, English country and Victorian as these are true maximalist styles and incorporate a lot of layering in their aesthetics. And with bohemian, it's generally a lot of bright colors and patterns, but that does not mean that you can't include elements from these styles into your minimalist design. It just means that at the end of the day, you won't have a classic English country, bohemian or Victorian home if you apply the minimalist design principles. But honestly, who cares? As long as you love your home, that is all that matters. So please don't be put off by minimalist design. If you are not a fan of contemporary interior design, Minimalist interior design truly can be for everybody. Remember, this style is bigger than a specific interior design style. It supports a broader idea, a philosophy, really, and that is creating a simpler life by only including was truly important to you. 5. Main Principles of Minimalist Interior Design: in this lecture, you're going to learn about the main principles that are the foundation for the minimalist interior design style. With this knowledge, not on Lee. Will you understand why minimalist interior design works so well with so little? But more importantly, you'll be on your way to achieving this. Look in your own home. Based on all of my research, I have determined that there are really five key principles. Two. Minimalist interior design. First, As you already know, minimalist interior design is on Lee about including what is truly essential to your room, both from a functional and an aesthetic standpoint, absolutely no clutter here regarding the functional needs. Later, in this course, I will provide you with recommended furniture cases for each type of room in your home. Regarding the aesthetic needs. You will Onley want to include just enough to court to create interest, balance and harmony. We will talk more about how to do this as well later in the course. Second, when selecting the remaining items and finishes, choose only the highest quality pieces and materials that you can afford from the material on your furniture to the finishes in your kitchen and your bathrooms, try a splurge on beautiful finishes that will elevate the peace or the space. For example, when purchasing armchair consider, upgrade the fabric to a beautiful linen, wool or leather. For additional durability, focus on finding materials that will add warmth and texture to your space. Basically, because you will have a lot less items in your room, every item will likely get the visual attention that it deserves. So you want to ensure that every detail of the room is well thought out and executed. Not just your furniture and your accessories, but even those items that usually are not noticed in a typical home, such as your door knobs, the finish on your light fixtures and every accessory you choose to display. All of these items need to be fine. Tune as a hall become critical to the overall design of a minimalist space. Third, each item in a minimalist room should be given plenty of breathing room, meaning plenty of space around it. This is not a style where you will be layering different items, which is a comment designer technique. Instead, remember that each item is simple, beautiful and adds perfectly to the space so by providing sufficient space around your items, each item can truly be appreciated on its own. With regards to furniture. This means that you will Onley include the truly essential cases that are needed for that room to be perfectly functional. For example, in a bedroom, this would include your bed, a night stander two and possibly a seat of some sort, such as a bench at the end of your bed or a corner chair with regards to accessories in him . In the little space, you may include only one sculpture on your counsel table or your buffet. Ah, lamp on Lee on your night stand or a pretty orchid by itself on your coffee table. Now. That's not to say that you couldn't do a grouping of three coordinating vases as the only accessory on your fireplace mantle. You can. It's just important to remember that that coordinate and set should generally be the Onley accessory than on your mantel. Fourth, minimalist interior design should always have amazing cocoa point. Now this is already a general interior design principle that we use, but it's essential in this style. You want one truly stand out piece or element that will draw your eye when entering the room. This could be a gorgeous wall treatment, a beautiful light fixture which I love. A striking piece of artwork for some interesting wallpaper. Even this element will essentially help to carry the room and can and should be, the piece that you decorate around while minimal is rooms used, subdued color schemes you can absolutely throwing a punch of bright color. If you do this in most cases, be sure that it's your focal point item. Otherwise, the bright color used in another area will likely then compete with your focal point, which will defeat the purpose of having a focal point. Fifth. And finally, the room should contain some negative space. Negative space is truly a design element in and of itself. So what is negative space? Technically, it's the area around items in the room, but in this context, where negative space is used as a design element, it refers to an area of the room that is noticeably absent in terms of furniture or decor, where you would normally have some type of furniture, piece or decor. So why do you think it is important that we include negative space in this design style. It's because minimalist design is also a celebration of breathing room in the space, which can also be referred to as empty space. And really, room is something that every room needs, and especially something that this style needs. Later, in this course, we will talk in war detail about this important design elements and how you can incorporate successfully into your own home. 6. Activity #1 - Can you Spot the Minimalist Design Principles?: Now that you have a better understanding of the main principles that make up minimalist interior design, I want to give you an opportunity to see some of these important principles in action. What I would like you to do is take a look at a few different pictures of classic minimalist firms and then write down the minimalist interior design principles that you see in those images. Once you have a moment to do that, I'll then share with you when I see which should help you in learning how to identify the important design elements off this very cool style. Here is your first picture of a well executed minimalist interior design in the bedroom. Think back to what we just discussed in the last lecture. What principles of minimalist interior design do you see utilized in this gorgeous room? Let's go ahead and go through the five main principles again and see if they are demonstrated here first. A minimalist design Onley includes the essential functional and aesthetic items. Is that what we see here? Definitely from a functional standpoint, we have a bed. Of course, we have two night stands, a chair in the background and three light fixtures Exactly what the space needs to be functional as far as the core. We have a plant on the right hand night stand and two bases with a candle on the left hand night Stan just enough to add a decorative element to the room and certainly cannot be accused of looking cluttered. The second principle we discussed is the use of high quality materials. Do you feel that the space does that? I definitely do. The betting appears to be silk or satin. I love the brass finish on the light fixtures and the chair. They have a beautiful white wood floor, and the molding on the walls really elevates the elegance of this space. What about the third principle, which has to do with allowing plenty of breathing room or space around the furnishings? Have they accomplished that? No doubt, right? Was so few items in such a large room, every piece truly is allowed to breathe. How about a focal point? I don't know about you, but the first thing that drew my attention was that beautiful blue wall with the rest of the room utilizing a white color palette. That wall is spectacular particularly with the additional moulding detail. Finally, let's talk about negative space. Do you see some here? Some might say that the wall over the bed is a negative space because it's lacking any artwork or will decor, but because it's painted such a vibrant color compared of course to the rest of the room, the color acts as decor or space in and of itself. I can see negative space in two other areas. First, on the far right wall, where you would normally see a dresser or some other case could item as well as on the floor, where you would often see a rug over a hard floor. But in this instance, the negative space allows the wall and those simple but gorgeous light fixtures to really shine. My favorite part of this whole room, though, is how they beautifully mixed different interior design elements. We have the bed in the lighting that lean towards contemporary, the night stands and chair, which lean toward mid century modern, and the wall molding that lends a traditional vibe to this entire room. Very well done. Let's go ahead and take a look at a second minimalist space together. I absolutely love this dining room. I think they're the main minimal. Its principles. Do you see all of them here? Let's briefly go through them. Do we have only the essentials from a functional standpoint? Most definitely. What about aesthetic requirements in my mind? Yes, we have the bold rug, which serves as a needed counterbalance for those very, very cool, bold pendants. And we have a base of stems on the far wall to provide a bit of interest to that brick wall . What about high quality materials? Absolutely everything from the dining chairs and the pendants to the wood flooring and the rug. You can tell that these air, all high quality materials. We also have adequate breathing room for everything in this space and as far as a focal point. My goodness, do those pendants deliver that or what? Of course, if they weren't there, they certainly could have used the gorgeous view as a focal point as well. And finally, where do you see negative space? Definitely on the far wall. The brick adds some texture, but they were very smart to not hang anything on that wall that would Onley serve to likely detract from these stunning pendants. Okay, let's go ahead and take a look at one final space. In this case, I've chosen a bathroom. What animals elements do you see here? Definitely. I think we can agree that they only have the essentials. The three bases and stems are the only aesthetic design elements we see here, and they provide just the right amount of aesthetics to finish this space so that it doesn't feel well unfinished. The materials used are simple and beautiful. Clearly, we have enough breathing room between all of the fixtures. Now let's talk focal point. What jumps out at you when I love about this room is that it's an element that's generally not utilized as a focal point. And that is the floor. Of course, that floor is simply stunning. And finally, do you see any negative space. While perhaps it's not as obvious as with the previous two examples, we definitely see it to the right of the mirror over the remaining countertop. I think it was definitely an interesting choice to extend the counter but not extend the mirrors well. At any rate, you now hopefully have a good understanding of the principles that make up the minimalist interior design style. I look forward to seeing you in the next lecture 7. Start with the Vision: in this section, I am going to be sharing with you my tried and true methods for decluttering, which is really the first step to any well designed minimalist space. But before we get into the specifics, there is an important step that I strongly recommend that you take first, and that is to visualize your dream home. This may or may not be difficult for you, but if it is difficult here, some questions to help get you started, how do you want your home to make you feel? What mood are you looking to create? How will you use your space? What colors do you want to be sure to include? Are there any current features of your space that you want to accentuate? The more specific that you can be in the planning process, the more motivated you will be to create your home. And, more importantly, the happier you will be with the end result. Trust me once you've answered these questions, or if you're not able to yet answer these questions than either way, I recommend taking a look at Pinterest dot com or house dot com to find pictures that inspire you towards your new, desired minimalist aesthetic and create some boards in those sites with your inspiration. Pictures toe help guide you on this journey. The other action I recommend that you take is to create a mantra for yourself and your family that you can use when the decluttering process gets challenging and it will. I can almost guarantee it. The one that me and my family used Waas Onley. My very favorite things, as in I'm Onley, keeping my very favorite things. This was incredibly helpful, particularly when we were trying to decide between multiple, similar items such as books, music, toys and accessories. Other great mantra is include Onley. The essentials or every room and closet is going to be beautiful. By taking these important steps, it will be much easier for you than to get rid of items, because you could easily ask yourself, Is this item part of my vision or not? If the answer is, it's not. Then out it goes, but without a clear vision. Trust me, you will find a way to keep a lot more than you probably want to, because it will be hard to decide whether or not the item will fit into your new home. So make your life easier and do this bit of pre planning before you begin 8. My Favorite Decluttering Techniques: when the average person thinks about de cluttering on entire home, I feel confident in saying that they're likely going to feel completely overwhelmed at best and possibly even completely paralyzed. At worst. I know I did. Why? Because this is hard, plain and simple. Letting go of items, particularly those items that we think may be useful someday. Or those items that were given to us as gifts, even if we don't love them or they aren't useful is still hard. So what's the best way to tackle this? Well, have you ever heard the joke? How do you eat an elephant? The answer is one bite at a time. Now, for the record, I don't advocate eating elephants, but the analogy is sound as it's basically the same approach. With decluttering a home, you have to break this down into manageable pieces and might manageable pieces are room by room or even space by space. For example, I began by first decluttering my closet. Then I moved on to every other closet in the house, one closet at a time. After my closets were done, I tackled my kitchen cabinets and then I declared my pantry on a completely separate weekend. I basically tossed anything in my pantry that I had not used in the last six months or those items that were passed the expiration date. After the hard parts were done, the rooms became much easier to do again, one room at a time. I find that this approach has worked well for my clients as well. So I'm confident it should work for you too. Also based on the process I just described, you can likely tell that I did not do this all in one weekend. Nor have my clients. So please be sure to set realistic deadlines and expectations for your own home. So that said, how do you actually go about the business of decluttering? Well, if you Google how to declutter or the art of decluttering, you will come across many, many articles with great tips. I don't need to reinvent the wheel here, but I can share with you what has worked for me personally and others that I have worked with First, if you happen to be moving into a new home, this will be much easier for you. Obviously, in order to move, you'll need to box everything up. This is great because when you move into your space, avoid unpacking everything instead. This is your chance to study the space and then include Onley, those furniture pieces that you really need and love for each room. In a later lecture, I will share with you my recommended furniture pieces for each room. Then for all of your non furniture items, spend the next couple of weeks Onley unpacking those items that you really need or really love and will serve an important aesthetic function in your room. What's left in your boxes after a couple of weeks can likely safely be donated or sold at that point. But if you are in the process of moving right now, or you will be moving, you know, not meet movie in the next month or so. Then let's talk about some tried and true techniques that you can use in your home right now. The first successful technique that I want to share with you involves multiple rounds of editing over several days in a single room on Day one. Start with the easy items first, so first you'll remove everything from the room that doesn't belong there. You know those items that actually belong in another room, like a bedroom, the kitchen, etcetera and have somehow migrated there over time, then on day to get everything off of the floor and keep on Lee the furniture that you really need selling, donating or redistributing the other items to other places in the home if and only if it makes sense to do so on day three. Tackle your non furniture items, which includes accessories as well as papers, books and magazines for accessories, try to keep on Lee 123 items on each flat surface you have in your room. Remember Onley your favorites regarding paper? My rule is that all paper should either be filed, preferably Elektronik Lee, recycled or shredded. Keep your books to a minimum in each room as faras magazines. I'll keep on Lee the ones that I know I'll read that are less in a couple of months old. Everything else gets recycled or given away to somebody else. I am someone who falls in the trap of Oh, I'll read that magazine at some point, but I never dio so now I just recycle or gift them. Based on this criteria then on Day four, go back and work on creating some negative space somewhere in your room, which I will talk more about later in this class. Finally, go back to the room two or three more times over the course of a few weeks and challenge yourself to find one or a few more items to minimize rearranging the items until it just feels right to you. And this 1,000,000,000 is going to be different for everybody again. The ultimate goal is to have every item in your room be a deliberate choice, serving a very specific, functional or aesthetic me, such as creating balance or harmony in the room. But every item kept for aesthetic reasons should be items that you really do love to look at. The trick to this approach is to calendar all of the days that you plan on doing this and have a loved one hold you accountable to it if needed. Otherwise, it's easy to never get to it and don't block off hours for each activity. 15 30 minutes should be plenty of time for each of these activities. A second technique is to start with just one surface in one room of your home. Let's say you want to first declutter your family room, then pick one piece of non seating furniture like your coffee table console table or even the shelf, and completely removed everything from it. I mean everything. Let's stay like that for one week. See how you feel about the empty space. If the peace has interesting sculptural lines, then maybe you'll decide to leave a completely bare. But if it's not, or you just cannot take it stain so empty than add back 123 of your very favorite items to it. This may be a sculpture, a bouquet of flowers or a plant. Ah, coffee table book, a candle holder or a pair of table lamps. You'll immediately see a lot of difference. This makes, and you will learn to really appreciate those items that you've now given a prominent place in your room. Repeat this on the other non seating furniture pieces in your room for your seating. I'm keeping it to 1 to 2 pillows for each sofa, but generally no pillows on my chairs. I just make sure that these air high quality, beautiful pillows I love throw pillows, but by just using one or two. I've create a lot more space on my sofa proceeding, which is a bonus. I also recommend including a throw blanket on your sofa or on one of your chairs. Ah, great way to add texture to your room. 1/3 technique that works well, particularly for your clothes, is to create some force constraints or rules for your minimizing. I actually did this with my own closet and it worked like a charm. Specifically, I told myself I needed to get rid of 50% of each type of item that I had. For example, 50% of my casual shirts. 50% of my dress shirts, 50% of my pants, 50% of my sweaters, etcetera. This resulted in me having the choose Onley, my very favorite items. Those I am that fit me now and that I believe look good on me. Sure, you can go through each item to decide whether or not to keep it. But I found that this approach was much quicker even though in some ways it was more difficult. Now I'm actually participating in something called the Project 333 Challenge, which is challenging me to live with just 33 33 clothing items for three months, I talked more about this challenge in the bonus lecture of this course. My point is that if you create some force constraints for yourself, you may find it easier and quicker to get to your goal like I did. Also, this may go without saying, but if you haven't item that you don't absolutely love and would not buy again, then by all means, please get rid of it. Give it to someone else who enjoys it. This may be handed down items, damaged items or just items that don't resonate with you anymore. For whatever reason. And speaking of the phrase, Get rid of it. Let's talk briefly about how to do that. You've probably heard of the idea of creating three boxes or bags as you declare a space one for those items that you want to sell, one for donation and one for trash. This is a great approach, for sure. The trash piles easy. It just goes in the trash once you're done. But the sell and donate piles may create another unexpected headache for you. Sometimes what happens is that these boxes or bags are. Put that into another room of your home to be dealt with at some later time in the future. If you do this, there is a strong possibility that they will sit there for a lot longer than you would like . I've tried a couple of different approaches that work well to counter act this very common problem for the donation items. They go straight into the back of my car. The next time I get in my car, I forced myself to drop them off at the nearest good, well donation center. I know others who simply and immediately schedule a pickup from goodwill or a comparable company for those items that you want to sell. Then I go ahead. I placed the boxes of the bags in my garage. Then I immediately either list them on a local Facebook page that we have here devoted to re selling items or hold a garage sale once I have enough items to warrant having a garage sale. But the point is, I never left the item. Sit for any length of time. If they don't sell after the garage sale or after a couple of weeks on these particular Facebook sites. Then they are donated. Finally, for most people, creating a minimus home never really stops. Why? Well, for two main reasons. First, editing is simply an ongoing process. As you live in your home with less stuff, you will naturally be more aware of what you truly need. After a few weeks or months, you'll find yourself realizing that there are other items that you are not using or you simply don't need. This is completely normal. The second reason is that you will be bringing view items into your home occasionally for a variety of reasons, because either you need something that you didn't already have. You need to replace some pain that's broken or because of well meaning gift givers, so you'll need to find a way to manage the new stuff that comes into your home. That may mean removing an item every time a new item comes in, one in one out or main being re gifting or doing in an item that you were given. My point is this. Maintaining a minimal is home will require ongoing work, but to me the effort is completely worth it now, that you have some tools in hand for conquering your clutter. You may be wondering where in my home should I start? I recommend starting whatever rumor space that currently gives you the most ANC's for two reasons. First, getting the hardest part over with when you generally have the most motivation will make you feel great. As you know, that's all downhill from there. Second, this will result in the strongest positive emotional impact for you again helping you stay motivated to keep moving forward. I have one final thought that will help motivate you to get started. Every single person I know who has gone through the process of serious decluttering has reported immediate feelings of happiness, peace and relax, ation and Maurin. Importantly, not one person that I know of has ever regret their decision to simplify. 9. Collections and Sentimental Items: For those of you who think that you can't bear to part with collections or sentimental items, I have a few recommendations to share with you that I have personally and especially used successfully. First, let's talk about collections specifically what I consider collections of utility such as books, DVDs and CDs as faras books. I love books, but I have way too many. I chose the seller donate all of my fiction books as I almost never read anything twice. And I kept on Lee those nonfiction books that I will likely need to reference in the future , mainly financial management and interior design books for DVDs. There's so much that you can stream now online for free or very little money that I think it's pretty easy to pare down a DVD collection to Onley your most favorite ones. Designate a shelf or two on a bookcase or in a closet for your DVDs and then include Onley ones that will fit in that space. Force constraints. You may need to do several rounds until you get down to your final selection, but it will feel great once you do for CDs. My husband actually has dozens, possibly hundreds of CDs stored in his office. He loves music. It's that simple, but he is embracing the minimalist design style as well. So he has begun the task of burning all of the CDs into a cloud file sharing program that we use. He has chosen to keep the CD art of some of his favorite classic CDs, but the rest he will sell or donate once they're uploaded. There is one other solution that you can use on how to deal with all types of collections, and here it is. Leave one room in your home in your pre minimal estate. Just feel free to go wild there, but keep it tasteful. Of course, this will allow you to keep those collections or items that you can't seem to part with just yet. Maybe you leave the room like this forever. Or maybe you fall in love with the rest of your minimalist home so much that you eventually apply your minimalist design style to that room as well. Eventually, for example, my home office is currently my non minimalist space. It's certainly not cluttered as I've never been a person to like visible clutter, but I couldn't call it minimalist, given all of the really beautiful accessories that I have chosen to display on my bookshelves. Perhaps someday I will go minimalist in there as well. Now let's talk about sentimental items. This is probably the hardest area to tackle for most people, including myself. I'm referring to photos, birthday and anniversary cards, gifts from our loved ones going away, gifts from co workers at previous jobs. You get the idea. So what to do? Well, I'm going to share with you a few successful strategies from my experience. One option is to take a picture of the item. I found that this allows me to more easily donate or sell the item without the guilt associated with it. If that doesn't seem like you've done the item enough justice, you can always insert that picture into an online document and then right down type in why you love the item or why it's brought you such joy. Another technique I've heard of, although I haven't yet tried it myself, is toe Thank the item for the joy it has brought into your life before you give it away. This should create a feeling of closure for you for cards and letters of sentimental value . I highly recommend scanning them into your computer, which is what I have done and has allowed me to go ahead then and recycle the originals for photos. The same approach applies. Simply scan them in. That said, many times most of us have albums and albums, off pictures and the thought of scanning the men conceal seem completely overwhelming. If that's the case, that you should know that there are many businesses that you can then ship your photos to that will scanning your photos for you and then either ship them back for you to dispose up or they will shred them for you. Another great approach for photos is to buy a digital picture frame and then upload the pictures that have been scanned to the frame So you can see these pictures that you've digitized on a regular basis in your home rather than having to go on your computer to look at them decluttering. My photos and my photo albums is actually next on my to do list, and I plan on employing both of these approaches. Finally, let's talk about how to deal with those just in case items. You know those items that you may need at some undetermined time in the future that we hang on to for years at a time. For example, I had to wet suits that I used about 10 years ago when I used to do triathlons. I've been keeping them thinking, Well, maybe someday I'll do another try Apple on. The fact is, I probably won't and all they're doing is taking up space in my closet. In the unlikely event that I average decide to do another triathlon, I am sure that I can purchase a used one online like from Craigslist. But for now, I've sold them to others who can truly get use out of them. Right now, I feel good knowing that they're likely being put to good use instead of just collecting dust in my closet. My husband had a bunch of tools that he just doesn't use anymore and doesn't plan on using them for the foreseeable future. So he two sold them, which created more space in our garage, which is great. I once heard someone say that they used Craigslist like their personal tool locker. They buy and sell tools cheaply through this site as they need them, instead of buying everything and then filling up their garage with seldom used items. I love that approach Now. If this sounds like way too scary for you right now, then a great method I know some people have used is to create a maybe box in your home for those items that you really believe you might use. Go ahead and stick them in your maybe box. Put a date on your calendar six months or so in the future. To review those items, make a deal with yourself that when you do review those items in six months, and if you still have not used them that you will donate or sell them. The bottom line is that for most just in case items, I would speculate that 99% of time that day never comes. So clean those items out and add some cash to your wallet in the process 10. Everything has its Place: One of the greatest benefits that I and others have enjoyed about a minimalist home is the fact that everything in your home will have its own place. No more time wasted searching through cramped cabinets, looking for your food processor, looking for that one tool in overrun garage, or digging through your closet to find that perfect blue sweater that you know you have some. Instead. Once you get down to truly just the essentials, every item will have its own home likely. With plenty of space around it, you will know exactly where everything is. It is a great feeling, Let me tell you, I recently went through my entire kitchen, and the Onley items I kept are those that I use on a daily basis or that I've used in the last 90 days. If I haven't used it in the last 90 days, I sold it or I donated. That included duplicate items like duplicate measuring cups, duplicate blenders, duplicate pans I never used, ah, pasta maker, a dehydrator. Etcetera has left me with a very well organized kitchen that includes Onley, my favorite and most useful kitchen items that I use regularly. I also make sure to relocate items to the best possible place in the kitchen based on how I used it, since I now had plenty of space to work with. Now some people may decide to also keep items that they use once a year, like holiday baking items. Of course, it's perfectly fine. The point is, toe on Lee have those things that you will truly use in the near future. I now know exactly what I have and where I can find everything, everything even down. The things like my can opener and my wine opener have their own designated places in a very organized drawer. My entire family knows where everything goes as well, so nothing gets misplaced. How great is that along the same lines? This approach will also help you to avoid clutter, showing up on those previously cleared surfaces because everything again now has its place . The most important point about this approach is that the entire family has to agree with this rule for it to work for my family. We have certain practices all male gets dealt with. The minute we get in the house, lunchboxes get emptied and put away immediately upon getting home. The same goes for backpacks and purses. Shoes stay out in the garage on a shoe rack, so that's an easy one for us. But basically we've been able to maintain a clutter free home in all the common areas of our home. Do we still have some cluttered circuses? Sadly, but realistically we do. But they're confined to my child's bedroom and my husband's office so that in my book is a huge win. 11. Activity #2 - Let's Begin Working on your own Minimalist Room: welcome to the first day of the rest of your life. Boy, that's 100 dramatic. Maybe a better thing to say is welcome to hopefully the first day of your minimalist journey in this lecture, I want to help you get started. And to do that, I've created an easy to use template called Minimalist Interior Design Plan. You can find that in the resource is section of this lecture. Go ahead and pauses, video and printed out. Great. Now, before you jump in the step one, you'll see in the instructions that I'm encouraging you to do this one room at a time. Yes, you can use this template for each room of your home, but I find that clients and likely you as well. We'll have a much easier time integrating this style if is approached one room at a time. That said, let's go ahead and look at Step one, which is to create your vision for your new minimalist room. I've included the questions that we discussed earlier to help you more easily articulate your vision. I've also include space agree to come up with your own mantra that you will use with yourself and your family members. When the decluttering process gets challenging, as it will, I encourage you to take just a few minutes to fill out these questions. And given how visual interior design is also, take some time to create your own online boards with inspiration. Images toe help get you started in step to you want to create your own decluttering plan? Think about the techniques that I discussed in the previous lectures. If any of those techniques sound like they would work for you, then by all means try them out. Otherwise, feel free to Google phrases like decluttering techniques, or how the easily declutter your home or something along those lines. The Internet is full of great information on this very topic. After you're done with these two steps, go ahead, pat yourself on the back because you are off to a fantastic start. We will be tackling the rest of the guide later in this course 12. Choose your Most Calming Color Scheme: For the most part, the classic minimalist rooms that are designed today include very simple, very neutral color schemes to support the goal of creating a calm, relaxing space. White is generally one of the main colors, but you will also see quite a bit of black, grey and beige regarding black. I actually really like including black or a dark color like navy or charcoal gray in a minimalist room, at least one piece of furniture as it creates an interesting counterpoint to a generally light colored space for you non neutral color lovers out there. Please don't despair. You can definitely include non neutral colors in a minimalist space. The difference, though, is that you will typically use only one or two of these non neutral colors and definitely with restraint. While blue and green are two of the most common non neutral colors used in minimalist rooms , as these are typically considered calming colors for most people, other colors condemn it would be used as well. There are a couple of ways that I like to use color in minimalist rooms. The first way is to include muted, rich tones in the space, such as from the blue, green or red families. I particularly love navy blue and often use it as a neutral. Or I simply will use a vibrant shot of color, such as a brightly colored chair or a brightly painted wall. In this scenario, just be sure to choose your favorite color, as this brightly colored piece will definitely be a focal point for the room, meaning it will draw your attention every time you walk into it. So make it a color you love. The goal is to create a color scheme that is most common to you. For me. I love black and white, and that is what I find most. Calming Blue is my preferred accident color and what I use throughout my home. But that's definitely not for everybody. I've had clients who really dislike black and white and are drawn to warmer neutrals like beige, gray age cream and brown. And that's great as well. The important point here is to find out what speaks to you, not what's in style at the moment or what you think you should have. What do you love and what colors bring you? Peace and comfort Now, as far as patterns I would really try to avoid them in the style. The only items I would consider using a pattern on is a rug or pillows. Instead, think texture. Try to incorporate a number of different textures and materials such as wood, leather, wool, glass, steel, stone, jute, velvet, etcetera. This will give your I a lot more visual interest to feast on, Alternatively, include some dramatic artwork in your space. This will also help to alleviate your hunger for patterns. So in summary, spend some time thinking about what your homes color scheme should be. Keep it simple. 3 to 4 colors in total, with generally a heavy emphasis on neutrals. And be sure to get input from your family as well. So hopefully everybody can be happy and inspired in your new space. 13. Determine your True Furniture Essentials: as I discussed my main principles of minimalist interior design lecture. One of the defining characteristics of this style is to Onley include what is essential in the design, either from a functional or aesthetic standpoint. I would say that of all of the principles, this one is arguably the most important to the style, as you simply cannot ignore this principle. If your goal is indeed have a true minimal space, remember on Lee the essentials. So in this section, we're going to be tackling your true furniture essentials. In later lectures, we will talk about rugs, artwork, late hearing greenery and accessories. So let's break down true furniture requirements room by room. The goal with each furniture pieces to ask yourself, Is this item essential in order for my room to be perfectly functional? And how do you think you will determine if it's going to meet a functional need by asking yourself what main activities are taking place in this room on a regular or even occasional basis? Once you know that, then determine what furniture pieces you need to support those activities becomes quite easy. If the piece is not going to meet a functional need, that it's going to be a great candidate for repurpose ing in another room, donating or gifting to a friend or family member. The other important point is that you may find that some of your items are simply too big for your current home. I see this frequently with my own clients. Often what happens is that you will move into a new home that has a smaller bedroom or a smaller family room than you had in your previous home. The result is that you may end up with a bed that is just too large for your bedroom or a Silva that is too big for your living room. Furniture that is too big for a room is never a good idea, but it's particularly bad in a minimalist home. If you're not sure if an item is too big, ask a friend who will give you an honest opinion or, of course, hire a designer. If you do have an item that is too big, then if at all possible, make it a priority to replace it with a more appropriately sized piece. Remember, in minimalist design, every single piece matters so focused not just on the quality of your pieces, but the size of them as well as you want your items to breathe like we discussed in the main principles lecture. In the long run, you will be grateful that you did. This has a designer. I know how expensive partitions can be. So when you think about replacing certain furniture pieces that are too large, consider doing so with second hand furniture, specifically furniture that is several decades old as this Kenbrell instant character to your space. Okay, now let's go ahead and get into the essential furniture requirements for each room of your home. Let's first start in your entry way a great place to start. I would include only to furniture pieces here, a consul or a cabinet and a piece of seeding. This could include a chair or a bench. The consular cabinet will serve to hold your essential items, such as your keys, hats, umbrellas, etcetera. The chair or a bench is great for putting on your shoes or waiting for the other members of your family as you are waiting to leave the house. Next, let's go ahead and move on to your family or your living room what are typically the main functions of the space well from most. It's going to include a place to have great conversation, both with family and your friends, perhaps watching TV and likely a place to engage in hobbies. So, first we'll need some seeding. How do you determine how much seating you need? Well, determine how many people you typically need to seat in the space. I wouldn't necessarily plan for the greatest number possible, as I sometimes do with other designs, because you can always bring in seeding from other areas of your home if needed. So if the majority of the time, you only need space for four individuals that ensure that you have seating for four, this might include a sofa and a chair or two or two sofas or a soap on the love seat. Obviously, there are more options than this thes air just meant to be examples for you. I would also include a coffee table, but likely no end tables or maybe just one end table. If additional task lighting is needed in the form of a table lamp. Now, if you have a TV, you will likely be a TV scan If you are not mounting it to the wall now, many minimalists would tell you to stop there, and you definitely can. But I don't think there would be harm. And possibly including one more piece of furniture, such as a consul, perhaps, or a bookshelf If you do have some books that you want to include in the space or a stunning accessory or two that you want to display but remember, the danger with flat surfaces is that they tend to become magnets for stuff. So if you think you have the discipline to keep the surface is relatively clear, then do consider adding one war furniture piece like case. Good item. If it makes sense for the overall design for your dining room, clearly you'll need a dining table. And then I would likely just include one other piece of furniture, either a buffet or a console table for any table lamps serving where or just one or two pieces of decor. Now, let's talk about your bedroom. I would advocate that this is perhaps the first room. You may want to start in with your minimalist journey. Why? Because your bedroom is meant to be the ultimate, the ultimate sanctuary in your home, the place where you go to truly unwind, relax and get a great night's sleep. So what does an ideal minimalist bedroom look like? Well, you'll obviously mean a bed, but you also need a night stand or possibly two. A single dresser if you don't have a built in closet already, and finally a place to sit, because sometimes you just need a place to sit down in your bedroom. This could be a bench, or it could be an accent chair for your kitchen. Try to get your counters as clean as you possibly can. As the more items are on your counters, the more clutter your kitchen will feel. Onley set out those small appliances that you use on a regular, for example, a daily basis in my own kitchen. The only functional high items I have on my counter include a coffee pot, a coffee grinder and a knife. Blocks set the's air literally the only items that I use daily. I do have a toaster, but I typically only use it on the weekends, so I've stored it in my pantry during the week. In addition to these functional items. I also have two decorative items. Help balance out the space aesthetically, but that's it, and I absolutely love it. It feels so open and makes food preparations so easy. As I'm not competing for space anywhere on my counters. Try to take a similar approach in your bathrooms. The only items I have in my bathroom sink RSO pump and a tissue box holder. Everything else is stored away, and I love the simplicity of this approach. And don't let your shower become a dumping ground, either. If you don't have a recessed shower shelf in the shower than invest in a plastic basket to corral Onley, the essential bath products that you use. Given that you will be using minimal items in your kitchen and your bathrooms, you can see why, if possible, it's important to choose only high quality finishes such as your countertop and your flooring materials, as they will really stand out in a minimalist space. Finally, for your home office, you'll, of course, need a desk, but I would also include one other case. Good. This could be a bookshelf, a bookcase where you can store any reference books, baskets with office supplies etcetera. Or it could be a credenza if you need to store a number of files, although any good minimalist will scan those files to eliminate the mounds of paper that we typically find stacked in our home offices. Finally, if you have visitors to your office, even if it's just other family members, be sure to invest in the guest chair as well. 14. Activity #3 - Identify your Color Scheme and True Furniture Essentials: 15. Identify your Focal Point: Now let's talk about the all important focal point, which we also briefly discussed in the main principles of interior design. Lecture, as I mentioned, including a focal point in a minimalist room, is extremely important. Why do you think? Well, there are really three main reasons. First, the minimal space, with its generally subdued color scheme and fewer pieces in a typical room, becomes the perfect backdrop for a show stopping piece. So take advantage of the study. Second, minimalist rooms without a focal point will definitely be a lot less interesting. And great interior design should definitely be interesting, so do not skip this important aspect. Third and last, a focal point can help to create balance in a room if you end up arranging your furniture around the focal point, which is a common approach. So what makes a great focal point in a minimalist room? Some of my very favorites include fireplaces, light fixtures, large mirrors, a rug, beautiful artwork, a lovely view, ah, brightly painted or wallpapered accent wall and unique coffee tables. While generally you want a position the furniture around the focal point of the room, that is not an absolute necessity, particularly if your focal point is a unique brightly colored chair or even a large plant with interesting sculptural lines, which is perfectly acceptable in a minimalist space. My preferred method when designing a room is to first identify or create my focal point. And then I decorate around it, meaning I use that as my inspiration piece for the room when selecting the other pieces for the room. This is very effective in helping you to narrow down your other choices as the focal point may help dictate a color scheme, or it can help determine the lines of your furniture. If, for example, the focal point of your fireplace as fireplaces can range in style from traditional and or Neitz to completely contemporary with clean lines, let's go ahead and take a look at some minimalist spaces that have well designed focal points. As we look at these pictures, notice where your eye goes first. If you're I and my I go to the same place than that is a great focal point. Okay, so here's our first beautiful space, and there's no question here regarding what is meant to draw your attention. That stone stacked wall is simple and gorgeous and truthfully, not that difficult to install and think about how boring and plain this a bathroom would be without it. This wall truly makes this space and helps to create the calm, then like atmosphere that I am sure they were trying to achieve. Okay, let's go ahead and take a look at another space with a fantastic focal point. This space absolutely draws me in. Given my obsession with oversized light fixtures, I would love to know what came first for this particular designer was the light fixture or the kitchen. I'm actually going to guess it was a light fixture. It just seems like this kitchen was designed in such a way as to highlight the beauty and uniqueness of this fixture. They kept the lines of the kitchen clean and the color scheme black to perfectly complement this pendant. And I love how they use black marble to provide some interest to the very simple kitchen, but nothing so dramatic that competes for your attention. This light fixture has it 100% OK, moving on. This is a great example of a unique focal point. It's not often that we see drapes become the focal point of a room, but in this case, they've done it well. Yes, we do have the bright pink sculpture and based on either side of that room, which are also dramatic. But it serves to accentuate rather than detract from the gorgeous draperies that frame this room. The long lines of those drapes are repeated in the long for his all lines of the sectional , as well as the mirror on the left wall. And as an aside, I love how they repeated the circular pattern off the pink sculpture in the three pendants hanging in the middle of the room. You can see that they kept the color palette of this room very neutral, allowing the drapes to really steal the show very well done. Now, let's take a look at a bedroom. If you are lucky enough to have a room in your home with this kind of you. I know I wish I did. Then this is how you use it to create your rooms. Focal point. By using all white and cream furnishings, they make you feel as if you are floating on clouds inside those trees, don't they? And more importantly, the colors do not in any way detract from that view, which needs to take center stage. And the wood floor they used is perfect, as I'm sure it's meant to mimic the trunks of the trees just outside. Bravo. Indeed, finally, I want to show you how easy and affordable it can be to create a fun focal point in a space . Here we have an industrial style office with classic materials for that style, including brick and metal. But by throwing in this bright yellow contemporary chair, they've instantly added interest and broken up the generally neutral color scheme. As you can see, this type of focal point is very easy to add toe any room when you are struggling with creating your own focal point in your space. Now that you've seen some great focal point examples, go ahead and give some thought to a focal point for the first room that you're starting in . Go ahead and jot down some ideas. Then, in the next activity of this course, you will be selecting the focal point that you will be using to inspire your entire no pressure 16. Include some Negative Space: as I mentioned in the main principles of design lecture, Minimalist interior design is in many ways a celebration of empty space. As a result, empty space or negative space becomes a key design feature that you really must include in each room of your minimalist home. Now that said, I find that this principle is usually one of the hardest for my clients to embrace. Most people really seem to have a tough time with empty space. Either they're worried that their home would look cold, sterile or uninviting. Or they think that others will judge them, assuming that they don't have the money to decorate or worse, that they simply have no style or taste. But this couldn't be further from the truth. Negative space not only creates much needed breathing room in the space, but negative space also plays a very important supporting role in allowing other features of the room to be appreciated even more. That said, you will not be surprised to hear that there is an art to including negative space in your room. And so in this lecture, my goal is to help you do this in the best way possible in your own home, I find that the easiest way to include negative space is on a wall. Basically, just leave one of the walls bear in your room. This works well because the furniture will help to ensure that you still have balanced in your room. An empty wall is a particularly great option if you have an interesting light fixture hanging from the ceiling as a blank wall, then becomes the perfect blank canvas against which the fixture can be seen. A blank wall is also a great choice if you have some beautiful artwork or an amazing view from a large window on a neighboring wall. That way, the artwork or the view isn't competing with anything else in the space. Other examples of negative space include an empty corner where you may typically have a large plant, an open center of a room where you would normally have a coffee table, for example in the living room, or an empty or near empty console table or coffee table, where you would normally include a few accessories. The challenge with this approach is to make sure that you still have excitement and balance in your room. However, the excitement will come through your focal point for balance. It really depends on where your negative space is. As I mentioned, if you make your wall your negative space, the furniture arrangement generally will provide the balance. If you use a corner for your negative space, I would look to add something to the wall above it to help balance out the room. If you're negative, space is in the middle of your room. This is quite easy to balance out, as you simply include pieces in all four quadrants of your space. I hope that makes sense and that you now feel comfortable with incorporating this very important minimalist design feature. 17. Activity #4 - Include your Focal Point and Negative Space: 18. Include the Finishing Touches: up to this point, I have discussed how to create the ideal color scheme for your minimalist home, how to determine your true furniture essentials, how to decide on the focal point and, finally, how to include some negative space into your design. Now let's discuss the remaining design aspects of any room. This includes flooring, wall art, lighting, window coverings, greenery and accessories for flooring, wood or another material approximating would such as wood plastic composite, known as WP C or vinyl, is by far the most common choice for a minimalist home due to its beauty, warmth and simplicity. But if you don't have wood floors, for whatever reason, it's completely okay you can still it to your minimalist home after. Would I would say that the next best options would be a natural material like stone or tile . Carpet would be my least preferred choice if you do have all the wall carpet than I would skip the rugs now, this may surprise some of you who have heard me say that I nearly always include a rugged my spaces, even with wall to wall carpeting. But there's usually an exception to everything, and my exception would be with a minimalist design now going back to rugs. It's really up to you if you want to use them in your rooms. I personally would, because I like something really comfortable under my feet in my main living spaces, And I also think it does help to the finest space. But this is one design style in which you really don't need them. So if you're trying to save money or you just don't like the look of rugs in general, then by all means skip it. The other important point about flooring is that nothing truly nothing should be stored or stacked on your floor. The only thing that should be touching the floor are your furniture pieces. Everything else should be stored away where it belongs. So remember the floor is never a place for storage. Now let's talk artwork. This guideline is quite easy trying to go with one or two pieces of wall art only. Keep the artwork to one the two walls of your room. I like to use one large statement piece personally, but you could have a pair of medium sized art pieces as well. The only thing you want to avoid is a number of small pictures adorning your wall like in a collage that would be too much visual clutter for this style. Your wall art doesn't have to be a painting or even a photograph. It could include a large mirror, a wall sculpture, floating shelves with minimal accessories. Ah, large wall decal or one of my favorites, succulent wall art, which you can now purchase through a variety of online retailers, in different sizes and at various price points for lighting. I would still follow the standard guidelines for ensuring I have adequate lighting in my room for all ambient task and accent lighting for ambient lighting or all over lighting. Decide what your one source is going to be for the room. Will it be a chandelier, a flush or semi flush mount light, a pendant, a group of can lights or something else for task lighting? Just make sure that you have floor lamps, table lamps or pendants for the main tests that will be taking place in that room for accent lighting, which is optional but highly recommended by me. I would just keep it to one area for item, such as wall washers, concealed up lights for a plant or led strip lights for cabinets or bookshelves. But I encourage you to include what is Onley truly essential? Just enough lighting and no more. That said, because I love lighting so much, I would possibly have one of my ambient or task lighting fixtures. Act is my focal point for the room, since there are so many beautiful and dramatic light fixtures available on the market today for window treatments, it's not going to be a surprise to you when I say to keep it as simple as possible, provided you have window molding. Bear windows would work well, but how often are not very realistic, especially for you city dwellers or rooms that get a lot of natural light during the day. So definitely consider the style of your room when selecting your window coverings. But something simple, like woven blinds for coastal chic and farmhouse styles or simple drapes for a traditional modern French transitional French country, Mediterranean Western Art Deco would be great, and finally, I would just use some roller shades. If you have Scandinavian contemporary, urban, modern, mid century modern industrial and Zen as your style. Obviously, there are other styles of window treatments that will work for these particular styles. These are just meant to be examples. The point is that you want to keep it simple, devoid of patterns, fringe tassels, etcetera, as this would just be visual clutter for the room. In the case of stationary drapes, you can certainly still layer by adding and shades her light control and privacy. But for purely aesthetic reasons, I would personally avoid it. Okay, now let's move on to plants. I absolutely love plants, and I still abide by the rule at least one plant for every room in your home. Many of today's artificial plants are great for those of you who have a hard time with real plants. But if you can't stand the thought of artificial plants, I get it. So consider succulence as we spoke about earlier. They are super low maintenance, and there are so many great varieties available today I would recommend, including either one large floor plants or one large floor plans and one small table plant for most rooms of your home. Finally, we have accessories. You know, the myriad of items that were placed in the flat services around our home. Based on my experience as a designer, accessories are generally the most challenging items for my clients to minimize. Why it's because accessories are offline, deeply personal. After all, we're talking about framed photographs, travel Mementos, homemade items from our Children and family heirlooms, just to name a few. However, one of the hallmarks of a minimalist home is the over abundance of clear, flat surfaces, with maybe 1 to 3 items per surface. So then how do you reconcile these two opposing realities very carefully. In all seriousness, this can be quite a challenge. Examples of great accessories, though, could include a simple vase of flowers for your coffee table, two or three interesting sculptural items for your office desk, or a few of your favorite travel Mementos scattered throughout a bookcase. The hard part, of course, is making these selections. I have a few suggestions for you, though, on how you can make this a bit easier on yourself. First, gather up all of the accessories in your home. Yes, all of them, and place them in three groups must have group being those items that you could not bear to give away a donate group for those items that you've grown tired of and constantly donate to the goodwill or a comparable organization and a gift group, those items and you think someone else in your life would really appreciate. This is particularly suited for family items that you can pass on to other family members so that they can enjoy them as well. Now take a look at your must have group and see if you can scatter them throughout your home, limiting yourself again to one the three items per flat surface. Ideally for smaller surfaces like a coffee table, I would probably keep it to one item for larger areas like a kitchen counter than three items will definitely work if you still have too many items than there are a couple of other options that I can recommend to you. First order your items from your most favorite to your least favorite. Yes, I know this will be hard, given that this is your must have pile. But this is exactly where the term ruthless editing that I used earlier comes in. If you really want to embrace the minimalist aesthetic, you may need to do some ruthless editing to get down to your truly most favorite objects in your home. Now, if you just cannot bear this approach, especially if you are making a big transition already by embracing this particular style, then my second suggestion is to create a system by where you rotate the items every few months, meaning you keep the accessories like we discussed 2123 items per flat surface, and then you store the rest of the items in a cabinet into three months. Go ahead and rotate out those items for those stored items so you can enjoy them at different times of the year. Who knows? In a year or so, you may be ready to part with some of these additional items, but at least you've achieved clean, minimal look you were going for without having the truly part with some of your favorite pieces. 19. Achieving Perfect Harmony and Balance: throughout this course, I have touched on ways to incorporate harmony and balance into your minimalist space. However, because create harmony and balance can be more challenging in this particular design style . Given that you were working with less of everything, I thought it might be helpful to provide a summary of what I discussed so far, as well as provide some additional techniques that you can use to achieve these important design outcomes. First, just to make sure we're on the same page, let me define balance and harmony for you in the context of interior design. Balance refers to create a feeling of equilibrium in a room. Harmony refers to the pleasing arrangement of different elements in a room to create a unified feeling. This is often done by including items that shares some similar traits. That said, let's start by quickly reviewing some of the techniques that I have already mentioned in this course. First we talked about the importance of texture and how it's important to include a lot of different materials and textures throughout your space so that you have rich textural interest in your furnishings as long as you're repeating some of the same textures. This will help to create harmony in your design. Using a variety of textures is particularly important when you have a neutral color scheme . Another technique that we discussed for achieving balance is through the careful application of negative space to a room. Finally, I discussed how using a focal point can help you to achieve balance in the room Should you choose to arrange your furniture around that particular focal point. Another technique you can use to achieve balance is through the use of symmetry, all types of symmetry that we use an interior design, including formal, informal and radial symmetry. Formal symmetry refers to repeating or mere ing the same elements along a central access and is the easiest to create. Informal symmetry is when you use different items of similar visual, wait along a central axis and can be a little more challenging to achieve well. Radial symmetry occurs when you arrange items around a central point, extending outward like you would see with a dining room table and chairs in the center of a room. Having a cohesive color palette of only 3 to 4 colors in the room will also help you to achieve harmony in your minimalist space, finally repeating elements in a room such as furniture, lines, shapes and, as I mentioned previously, textures as well will also help you to achieve both balance and harmony. 20. Activity #5 - Complete your Minimalist Interior Design Plan: Are you ready to complete your minimalist interior design plan? Well, I am definitely ready to help you. Go ahead and pull out your plan one more time so that you can get yourself on your way to finalizing your blueprint for the start of your minimalist dream home. After the last activity we left off on Step six, go ahead and find that on your guide. Now you will see that you are going to be thinking about the flooring for your room from a few different angles. First, you're going to give some thought as to whether or not you'll be replacing the flooring in that room. For most people, the answer will be no. But you may have been planning on getting new flooring in the near future. If this is a case, this would be a great time to give some thought to your choices. A new type of flooring, particularly wood, stone or tile condemn, definitely help to accentuate your new minimalist style. Also, you want to give some thought to whether or not you want to use a rug in this room as it's really up to you for me, unless it's wall to wall carpeting. I would, but you don't need to. Finally, I encourage you to set a target date for ensuring that nothing is on your floor except the legs of your furniture. Moving on to step seven, you are going to be giving some thought to the wall art and wall decor you will be using in your room. As you can see from the guide, try to leave some walls bear, particularly if you have a window on that wall already. Also make sure that they are your very favorite pieces in the guide. I'm encouraging you to think about what walls you want to include wall art on and specifically, what pieces you will be using. Remember, this is a great opportunity to use wall art or wall decor as your focal point. Let's go ahead and move on to Step eight, which is lighting. This is where you will need to give some thought to your lighting plan for the room. Remember in a minimalist room. My recommendations include one ambient light source, which provides General Oliver lighting to the room, a task light for each major task area taking place there, and then some accent lighting for one specific area or item in your room. Don't forget that if you are shopping for new light fixtures, this is a great place for you to consider making one of your life fixtures your focal point . If you are still lacking one looking at Step nine, you can see that you'll be deciding on what type of window coverings you will be using in your space. Specifically, you will need to decide which windows in your room need coverings at all and identifying what type of window treatments you will be using. Remember to keep it simple and relevant to the design style that you are using in your room . Step 10 asked you to identify what areas of your room could use a plant. Ideally, try to incorporate 1 to 2 plans in your room. A large floor plant in a small table plant. Work well in most spaces. Remember if you have a black thumb, artificial plants and succulents will be your best friends. Here you have finally arrived. Now it's step 11 of your guide, which will help you to narrow down which accessories you will be using in your room. If this is challenging for you. I encourage you to try the approach that I mentioned in which you group all of your accessories together and divide them into three piles. The must have the donate and the gift. Then, if you still have too many, order them from your most favorite to your least favorite again. Your goal is to keep it to 123 accessories per platt surface in your room. Obviously, for bookcases, you can likely use more than three. But remember to give each of your accessories plenty of breathing room, and that's it. Fantastic job on getting through this guide. This completed guide will truly serve as your road map for pulling together your new beautiful minimalist room. Most importantly, have fun with it, and I hope you enjoy your new clutter free, stress free, relaxing space. 21. Conclusion and Final Thoughts: If you are watching this lecture, I want to warmly congratulating you for completing the entire course. You should now understand why minimalist interior design is becoming such a popular interior design style today. More importantly, though, you should have a good foundational knowledge on which to achieve this in your own home. As you might remember, this starts with a clear vision. Then you will want to use some tried and true decluttering techniques so that you can create the perfect blank canvas for your minimalist design, which will be achieved through a calming color scheme. Determining your true your true furniture essentials creating a fabulous focal point, including some negative space and including the right finishing touches, which include flooring, lighting, window coverings, greenery and accessories. What I like about this course is that we had multiple points throughout the class where I was able to walk you through how to do this on your own by using the minimalist interior design plan template so that you hopefully now feel confident in creating your own minimalist dream home. Minimalist interior design is clearly near and dear to my heart, and I sincerely hope that I was able to inspire you today to incorporate some of these wonderful design aspects into your own home. As always, if you have any follow up questions at all, please go ahead and send me an email, as I am happy to provide any need support for you. Thank you so much and happy decorating. 22. Bonus Lecture - Additional Minimalist Resources: If you Google minimalist interior design, you will see many. Many resource is available to you on this topic. In this bonus lecture, I want to share with you some of the websites that I found most useful for providing inspiration and information to me as I created not only my own minimalist home, but really my new minimalist life. First, if you haven't heard of them yet. There are two individuals who call themselves the Minimalists. Their website is the minimalist dot com. They also happen to have a podcast as well as a documentary about minimalism on Netflix, which I really enjoyed. While they don't really touch on the minimalist interior design style per se, they do show some pictures and videos of their own homes, which are obviously definitely minimalist. More importantly, I have found them to be a great inspiration for those who want to incorporate minimalism into all areas of their lives. If you are interested in creating a minimalist wardrobe which I have done as well, and I really like Google Project 333 or go to the website, be more with less dot com and click on the project 333 link at the top. This has been so much fun and liberating for me. As I mentioned earlier in this course, it's a challenge to reduce your wardrobe to Onley 33 items for three months. Basically, you change your wardrobe with each new season and my wardrobe. They are referring to not only your clothes but shoes, jewelry, handbags and accessories such as hats, scarves and belts. Why do I say liberating? Because it's made my mornings so much easier. No more trying to figure out what to wear. I only have a few choices of Onley, my very favorite clothing items, so it makes getting ready in the morning so much quicker. I absolutely love it. After a year of doing this, I'll be donating all of the clothes that I didn't choose for any of my project. 333 seasonal wardrobes As clearly, they didn't make the cut for my very favorite clothing items. Finally, I have created a Pinterest board of some of my very favorite inspirational minimalist interior design photos, which will hopefully inspire you as well. Here's the link where you can find this Pinterest board. In these pictures, you will see that the minimalist aesthetic can absolutely be used successfully with many different styles of furniture. I hope you find these additional resource is helpful.