Thursday, October 9, 2014

License To Fill


Photo courtesy Flickr

One of the rooms is empty and waits for a few first passes with a paint brush.  In this piece of Jeffersonian Revival architecture, less is far more than more. Even one chair backed up with a small side table will focus a space, harvest daylight, and generate a supportive flow of activity.

When the contents of the house are just right, emptying one room does not disrupt the others. I wouldn’t mind ditching a couple of things that are cluttering the hall and the next room over. They’re not crippling the spaces, though, and my partner finds them useful.

Managing the closet is the key to getting the most out of a room. Storing clothes is the lowest priority. Little in our wardrobes requires ironing. All but key current garments can live in a mothproof chest that doubles for seating, serving casual meals, or staging projects. A foot or two of pole suffices, with perhaps a hanging nylon shoe bag for small clothes and footgear. Seattle's mild climate means that every piece of clothing can work all four seasons.

A nearly empty closet can house the odd bulky items that drive housekeepers nuts. Hiking and sports gear, extra chairs, spare work lights, bulky portfolios, stuffed animals, and cases of staples can all stand ready to use and out of the way.

The trick is knowing when to quit. Once I realized that digital culture feeds my hungry eye, I was free to leave the spaces in the house in nearly vacant peace.

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