Minimalism is on the top of my list in everything I do. And I’m fortunate to have a like-minded family that believes in giving away stuff in excellent condition – be it toys, gadgets. Why buy, you may ask? Well, not anymore. I think twice before getting anything new into the house. And if something new has to come in, then something has to go. As a result, we don’t have overflowing closets or, toy boxes. It has also meant lesser trips to shops and malls and more to parks. Something my husband read out to me a year back on the paradox of choice and happiness has stuck with me:
*** Buy more experiences and fewer things. Material goods depreciate. The day after you buy something, it’s probably worth less than you paid for it. Experiences, on the other hand, appreciate. Your memories of the things you do—vacations you take, concerts you go to—tend to become fonder with time.
*** Buy many small pleasures instead of a handful of large ones. This one’s tough to hear on a personal level, because I tend to forego daily indulgences for big rewards. But, in the words of the authors, people are usually happier with “frequent doses of lovely things rather than infrequent doses of lovelier things.
Come to think of it, the whole process of redesigning our home a year and half back began when I realised my husband and son’s needs – space. The declutter journey began with replacing all our oversized furniture with compact ones. It’s been a BIG transformation that we are all happy about but still not quite there. So, I’m a little wary of homes that barely have space to walk around but it’s a personal choice.
I’m constantly looking at studio apartments to learn about maximizing space and innovative ways of storage. On one such mission, came across designer Ayaz Basrai. Ayaz Basrai is the owner of The Busride (I know a quirky name for a design studio). Even more quirkier is his home. Ever fancy living in a 160 square feet apartment? The smallest I’ve ever lived in a 540 sq. ft apartment in Chicago. So, this just hooked me on.
The design studio’s profile of impressive achievements includes The Smoke House Room, Cafe Zoe, informal The Chimp Kiosk, quirky The Channel V studio among a dozen others. But what stood out for me is his tiny sliding home in the Ranwar village. Fathom a king sized bed that splits to create a seating arrangement during the day, a walk in closet, full length mirror, changing area, a pantry and a workstation – all in 160 sq. ft?
Ayaz offers some really invaluable design lessons on how you should design a house around your life, and not from the design magazines. The best I’ve ever read.