"Our fondness for stuff affects almost every aspect of our lives. Housing size, for example, has ballooned in the last 60 years. The average size of a new American home in 1950 was 983 square feet; by 2011, the average new home was 2,480 square feet. And those figures don’t provide a full picture. In 1950, an average of 3.37 people lived in each American home; in 2011, that number had shrunk to 2.6 people. This means that we take up more than three times the amount of space per capita than we did 60 years ago."
We used to live with less. It is possible. I'm far from minimalist, but the more things I find I can get rid of, the happier I am. In his article, Graham Hill mentions that all those things take up mental space as well. And what do we do when we have too many things? We pay people to hold it in a box for us. A " 22 billion dollar" industry. So this weekend I'll be sending boxes of books, cds, and clothes to new homes.
Living small can be really stylish too. This site has collected a bunch of examples for small living. Check out JoAnn's apartment:
Darling. A lot of the discussion on small living as been about how to incorporate these principles in families. Here's a great NYT article about how one family downsized. I may have shared this article before, but it's worth sharing again. I love everything about this home, especially how they include the outside as part of their living space. It's beautiful:
This family of four downsized from a 3,000 sq. foot home, to one less than half that size. They dramatically reduced their belongings, and now spend more time together
Here's a video from a furniture company that illustrates their solutions to small living. If you are creative with your space, you can do much more with it.
Small is the new Big everybodyyyyyyyy.