Ideas on Decluttering and Moving to a Small Space

“We’re moving to Munich, Germany”

It’s the kind of announcement that is followed by stunned silence, and that was certainly the case in my house about 4 weeks ago. Although my husband had been interviewing with a German company, I didn’t really imagine that he’d take the job. It was too far, too different, too German. Our son is a freshman in high school and doesn’t speak German. Surely no job could be worth that far of a move.

Fast forward to today. My husband starts his new job on February 1st and my son and I will be selling the house, finishing up the school year, and then heading over. Excitement! Terror! More Excitement!

We will most likely be living in a 3 or 4 room flat in Germany. Fortunately, it seems like the current worldwide trend is smaller and smaller  spaces.  “Downsizing”…”Empty Nesting”…”Decluttering”…”Mini Houses” Going small requires careful planning and pruning.

Going from a 2,000+ square foot home to a 900 square foot apartment requires very careful planning, pruning, and the occasional glass (or three) of wine.

There are so many questions to be answered when you downsize, but it comes down to this: what’s worth taking? Family photos, yes; every project from elementary school, no. I’ve managed to start sorting through furniture using the following rubric:

is it sturdy? is it comfortable? is it timeless? will it last? I’ve been reading through good bones, great pieces by Suzanne and Lauren McGrath to get some ideas about what to keep and what to pitch. In addition, because I know that our new space will be very small, I’m focusing on keeping or buying smaller proportioned furniture.

Enter Thrift Store Find #1: The Chair

Many older chairs are smaller proportioned so there is a wealth of great opportunities for the budget bargain hunter out there. This compact armchair is slightly stained and cats have happily ripped the upholstery, BUT it’s very sturdy and well made with a hardwood frame. Diamond in the rough for $17 at Goodwill. Score!

Bernie checked it out and confirmed my suspicions that this was, indeed, a chair worth reupholstering.

I invite you to follow along in this blog as I downsize our household and make decisions about what to take, what to buy, and what to throw away!

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