30 Days Without Accessories: Want to Join Me?

let your house breathe

Wednesday I announced that this accessory loving girl is removing all her home accessories and hiding them away (in the guest room) for a month. I can think of lots of reasons I like this idea, and only a few reasons I don’t. The only reasons I don’t like it are:

1. it sounds like trouble and I like to avoid trouble

2. I’ve got multiple things scheduled at my house and I like to show off my pretty accessories

3. a very slight, irrational fear that I’ll love my house all accessory-less so much that I’ll sell almost all of our furniture and turn into a person with an empty house and the outside world will shun me because of my empty house ways and then I’ll have nothing else to talk about here at Nesting Place because I’ll have eight items in my house and who can write a blog about that?

I hope my honesty doesn’t scare you away.

Really, I can only see good things happening from this little experiment.

And I’d love for you to join in.

I tried to think of a catchy tag line for this exercise but I’m guessing we won’t figure out what the best one is until the end of the thirty days. Here are some thoughts…


why not?

It would be so much more fun if you joined in this experiment. All you need to do is:

1. find a place to pack away your home accessories for the month of June. It can be a closet, under the bed, the garage–anywhere they are out of sight and not in your way.

2. start clearing out today and try to finish by Monday

3. write your thoughts on your blog and come link up here on Tuesday. Take a photo of your empty place or your stash and use the hashtag #BreathingRoom on instagram I’ll try to figure out how to feature those here too.

I’ll be writing about the process throughout the month, with regular posts sprinkled in too.

What I’m removing:

Stuff that’s sitting on surfaces like photo frames, decorative bowls, stacks of books and magazines (unless I’m currently, truly reading them) disco balls, vases (unless they are holding live, fresh flowers) photos that are taped to things, baskets o’junk on the surfaces and floor, pillows, throws, random cute stuff that I have sitting all over.

What I’m not removing:

Lamps that I use daily, stuff my husband sits on his man-station, plants that might die if I pack them away–but I might try to move them to an out of the way location, the pillow my husband uses in the downstairs chair, large pieces of art (including my empty canvas) that are sitting on a surface leaning against the wall. My book page garland that hangs from the hutch, anything hanging from the ceiling or on the wall. Books that are stacked neatly on bookshelves.

The rules:

Pack it away for a month. IF you realize you need something you can take it out and use it. For example, if you are having company over and want to light a candle, pull it out and light it. If you are cold, go get your cute throw. If your children need the jar of colored pencils, go grab it. If you miss your disco ball, realize you can live without it for a month.

I really don’t know what to expect from this month, but I think it will be fun to talk about and do together! Let’s link up on Tuesday!

30 days


i'm in!

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  1. I am particularly fond of the tag line, “Because your house likes to be nekkid too.” Catchy. Kind of rolls off the tongue and leaves you grinning. :)

    I don’t think I’ll participate in this particular challenge, but I LOVE the idea and can’t wait to read your posts through it. My house is too shy to go nekkid. The mere mention of it leaves her blushing. But we’ll gladly ogle your nekkid house throughout the month.

    That sounds weird…


  2. I vote Give your Stuff a Break. Or maybe….Dusting Sucks. Ok, I’m not good at this tagline stuff either.

    I love this experiment. I’m so interested to see what you take away from it after the 30 days are over.

  3. No way – I would never do it. I don’t have a lot of accessories to begin with, but those that I DO have, well, they are “me”. They bring peace to my stressful days just from their presence in my home. A picture frame with a hand drawn flower in it made when my daughter was 3 years old; my guitars and ukulele hanging on the wall; two identical bud vases in the shape of yellow glass violins that my best friend found for me at a flea market that I just hung on the wall; the straw fedora style hat hanging on the corner of a 4ft long mirror… and a few others that speak to my soul. When I am overwhelmed with being everyone else’s everything and don’t have time to even shower, the sight of these things surrounding me brings me calm in the middle of the chaos. I love my “stuff”; It’s a daily reminder of what makes me, “me”.

  4. Katherine says

    Funny that you’re doing this, because my house is nakie right now! Once I put away all my bright and sparkly Easter decorations I just didn’t feel like covering all my surfaces with something else! I need a break! So, I decided to “Go Nakie” until my zinnias are blooming prolifically. Then I’ll whip out my assorted Fenton Art Glass vases, rose bowls, compotes and baskets and fill my home with bright, colorful bouquets!

  5. Well, then, how convenient I can pack my stuff away at the yard sale I am having tomorrow! I don’t have a lot of flat space in our apartment, so it follows that there aren’t too many accessories….well….there are still plenty of things I can move out of my closet, from under the bed, out of the storage area. (I don’t think I will be putting much back into those spaces!)
    Tag line? How about a mash-up of all the ones you have?

    “Practice intentionally giving your stuff a break by considering what you have, and why, then destuffocating your home so it can breath – because it wants to be nekkid too. Why not?” :)

  6. I have the urge to do this every January after the Christmas decorations come down. It always takes me a month or two to get around to putting all the “regular” decor back into our rooms. It feels good to let everything b-r-e-a-t-h-e after having so much stuff out for the holidays. But by Spring I’m happy to see the pretties return and liven things up again. :)

    Love that you’re experimenting with this–such a cool idea!

  7. I am trying to get to a place ALMOST naked. Like going from a full piece to a bikini. ha!

    But seriously, I have found that the only clutter that usually gives me hives is surface clutter. Anything that has a place I am fine with, but the stacked books, table top frames, etc. Make me itchy. So I will remove all of those. And I am pretty sure they won’t be coming back.

  8. I love this idea. Our living room tables have been cleared for months. I like the way you are accommodating your husband. I asked mine if he wanted to do this project. He was not a fan of the idea.

    • yeah, I figure it’s my experiment, not his so I don’t want him to suffer–otherwise he won’t put up with my future antics if I make life hard on him today. so yep, let him be!

  9. I love the idea of this. And a huge part of me really wants to do it. My biggest problem is that I literally have no place to put all of my junk – I mean, accessories :). I’m not sure if that means I have too much stuff, or too little space… But I will think about it this morning and decide if I will join you. I probably will. It would make it a lot easier to make some of the major changes around here that need to happen.

  10. The immediate tightening of my chest at the thought of removing my precious drivvel is a pretty strong indicator that I need to take this challange. You’ve helped me love my home again so I’m gonna trust you on this one. I’m in!

  11. Is it bad that I already have nothing out? Growing up my house looked like we just moved in, nothing on the walls or on any tables. Bare everything all the time. Now I’m actually trying to keep stuff out. The thought of putting my few precious things away makes me sad! I suppose I’m trying too move up from a bikini to a one piece!!!

  12. I wan’t sure I wanted to take the plunge, but, after thinking about it and talking to my husband, I’m in! I have a lot of things that have been hanging around since I was younger, little things that aren’t really me anymore but that I felt I had to use since I couldn’t blow a lot of money on decor. My goal for the week was to go through it, but I think to actually get anywhere, I will have to take drastic measures! Oh my, is this is hard for you as it is for me, Nester? I’m skeered!

  13. I did this a couple years ago. And I am just better now editing what I put out now. I need quiet areas in my rooms and then areas where I can rotate things. It will be interesting to see your experience

  14. constant struggle! you are so cool to think of these challenges. no blog, but will join in and tackle at least two rooms!

  15. Hmmm. I don’t really think of myself as that much of an accessories girl, but as I look around my house, I think I might have a hard time with this challenge. This could also be lots of fun and good for me! Count me in!

  16. I recently moved. Left my husband of 25 years. (stuck it out way too long with someone who thought nothing of leading a double life… ’nuff said, there!) So, my new place is giving me a lot of much needed solace, including decorating it. I don’t have a lot of accessories to begin with, but the ones that I do have, I very much enjoy. I can understand, however, from your standpoint, having a normal family, how that would be an interesting exercise. For me, its not the stuff in the house, but the people in it. If that’s not right, then it doesn’t matter what I have or don’t have.

    • ps: One thing I did do, however, is that when I moved, I took as little as possible and being an interior designer, it meant ruthless editing of samples and whatnot. Since everything is available on the internet now, it makes it possible to pare down considerably! It felt good to be able to unpack all of my things in only two days!

  17. Oh, girl! I have had a two year head start on this one. I tend to be a minimalist and have no accessories in my house because I am waiting to finish our reno. And yes, those empty walls do feel lonely and less like home. Maybe I should try to add some accessories during this time. Haha! I am all in favor of “clearing out the nest” tho. :)

  18. LOVE it!!!

    Call it the House Cleanse :D

  19. I am in a Nesting phase of life right now so I won’t be joining you. Go for it! Everyone needs a Month of Minimal Mania. It is good for the soul!

  20. Catherine says

    So after reading your blog for years, I have to say,
    I would love to read about how you live with 8
    Things in your house. Like having a wardrobe of
    8 pieces. What 8 accessories would you have in your
    Home? What pieces do you have to have, most versatile, etc.
    and how do you decide when to get rid of something for a new item?

  21. I will enjoy following along on your journey. I really need to be doing this with you but just can’t bring myself to at this time. I’ve recently been bothered by how dark and sort of depressing all of our furniture is and the accessories are about the only things that add color around here. I finally got the dark winter curtains put away and the white summer curtains put up and it helped. So I think I need to get out my ASCP, transform some pieces of furniture then give your experiment a try.

  22. I have a lot of stuff and I see your house is ‘healthy’ too, I like that you’ve put your house on a diet!

  23. Great idea. When we moved into this house I packed everything away and brought out bits and pieces bit by bit. I am to the point that I need to “de-clutter” again. It is fun to see things from a totally fresh prospective and some of the stuff I thought I LOVED-I never missed..and still don’t. Hope you have a wonderful month!!!! xo Diana

  24. You’re recieving a lot of ‘that’s so funny/perfect because’- well here’s mine. All of my stuff is in a moving storage facility, my husband are selling one place and buying another one, whilst I’m living in my parents (chock-full-o-stuff) house. Every time I start helping Mom clean something I am determined to send half of what’s in storage to the thrift store!

  25. My house has been nekkid since we moved in – can we do a Please Help Clothe My Home after June??!! :)

  26. Hi, my name is Michelle and I’m a home accessory-aholic. I LOVE them, I am constantly on the hunt for them, and I have way too many of them! I like to call it “collecting” because it sounds better. haha! Well, I know I have too much and want to get rid of some things and this challenge would probably help a lot. But I live in a small house and there are six of us. There is no extra space to store them away! But I am committed to going through my things and giving some to the Goodwill this month. I think I may start doing the buy one thing, get rid of one thing idea. A lot of the clutter in my home is my kids toys. Time to weed out their toys, too. Hope I can get them on board.

  27. More power to you my friend! The thought makes me hyperventilate actually. AND it would take me 30 days just to un-accesorize my house… That should tell me something already. But I am working on parring down what I really like and really need. I am a child of hoarders (the real ones) and the apple has not fallen too far it seems. Though I don’t have walkways surrounded in piles, I do have my piles. =) I do love your post though and it has had a positive impact so I will continue to watch what happens for you over the next 30 days. Maybe I can join in next year.

  28. I’m kind of inadvertently doing this already. I married my husband 1 1/2 years ago, and we lived in a rented house with a hodge-podge of mismatched junk until now when we just bought our first house together. Everything is packed away until I figure out what OUR style is.

  29. I hope you’re not going to be that “smoker” who thinks everyone else should quit cause you did. ;) jk Having said that, I have said many times I can live without everything but my coffee and my Bible. And maybe computer. And wet wipes. ;)

  30. Christie says

    I’m in the “sounds like trouble” camp even though I really, really, really like the challenge!

  31. Carlotta says


  32. Stephanie says

    I am in the middle of a HUGE purge. I collected so many cute, nice things for a future fantasy life which must have included a mansion to contain all this stuff… It is now all sitting around or stored away in boxes along with my entire life of memorabilia which i have saved! I finally realized, “Enough! Um… Too Much!” and i am purging big time. While I was in the stage of simply thinking about the possibility of letting a few things go, I got some of the items out of the cupboards and storage boxes and set them around on my kitchen counter. At first they were “so cool”. After a week, i was shocked and surprised to discover that they had lost their attraction! i looked closely at a piece of gorgeous polish pottery… so strange that it really did NOT look as wonderful as I had previously thought! AND, I realized that all the stuff was actually a burden! it keeps me from other things because I must organize and store away all of it! Gradually, I am going through everything! First cut is the yard sale. If it doesn’t sell it goes to the goodwill. Already the house feels much lighter.

  33. I read your post on Saturday morning, and by the afternoon my box had been packed. I didn’t have a lot of stuff around to begin with, but having clear surfaces (and I have a lot of them) is so refreshing. The stuff I cleared away is of strong emotional or historical (I mean that literally) value: original artwork, gifts from very special people, etc. An additional benefit of accepting this challenge is that I found a place for *everything*. Finally. Oh, and it gave me an opportunity to talk with my son (he’s 5) about “stuff” since he was watching me box things and started asking questions.

    Here’s my box pic: http://instagram.com/p/aAo7VWyoYb/

  34. Uh-oh, be careful what you wish for. If this is successful you won’t be “nesting” anymore and may find yourself without a blog!

  35. My household is in! My husband is more in than me, I’m the cutesy stuff and piles everywhere person. It’s inherited, I can’t help myself. I just had a long weekend back home (which was lovely) but I am ready to purge and pack away. My house will be getting nekkid slowly, ahem, a bit a strip tease perhaps? The classy kind, don’t worry. LOL. Oh the piles everywhere and the half colored spidarman pictures and the toys, oh the toys. So, first things first, clear away my stuff, pack up accessories, just move it to another room out of the way. Breathe. Pack up 2/3 rds of the toys. Put in attic for later. Enjoy nekkid space. Finish with purge/cleanse/ saving-of-stripper-house-to-be-up- standing-member-of-community.

  36. I love this idea. Please take some photos of your accessory-less rooms! I want to see the difference!

  37. From what you say you are leaving out, I don’t think you will be nekkid. I do want to see the nekkid pics though.

  38. Sounds like a great challenge! Our new house is practically empty we have two foldable chairs and a small white table. We still need to put in the plinths and install a heater to the bathroom before moving in entirely. I go there to unwind until we fully move out of this equally minimal place. But a bare house is so peaceful! The fact that it is uncluttered is a blessing all on its own. All I need to be happy in my living room is to have a sofa with some pillows, nothing fancy a lounge table with one small greeny plant and my big palm in the corner. Oh and of course the two side tables beside my sofa to put the lamps on. We all need light, right? That’s it! I can live without the television but I would need somewhere to put my iMac. For now it-s just a near empty place, my zen corner of the world and I love it!

  39. Mmm, you have read my mind! I’m not a hoarder but I really, really like stuff. To the point of tragic. I’ve recently sold %80 of my living room to fund a new sofa, so while the room is bare, I’ve been culling, deleting and well, enjoying it! Yes, my spare room looks like a thrift shop but I’m now taking the time to look at each room and take the excess away.

  40. Yeah! Great idea, I would like to put my accessories to the outdoor area. Loved your headline too catchy. :)

  41. Hurrah, that’s what I was seeking for, what a data! existing here at this blog,
    thanks admin of this site.

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