Sydney’s first Muji store opened in 2015 comes up with attractive minimalism, simplicity, and functionality – a kind of consumption that is all about consuming less.
The Japanese retailer offers home-wares, furniture, clothing, and stationery. It’s motto is described as the “antithesis to the habits of consumer society” and sells items that have undergone a “careful elimination and subtraction of gratuitous features”.
The Japanese “organising consultant” Marie Kondo’s best-selling book, ‘ The Japanese Art of Decluttering and Organizing’, encourages readers to adopt a certain relationship to objects. it says  if it doesn’t “spark joy”, discard it.
Her latest book, Spark Joy: An Illustrated Master Class on the Art of Organizing and Tidying Up (2016) adopts a similar ethos with practical tips about tidying.
Websites such as Unfuck your Habitat show us the aesthetic pleasures of decluttering with before and after photos of newly tidied household interiors. One-on-one organizational coaching is available for those who want professional guidance on decluttering. Happyho also provide best tarot reading services in Noida and Delhi NCR India area.
A number of do-it-yourself websites, articles, and books encouraging simplicity and minimalism have also popped up, with mantras such as “bust clutter”, “let it go”, and “clear your mind”. What these slogans have at their heart is the idea that our things mean more than just the functions they serve.
Our things tell us about ourselves. As accumulations of memories, souvenirs from another place or mementos from another time, they somehow reflect back on us. Who we are, have been, or would like to be, how others know us, and where we belong are all things that are tied up to our relationship with objects. In the shadows of this trend is the idea that you may be perceived as being too involved with your possessions.
Decluttering, the natural heir of scientific housekeeping, can therefore be vlog seen as a form of distancing yourself, physically as well as socially, from things that often have negative connotations: disorder, dirt, deviance, hoarding, as well as the kinds of people and bodies that are usually seen as in need of transformation in order to “better fit” with certain social ideals.
In decluttering we are not only throwing away things but associations. In decluttering we re-draw the boundaries between ourselves and others, and between our things and what they mean to us.
There is also something to be said about how the movement is tied up with our ideas of Japan, of Zen living, and the way that spirituality and a philosophy of living are evoked. How we imagine a Japanese way of life to be simple, organised, and orderly also forms part of the appeal.
The recent trends towards decluttering encourage us to change our relationship to the things we surround ourselves with and to be more discerning about what we include and exclude from our homes and from our perception of ourselves. However, where do these things “go” when decluttered?
Do they become “out of sight, out of mind” as they head towards landfill? Do they become clutter in other people’s homes? If our objects are holders of memory, stories, and biographies will our memories of them be erased? Will we regret giving them away in moments of scarcity?
What is a necessity now may become clutter in the future, and what is clutter now may be of use later. Will there be a lingering nostalgia for that possession that was once discarded but is now painfully longed for?