Space, clutter and the case of the missing couch
Over two weeks later..and where have we been? I worked out my nesting instinct on fixing up a rental property in Albury. At the end of the project our son Joseph said: “So. You’ve bought a house but we’re not going to live in it and the tenant is going to pay for it and you’ve stolen all your own furniture to go into it?” Even James is missing the three seater couch he never really liked and wanted to replace with an L-shape. It makes me smile to remember the days when a little two seater was enough for both of us, and how my husband’s legs, knees and feet have seemed to grow and grow as our marriage has progressed. Perhaps because we have all been highly transient in the past, the hunt for a couch has been a bit of a theme for us. I have a habit of fixating on achieving a “couch level” brand of settling down, attaining “couch level” and then getting rid of the couch within weeks ofacquiring it. The fixed address would usually follow. Television dreaming is another one for us – we haven’t had a telly for six months, but when we are in need of entertainment we have discussions about where the box might go and how we might arrange our imaginary furniture around it. My father-in-law, who is no doubt remembering his mother’s house full of furniture, gets a bit nervous about the way we seem to be settling in by un-furnishing the place. I always used to quip that I’d be a minimalist if I had proper storage space. We have acres of cupboard space now, so there is no excuse. It’s been interesting to see the size of our living space increase as we have removed furniture, and to note how the way we live in it is changing. This photo is of the old dining room – once inhabited and dominated by the big table and used mainly on ceremonial occasions. The room is at the heart of the house, is one of the coolest, quietest and easiest to heat. The fireplace is a scorcher and used to burn the backs off guests and ballon chairs. Now we can give it plenty of room and I can use the space to make tentative meditative steps back into the worlds of craft. Is this achievable without drowning in clutter? We shall see.