Your big day is not far off and you can’t wait for your new life to begin. It’s understandable that right now you’re focused on planning the perfect wedding, however this article is meant to provide helpful tips on how to live intentionally after you have said your I do’s. Going into your marriage with intention will give your relationship strength and you’ll create a home life you love! While minimalism can mean many different things to different people, the concept remains the same: to live more simply, striping away what doesn’t make you happy and making room for the things you value. These tips are meant to inspire you but a minimalist life will look very different for each couple.
Guest Post By: Lydia
Manage your registry with a minimalist mindset
If you each live on your own, there is a good chance you’ve got duplicates of commonly used household items. If this is the case, be sure to take stock. If you have two tea kettles, keep the one that is in the newest condition and donate the other. Many items that are suggested for a wedding registry are novelty items that have traditionally been given as wedding gifts, but aren’t quite as relevant today. These include housewares like fine china, table linens such as napkins and many different kinds of glassware. Let’s focus on glassware as an example. One wedding registry idea list had recommended registering 84 glasses in total (sets of 12 for a variety of beverages). Even if you aren’t gifted all 84 glasses, that is still a huge amount of it doesn’t suit your lifestyle. 4 drinking glasses, 4 beer glasses and 4 wine glasses may be plenty for one couple, but others may plan to host large groups in which case they would need additional glassware.
As you build your registry, focus on building it with the items you would put to use everyday plus a few items that you would use occasionally for hosting. In many cases, the pretty fine china pieces won’t hold up for everyday use - registering for durable, functional items will insure you don’t end up with things you can’t use regularly and will also prevent your cupboards from becoming over-crowded!
Create a capsule wardrobe as a couple
Established in the 1970’s by British boutique owner Susie Faux, a capsule wardrobe “is a collection of a few essential items of clothing that don't go out of fashion, such as skirts, trousers, and coats, which can then be augmented with seasonal pieces.” Capsule wardrobes have the potential to make life so much simpler and can be created to suit your lifestyle and personal taste. It will make getting dressed in the morning easier because less choice = easier decisions.
When building a capsule wardrobe, try sticking to a colour scheme that compliments your skin tone and styles that are flattering. Most importantly, you’ll want to focus on clothing that makes you feel great! Keeping in mind the professions of you and your spouse, a beginner capsule wardrobe could include the following:
Ladies CAPSULE WARDROBE:
9 layer friendly shirts
3 open front sweaters or blazers
2 pair of pants/jeans (versatile ones that can be rolled up as ankle jeans are key!)
2 pair of shorts
Guys CAPSULE WARDROBE:
2 sweatshirts or sweaters (depending on the guy)
2 long sleeve shirts
2 pair of pants/jeans
2 pair of shorts
a pair of dress pants
2 pair of sandals (one dressy, one casual)
2 pair of boots or sneakers (one dressy, one casual)
1 pair of dress shoes
The above items form your base wardrobe, which you can customize based on your personal style and the climate where you live. The society we live in now encourages us to buy what we want, when we want it, but being mindful of your possessions and what you really need can allow you to feel more of a sense of peace and freedom. Have you ever been frantically looking for that specific pair of pants to match a top only to realize they were at the bottom of your laundry hamper? With a capsule wardrobe you won’t have this issue! Pick a top, pick a bottom, throw on a scarf or some jewelry, grab your coffee and away you go.
Focus on financial freedom
When you read about financial freedom, it usually relates to planning for retirement. But you can have freedom by avoiding becoming overwhelmed with financial obligations as you begin your lives together. These obligations can take many different forms, such as a large mortgage that results in becoming “house poor”, purchasing cars with large monthly payments or even just thinking that your first home as husband and wife needs to be furnished and perfectly decorated by the end of your first year of marriage.
Even couples with high household income can end up stretching themselves too thin financially, and that can wreak havoc on your marriage. Adapting a more minimalist lifestyle can compliment a life of financial freedom as you’ll be more interested in enjoying experiences together and with other people instead of keeping up with the latest trends and newest gadgets.
This isn’t to say you can’t enjoy purchasing nice things for your home, but instead save for things you want and pay in cash instead of using excessive credit. This way, as you begin your lives together you’ll feel in control of your finances and a sense of peace about your future!
Living with intention means that you are thinking about your life together, rather than letting life happen to you! Embracing minimalism in your marriage could simply mean focusing on what you really need to begin your lives together when creating your wedding registry, building a capsule wardrobe together to prevent laundry overwhelm and stuffed closets, or aiming to keep your finances in check with your future in mind. Make space for simplicity and create a joyful life together!
Lydia is a wife, working mom and creative who is passionate about sharing her journey to intentional living and hopes to inspire others to live a life they love. Follow her on Instagram for tips and ideas @lydiaboudreau