Tuesday, June 10, 2008

the rules!

so it occurred to me that i need to be clearer about what exactly will guide me on this project. for example, what is okay and what's not? here is a list, in no particular order, of thoughts, guidelines, and vaguely outlined sketches of what i'm going to be trying to do for the next year.
  1. everything i buy for my home will be unique, wonderful, and something i've fallen entirely in love with. i can't promise that the odd purchase from target won't sneak in, but i'm going to try to cap things from chain stores at no more than twenty dollars each. everything else i'll try to source from dumpster dives, craigslist, ebay, thrift and vintage stores, and trades. (will trade massages towards certification for your mid century modern table lamp!)
  2. this does not apply to clothing. i thought about it, and i've definitely gone through my wardrobe in the spirit of this project and purged everything that wasn't essential, fabulous, or both. but at the end of the day, i repurpose my look a lot, and i need the flexibility of being able to do that quickly.
  3. if i don't love it, i won't buy it. if i don't have it, i'll live without it. this means that i may not have a desk or a couch for a relatively long time. when i do get one, though, i'll be wedded to it, so whatever i find will have to be worth the wait!
  4. i will catalogue everything that i own. some things may be grouped generally (i am, for example, thinking in particular of one big photo with all the paperwork i have to deal with). but i think that knowing exactly how much i have, for better or for worse, can only really help me in terms of having a life that is a known and manageable quantity. besides, think of the insurance ramifications!
  5. at the end of this, i will give the lion's share of what i've accumulated away. this one is one i'm still thinking about. a big part of the reason i wanted to do this project anyway is the fact that i travel a lot, and i have absolutely not figured out where i want to be in a permanent sense. but i'm also a nester and a packrat, because i tend to get more attached to belongings (and, to be fair, put more thought into selecting them) than most. in some ways i'm trying to take all of these things - the nesting, the attachment, the selectivity and the impermanence - to their absolute limits. i think it's going to be a huge test for me. but i do have to say, at the outset, that everything i acquire is something i am going to be doing so under the understanding that it is probably not mine to keep. weird!
  6. i want your feedback! this project is kind of off the wall even for me, and i'd love any comments/input/covetous attempts to lay claim to the fabulous shelving i'll eventually procure that you have to offer me. i also expect to have a fair amount of projects because of the level of customization i want this to get to. so down the line, if you have great advice on how to reupholster a couch or refinish a hutch or hang potentially illegal ceiling lighting - or, even better, if you live in boston and you want to come help - drop me a line! let me know what you think; i think that one of the most interesting aspects of this project is going to be seeing what happens when i turn my home into, for all intents and purposes, a community with a history and a destination. i'd love for you to be part of that!
i'm still thinking about how to organize everything and what the smartest way to begin is. i think it will be with a visual/written catalogue of everything as i unpack it, once i move into my apartment. let me know if there's anything i've told you i wanted to do that i forgot to record here, and i'll come back and add it. (alternately, let me know if there's something you think i should be doing, and i'll consider it and possibly add that too.)


Kiya-rain said...
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Kiya-rain said...

I like the idea of having an on going "project" in ones life. Reminds of one of my favorite abstract thinking artists, Andrea Zittel http://www.zittel.org/

Or the journalist who had a blog on msnbc when she decided to become a Freegan for a month-http://blog.newsweek.com/blogs/freegangirl/archive/2007/08/22/day-one-how-to-be-a-freegan-in-nine-easy-steps.aspx

I need a project! Good luck and also, I think the selling and especially bartering should be key. I would love to live without material possessions weighing me down.