The Great Unveiling

Today I want to share with you photos of my new home. It is a work in progress but I am sure you will agree that we have slotted in fairly well so far. However my photography leaves a little to be desired.

We are constantly decluttering and reshuffling and it is coming together nicely. This Friday we take possession of a secondhand 70s sideboard which will replace my craft cubes that have been serving as our TV cabinet since we moved in. Two of the cubes will go into my kitchen cupboards while two others in the spare room wardrobe will be decluttered to make room for the paper file drawer cubes.

We are also getting some organisational fittings in the pantry and laundry in the near future to make them more functional. I will take some before shots of these spaces prior to the improvements and share them with the comparison after shots when complete.

And we will eventually also be fitting picture rails to some of the walls to accommodate the art and framed photos that survive our constant culling. At the moment the spaces under the beds are cluttered with these items.

One step at a time and, as per the usual 365 approach, there is no hurry. We will slowly bring it all together in our own good time and let go of the things that don’t fit with our ever evolving vision for it.

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Below is a photo of the bath tub side of the main bathroom at the time the other photos were taken. It has since been cleared and several of those items have been decluttered or listed on ebay.

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We are loving it here!

Today’s Mini Mission

Declutter something that requires assembly to use so you can never be bothered with it. Perhaps a complicated kitchen gadget.

For a full list of my eco tips so far click here

It matters not how fast I go, I hurry faster when I’m slow

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Continue reading with these posts:

  • Mini Mission ~ Friday 22Dec2017 Declutter a couple of old shabby shoes that you no long choose to use.
  • Day 242 Cleaning Out the Closet A guest post by - My Husband During a recent overseas business trip I read about an experiment to choose six clothing items and only use those items for a month. You could have multiple […]
  • Mini Mission ~ Thursday 21Dec2017 Declutter your fridge of out of date items or by using up as much as possible before adding more. With the holiday season here you will likely need every inch of spare space.
About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. What a nice apartment! It surely is the same style as your former house, so I assume it just matches your style just as well! I love the balcony (if that’s the correct term), it’s so spacious and allows really spending time outside – and that view! 😀 With that extra bedroom and second bathroom you still have plenty of (clutterfree!) space to host guests which was always important to you as I remember. It just shows that a small home is still offering enough space to what is important to you, when you strip away the unnecessary. A lovely place, Colleen! Enjoy it!
    Also, I’m excited to see the progress you make in the areas that you don’t feel quite content with now. I think, a 70s sideboard will be perfect for the living room and add some more warmth and charm to the setup.

    On a side note, I have the exact same pink bin you have in your laundry nook/room! How strange that these days we have the same products anywhere around the globe.

    Thanks for showing us around!

    • Hi Sanna, thank you, we are really happy with our new place. And you are right about the style – being a bit of a neat freak I do love a modern streamline home that is easy to clean. And I feel the same way as you about the 70s sideboard, it will add an element of eclectic warm style to the place. Also one day I will post some location shots. There is common area on the roof and the view from there is amazing.

  2. Colleen, it is looking good. I’m so glad you are loving living there. I really like the balcony. I think I would find myself out there often in good weather. You have such a great setup there. I’m so happy for you.

    • Thanks Deb J, I love the balcony too. We go out there several times a day and night just to watch the world go by. As the children’s song goes – “Living in the city is hustle and bustle. Living in the city is fun…”

  3. I love the colors! Grey and red are my favorites 🙂 Congrats on your new home, I really like it!

  4. It’s “unveiling,” as in removing a veil.

    • Hi Anita, yes sorry about that. I knew it was wrong when I typed it but ploughed on and then forget to fix it before publishing. Spellcheck doesn’t work on the heading in WordPress so I wasn’t shining out as a mistake.

  5. What a fabulous apartment Colleen! It looks so peaceful and wonderfully easy to take care of. Also I love the balcony!

    • Hi Christine, it is far from peaceful, it is the noisiest place I have ever lived but that is one of the things we love about it. But it sure is easy to take care of. I cleaned it from top to bottom in less than two hours this week. It has taken a little knocking into shape, cleanliness wise, as there were several areas that had been a bit neglected in the past. But cleaning is one of my fortes so not problems there.

      • And here, Colleen, you have given the best reason for decluttering and downsizing – cleaning the whole place in two hours. There are so many better things to do with one’s time than clean. I know a few strange souls say they enjoy cleaning. Surely they enjoy the effect – a clean house; and not the actual act! I worry if it is otherwise.

        Without the clutter and mess, your flat looks like a display home! You’ve inspired so many people!cthank you.

  6. Well done Colleen, I love your new home! It looks very comfortable and familiar to me and, after thinking about it, I realise it reminds me of my own!

  7. I am so envious! Well done you! It looks like a magazine shoot from a House and Garden magazine.

  8. I love it! You give me hope for my little place. Is it 2 bedrooms/2baths?

  9. Thanks for sharing your photos, I am so excited to see your decluttering journey working in real life! One day I might get to a stage of more empty space but I am a long long way off yet. Your photos are really inspiring and the apartment and view are beautiful.

  10. Love love love the sleek kitchen! I can’t decide if that or the balcony is my favorite… But all the rooms look great 🙂 Your color scheme is consistent throughout the apartment, which adds to the spacious effect. Approximately how many square feet/metres is the apartment?

    I am wondering if my household will ever be decluttered enough to downsize from 1250 square feet… We are not hoarders, but in the recent past I felt the need for “abundance”… Finally I am seeing the value of having only what we need, as we need it. It’s saving us a ton of money! I sure wish I had learned the lesson earlier, but better late than never, lol

    • Hi Peggy, I love the sleek kitchen too but it needs some really adjustments on the inside. Nothing that can’t be easily fixed though. I didn’t realise until you pointed it out that even the furniture and linens are consistent in colour scheme throughout the apartment. The fact that the duvet in one room belongs with the pillow shams in the other helps with that consistency. I kept taking the duvet off our bed at night because it is too hot for the summer and then realised that since we haven’t yet replaced the duvet in the other room we might as well put it in there out of our way for the time being.
      I don’t know how many square feet the apartment is. If I remember I will ask my husband, he probably knows or can look it up.

  11. I a pleased to see Colleen that you have the beginnings of a jungle on your balcony, remember, plants do not count as clutter! 🙂

  12. Your place looks wonderful. You’ve done a great job of combining calm with cheerful. Okay, now I’m inspired to haul some more stuff out of my own home!

    I’m a frequent reader but infrequent commenter. Thank you for the daily inspiration. This is by far my favorite blog. 🙂

  13. What a great space – I love the neutral background for your red furniture and accents. It will be fun to see how you refine the spaces as you live there and see how it all functions.

  14. Just by looking at these photos, your home has that comfortable feel about it that I get in hotels. And it looks like there’s enough space. When I stay in a hotel I want to stay there. That feeling is what I want to achieve. I love red too.

  15. This is really fantastic, Colleen! I am so happy you are enjoying your new home. I love that view! Your home looks very comfortable and I really like the non-cluttered kitchen. Very relaxing. 🙂

  16. Congratulations on your new home!! It is beautiful, more compact & looks very comfortable. Thank you for sharing & being a continued inspiration to me & other followers on your blog. Wishing you & your hubby lots of happy times there. Randi

  17. Hi Colleen, i’ve been following your blog daily for a very long time but I’m not good for writing in, i’m so happy you have found someplace special and wishing you happiness there for a long time to come, Sinéad from Ireland.

    • Hi Sinéad, I wish you had commented sooner. My husband in I have not long enjoyed a wonderful tour around Ireland. We could possible have met up somewhere along the way. Where in Ireland are you from. Thank you for your well wishes on our happiness in our new home. So far so good, we love it here.

  18. I love your new home. Congratulations! It must feel wonderful to know that the minimalist life you’ve been working towards all these years is the reason you and your hubby can enjoy the home you have now. My husband and I just moved into our new (smaller) home this weekend. There is definitely more decluttering to do! When we moved we got rid of a king bed, a buffet cabinet, two very large tall cabinets, an outdoor table, and more book shelves. Well, I still need to schedule pick up for these things but they didn’t come with us to the new house. Now that we’re unpacking we have filled 3 more boxes of stuff to cart off. They are in the backseat of my car as I type this. I can’t wait til we’re a little more settled!

    • Hi Melissa, thank you, we do love our new home. And congratulations on your smaller home too. And well done with the decluttering. Don’t worry that there is still more to do. Take your time and be sure that you are letting go of the right things. Since we moved in I have been slowly rearranging my kitchen and the slow deliberation of that process how helps me to understand what renovations I need inside the cabinets. Had I rushed into this I might have regretted some rash decisions. Now I have a good feel for what needs doing and how things will be arranged. Take your time and it will all come together.

  19. Oh my gosh!! Love love love your place!

    We also downsized to a two bedroom, 2 full bath condo in a low rise building. It is 1000 sq feet and I am constantly clearing out the clutter.

    We have spent years remodeling it and I do just love it. It’s small but perfect for us. Jealous of your balcony! I would love to have one …even just a small one. Will you post pics of your closets?

    • Hi Cathy and welcome to 365 Less Things. Thank you, I love my place too. And yes I will be posting photos of my closets and pantry. I must take some photos soon before I get them too fine turned for before photos. My pantry and under sink cupboards will be the ones that end up with the biggest transformation.

  20. Hi I’ve just found your blog 2014 is my year of change Due to some rather shocking news that my hubby has incurable cancer I have started detoxing our lives. I believe in eliminating the unnecessary is vital to keep our environment as healthy as posssible. Doing good for a local hospice as providing them with lots of goodies to sell in their shop. I am also 40 something who lives in Newcastle (England though). Thank you for the inspiration. The blogs I’ve read so far, while good lacked the feminine touch so I’m looking forward to reading your archives.

    • Hi Sharon, I am so sorry to hear about your husband’s cancer. I can’t imagine what that must be like for you. I hope that a miracle happens for you and you get far more years together than you are currently expecting.

      Detoxing and letting go of the unnecessary in your lives can only be a good thing. I wish you every success in your mission.

  21. It looks great Colleen. Hope you have wonderful times there.

  22. It looks so lovely, Colleen. I had thought that your place might look a bit sparse by now, but it’s not at all – it’s just so serene. I’m going to have to start nagging the husband again now!!

    • Hi Tracey, most people do expect it to look sparse but it just looks like home with creature comforts and things we love or use on display. If it helps tell your husband that my husband loves it here. I have never seen him smile so much.

  23. It looks fabulous Colleen. And I think you did quite well with the photography 🙂

    I am so glad you are settling in nicely, and I am sure you will continue your little, subtle changes over time. I can’t wait to read about them.

  24. Colleen,

    You place looks great! I do have a question for you. Do you miss the open space of having a larger place to live? We have been considering downsizing, but am concerned we would miss the space. It is cold where we lived and if we are stuck inside in the winter, I think I may go crazy in a smaller place. What have you found through downsizing?

    • Hi Spendwisemom, not one little bit. In fact we feel that this place is more open. For one reason the living area isn’t much smaller and our bedroom is bigger. But mostly our last townhouse had a small back yard with a high fence while the front only looked out to the other townhouse garage doors and concrete driveways. This place has the balcony which looks out to the whole city and a block away is the harbour, cafes, museums, restaurants…, so we feel open to the world and that is fabulous.

  25. Hi Colleen, I’m from Co. Kerry, it would have been lovely to meet up as I love what you do but hopefully you will come back sometime, you have a nice Irish name so maybe there is a connection to Ireland somewhere, take care, Sinéad.

    • Hi Sinéad, there is most definitely an Irish connect for me. I have ancestors from both Co. Donegal and from Tipperary. We spent several days in Co. Kerry staying at Dingle. It was lovely. And yes I would love to go back someday.

  26. Colleen,

    Do you miss having a yard or garden or flowers? Do you find it hard to live in a smaller space, and how what do you do when you have company?

    • Hi Marianne, I lived in a townhouse prior to this so didn’t have much of a yard anyway and it was fenced in by a six foot fence. Aside from the plants in my little garden I couldn’t see much but the sky from my yard. Now I can step out on the balcony and see for miles. Also I have acquired, from generous friends, several potted plants, two of which are flowering, and am enjoying tending to those. So the answer is no. I actually feel like I live in a larger space.