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Homeowners with an eye for quality, not quantity.


I recently read somewhere that “Simplicity is purity. It is facing the true nature of things and embracing it instead of… filling a hole inside you with chaotic activity or an overabundance of stuff… A simple home, a simple lifestyle, simple meaningful relationships, these words describe freedom…intensity… focus… a life fully lived. A simple life is a deep life.” As I entered this home, these words took on real meaning. The living spaces were tastefully furnished with exactly what was needed to make this home welcoming and comfortable.

The homeowners admitted that it was a busy work life and the desire to have a relaxing retreat for their family that inspired the design and décor of this home. Fifteen years ago when the homeowner bought this house, he knew that he wanted to create a living space where all of the family could come together to re-connect and replenish both their bodies and minds. With the emphasis on keeping the décor “simple and practical” the home owner and his wife have spent a great deal of time carefully selecting all of the furniture pieces for their home.

As he explained, “The most important thing is the functionality and practically of the things we buy.” He was very firm in his belief that every piece of furniture should serve a purpose. He proudly admitted that most of the furniture that he still has today, is what he’d bought when he originally purchased the house. He said, “I buy things that we can use, and not just for display. We only invest in things that are robust, things that last”, an idea which both him and his wife agreed with. In today’s world where so many people prefer to follow changing trends, it was refreshingly different to speak to someone who values quality and durability rather than passing styles.

The natural, earthy decorating scheme which combines the effective use of limestone and slate was the perfect backdrop for the owner’s quaint personal collections: a treasured collection of stamps from his childhood, exotic rugs from his travels and the impressive artworks given to him by his brother. In this cosy and inviting environment you could picture guests feeling right at home. The owner explained, “When we have guests over, there is always interaction and conversation which is why we don’t have the TV and any other electronic devices in the main living area.” He believes that nowadays, people are too easily distracted by the use of mobile phones and electronic devices and have forgotten how to listen and enjoy good conversation.

Photography by Greg Chin & Riley Khoo

It is clear that this homeowner gives his guests his undivided attention while they are visiting him. And this is why he said, “Our guests always end up staying for a while. They enjoy the food we prepare for them and we actually have meaningful conversations.” It was certainly a privilege to have spent time getting to know this family, chatting with them and enjoying some delicious homemade salmon quiche which was prepared by the owner’s wife.

With a contented smile the owner said, “What’s the use of having a big house when at the end of the day you can’t even afford to maintain it? My home may not be big, but I have my family to come home to, it’s easy to maintain and we’re all very happy living here.” Having looked around this home and spoken to this down to earth homeowner I think that it is true to say that less is more; and that simple is simply better!

This article was published in the May 2015 issue of Inspire Living Magazine. Download it here!