Beautiful or Functional?

"Homes really are no more than the people who live in them." -Nancy Reagan

At its most basic function, a home is meant to shelter you, keep you warm, and house your family. Keep this in mind as you glance around your house. How many unnecessary items do you have on your shelves, coffee table, desk, or bedside table? Clutter weighs you down and detracts from your quality of life.

In your home, you should have only things that you find either beautiful or functional...the rest is just cluttering your home (and your life). Pick one room in your home and take a garbage bag with you as you walk around and throw out (or recycle!) anything you don't need and/or don't use. Try to progress with an objective eye and attempt to see how others would view your space. What does it say about you? Do you like what your house is communicating to your friends, family, and to yourself?

We often get very attached to our "stuff", but too often we keep things because we don't know what to do with them or feel guilty about getting rid of them. It is important to realize that having something (or someone for that matter) in your life that doesn't contribute is not worth keeping. Cleanse. It will lift your spirits and leave your home looking and feeling much better.

Keep in mind that everything you eliminate from your home could potentially be put to good use in someone else's! Donate unwanted items or hold a yard sale for things that are in good condition.

*These photos show the before & after of a living room in need of some de-cluttering.

For more information about Cailen Ascher Design or my upcoming book, Well-Designed Living, visit or email me at