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Through her company Minima, Kristen Ziegler helps her clients purge the unnecessary, organize, and create a harmonious and productive environment. Her clients include companies such as Ledbury, Need Supply Co., Pink and Wills Financial Group, along with many residential clients.
Photos by Kip Dawkins
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“Whenever something isn’t working with a space, if it doesn’t feel right, instead of adding something (people want to go out to IKEA or a favorite design store to make it feel finished), I find that something as small as shifting a piece of furniture a few inches or swapping something or taking something away actually works. My process is subtractive, not additive. Then it looks finished.”
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“I think decorating is a bad word because it feels ingenuine. You should surround yourself with objects that are meaningful to you — not copied from a magazine. Every person’s space is unique and should reflect them. There is beauty in that honesty. Minimizing gets to honesty because these things actually say something about me. The things I don’t love, and don’t have some important sentiment or story behind it, are removed.”
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Ziegler originally planned to install a new IKEA kitchen along the back wall of the town house, but instead decided to tuck the kitchen under the stairs to maximize space. This also will allow her to blow out the back wall and add French doors and bigger windows to overlook her backyard in the future.
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Most of Ziegler’s furniture is white IKEA furniture, allowing her vintage pieces to shine. For instance, she pairs her IKEA DOCKSTA kitchen table with midcentury Planner Group chairs by American designer Paul McCobb.
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“Having an uncluttered desktop is essential for me to have clear, creative thoughts,” Ziegler says. She recycles most of her paperwork, and all of her information is digitized and stored in Google Drive. Cable management is also important for Zeigler’s minimalist space; she uses CableBox from Bluelounge to keep her cords tidy under her desk.
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Ziegler became a minimalist while studying architecture at Virginia Tech. She was tired of moving her stuff from apartment to apartment, year after year, so naturally she started getting rid of things. Also, architecture school opened up her mind to minimalism.
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Ziegler loves bunnies. She has two rabbits — Rocket, 8, and Coco, 5, — and several pieces of rabbit artwork in her home. This graphic pink bunny pillow is from Quirk Gallery.
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“I don’t have that many options, but I know I love what I have. Plus, I hate ironing.” She uses an IKEA TURBO clothing rack in her bedroom to organize clothes. “I love looking at my clothes,” she says. “It makes me feel like I’m in a little store and I’m shopping for clothes.”
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Ziegler’s future plans include renovating the bathroom. She wants to remove the wall between the tub and toilet to open up the space. She also wants to retile the floors and install a claw-foot tub. “I had a claw foot at my first Richmond apartment on Boulevard and used clear shower liners with nothing else. It was like taking a shower in the middle of the room.”
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Ziegler moved the laundry upstairs for convenience, putting a 24-inch-wide LG combo washer-dryer unit in a nook next to her bedroom. Ziegler uses IKEA KUPOL translucent drawers for organization, which are modeled after MUJI, a Japanese company. She loves them for their strict “form follows function” design. She also uses IKEA PINGLA striped boxes and Elfa Décor shelves, sold at The Container Store.
Kristen Ziegler lives in a small town house on a quiet, narrow street, and inside her home there aren’t many things.
Ziegler, 31, a minimalist and the owner of Minima Organizing & Redesign, recently purchased and renovated her 1,020-square-foot brick home on Parkwood Avenue in the Fan. As a first-time homeowner, Ziegler experienced the trials and tribulations of a renovation, while simultaneously putting her minimalism philosophy to work.
In late February Ziegler purchased her two-bedroom home built in 1920 with the idea it was going to undergo a small-scale renovation. One thing led to another — a wall was knocked down, flooring was ripped up and soon she found herself without a kitchen, and spending more time and money than she had anticipated. In early August her home was finished, and she invited us in to see how she lives simply in her newly renovated and sparsely decorated space.