Minimalist Style – Elegance in Simplicity for Men and Women

We live in a world of buy now, pay later, upgrade today, and more is more, but wouldn’t it be nice to get away from all of that?  I would like to share my ideas about minimalist style and how it actually has more to offer.

Minimalist style is the philosophy of “less is more” and includes focusing on the essentials, decluttering, maximized space, and what really matters.  Whether it’s the bedroom, art, décor, clothing, and chic or edgy style, minimalist style is flexible and achievable by many.

Have you tried keeping up with all the latest fashion, the newest technology, and just felt overwhelmed by it all?  Are you fed up with all of the consumerist nonsense and want something simpler? This article will dig deeper into the various styles of minimalists and give you a better understanding to achieve it.

What is Minimalist Style?

Minimalist style is living the philosophy of “less is more,” as frequently used in minimalism.  This style can apply to home décor, furniture, clothing, art, music, literature, and even the home itself.  Because minimalist style can apply to so many things, we’re going to look at some characteristics in general.

Minimalist style is design and aesthetics that focuses on simplicity, clean lines, and open spaces. It emphasizes the idea of “less is more” and promotes a sense of clarity, functionality, and calmness. In minimalist style, unnecessary ornamentation and clutter are intentionally eliminated, allowing the essential elements to stand out.

A minimalist room with a tv and guitar - Minimalist Style - Gone Minimal
A minimalist room with a tv and guitar

Characteristics of Minimalist Style

Minimalist style, because it can apply to so many things, can have variations in appearance.  The overall theme, however, is about maximizing space and character without the clutter.  Characteristics of minimalist style regardless of the category include the following:

  1. Only the essentials
  2. Natural materials
  3. Neutral colors
  4. No clutter
  5. Simplicity
  6. Minimal distractions
  7. Maximized space
  8. Discriminate between need and want
  9. Focus on meaning, not things

You can probably see where these characteristics can fit many things-the wardrobe, the home, lifestyle, etc.-and it’s not just the material things.  According to Professor Lisbeth Thorlacius of Roskilde University, minimalist style even applies to web design-where functionality is more important than aesthetics because people expect web pages to work, not be pretty. 

The focus is on natural light, no clutter, style, and comfort.

Minimalist style can apply anywhere you want to incorporate it to maximize possibilities.  Next, let’s look at some different ways to utilize the minimalist style.

Minimalist Style for the Home

We’ve looked at some of the characteristics of minimalist style, applicable to pretty much every category.  Let’s start with minimalist style for the home.

Minimalist Style Interior Design

Minimalist style interior design is all about creating an open, natural, comfortable living space.  This can apply to the living room, office, kitchen, or the whole home and utilizes natural materials, natural light, clean lines, maximized space, and no visible clutter.  It’s using the essentials to create a comfortable and functional space without filling up all available space.

Minimalist Style Bedroom

The minimalist style bedroom is a comfortable and simply decorated space with the essential furniture and neutral colors.  The focus is on natural light, no clutter, style, and comfort.  It’s a relaxing space designed for sleep as well as comfort, a space anyone would want to escape to for reading a book, sleeping, or finding your Zen.

A bedroom with simple furniture - Minimalist Style - Gone Minimal
A bedroom with simple furniture

Minimalist Art Style

According to Professors Lukito and Handoko of Universitas Indonesia, minimalism started with art but has influenced many other things to convey simplicity, basic form, little decoration, and of course-“less is more.”  Minimalist art style is very diverse in that it includes photography, paintings, sculptures, drawings, and more.  The minimalist art style is defined by simple beauty, clean lines, and a splash of color.  From single line drawn figures to abstract creations, this style is meaningful and interesting. 

Minimalist Decor Style

Minimalists are all about minimal décor, so the minimalist décor style is about function and impact pieces rather than accessories all around.  This décor is simple yet beautiful, tied into the color scheme of the room, may be part of a theme, and pulls the whole room together or makes an impact by itself.  Picture a single piece of artwork over a fireplace, a vase on a bookshelf with a single monstera leaf, or just a brightly colored accent wall.  That is minimalist décor style.

Regardless of your lifestyle and gender, there are a few different types of minimalist style that may be exactly what you’re looking for.

Minimalist Clothing Style

When it comes to minimalist clothing style there are many variations-from simply designed durable clothing to capsule wardrobes, there’s a minimalist clothing style for just about everyone.

Minimalist Dressing Style

The minimalist dressing style is not just about having fewer pieces in your wardrobe, but about presenting yourself in a simple fashion.  The essentials for work-a dressy top, nice pants or a skirt, nice shoes, and a watch could be considered minimalist dressing style.  It’s not brand name from head to toe with every accessory available-it’s using just what you need to be comfortable and appropriately dressed for work, school, play, and home.

A man wearing a simple blue shirt - Minimalist Style - Gone Minimal
A man wearing a simple blue shirt

Minimalist Style for Men

Minimalist style for men is largely defined by lifestyle-including work, home, and the environment.  Most men need proper style for work, and in true minimalist style he will have only the number of shirts/ties/jackets/pants/etc. to get through the work week.  Same for home life and exercise-nothing in excess.  It’s all based on his needs, not much more.  Minimalist style for men is about getting work done without extra things.

Minimalist Style for Women

Minimalist style for women is also defined by her lifestyle, work, and home life.  She will have just enough attire to get through the week including work, exercise, child care, home care, etc.  She should be comfortable with what she has to meet her needs, all while getting things done and taking time for herself.  Minimalist style for women is about getting her work done, also without extra things.

Types of Minimalist Style

Regardless of your lifestyle and gender, there are a few different types of minimalist style that may be exactly what you’re looking for.  Let’s take a look at three main types of minimalist style here:

Chic Minimalist Style

A woman wearing a minimalist work outfit - Minimalist Style - Gone Minimal
A woman wearing a minimalist work outfit

Chic minimalist style is about having clothing and accessories that are up-to-date, fashionable, yet sustainable.  Because the focus is on having less, the pieces in the wardrobe are classic-meaning they stand the test of time and never become outdated.  Natural materials, comfortable pieces, coordinating and classy, the chic minimalist style is always in fashion while being eco-friendly.

Modern Minimalist Style

Modern minimalist style is focused on functionality, sleek lines, simple furniture and architecture, and natural materials.  It’s a little bit funky rather than classic and will catch the eye without being obtrusive.  Modern minimalist style is functional and clean while bold and simple.

Edgy Minimalist Style

Edgy minimalist style is about pairing clothing with accessories to be different or unconventional.  It’s about standing out from the crowd, while still using comfortable, natural materials and functional accessories.  Edgy minimalist style is unusual, sets the wearer apart from others, and can be used for work or play.

In this helpful video, you will learn six minimalist style tips to help you get the most out of your wardrobe.

Related Insights

How do you design a minimalist?

A minimalist is designed through function, comfort, sustainability, and less clutter.  This is done through wardrobe, décor, accessories, furniture, and even the home-meet basic needs and add a little bit of comfort without all of the excess stuff.

What is modern minimalist fashion?

Modern minimalist fashion is based on practical pieces, accessories with function, comfort, and natural, durable materials.  Modern minimalist fashion is current yet classy, suave yet sustainable, eye-catching and comfortable.

What is the purpose of minimalist design?

The purpose of minimalist design is to maximize function and space, use natural materials, focus on sustainability, and minimize clutter.  This pertains not just to home interior design but homes, apparel, artwork, photography, architecture, and much more.

Areas of Life Where Real People Would Like to Try Minimalist Style

I asked friends and family to list an area in their life where they’d like to try minimalist style the most.  Here is what they shared and what I learned from the poll, and the percentages of their responses.  

Where People Want to Try Minimalist StyleTimes Selected 
Garage/work bench16%
Home office8%
Storage shed8%
Packing for Vacation8%
Tiny home4%
Where real people want to try minimalist style the most

Other Resources:

Minimalist style is an increasingly popular way to dress, decorate, paint, accessorize, and live.  Minimalism is flexible enough that you can do it whatever way you want, it’s not so structured that it’s unattainable.  Through minimalist style we can relax and simplify our wardrobes, our homes, our work, and our lifestyles.  Where will you incorporate minimalist style?

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