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Architect Jessey de Leon gives a guide to creating a minimalist home

By Camille Santiago Published Apr 28, 2021 6:39 pm

The pandemic has allowed people to see their homes in a new light. Maybe their room is in dire need of a renovation or perhaps they were inspired by someone from the Home Buddies Facebook group to improve their work-life space. But whatever the reason is, it’s no doubt that the lockdown has been a boon to home improvement projects. And one popular trend that many of us are into right now is minimalism.

But there’s more to minimalism than clearing your home of every ounce of clutter. According to Jessey de Leon, who is also the co-founder of Shibui Home Studio, a Japanese-inspired homeware brand that sells handpicked objects and functional art, a minimalist space is important in keeping your peace of mind. 

“Being stuck at home amplified the importance of how our home aesthetics, space or arrangements impact our mood and productivity,” the volleyball player-turned-architect told PhilSTAR L!fe. “Since most of us are living fast-paced lives, minimalism brings [us] peace and ease despite our very busy schedule, our very busy lives.”

Since De Leon is an expert in this field, we asked her to help us tap into our creative impulses before we get into redesigning our spaces. Ahead, check out the things you should consider when making your space look minimalist.


For De Leon, one of the main rules of designing a minimalist space is making sure everything has symmetry. “When arranging, I like balance. So if one item is purely white, then another should have a more rustic vibe to it. I think hindi naman ibig sabihin pag minimalism, parang literal lahat wala kang gamit. I think it's how the balance is sa mismong space,” she explained.“Dapat meron syang balance and everything looks harmonious when put together,” she said.


When it comes to minimalism, clutter is a no-no. Aside from organizing your stuff in crates, trays, and cases, decluttering is also a step so you’ll have a clear vision of what you need and what you don’t need for your space. However don’t just throw things away—keep some memorable items. “Balance is still key when you declutter. It doesn't mean you throw everything away, I still believe that keeping a few personal items you've collected through the years make your space much more meaningful,” she said.

Color scheme

One common misconception about minimalism is the colors. A minimalist home can most definitely still have splashes of color, but again, should be balanced. De Leon says, “I think it’s important that everything is cohesive even though there are pops of colors, you still make sure lahat yun nag co-complement with each other and you still stick to the color scheme.”


If the budget permits, get decors that have both quality and function. “Quality is still the utmost factor that you must consider in the long run when designing your space,” De Leon shared. “Since you want a minimalist approach, konti lang items mo. It’s important that those items are nice in quality.” She also added, “I think good aesthetic is not necessarily expensive, I still believe that there are products worth splurging on.”