I’m a big fan of the Sunday Styles Section in the New York Times. This weekend I read an article that I can’t get out of my head.
It’s about Fabrice Grinda who, approaching 40 years old and despite being worth approximately 100 million dollars, decided to give up his lavish estate (including a butler) to live out of a Tumi suitcase of 50 items and pursue experiences with friends and family.
He basically became a nomad and purged himself of his McLaren car, his 13k Madison Square pied a terre, and the whole mansion full of stuff. Downsizing.
Sounds crazy, right?
But is it?
Now I’ve heard of nomadic hippies.
I’ve met poly burners living out of their vans, camping at Harbin Hot Springs in California out of choice and financial necessity.
In my social media class with Melea Seward I heard about Courtney Carver, who created the minimalist fashion project 333 which challenges you to dress with 33 items or less for 3 months. A challenge certainly influenced by her diagnosis of MS and desire to simplify life.
I’ve personally been blogging about traveling to Greece with less for years and the past few winters I did my best to maintain my stylishness while living out of a suitcase in California. These nomadic experiences were the catalyst for my program Closet Clarity.
What’s been so compelling to me about Fabrice’s story is that he worked hard to achieve what so many of us envision as a super abundant life. He built the companies, cashed out, got the mansion, the car, the lavish lifestyle and butler and then realized that what he created didn’t feed his soul. All that stuff wasn’t making him happy and became a burden. He donated almost everything and went off to stay with friends and family. Some of those stays didn’t work out so well and it took him a while to figure out the best way to spend quality time with them. As a nomad, he found dating challenging. Women did not want to join him living out of a suitcase.
He’s now in the process of buying a modest two bedroom in the East Village which I think is a good compromise.
So my question is…can you be a nomad and still be stylish?
Can you live with less?
I do think it’s easier for men to live with less clothing. Would a woman do that? I would be curious to hear about a lady who built her wealth only to destroy her wardrobe…
Commercials certainly sell us on the notion that owning things will solve our problems. We buy into the concept that more is better and that contentment comes at the end of the rainbow of lots of stuff.
It hasn’t been that case for me.
I did spend my 20’s and 30’s acquiring, and then about 6 years ago I started slowly purging. Nothing dramatic but since moving into my atelier on 5th Avenue I’vebeen decreasing my closet and possessions.
Last week I gave a younger friend everything I hadn’t used in my kitchen, And now it’s so much easier to find things. Made cooking a lot faster too.
I actually totally get why Fabrice did it.
Living in a huge empty estate isn’t as much fun solo as you would think. Managing that much stuff is actual work.
Living with less is easier and freeing.
Life is an experiment and we are all muddling our way through.
If you’re feeling like a closet cleanse is in order and don’t want to go at it alone you can check out my program Closet Clarity which will guide you through the steps with ease >> CLOSET CLARITY
Jump into the program now and get the streamlined closet you desire!