How to hush your home - I tried the tidying trend that finally quietened my mind

The maximalist's guide to slowly decluttering

Living room desk and seating area with built in shelves.
(Image credit: Future PLC./Holly Cockburn)

Living in a small flat has a number of challenges, and as someone who loves home decor, simply having too much 'stuff' is one of the biggest. As a result, I've been on the hunt for a new tidying trick that makes my space, and mind, feel decluttered, without just getting rid of my favourite living room decor pieces. 

Working and relaxing in the same space means that even the most current home decor trends can feel tired quickly. So, although I utilised the very best living room shelving ideas, I felt like they were due a refresh and a declutter. Enter: 'hushing' your home. 

The tidying trend began as a way to quieten your environment by literally removing objects from your home - whether it's to simplify your Sunday reset or aid your sleep routine. It's also expanded into hush home decor with interior experts emphasising the importance of a minimal colour palette and design scheme to bring a physical sense of comfort.

Whether you're feeling in need of a September back-to-school refresh in your home or you're just in need of making a certain spot feel revived, this is how to hush your home decor effectively. 

How to hush your home

Living room with blue sofa and cushions and white shelves along wall.

(Image credit: Future PLC)

'Hushing is a brilliant new term for calming your home but the action of doing it is tried and tested,' explains Mimi Bogelund from The Organised Home and Life

The method involves focusing on an area of your home that feels particularly cluttered, whether that's in a living room, bedroom, or even home office, and removing all of the items from it. The catch is that you don't need to sell them or donate them, you need to store them in a box out of sight. This way, you live in a significantly emptier space for a while and learn which pieces you miss. 

'Removing everything from a room, an area or even a just piece of furniture, and then only replacing only what you really love or need, is a quick way to refresh, re-energise and calm your space,' adds Mimi. 


Whether I'm watching TV, working at the table or eating dinner, I'm staring at the same shelves every day. Not only was I starting to feel bored with the same accessories, but they'd also started gathering some serious dust. 

Living room built in shelves with books and accessories.

Holly's home shelves

(Image credit: Future/Holly Cockburn)

So, I decided to stack everything into a collapsable crate, bar a couple of books, and store it in the bottom of a cupboard. It's safe to say I'm not a minimalist, and I also don't love permanently getting rid of things, so this felt like an easy compromise. 

Some tidying hacks can also feel pretty daunting and consume much more than a few hours when you get into them. What I loved about 'hushing' is that it took no longer than 10 minutes to pop everything into a box, and the next step is an easy ongoing process. 

Over the following week, looking at the empty gaps on the shelf made me realise what was missing, and what I didn't miss at all. I gradually began to enter into the cupboard and pop things back on the shelves bit by bit, such as a photo frame and glassware. What was once an overwhelmed area full of random knick knacks now felt considered and brand new.


Living room built in shelves with books and accessories.

(Image credit: Future/Holly Cockburn)

'Hushing is a popular decluttering tip to remove things from their usual place, move them into another room and you’ll see them in a new way. It's much easier than trying to evaluate what’s creating noise or not serving you whilst they’re in situ,' says Mimi. 

Hushing my living room was an important lesson in evaluating what is no longer serving the space, without being hasty. It's the perfect compromise between Marie Kondo's decluttering methods and the maximalist 'clustering' trend I personally veer towards. 

However, it's important to follow through with the task and not just leave the discarded items in a cupboard forever. I ended up throwing out a couple of empty candle jars that I had once been using as decoration and were now gathering dust, making room for me to inevitably add in new accessories over time. 

It can be hard to let go, but if you haven't missed the things in the box, it's a sign that you need to say goodbye. The result of a decluttered space has meant that I now have the mental space to relax, concentrate on work, and start brainstorming for my next home decor project. 

Plus, there's far less to clean around. It's a win-win. 

Holly Cockburn
Content Editor

After starting out her journey at Future as a Features Editor on Top Ten Reviews, Holly is now a Content Editor at Ideal Home, writing about the best interior ideas and news. At Top Ten Reviews, she focussed on TikTok viral cleaning hacks as well as how to take care of investment purchases such as lawn mowers, washing machines and vacuum cleaners. Prior to this, Holly was apart of the editorial team at Howdens which sparked her interest in interior design, and more specifically, kitchens (Shaker is her favourite!).