A conversation on Instagram last week prompted me to share my growing realisation that 5 is a powerful and useful number for those looking to ‘right size’ their possessions.
Here are a few examples:
I have 5 pairs of shoes in my winter wardrobe:
- Black work court shoes with a heel
- Grey casual lace-ups
- Reebok trainers
- Knee-high boots
- Walking shoes
In summer, I trade court shoes for ballet pumps and flip-flops and sandals for lace-ups.
Living in a climate where it’s perfectly possible to enjoy temperatures in the teens one day and below zero the next, it’s useful to have a variety of shoes for all weathers and situations. These shoes cater for all types of events and I simply don’t need any more.
Having cut down the number of cookery books I own, I also realise that I’m nearing my perfect five, as there are six books remaining in the kitchen. There’s just one book on the shelf about which I’m still unsure. I use a small number of its recipes very occasionally but these might be better scanned and saved, so that I can pass the book onto someone who’ll appreciate it more. The remaining few have now been resigned to the “box that will go to the second-hand bookstore”. If I don’t open the box for 30 days, out it will go!
Bags – from small to large
I have one tiny cross-body bag for when I only need to carry my keys, my small purse and my phone. Next size up is a neat, black messenger bag that I use daily. The largest handbag I own is a Dune tote that has seen better days (but I won’t buy a replacement until I have the perfect one!). Next comes a Cath Kidston floral shopper in a wipeable vinyl fabric, followed by a soft brown bowling bag that’s neat enough to carry as hand luggage and perfect for a few days away. And that’s it. And there you have another 5…
The list goes on, but it may be that this handful of examples provides a guide for when you’re asking the question, “What’s the right number?” Answer? Gimme 5!!
Do you have a perfect number of a particular item? Can you count the number of possessions in a particular category on one hand?