No Knick Knacks Allowed: 6 Reasons I’ve Banned Tchotchkes From My Home

Knick knacks, trinkets, baubles, figurines, tchotchkes, whatever you call them; they are no longer welcome in my house. I have enacted a strict “No Knick Knacks Allowed Policy”. Violators will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. If a knick knack dares to trespass on my property, it will be donated, sold, or shot on sight! (I’ve given my husband permission to use knick knacks for target practice).

Why have I gone to such extreme measures to keep knick knacks out of my home? I’ll give you six good reasons why…

No Knick Knacks Allowed: 6 Reasons I've Banned Them From My Home

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No Knick Knacks Allowed

The main reason I have outlawed knick knacks from my home is because I hate cleaning them. My house seems to attract dust like a fly to poop. (Pardon the expression).  If I had decorative items on shelves or tables, I would literally be dusting every day. (Instead of my usual once per month year.) I have no desire whatsoever to spend more than 30 minutes per day cleaning my house. Therefore, my quick and easy solution to keeping a (fairly) clean abode, is to keep it free of knick knacks.

Another reason I do not allow knick knacks in my home is because they are easy to break. I have three active boys (who frequently have friends over), as well as a boisterous husband. Plus, I am a very clumsy person. Things get broken in my house all of the time. I simply do not like to stress over keeping my stuff “safe”. As such, I choose not to own any tchotchkes or decorative trinkets.

“Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”-William Morris

Figurines are creepy. At least I think so. When I would visit my grandmother as a child, I was always creeped out by her knick knacks. They had eyes that would follow my every move. Whenever I had to sleep in the same room as them, I would turn them around or cover them up so they couldn’t “see” me. Despite the fact that I am now an adult, and the figurines are long gone, the mere thought of those creepy miniature statues sends shivers up my spine.

Knick knacks take up valuable space which my small house simply doesn’t have. Our family of 5 lives in a 1,100 square foot home. There just isn’t a lot of room for excess stuff. Decorative items take up valuable real estate. In order to display art, you need wall space. If you want to showcase a figurine collection, you need a curio cabinet or shelf. In order to fit a china cabinet in my dining room, I would have to get rid of our only space for eating meals together. Which is not a trade-off I am willing to make.

Why I've Banned Knick Knacks From My Home

Dear Knick Knacks: It’s not you, it’s me

Furthermore, I do not own tchotchkes because they add to visual clutter. I get overwhelmed quite easily. If something is competing for my attention everywhere I look, my mind is unable to “rest”. I prefer to have empty spaces in my home where my eyes can go when they need a break. In my living room, for example, I have one wall of artwork created by my family. The rest of the walls are blank. In my dining room, an original (1904) picture window is the focal point. Limiting the amount of visual clutter helps me have a more peaceful home.

The final reason I have banned knick knacks from my home is because, frankly, I do not love them. I am a firm believer in keeping items you truly love so you can enjoy them. Therefore, If you adore knick knacks, feel free to display them proudly! Personally speaking, my love affair with figurines, baubles, and decorative trinkets has come to an end.

“If you cannot learn to love real art, at least learn to hate sham art and reject it.”-William Morris


Don’t get me wrong, I can appreciate (what I consider to be) exceptional works of art. When they are hanging on the walls of an art gallery or a friend’s home. I also delight in discovering unique sculptures and colorful ceramics. Again, when they are displayed at a gallery, craft exhibit, or someone else’s home. This way, I can admire interesting knick knacks without having to create space in my own home for them. More importantly, I don’t have the responsibility of keeping them clean!

Do you have a love/hate relationship with knick knacks? Let me know in the comments!


Wow, this is harsh! You mean to tell me this woman doesn't have ANY sweet little figurines in her home?

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About Cheryl Lemily

A wife, mom of 3 boys & 2 dogs. A minimalist raising a minimalist(ish) family. Living a small, slow, simple life. Helping others declutter & simplify.

2 comments on “No Knick Knacks Allowed: 6 Reasons I’ve Banned Tchotchkes From My Home

  1. Great article! I love your stance on the clutter! I try to remind myself how I like a clear space for the eye. I do love the thrift store to much. 🙁 I love your quotes to!!

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