Image of terracotta figures, 750-600 BC, Cyprus, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art New York

Small is playful, humble, safe, appealing, cute…

Small is Beautiful, the title chosen for a small book first published in 1973 by British Economist E.F. Schumacher, has outlived him and helped fuel discussions about everything from how we feed ourselves to how we get from A to B.

Small was already in the air by the time Mr Schumacher’s book hit the stands. The “Think Small” ad for the Volkswagen Beetle is from 1959. The Beetle provided North Americans with a way to save money on gasoline while showing your neighbours you had a sense of humor. The advertising agency, Doyle Dane Bernbach helped to encourage the converts with their provocative, simple ads.

At the same time, Britons had their own funny little cars, of which the Mini Cooper (1959 – 2000) was, and remains, the most beloved. The name and some of the character came back as the MINI introduced by BMW in 2001 and still in production. The original was put on a British Postage Stamp.


If you want to live in a city (Antwerp, Tokyo, Basel, Vancouver), finding interesting ways to live small is important and sometimes beautiful too.

Small is lots of things. Some are beautiful, some are bizarre, some are silly. You can find over one billion of them with the help of google and a good pair of eyes.

Tiny radio from Motz

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