3.31.2011

Settling Into My Style

Recently, while reading a post at Young House Love, I had an epiphany.

My girl Sherry writes:
Even if it means doing things that might not have mass appeal – as long as something speaks strongly to us, we’re in. There’s actually freedom in letting go of the notion that your house should please everyone who walks in the door. It allows you be more true to yourself and your place starts to feel more special.
As I sat in my cubicle at work (or "cuticle" as one of my co-workers calls them) a smile of contentment came across my face and suddenly I mentally let go of all I was unconsciously clinging to when trying to make decorating decisions for my house.

The truth is, and I don't mean this as harshly as it will read, but...

I DON'T CARE WHAT YOU THINK OF MY HOME DECOR.

Seriously, if you think about it, why should you care what others think of YOUR home? Sure, we all love for folks to gush over our creative ideas and fun designs, but usually the best homes come from folks who step outside the norm and create a place of warmth and style by just being themselves.

When I read Sherry's simple, yet kinda obvious thoughts, I decided right on the spot to quit caring what someone else might say or think when they visit my home. Everyone has different styles but that doesn't make one right or wrong or better or worse. It makes us DIFFERENT and UNIQUE and essentially MORE INTERESTING.

Since pretty much 100% of our friends live in other towns and states, I don't usually have anyone with which to share my decorating fun so the sharing generally trickles over to my mom. She is "Traditional Trish" with a capital T when it comes to home decor! She and I have completely different styles when it comes to decorating. She's all oriental rugs, solid mahogany furniture, beige/blue/cream color schemes, and totally a slave to the "you should haves" in your home (i.e. a formal living room AND a formal dining room AND a casual family room). I, on the other hand, am a bit more adventurous and tend towards the modern when it comes to furniture, accessories, and color. I can just as easily fall madly in love with the modern decor at IKEA as I could a beat up and creaky old piece of furniture with some history. I try to combine these things in my home as much as possible - like when the opportunity strikes and the right piece at the right price falls into my lap.

But while sharing with mom should be safe and fun, for me I end up disappointed a lot. I want my mom to enjoy my home as much as I do - to see if for what it is and appreciate the difference between us. I can appreciate her style even though I wouldn't necessarily replicate it in my own home. But I feel like she doesn't always appreciate mine. It kinda makes me sad. I can hear the doubt in her voice when I describe my latest paint project, or the new throw pillows I got, or the color scheme for the next room. It's a doubting sound that can only come from someone who clearly doesn't have the same style as me. I get that, I just with the doubt wasn't there. It makes me feel like my personal home style is wrong - and it's NOT!!! It's just different!

After my YHL epiphany though, I'm having so much more fun finding and shopping for things online and in discount stores or wherever I might be now that I "don't care." I feel incredibly free!

For instance, here are a smattering of things I found at Home Goods the other night that wouldn't be caught dead in my mom's house, but I found charming and interesting and wanted to bring them all home with me. Unfortunately, they were a bit too rich for my wallet and so they stayed behind at HG.

I simply love these fun chairs. I can totally see them as head chairs at a dining table as fun punctuation marks to an otherwise simple table. They've been in the store for a while now and at $120 a piece, I'm not quite ready to buy, but I'm thinking about it!

Then there's this fun little guy. They had lots of these. Some in white, some in black, some in red. The white was by far my favorite and I love that they are sitting on Lucite stands. They would be amazing bookends. For now, they still reside in the store, but I might go back and grab a pair!

Lastly, they had 3 of these gorgeous and fun carved wooden trees. This was by far the best one, but again, at $50 a piece it wasn't the right time or in the budget to bring one of these bad boys home. I was kind of smitten with them, though. Totally beautiful as mantel pieces. I can see one at each end of my mantel. These trees were so unique. They were about an inch thick and very sturdy. I just loved 'em!

The things that "speak strongly" to me are usually bright and colorful with personality. I'm not going to deny myself any more! WOO! While there are certainly parts of my house that I have decorated more traditionally, I always find that there's a piece that sneaks in that's more fun and loud.
Take our living room rug for instance:
We don't own those sofas anymore, but I love the mix of the modern sofas and rug with the classic mission-style coffee table and the classic bungalow physical features in this room. I swear that rug was made for our house.

Hopefully, I've made some sense here. I haven't been having all the fun decorating our amazing house as I wanted to when we first moved in. After realizing that caring so much about others opinions of my house were actually holding me back, I've dropped all that and am moving forward for ME. I hope that I can find happiness in the decorating journey ahead!

1 comment:

  1. That is so true!! I too find myself concerned with what other think, but for me, what makes sense for our family and what works is much more important! Your decorating decisions always look fabulous to me!! Keep at it :)

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