Monday, March 12

get inspired...

I went on the traditional blog stalk today and found a new one!! I love when I discover someone that inspires me in the home decorating department. I searched this lovely mummas page to find a little bit about her and the family. I particularly love her view on home decorating. Simply put ...just do it!!!

Enjoy the read....

A little bit of our philosophy: 
Let me start by saying, last year I turned the big 3-0. And I’ve embraced it. I think I may even be going through a bit of a rebellious stage. {I know, right? Cue the gasps} You see, I’ve always been a people pleaser. Not only that, let’s add southern to the mix and we can up the ante to about five times the normal potent strength of people pleasing potential. I’m the one who never said no, the doormat who was angry after the fact, and the oldest child who tried to make everyone happy. I was exhausted.
But this isn’t a counseling session, and my point: I realized those attributes extended to every area of my life. Including the choices I made when decorating our home. I was limiting myself, and I wasn’t brave enough to simply go for it. I wasn’t even really sure what to go for. {tiny violin} As I’ve grown, I’ve achieved the most delightful results: I no longer worry anymore about things I wish I could do. I simply start doing them. I’m no longer inhibited by what-if-the-new-owner-of-my-home-doesn’t-like-this-itis or the acute my-sister-in-law-won’t-approve-syndrome. And as a result, I’ve never been happier.
I’ve learned to be passionate about what I really love, and by embracing it, I pursue it. Don’t get me wrong. I didn’t just make up my mind one day. It’s been a slow process of training myself to think differently. Much of that has to do with the fact that I finally know who I am as a person, and a designer.
I have a new motto :
In turning this page for myself, I’ve seen a lot of this same syndrome in the people I help with their own homes. There are millions upon millions of people out there, simply paralyzed with doubt, fear, and unnecessary questions. Stuck in design limbo because they doubt themselves. It’s like we all need someone to tell us it really is all going to be amazing.
What if that someone was yourself?
As a result of conquering my own personal demons, here are three of the main guidelines that I stick to for my own spaces, and for helping others design theirs.
1. Follow your instincts.
Some of you are all, “Yeah. Well, duh.” But did you hear me? I said your instincts. Not anyone elses. For instance: your mom’s. Mom’s opinions are great. Until they start telling you what you can or cannot do with that piece of furniture she GAVE you from 1985. It’s composed of laminate and that looks like it fell off the back of a bean truck, but would look incredible, mind you, with a fresh coat of white paint. Only she forbade you to paint it. Why? Because she’s your mom and that’s what she does. Only this isn’t 1985. You are an adult. Listen to yourself. Do what you love. Or else you’ll never enjoy a cohesive, beautiful home created by you. {Obligatory disclaimer: my mom is actually very supportive of my painting ventures, and not everything needs to be painted. But I hear this a little too much from clients.}
I’m still undoing some of my I-bought-this-when-we-were-first-married-because-this-is-what-you’re-supposed-to-do, outright mistakes. We get so caught up in the projected ideals of others, that we forget the practical. In that process, we sacrifice what WE love. We should never have to sacrifice that in our own homes.
My husband and I woke up one morning, and decided we wanted to build a wall for our back porch, to turn it into an additional room. So we saved, and built. At the last moment, I also decided I wanted stripes on the planks of my walls. I listened to my instincts, and I went for it. And we love that room. Not my mom. Not my mother in law. Us. We do.
2. If you don’t like it, change it.
It’s really great that you spent 1200 dollars each on those dark bachelor club sofas circa 2007. {I may or may not be throwing up a little in my mouth as I refer to myself} Now that you’ve come into your own taste, and you’ve decided it’s not for you, what should you do? Sell them. Then use those funds to buy what you really want. Be savvy and resourceful and smart with your moolah, and do what you feel passionate about to create a home you love. After all, aren’t those couches considered value-less if you don’t love them anyway?

We moved into a brand new cookie cutter home circa fall 2007 and it had a cookie cutter kitchen. Some people would be perfectly happy with that kitchen. Nothing was wrong with it, except the fact that I hated it. I’m not an ingrate, so it took me two years of ideas, and an entire additional year of fear to get over it, and paint that kitchen. Yep. That’s three years of listening to unimportant nonsense before I dipped the brush and took the dive.

What was I worried about? The future owners of our home. What if someone didn’t purchase it because they didn’t like it? What if painting our cabinets “de-valued” our house? {cue hyperventilation}
And then I started thinking, what if I died, and never got another kitchen? What if the end of the world was just around the corner and I left with kitchen regrets? It sounds dramatic, but we aren’t really guaranteed tomorrow. Death trumps future buyers, and I would like to know that I enjoyed myself with my family while I had it, my last ever kitchen. My only regret: not doing it three years sooner. If anything, it makes our house a real home, just for us.

It was about a week after that, before I tackled the laundry room, and thus began the domino effect of changing over what I always felt kinda “meh” about. I’m in the process of doing three rooms, now. It’s a lot of work, and thinking, and projects and chaos, but in the end, its all worth it.

Now I’m on a mission, and we’ve never been happier in our home.

3. Make it.

If you can’t afford it, if you can’t find it because you saw it in some hoity toity fancy shmancy article… make it. Even if you can afford it, make it. Sometimes out of imitation arise the best creations. If you don’t have the capabilities of making it, be resourceful and savvy to go for what you want. I found a welder to make our coffee table. And an upholsterer to redo a stellar Duncan Phyfe. If you don’t have the funds to hire out, you have your mad skillz. Trade, beg, and borrow. If it’s something you feel passionate about, you can find a way to make it happen. Whether its curtains sewn for the perfect space, a handmade coffee table, or that piece of forgotten furniture instantly spruced with a fresh coat of paint…

Just go for it.

With the handmade option, unique details which truly make a house a home are created and in turn, a beautiful abode for your family. Gone are the days of to-the-trade only. With books like undecorate, blogs like Ana White, and never ending inspiration at the touch of a finger, people are thinking outside the Pottery Barn box. It’s a handmade revolution, and it only continues to grow. If we want a truly unique home, its a wonderful option to embrace.
To read more about our approach to home life + design… click away! Also, be sure to check out our entire FAQ’s page, here. 
Those are three basic guidelines that I find myself sticking to daily, and reminding others that “the rules” circa 1993 no longer apply to their spaces. Forget your inhibitions, and do what you love in your own home. Be a rebel and don’t worry…because it really is all going to be amazing.
Go for it.

You can find out more about The Handmade Home here

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