Love the One You’re In

Posted on Friday, June 3rd, 2011 at 1:53 pm

Do you walk into your home and go, AHHHHHHH, this space just feels so…soooo…right?????

from Urban Grace....sooo lovely!

If not, what is holding you back?

Many times clients call because they cannot pull their home together and they need major help.   STAT. They aren’t exactly sure what is wrong, just that something is definitely not right.  

what's wrong with this picture????

The next time you think knocking down a few walls is the answer to your home-woes, try the following tips first.  If you still aren’t ahhh-ing when you come home, give me a call.

1. Get Rid of It! Yes, it is okay to part ways with a family piece you do not love.  I give you permission, so get rid of the guilt, and let it go.

ifitshipitshere.blogspot.com. if you don't love it, don't keep it.

 One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.  The rocking chair from my daughter’s room was her great-great aunt’s, but because she has outgrown the need of one, it is about to go into storage as well.

teddy bear's seat was my child's great-great aunt's rocker

 Just because it is a family heirloom or your aunt gave it to you for your wedding doesn’t mean it belongs in your home.  So many tastes are out there, and I bet you can find a home for it (your sister? your niece? your neighbor?). So do it.  Pronto.  De-clutter.  Keep only what you love and use…and you will definitely see and feel a difference in your home immediately!

2.  Every Thing Has A Place.  Every single thing in your home should have a place.   Pencils. Phone accessories. Cucumbers.  Summer hats.  Screwdrivers.  Blush brushes.  Every thing. Whether it is in a specific drawer or in a particular closet, it has a home.

yes, cheese graters can act as pencil holders... sometimes

This recalls the de-cluttering process mentioned above.  As a designer, I can find a home for any loved piece, but if you do not love it, repurpose it or get rid of it.

don't the objects here just FEEL loved? by Nate Berkus

I have had many clients in my career who simply cannot let go of things, for fear of perhaps needing it “one day.”  Let me tell you, take your chances.  Ask a friend who has a discerning eye to help you decide what should stay and what should find a better home (including the garbage can or Goodwill).   If there is something you absolutely cannot part ways with, box it up and put it in storage.  Chances are, after a year of having it out of your immediate experience, you’ll have an easier time saying farewell to it.

3. Assess the Function of Each Room.  Yes, each room should have a function.  It does not matter whether you have a 1,500 or a 15,000 sq ft home, every room should have a purpose.  The goal is to utilize every square inch in your home, and love it!  Is that extra bedroom a study, a guest bedroom, or a workout room?  Or is it just pretending to be all of those things when it’s really just storage?  Give each room an identity so you can organize and decorate accordingly.

4. How Do You Want Your Home to Feel?  Do you want your home to be a retreat from the crazy world we live in…

so serene from Mary McDonald

…or do you want it to reflect your bold personality?

show the world your personality! by Jan Showers

Whatever you decide, make sure each room flows from one to the next.  A retreat space will have more muted colors and softer furnishings, while one that is more bold may have pops of color.  Figure out what you need when you are at home.  Perhaps you need quiet time, but your home feels loud and busy.  Perhaps you need a little more energy in your life, but all your furnishings are heavy and dark-colored.  All of these things make a difference!

lighten up and keep it simple... by Thomas Filicia

Your home can make you feel inspired and at peace, or it could possibly be draining you.  Start by applying the above tips before doing anything long term or drastic.  You may be amazed how donating a few things and making a trip to the Container Store can make you fall in love with your home again.

8 Responses to “Love the One You’re In”

  1. Sarah says:

    So true! I love clearing out clutter but the ‘ol family heirloom always gets tricky. In my family we’ve managed to continually redistribute old family pieces between my sisters and I. But at some point I know hard decisions will have to be made. Great post!

  2. Loved that Every thing has a place..a home.I am going to start donating and decluttering tomorrow with that in mind.Great post!

  3. Denise Cosgrove says:

    Dana, loved this post! Decorating a home often requires a purging, no matter how difficult. The journey toward a blissful retreat in our homes becomes almost spiritual at times. ~ Denise Cosgrove

  4. Carla Ingram says:

    Dana, awesome, practical and helpful information. Very helpful to me since our home has been so unorganized since the storm. You have totally inspired me and I’m sure many others. SUPER BLOG!

  5. Marisa says:

    Just stumbled upon your blog. Great advice. Love the idea about giving the family heirloom to a friend…this way you can visit it from time to time without the commitment.

  6. Marisa says:

    Just stumbled upon your blog. Great advice. Love the idea about giving the family heirloom that has run it’s course to a family friend. This way you know where it is and can visit it from time to time.

  7. Great, great post, Dana! As a bit of a collector, I try to make sure everything I bring home has a spot to live, or I don’t buy it. It’s the only way to keep my china cabinet under control!

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