This post wins the award for longest title ever. I’ve been wanting to write it for some time, but it took me a little while to really articulate my thoughts in a way that I felt made sense outside of my own head. Big proclamation ahead…You ready?
I believe that your home is never, ever “done”.
My hope is that this doesn’t stress you out and that by the end of this post (if you make it that far) you’ll actually breathe a sigh of relief knowing it is ok for your house to never really be “finished”.
A few years ago when I first started talking to clients about their struggles in decorating, I could TOTALLY empathize with them because it was exactly how I felt about clothes.
Confession: I am completely lost when it comes to fashion. Give me a room, and I can tell you exactly how to dress it. Myself? Totally different story. Post baby and well into my 30’s, I basically cross my fingers every morning and hope I pull something off that’s both age appropriate and not completely outdated. When I do stumble upon an outfit that seems somewhat acceptable, I will wear it for days on end. No Lie.
This kind of started my wheels turning on this whole decorating your home and building a wardrobe comparison.
If I gave you $10,000 to go out and buy a new wardrobe, you’d be thrilled right? But what if I said you had to spend all the money now and couldn’t buy any other item of clothing for the next 10 years. Might be great for a year or two, but even if the items you chose completely defined your style today, who knows how you will have evolved in 10 years?
Think about your home less like a puzzle with missing pieces and more like a wardrobe that should evolve over time. (Write that down and remember it when you’re feeling overwhelmed.)
It’s a pretty widely accepted notion that our wardrobes and perhaps our personal style will change in ten years. Some staples will last you several years. A precious few might last a lifetime and get passed down. Through wear and tear or simply for the fact that those things just don’t represent us any longer, items in our closets are constantly changing.
Items in your home obviously won’t move as frequently, but I feel like seeing this comparison might help you realize that decorating your home is not a race to be completed but a continuous journey of self-expression.
Sound a little artsy and hokey? Maybe it is. But this happens to be my personal philosophy on designing your home.
Major changes in our lives typically show up in our home first. A new baby, an empty nest, the loss of a partner, a move across the country…All these things have a huge affect our environment. Making a conscious effort to proactively embrace these changes in our home and create a space that is both functional and inspiring to whatever place in life we find ourselves can have a drastic effect on our sense of well-being.
If you’re like me, then aesthetics matter to you. You can’t stand the sight of blank walls. You’re constantly rearranging your mantel to keep things fresh. Maybe you cringe a little every time you see a corner of your house that you feel hasn’t been tended to in a way you’re happy with.
And not everyone “gets” us, people like you and me. They can buy a “bed in a bag” set from a big box store. leave their walls with the “builder’s beige” paint, and call it good. And there is nothing wrong with that! But for people like us the color, fabrics, and art we surround ourselves with matter because we want our homes to reflect who we are and how we feel inside.
As humans, we evolve. If your home is a true representation of you and your unique story, then it should reflect that change as well…which means that decorating is a task that is never “done”.
It doesn’t mean that you throw everything out and start over each season, but it does mean that you keep what is innately “you” and continue to add, rearrange, and celebrate new things that you’re drawn to or that represent your experience.
Let yourself relax knowing that you will not be in love with every room in your home simultaneously. It is a canvas on which you are constantly creating. Part of the joy is in the process. And part of the process is the tension you feel until something beautiful comes together.
I hope this make sense and perhaps even resonated with you. Be patient with yourself and your home. Enjoy the process:)
I love this. It has taken me a long time to accept the fact that my home–my style, my wardrobe, my everything!–will never be done, and that it’s okay if I don’t have it all figured out right now. Things take time. Change is good. I shouldn’t feel guilty or inferior or apologetic for being in progress. Thank you for the reminder!
Amen, sister! I feel like when we can bond with others over this fact, it makes us feel less alone among all the “I-have-it-all-together-and-I-know-it” types:)
Kathy Vesely says
Hi Heather, I LOVE your “clothing/decorating (furnishings) analogy. I “get” it now!
Thanks, Kathy!! SO glad.
Loved this post! I too struggle with my wardrobe choices post baby and I’m 40! Thanks again for helping me with my living room.
I feel like we could form a “dressing room” support group for moms dealing with their post-baby bodies! Thanks, Glabe.
Elizabeth @ The Little Black Door says
So well said my friend. This needs to be printed off and handed out to everyone we meet. 🙂
Hah! Thanks, girl.
Tess of Bella Rustico says
This is so true! I love finding special ‘things’ and rearranging a room so it looks all fresh again (my husband not so much!) Of couase this week I did look at my living room and thought it was sooo not done and empty. Pretty much started my brain designing the room again:)
p.s clothes drive me nuts! I’ve even taken my sister and friend with me shopping to help steer me to better clothes choices cause I like their style 🙂
Thanks for joining in the convo, Tess! I posted above to Glabe that we should start a “dressing room support group” or something. You could upload pics of yourself in the dressing room and get advice from everyone. Especially nice if you can’t get some friends to go shopping with you!
I hope the “new design” scheming for your living room isFUN. Oh, and my hubs totally doesn’t get it either.
Thank you for sharing your wise insight. Your post helped me find a less solitude and lonly place of seeking answers that finally brought understanding to what I have blindly struggling with since my husband left. Your compassion and validation was an encouragement in helping me find my way back. Thank you!
Christine, this means so much to hear. You feeling this way is the REASON that I spend late night and early mornings writing this blog. You have no idea how much that comment inspired ME to keep at it. Sending loads of good vibes your way today.
I couldnt agree more Heather. I try explaining this to clients all the time. When we moved into our current home I felt settled and completely like this is our forever home. I know that the current state of the house will change over time, and Im approaching this homemaking experience as a marathon, not a sprint. Im completely ok knowing that the evolution of spaces will occur slowly and in time. Im also ok with knowing that in doing so I will be creating a home that is uniquely mine and it will feel as such. Great post!
Thanks Shavonda! I don’t think I could have learned this lesson if I hadn’t spent 5 years decorating my house and feeling that constant frustration. Then it was like a lightbulb. I’m still not “in love” with every spot in my house, but I have a bit more grace with myself and patience through the process;)
Love this idea! SO true and helpful for all ages. Is your tree plant real? If not, where did you purchase from?
Thanks, Sally! It is real and I purchased it a local nursery. It’s called a fiddle leaf fig tree. I believe Home Depot and Lowe’s also carry them in smaller varieties.
“Part of the joy is in the process. And part of the process is the tension you feel until something beautiful comes together.” It could not be more clearly or eloquently said! Thank you for your insights and for reminding me that there are others like me out there! I can relate to every post of yours I have had the pleasure of reading so far (especially battling with my husband over my grand plans for this house…his annoyance is especially real when I buy and return items countless times before being happy with the result). Art cannot be rushed, LOL! ❤️