Wednesday, March 10, 2010
Day 984: undecorating my house
Lauren of Pure Style Home posted an interesting discussion yesterday on decorated vs. undecorated spaces. The short version is that the "undecorated" rooms -- though often very intentionally decorated -- feel like they were created naturally over time and through collecting and editing. As a designer, Lauren's perspective is that she is trying to create this look on a schedule and in a limited time (whatever that may be).
My perspective is that yes, I do want my own house to evolve over time. Not be redecorated all the time, but to change organically, to reflect our needs and what we think is beautiful, and -- above all -- to be a haven for our little family. Our guest bedroom is kind of a microcosm of that idea. When I started working on it I had a time frame: Money for it came from a garage sale, and it needed to be finished (I use that word loosely!) about eight weeks later because we were expecting visitors. You can see it then here.
I liked it, but it didn't thrill me. I updated it a bit early in the fall and have moved a few other little things around since. Now when I walk by and look in (and sometimes sleep in there just for kicks) it makes me smile, which is the goal, I think! The basics were there in July, but it's taken a little longer for the room to settle into a groove and have its own identity. Now if only our bedroom would get over its identity crisis (but that's for another day!) ...
Now, for the whole point of this post, here are some of my favorite "undecorated" rooms. Which have been decorated, but not overly so.
I remember this story from Cottage Living. The homeowners downsized and took all of their furniture to the new house which was a completely different style architecturally than the old one. Just goes to show that if you buy quality pieces that you love, they will always work (see another view of this room here).
Another good one from Cottage; this dining room doubles as a library. I was watching The Marriage Ref last night, and one couple was fighting over their dining room. The wife sets the table and leaves it that way for 364 days a year and they only actually eat on it on Thanksgiving. The husband, appropriately, thought this was crazy. People. Please use your dining rooms! Even if you don't eat there, surely you can find some way to use it. Why spend the money to have the space and decorate the room if you aren't "allowed" to use it?! Okay, rant over.
Ruthie Sommers can do the best of both worlds, in my opinion.
I really love a spare dining room. Crystal chandeliers need not apply!
Yet another favorite from Cottage Living. This Charleston house had such a great mix of style and periods -- it felt like the very definition of "collected over time."
And again, just a simple dining room where the function meets form just beautifully.