Monday, July 23, 2012

Redefining Perfection

I've never had a perfect-looking home.  Never the soft-gray sofas with ornamental pillows with "pops" of orange.  Or custom-made ceiling-to-floor lush curtains in a silvery blue that pooled on the carpet.  I typically had cutains that I sewed from a sheet with a pattern I liked at the time.  One particular "sheet curtain" was cut and resewn about four times to fit various window sizes over many years.  Even long before kids, I had mix-matched furniture, odd collections of items pinned to the walls (from antique hats to crosses from Mexico) and white twinkly lights hooked to the ceiling in some corner I'd dubbed "the reading nook."

I rather fancied my anti-mainstream decor (if you will).  Until I'd go visit someone else's house, decorated in all Pottery Barn or West Elm, and pulled together with what seemed like the graceful ease of an interior designer.  I felt a little envious pang when someone would gush over their billowy drapery and beautiful original artwork.  I have original artwork!  Just because it's a God's Eye made out of yarn and popsicle sticks from when I went to vacation bible school 30 years ago, doesn't make it any less original. 

The thing is I like visiting other people's homes that are elegant and beautiful.  I like standing in their living room and looking at expensive paintings or antique objects in a curio cabinet.  I like a nicely painted room and well-framed photographs.  But I don't need those things.  At all. 

Photos on the ceiling above the bed. Go to bed & wake up happy!
Lately, I've been walking around my house and loving all of the weird, accidental decorating going on.  I love my Day of the Dead decor that goes from dining room to kitchen, spotting the house with dancing skelatons and sugar skulls.  I love the overflow of my kids' artwork that I decide to stick up wherever I feel it belongs.  I love that our bedroom has absolutely nothing "master" about it, except a 3/4 bath.  We have my husband's childhood bedroom furniture in use, randomly framed photos, a glass heart hanging from an off-center nail on the wall, a tissue flower made by our three-year-old, a handmade dreamcatcher, a paper daffodil in a vase in the window sill, and about 15 photos taped to the ceiling directly above the bed.

Kid art created for a new baby
It's cool to me.  It makes me happy and it feels like life.  I have stopped running around, tidying up all of this life every time someone comes over for a visit.  I find that most people don't mind standing amongst the skelaton collections and handmade tissue flowers.  We really don't need to have curtains that match the stripe in the ottoman or blue pillows that pick up the sky in the garden painting.  Our homes should reflect our life and our loves.  When we're gone, the pillows will be sold or given away.  That yarn and popsicle stick God's Eye will be the treasure.

1 comment:

  1. It's really stuff like that that turns a house into a home. I love it! And I remember your antique hat collection. I stayed in your room in Richmond once (I think at the end of college one year), and I loved those hats hanging above the bed. The next time I stayed in your room, your dad was brewing beer there. :)