I was reading a blog the other day and she threw out a challenge. Grace over at Sense and Simplicity made the point that we all love drooling over the beautiful homes featured in magazine spreads. In fact I also did a post on that recently (read it here). We search the web, read shelter magazines galore, raid library shelves, talk to our friends and watch HGTV ad nauseum.
“I see a lot of advice about buying what you love and creating a home that is a perfect reflection of the inner you. Personally, I don’t think that’s entirely possible. Sometimes practicality has to win over the idealized version of perfection. And sometimes the imperfections are the very things you learn to love.” Stephanie @ BrooklynLimestone.com
Take a Step Back
Let’s all take a step back. No home is perfect (not even the ones in the magazines). We all have challenges to overcome and sometimes the budget or practicalities just make that impossible. However, we also have things we love about our home. A room, a corner, a treatment or project we’re proud of – there are places that make you smile. Today is about that. Let’s celebrate what’s right with our homes.
Terrie’s 5 Things To Love About My House
Since we’re just renting for now, one of the main attractions in our desert environment was this delightful back yard. No back neighbors peering over the fence and mountains in the distance. We love sitting on the patio and enjoying our outdoor space.
Something I look for in any house we buy or rent is a wall long enough to have my row of bookcases. I know they could be broken up (I actually have 5 and one is in another room) but I love the impact of books and accessories all together. I wrote about my process to accessorize a bookshelf in this post.
I’ve never lived anywhere with such a deep mantel. And I love it! It’s so much easier to be creative and use large accessories when you have the depth to accommodate them! I also shared ideas on how I work through decorating my mantel (you can read that one here).
I finally purchased new bedding for my guest room (we had an Asian themed room for a long time and I was ready for a new look) but there’s no headboard. I painted the room a medium aqua that’s an interesting combination with the lighter blue bedding. The bedding has viney flowers that look very sketchy and hand drawn. I thought it looked like a design I could copy, so I bought one of the little $5 sample paint colors in a rich brown and painted these branches swooping down from the corner of the room. I added little lime green dots like berries here and there along the branches. I like having an expression of my creativity in a room.
We are lucky renters – we were allowed to repaint any and all rooms we wanted. So I repainted the whole house in colors we like. Most of the main living areas are this light aqua color (remember our post on aquamarine?) but I accented with this kind of cinnamon color. And wonder of wonders, I was able to find these perfect drapery panels to blend the colors together. I feel happy every time I’m in this room – which is every day since the kitchen is just out the photo beyond the wine rack!
“Our home should be beautiful because of what it represents, not because of what we have or know about design.” Melissa from The Inspired Room
It was actually pretty easy to come up with these 5 things I like about my home. Hey Cindy, since you just built yours, is it hard to narrow it down to only 5 things you love?
Cindy’s 5 Things To Love About My House
Since we bought the lot, built our house “from scratch,” and moved in less than a year ago, it’s hard to narrow my choices down to just 5 things I love - plus, it’s still a work in progress! It’s said “Home is where the heart is…” and my husband and I now say “There’s a lot of heart in our home…” We’ve done a lot of the work ourselves and I feel very lucky that we were able to create the home we dreamed of. Right now the top 5 things I love about our house are:
The views – there is a view of Lake Chelan from every room in our house.
No matter the season, seeing water feeds my soul (I’ve always felt this way) – and I love watching the landscape change through the year.
Room for family & friends to stay
After living in the Seattle area for years and years, we left family and friends and moved three hours east (over 2 mountain passes!) to Central Washington. Luckily we’re in a resort town that draws a lot of people due to the lake and wine country. When family and friends visit we want them to stay with us comfortably so we have a “casita”… a little house for them.
The casita includes bedroom furniture, a kitchenette with a dishwasher drawer and refrigerator plus a bathroom area with his/her sinks and a shower. An outside door to the “his” side of the bathroom serves the pool. A large closet in the casita lets me store all my craft materials so I can set up a table in the casita for crafting when no guests are with us. At least that’s the plan – we finished the casita (well, almost finished!) just before Terrie arrived in June and it’s been occupied almost every weekend since then – so no crafting yet!
Outside living area
Between the house and the casita we created a covered outdoor living room that overlooks the swimming pool, vineyards and lake.
This area serves as a living room when the weather is nice the soft comfy sofa provides the perfect place for me to settle in and write a blog post!
Kitchen for multiple cooks
We’ve been lucky enough to have lots of company and I love the fact that the kitchen accommodates multiple cooks easily.
My friend Lesley visits from the Seattle area and knows her way around my kitchen since she’s cooked several wonderful dinners while I’ve served as her assistant.
It’s not pretty, it’s not decorated (except for the breaker box cover that I wrote about here), but one of my favorite features of our home is the large pantry.
A window provides natural light, deep chrome shelves let me easily see what supplies I have on hand (and makes unpacking groceries so easy!) and they hold big appliances and serving pieces that don’t fit well in standard cabinets, it holds the freezer so no more trotting the the garage, and the pocket door hides it all away.
What Do You Love?
What’s your favorite part of your home? Whether you own, rent, live in an apartment or even just a dorm room, you surely have a spot or two that you love. Although I love to decorate and redecorate my home, I think we all sometimes get too caught up chasing some perfect image in our heads. It’s good to take a reality check now and then and realize that there really are places and spaces within our home that we love.
We want you to tell us the two or three or five things that make you proud or calm or happy about your home. As usual, you can leave us a Comment below or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.