If I look out my window, I see white, grey and brown. That’s it. Snow, clouds and tree trunks. Neutrals combined with color is one thing; a world of monotone shades wears on me. I usually spend the weeks from mid-January to late March twitching, eating too much chocolate, drinking gallons of coffee, and knitting things in impossibly bright shades just to keep the color-desperation at bay.
Since none of those strategies are beneficial in the long run, I decided on a new one. This year I am attempting to use these months of nearly-mandatory indoor time as an opportunity to clean, organize, decorate…to create a warm, colorful den in which to spend my hibernation.
I am a quirky person (I have made my peace with it) and I am delighting in slowly crafting my world to reflect who I am. We moved just a few months ago, and I took advantage of the opportunity to rid myself of a lot of STUFF…much of it perfectly “good” stuff…that I simply didn’t want/like/need. It was liberating; just because things were still “good” didn’t mean I had to keep them. It felt to good to free myself of the baggage, and trust in the future.
My new style is cheerful. Colorful, too, because beige be damned — I’m not beige and my house won’t be either. I’m a jeans-and-sweater girl; my home shouldn’t look like a business suit. I spent some time listing what I like – strong, bright colors; bold patterns; soft and warm fabrics. I love the shine of glass and the warmth of wicker baskets. I like using things for a different purpose than intended – baskets to store DVDs, an old creamer to hold handmade soaps, mandarin orange crates to organize boxes of tea. I don’t like fussy patterns, boxstore art, knick-knacks, or too much symmetry.
Over all — I love crafting a home out of materials that have already had a previous life. I am a regular haunter of the local thrift stores; I don’t always buy. The goal is not to get more STUFF; the goal is to keep an eye open to the possibilities…and the things I buy are often what nobody else likes — the old vintage tablecloth; random cloth napkins in funky colors; old glass jars and baskets. The fascinating thing is this — it all comes together. When I stick with the colors and textures that I love, they always seem to work.
The trick seems to be tossing the rulebook out the window and listening to my hibernating instincts.