Monday, January 24, 2011

no-frills decorating

In court, you can lie by not telling the truth, and you can lie by not telling the whole truth. Lying by omission. Same with sinning. Before you think I'm going to go into some deep topic, let me say that today I'm going to talk about decorating. As in: my house.

I'm a simple girl. Finding the right furniture for me is a major exercise in anxiety control. A couple years ago when we were looking for bedroom furniture, I was in one store (pretty sure they would NOT have what I wanted) trying to explain "simple" to the sales associate. When she heard "modern" she thought I meant "contemporary" and started showing me metallic covered or glossy pieces. That says "80's" to me and kind of makes me want to barf. She also tried to show me what she considered "simple." I finally said in as nice a voice as possible, while Joel covered his laugh behind her, "Look, I appreciate your help. But let me put it this way: My wedding dress didn't have lace. I don't do frilly. None." We left shortly thereafter.

My basic decorating theme is "less is more." But kind of to the extreme - so MUCH less, that it doesn't exist. And that's an offense, I think, to some design law.

If money were no object, I would fully outfit my house with pieces from Room & Board. Since money is an object, we have several pieces from Ikea. (we still do not have bedroom furniture outside the bed and the nightstands that were Ikea specials) Our walls, however, have become glaring reminders of my hesitation to commit. They're blank. To our credit (and the prior owner's love of dark, bold colors that made me want to cry), we repainted almost the entire interior. So at least there is color! Gradually, I've been hanging photos. But our room remains largely vacant (except for the bed and nightstands).

And then...I found it. Exactly what I wanted to put on our wall. And then the hemming and hawwing (are those real words?) began. I am not even exaggerating when I say I considered these for over a year. Do I really like them? Will Joel hate them? Do I care if Joel hates them? Can I pull this off? Do I really want to spend the money?

Answers: Yes. No. Yes. Yes. YES.

Right before Thanksgiving I bought them. And then they sat in my room. And sat. And I hyperventilated a little. And they sat some more.

I considered how I don't think twice about adding a new spice or blend to my cupboard. I don't worry that they won't go. Or if I'll hate it in a couple weeks. And when I open the cupboard, it's like greeting old friends. Hello there cumin! Hey oregano - I'm coming for you. Sorry, Greek, I was talking to the Mexican variety. Is it weird that I talk to my spices? I'll be honest and say there are few things I do NOT talk to. Is that surprising?

So I returned to my bedroom one Saturday morning while Joel and the older kids were skiing and resolved to get this done. So I set to work. It took about an hour of figuring out where I wanted them to go and the spacing and the shape. And when I finished and stepped back to admire my handiwork, I hiccuped with excitement. I had done it! It was EXACTLY what I wanted. Every time I walk into my room, it cheers me up. That was the best money I spent decorating since... ok, so I actually sat here having to think when the last time was I spent money on decorating. So, in a long time, is what I'm saying.

I am working very hard to not commit decorating offenses by way of omission (or commission - I had to pull back from ordering more flowers to put EVERYWHERE - that would be overkill). In the meantime, these little flowers are bringing me much joy.

It looks even better in person.

I'm still not a fan of frills, though.


Tennille said...

I love them!

I've been blessed by several tutorials from Adam's cousin. She is gifted in home decorating. I am not. I've learned a lot from her and I think I've been able to decorate my house in way that's not too horrible. :)

Margo said...

Those are awesome. I think they are perfect.

khriz said...

it's really pretty sarah!!!

NancyO said...

Hey - those are really nice - they look just right there!

laura said...

So cute! I like them a lot.

Christina said...

Oh my. I think I am in love. Those are absolutely perfect and I might have to buy some for myself. :) I love the simple/modern debate--hahaha!

wanda said...

They look fantastic! Good for you!

Anne said...

it looks amazing...totally simple but really pretty. and, no, it doesn't matter if joel doesn't like it.

TheKunks said...

Maybe it will grow on him...Looks so cheery!

loewymartin said...

I love them! We are trying to find something similar (branches/leaves) for over our fireplace. Where did you get them?

Lisa said...

LOVE THIS. (sorry, I'm way behind on reading blogs) I love it so, so, so much. I want it. Teach me, please?