As much as i love and appreciate what my mother did in life, something i learned from her was how i do not want to set up my living spaces. My mother was a frugal being. She very, very rarely ever bought herself anything new for the home. She worked with the things she was given, already had, or found for super cheap at a thrift store/garage sale/bargain bin.
While i believe wholly in working *with* a space, i have come to the decision that furniture comes and goes - and except for those pieces that are near and dear to your heart, it's ok to sell and give away pieces of furniture that worked in one living space, but do not work in your current place.
Throughout my life, my little family of three always had a huge amount of stuff. Just... STUFF. I remember growing up that my closets were always filled with boxes on one half - leaving me just a little room for my clothes and our garage was stuffed to the brim.
Why did we have all that stuff?! I believe that a lot of it was emotional. My parents each had children prior to meeting each other and adopting me - so they had boxes and boxes of each of their previous lives. A huge amount of stuff they didn't use or look at anymore took up tons and tons of space in our houses just because they couldn't bear to part with it.
I can't say that this is true for them anymore, but i definitely grew up in this mindset - that it's OK to hold an emotional attachment to gobs and gobs of stuff you never use or look at. I know someone who used to hold onto every single scrap of clothing they ever wore. This person's closet was SO jam-packed with clothes, that it was difficult to hang their clothes UP after they had been washed. I think they held onto all their elementary, junior high, and high school clothes in the hope that it would come back into fashion when their child was a teen...
I've learned that the odds of that actually happening are slim to none, and in the mean time - i don't want to cart around a crapload of boxes whenever i move somewhere new. I don't want to buy a home the way my parents did - big enough to store all of their STUFF.
It was a hard lesson to learn, to be honest, but one that i've taught myself time and time again. I have moved several times, and each time - i move less stuff. The thing is - when i pack it all up, i can't bear to throw it out, but after i move it and unpack it, i wonder why i even kept it at all. Why did i think this was useful?!
I remind myself of this lesson often when i waiver on donating something or selling something.
What memories does it hold? Will it last another season? Will it fit somewhere nicely and not look like my childhood closets - full of junk?
As a young adult, my living situation has never really allowed for a space for me to call my own. Truly my own. I've always shared a space with someone. In my apartment, my bedroom was "mine" but it was also my storage space. In the last (drafty, nasty, smelly) cottage i lived in, we were severely limited by budget, and therefore on how we could store our things. We built a huge shelving unit all along one wall in order to have space to put things away, but it always looked awful... no matter how neatly we stacked things and tried to make it look aesthetic.
It just always looked like a wall full of random things to me. Because it was.
Now we have this amazing new place to live with three bedrooms to sort our stuff into. So far it's been pretty successful - as we've determined a room for the office and crafts, a space for a guest room, and our own bedroom.
Somehow, i managed to turn my sewing room into an office. An office with craft supplies in the closet, out of sight.
I blame the desk.
Though it served us perfectly well in our old place (and served V well in his bachelor pad), i think that it will only ever be an office desk. It used to be an "L" shape, but i removed the corner piece hoping that one long space would make for more inspiration.
It made a long office desk.
As much time as i spend at the computer editing photos, this space does not really inspire me. Neither does our small bedroom. As i believe i mentioned before, i think we'll be switching our guest bedroom with our own bedroom eventually. In the mean time, i've been gaining inspiration for how to decorate these spaces. I believe that your home should be a place that you're proud of - a place that inspires you and relaxes you at the same time. Here are some of the photos i've found for possible decorating/organizing ideas eventually:
Mostly, i like the colors here... (source)
In this space, i really like the colors as well as the natural wood counter - and the re-purposed curio/sideboard cabinet. (source)
Okay i'm seeing a theme here... Turquoise and red... re-purposed curio/sideboard/cabinets to store fabric... but this one also has a space for a computer, and a high counter for cutting... Hmm... maybe i can fit a higher table in there after all. I love this space. (source)
Then of course, there is the bedroom to be done.
This photo is off the Ikea website. I just love it. Nice bold colors, yet it's still so cottage-style... i would LOVE my bedroom to look like this.
What are some of your plans for decorating or redoing your space?