Monday, January 27, 2014

Style Evolution... out with the old?

I've never known exactly what to do with my love of interior design.  I've never had much money.  I have only owned my own house for 2.5 short years of my adult life thanks to my divorce.  Rental spaces are limiting and often small.  However, despite these limitations, my desire to create a cohesive home has never diminished.  It is definitely my "thing." 

Confession time.  When I was married, and should have been considering a family of my own, all I could think about was decorating a nursery, not actually using that nursery.  I took that as a hint that I wasn't ready for motherhood, clearly, but nevertheless, the constant drive I have to reinvent a room persists. 

Theme?  Color? Mood?  Your space offers up a canvas to tweak your own identity.  Sure, I guess I have a personal style: I tend toward a certain rocker chic aesthetic which I don't adhere to very strictly.  I do tend to like a dark and bold look, so I guess that is similar to my home decor design sense. 

But I have to acknowledge that since my divorce my sense of style has evolved significantly.  Though my preferred color schemes remain the same (black and white, red) I tend toward a more traditional, country feel and that was not at all true in the past.  I am having a hard time, actually, because these remnants of my old life and my old sense of style remain and are obviously contrary to this new sort of french country, natural, rustic direction I want to take my home toward.  I often wonder if my new appreciation for all things country is due to my career choice.  I work in organic marketing, and honestly, farm to table, local food movements have influenced my desire to live in a small town and develop a simpler, more organic way of living.

Out with the bold, geometric, modern Marisa motif, circa 2012 and earlier!  In with country.  If you had told me, when I was 18, that I would eventually appreciate a country style I would have told you that you were crazy.  Country used to be exactly what I hated: gingham and gold and 90's trend disasters like wallpaper borders and brightly colored carpeting!  But thankfully the new country that we see today is worth emulating.

But, that leaves me staring at pieces I love that no longer work for me.  And yet I am reluctant to take them down!  And I'm not entirely sure what I should replace them with. 

acrylic paint on canvas

acrylic paint, mock "stained glass" on canvas, made by me 2012

super modern throw pillows, need to recover?
I loved these IKEA lamps when I bought them in 2011

metallic wall art from Bed, Bath and Beyond.  They still sell this, and I still love it :(
black ceramic bowl with red inside: filled with decorative balls from Pier 1

These large dragonfly pillows are backed in red microfiber.  They came with the couch.  Never loved them.

So what do I do?  It feels wasteful to no longer use these things.  I know this is a familiar problem with most of the design bloggers that I follow.  How can you justify buying new things when you have perfectly good "things" already?  I know that many of them sell their old decor, but truthfully, mine isn't worth much.  I was a poor 20-something girl starting out on my own, purchasing items from big box stores or making things like these canvases.  So sad.  But I really want to perfect my space and move toward that look I am going for.

I recently picked up this frame from Michael's Crafts which is much more in line with my new sense of style: I thought that the picture of my nephew picking apples at the orchard was not only cute but very appropriate to the decor style! 

I'm not sure what to replace the art pieces with.  I don't know what sort of art or wall decor would be appropriate.  I keep looking around at blogs for ideas.  I notice that many display their vintage or antique plates, but seeing as these are rental walls I don't know if I want to hang anything heavy or potentially damaging.  It's an ongoing dilemma.  Burlap?  Shabby chic frames?  Wood or pallet signs?  Antique store finds?  Landscape or still life paintings?  I am just not sure.

DIY project I found on Pinterest, from the blog "Creative Mommas"
Wooden Pallet Sign, Etsy, from RescuedandRepurposed

As for the pillows, I'm not sure if I should recover them in toile?  If so, black and white or red/cream?  Burlap?  I also appreciate Parisian printed fabrics.  I am into words, lettering, monograms.  There are too many choices out there.

Etsy, Red toile pillow covers from Elizabethdecor 
French script pillow from Wordgarden
burlap pillow, etsy, from thislittlehome

Help!  I am open to advice...


  1. I think repurposing some of what you have will make you feel less wasteful and also reinvigorate pieces that you like but don't love anymore, or don't fit your scheme. Wonder if you could sell some on craigslist or something and use the funds to buy some new pieces to refresh, via etsy etc??

    1. Yeah, I agree. I can repurpose the pillows and maybe trade out some of the decorative balls. I don't think I can repurpose the lamps or the metal wall art. I don't think I could get more than a few bucks for those things on craigslist which doesn't necessarily seem worth it. Maybe I will just box these things and store at my mom's? I don't know. If I had a house and more rooms some day I might have a space for them. The art has to come down and I don't want to paint over it. maybe I can cover them with fabric and frame them kind of like the picture idea I shared. Not sure. Oh well! I will have to think on it some more.