Over the past few weeks and months leading up to the One Room Challenge, I’ve really had to zero in on what I want the style for this house to be. I don’t know about you guys but there are so many pretty home décor items out on the market right now. There are elements of prairie, farmhouse, coastal, romantic and traditional styles that are fabulous, which sometimes makes it tough to decipher what I really “love” as opposed to what I really “like right now.” Yikes…those are the key words…right now. Can you guys relate?
Most of the time when you buy something you “like right now” you’re ready to change those items out within a few months. But once you start buying things you “love,” you have no desire to change things even after a season. It’s also when you start to understand the collections you want to curate. For me, it’s ironstone, brown and white transferware, tarnished silver trophies and chippy scales. Maybe for you it’s glass bottles, metal trays, weathered lawn ornaments, seashells, baskets or Pyrex. These collections are given a place of pride in your home and every time you see them, you’re totally excited.
As I shared last week, it was so hard to clean out my inventory closet. Not because the task took too long or that it felt overwhelming, it was hard because I had to decide what I loved and what I just liked. I didn’t have room to keep everything even though part of me probably wanted to. If you’re in a similar situation, I encourage you to have a trusted friend or family member come and help you with this process. Someone that is impartial to your stuff. Someone that can help you through the “what if I need this” or “what if I never find this again” or “what if I never find this again at this price” those are all things that I struggled with in the process of letting go.
Thankfully my Mom was instrumental in helping me through this process. For example, I was hanging onto a piece of orange burlap with a white knuckle grip. “Why are you keeping this orange burlap? You don’t even like orange. Nothing in this house is orange. You need to let this go.” So I countered, “I’ll need this in the fall. You know for like harvest stuff.” She looked at me completely unimpressed. “If your style is truly cottage neutrals you need to let this go. This does not scream cottage neutrals. It screams let someone else love me.”
I let the orange burlap go and after that quick reality check I let a whole lot of other things go too. The process got easier once we determined what the look of this little cottage should be….lots of texture, layered neutrals, nature inspired elements and a warm, relaxing, welcoming vibe.
A few hours later, as my Mom was getting ready to leave she said, “You will be so much happier living with what you love instead of settling for what you like.” It was tough to hear but I know she’s right.
Last Friday, I went out shopping with a list of things we needed to update the dining room. I came home with pieces of ironstone, creamware, fabric and pom pom trim. All things I’ve loved for decades and none of which made me feel like I was settling. The pictures found in this post are from that trip.
If you’re overwhelmed or confused about the style you’re trying to convey in your home and find yourself surrounded by too many home décor items, consider using these five simple tips while you’re out shopping to help keep your purchases on track and your home clutter free:
- Shop with a list of items that strictly fit your LOVE list not your “like” list.
- Keep your home or room’s color palette in mind for every purchase. If you want your living room to be coastal inspired, it’s probably best to leave the colorful and trendy boho baskets at the store even though you think they’re totally cool.
- Stay on track by only shopping for one specific project at a time, that way you’re not distracted by random items. For example, if you’re redoing your master bedroom closet and looking for wooden hangers, there’s no need to bring home rolling pins just because they were $6. You know what I mean?
- Understand your budget prior to shopping as things can really start adding up quickly especially if you’re layering a collection. Overspending will only cause more stress.
- Before you head to the check out, review the items in your cart and ask yourself one last time…do I truly love this? Is there a spot for this in my home right now? Can I use this in multiple places around the house? Does this fit with the overall vision I have for my home? What am I willing to let go of in order to bring this piece/these pieces home?
I know some of these things seem really tough but I know we can do it! Believe me, you will be creating a home filled with items you truly love as opposed to being surrounded by clutter that you liked for the moment. I can’t wait to see how this comes together in the dining room. It’s going to be so pretty!
It’s been an amazing 6 weeks participating in the One Room Challenge and I’m so proud of my office. We’ll take a look back at the old office and the decorating lessons I’ve learned along the way so I’ll see you back here tomorrow.