Along time ago in a land far away when I lived in a house in another state I wrote a post.
It went a little something like this.
Hi. My name is KariAnne (sounds like the word car with a long e). I make decorating mistakes. Lots of them. Here are five of my least favorite.
That was then.
This is now.
I live in a new house halfway across the country.
And guess what?
I’m still making mistakes.
I call them challenges.
Here’s a new set of five challenges I’ve faced with this house and a few lessons I’ve learned along the way.
Number 1: Not adding enough greenery
I’m not sure why I forgot about greenery.
Hello captain greenery obvious.
Greenery is good for the heart and the soul and the neutrals in a room.
It gives a room air. It helps it breathe.
Here’s the same room. The same view. The same angle.
Except now there’s greenery (and a mirror but we’ll get to that a little later).
I’m not done with the greenery.
I plan on adding a fiddle leaf fig and some other smaller plants to the corner.
Number 2: Adding a little color
I remember looking at this picture of the finished kitchen and thinking it was ready to take on the world.
I was all about it and it’s neutral self.
What was not to love?
White bar stools.
White subway tile.
I lived with it for a little and realized something was missing.
All it needed was a hint of color.
Nothing too overwhelming.
Nothing too much.
Just a little bit of blue and white. You can see the difference a little color makes between the two pictures. The only thing that’s really changed is the rug on the floor and the blue platters on the wall.
Oh. And the greenery.
For that—please refer back to mistake number one.
Number 3: Forgetting to add mirrors
Here’s the back entry when it had an upside down Christmas tree and an oversized map of Paris on the wall.
It was fine.
It was sufficient.
But I couldn’t figure what to do to bring a little light into the space.
And then a commenter suggested a mirror.
Here’s the same space with a new paint color and a mirror that came from my mother and used to hang in the old butler’s pantry.
Sometimes a mirror doesn’t have to reflect everything perfectly.
Just the light.
(total decorating aside: see the difference a mirror made back with mistake number one, too).
Number 4: Putting something that looks like a coffin on your dining room table
I know, right?
Are you thinking what I’m thinking now in retrospect?
I SERIOUSLY CAN’T BELIEVE I EVER THOUGHT THIS WAS A GOOD DESIGN DECISION.
I think I literally heard a collective gasp when I posted this picture.
And it wasn’t even Halloween.
Here’s the kinder, gentler after.
An oversized dough bowl with some greenery.
The toolbox is now in the office keeping the paper and pens company.
(total decorating aside: this room looks even more differenter now because it’s blue and white. Please act surprised.)
Number 5: Recognizing that each house is unique
I hesitated to put this one.
I know it sounds a little like I’m writing a Hallmark card for a house.
When I arrived here I decorated with what I knew. Neutrals. And I love neutrals.
They are my go to. They are my friends. They calm down my heart and make me smile and want to sink into a chair with a really good book and the sounds of violins filling the air. I loved them in the farmhouse.
But here’s the thing. Each house has its own story. Each house has its own vision. It’s not like any other house on the planet.
The house knows it’s heart.
The house knows what will make it soar.
The key is to listen.
It needed a little color.
It needed a little blue and a little white and a pop of color to make it come alive.
Decorating mistakes lesson learned: Be true to who you are and what your house tells you it wants to be.
No matter what you see on Pinterest.
Or see on a blog.
Or read about in a magazine.
There is only one you and the home you create with things that you love will be perfect.
Decorate with your heart.
And let you and your house reach for the stars.