Thursday, July 30, 2009

Searching for my style

I am a little of this....

And a little of this......

And a whole lot of this.....

So now as we prepare to move to a new home, I am on a decorating odyssey. As I pack, I am trying to take only those items we actually will use in the future or that remind us of our loved ones. I hope to get rid of the stuff that so often sits in boxes in storage anyway, because I just don't know what to do with it.

I think I have mentioned before that decorating our home is a real challenge for me. I don't really have a style, or maybe the problem is that I just like too many different styles. I definitely like old things, and our houses are always country farmhouse looking, but that can encompass very different looks. For example, I really like the pastel colors, small florals, and fruit motifs of cottage style. I also like the big overstuffed chairs and sofas that can go with that style. But I also like the dark colors and dark woods that go with the primitive style. I just love the soiled, tattered look of so many of the primitive crafts. The two styles are almost opposites of each other, but I like elements of both! If you are a really good decorator you can merge these two very different looks. Since I am not much of a decorator, in the past, I have just ended up with an unmatched, unattractive home. I am trying to clean up our look now and limit myself to one dominant style in each room. Hopefully this will result in a more attractive home.

Realistically I can't just follow my heart in decorating each room though. I have a family to consider besides just myself. Practicality does have to figure into the equation as well. For example, I find the dainty, airy look of shabby chic, cottage living rooms very appealing. I can just imagine having a sweet, wicker settee in my living room. That just wouldn't work at my house though.

We are not dainty, fragile kind of people. Our daughter may be the one exception. She is average height, with a slim build. The rest of us, well let's just say we are not so slim. When I married my husband, his family referred to me as "his big wife from up north". I was hurt at the time, but now that many years have passed, I think it's pretty funny. I mean, I can't help the fact that most women in his family are only about 5 feet tall. By comparison, I am an Amazon. I am both tall and "big boned." But my husband isn't exactly tiny himself. He is average height, but barrel chested. He is built somewhat like a small bull. Then there is our son. One of his nicknames in school was "Gigantor". Really, it was. He is 6'7" tall. Yes, I really did mean to type 6 feet, 7 inches. He weighs well over 200 pounds, and the emphasis in this sentence should be placed on the word OVER. He too is "big boned". His arms are like tree limbs and his legs are like 2 tree trunks. Face it, you just can't seat a mighty oak tree on a dainty wicker chair. It can't take the abuse. Our son doesn't sit just sit on furniture either. Instead he throws his entire mass onto it as he is seated. I swear the furniture used to groan when he came from school.

The last time I bought living room furniture, I had to keep all this in mind. I got a couch that was semi-neutral colored with flecks of assorted colors all over it to help hide the various food stains I knew to expect in a home constantly filled with hungry teenagers. I also bought a brown love seat because it was sturdy and the color would mask the assorted sports field dirt our son brought home after practices. Those colors would definitely work best in a primitive room. Now our son has his own apartment. He is using the good furniture in his living room right now so I don't have to store it. But as my husband reminded me, if it stays there very long it probably won't be the "good furniture" anymore.

Dark colors and already banged up wood are definitely the most practical choices for our home. Though our kids live on their own now, they do return to visit. Sometimes they even bring their friends. They are all taller now, but there still is lots of eating and lounging on the furniture. We don't really mind, but I do have to take this into consideration.

Yes, the primitive style does suit us very well for the main part of the house, and I just love all the rusty, crusty accessories that go with it. Soon, I'll tell you what I have decided to do in the bedroom though. You might say my motto there is "You go girl." Who knows, maybe this decorating thing will even be fun now that I have a plan. Blessings to you.
P.S. feel free to share any decorating tips you have. I can always use the help.


  1. I am searching also. I am starting to realize that sometimes I just like looking at some styles but can't live in them. I haven't figured out why yet. I love prim. I get obsessed with prim but as soon as I start decorating with it, I'm over it. I love farmhouse and cottage and a lot of things I've picked up at yard sales go with that but I feel sort of like a fake, living in an apartment in the burbs and all. lol I don't know. SOmetimes I want to be really funky with bright colors and other times I want to go all white like the Norwegian bloggers. So not practical but so pretty. On top of all that, I have to make do with what I have. Two years ago, I left a man I'd lived with for 8 years. I left my house (which I loved) and most of my stuff. I'm now married to another man and he left all of his furniture except a table so we pretty much started from scratch. Thank God for Goodwill and yardsales! LOL

    I said all of this to say, I really get what you're saying. I literally dream about decorating at night!

  2. I know exactly how you feel about being a little of one style and a little of another...I'm the same way. I like prim country, primitive country, farmhouse country, and cottage country. Guess you could say that I just love Country Decorating!! I think that it is perfectly fine to mixed any country styles together that you love...that's what makes your home you.

    It helped me to go visit blogs that were of all different types of country decorating and I also looked through a lot of my country decorating books, plus several from the library...And slowly, but surely, I am getting the look I want in our home and I'm loving it.
    Follow what your heart tells you and it will be the country house of your dreams!


  3. Thanks for stopping by my corner in blogworld! Writing about P.E.I. was an immense pleasure. I'll be writing about our time in Nova Scotia next.

    I only have one piece of decorating advice. If you don't love it, chuck it!! This philosophy has saved me from lots of clutter through the years. It has also kept me from spending money on things I'll never use.

    I've collected giraffes all my life, but never felt the draw to decorate accordingly. When it came right down to it, my heart is in the southwest. Therefore, our home has taken on a western theme as it has matured. Sadly, the giraffes have had to be put into a box. Since I love them, I haven't chucked them. They're waiting patiently for a proper room to bless their presence with. Perhaps, when my own children are grown and away from the house, I can have a giraffe room!

  4. I am the same way with decorating. I have a little of everything and with four daughters, four son in laws and four grandchildren who visit...some more often than others, you sure can't live in a "museum". Use what you like and is functional!