Welcome back for our Living Simply HOME week! I’m so excited about this week, I hope it encourages you. A little refresher… I’m teaming up with 3 of my favorite local bloggers to share how we are focusing on mindful, purposeful living in various areas of our lives this fall. Go here for week one which was all about mindful rhythms of self care for MAMA and go here for week two about KIDS. Make sure to visit the other blogs, I’m excited to see how all four of us pursue the same goal of purposeful living in different ways.
Today I’m going to talk about life paced design, design that follows real timelines and limitations. We live in a world of instant gratification and social media is filled with beautiful homes in which every detail is well thought out and special. It can be so easy to look at those photos and compare our homes and see our unfinished to do list and empty spaces. But what we don’t see behind those photos is the years of collecting and rearranging. We don’t see the mess of progress, the sheetrock dust covering every surface before the finished bathroom is revealed. We don’t see the hours and hours their interior designer poured over plans and furniture placement before install day. In our realities, most of us are limited by time and budget. We may have a vision of what we want our home to feel like but it will take us a while to get there, aka life paced design.
I’m here to say that life paced design is GOOD. Waiting for the right vintage piece is GOOD. Waiting to be able to afford that leather sofa is GOOD. Finding that perfect mirror that fits in your budget is GOOD. Playing around until you find the perfect balance of accessories is GOOD. Having the patience to enjoy the process and see your home come together over time is a sacred thing. Its GOOD to learn to live in the mess of progress and then one day we can enjoy the finished result and remember the work it took to get there.
I thought I would take you on the life paced design story of my kitchen. We renovated it three years ago and since then I’ve been playing with accessories and waiting for the perfect finishing pieces, and after three years I finally feel like the space is ‘me’.
When you look at a picture of my kitchen now I want you to see the three year process it took to get here. I want you to give yourself grace and enjoy the process of making your home feel like you and the people you share it with. I want you to not just see the finished result but also see life paced design.
This is our kitchen when we first bought the house and then right after we started reno. We took the floors down to the studs but saved the solid wood cabinets. We added a peninsula, painted every surface, did new countertops, redid all finishes and replaced the appliances (donating the old appliances and countertops). We lived with the cabinets half painted for at least a month while we did other things and only had half tiled floors for a few months as well. After a good 6 months of renovation we ended up with this, note the unpainted baseboards (that took a month to do too).
Then a few months later we built our hood!
We were finally finished with all the construction elements! From there I started the search for those final finishing touches that would make the space feel like us.
I was dying for copper pots to hang over the stove but knew it would take a while to find some I could afford. So for the meantime I found these vintage blue and white plates and hung them over the stove and liked the look for sure but had the copper pots in the back of my mind. I felt like I was getting there with accessories but it never felt ‘finished’ to me.
And here we are today! I found some copper pots after a couple year search for $40 at my favorite local spot (Route 276 for you Greenville peeps!) and completely feel like they finish the space.
Purposeful touches finish the space like our ‘collection’ tray where the girls put special rocks and things we find out walks. My favorite portrait of a lady (from @hohumhollow) lives next to the window and makes me smile every time I see her. A vintage rug from Etsy adds color and softness in front of the sink. Plants live in the window that I’ve miraculously kept alive for a year and just make the space feel cozy. All these little things I’ve collected over time, aka life paced design, tell the story of us and fill the space with meaning. I’m encouraging you to think of what pieces in your space tell your story and what brings you the most joy in your home and celebrate your own life paced design jouney.