Saturday, January 28, 2012

nice, comfy skin and current inspiration

Back in the day, when we first moved into this house and started this blog, Sam and I spent a lot of time thinking through our design style. We were making fairly permanent (or at least difficult to change) decisions regarding this remodel, and we wanted those decisions to be informed and well thought out. So, I read and read and read some more, and we considered each new choice carefully.

That was time well spent.

Now, almost three years later (3 years? craziness!), I'm to the point where I don't feel like I have to agonize over every decision. The house has some momentum now. A pretty clear course marked out. I feel confident in it. Confident enough to play around more with the less permanent stuff - to throw polka dots on the mantel if I feel like it. To put a vintage tablecloth out if I want to. The foundation of each room is carrying a cohesive mood to allow for all of that without a completely schizo result. Finally.

Not that we're necessarily nearing our finish line. But, the progress is tangible. The house is more pleasant on the whole. It's brighter. More functional. More orderly. More cheerful.

More us.

But this "us" has come about through a variety of "thems". By that, I mean there have been a few definitive sources of inspiration that have helped guide us to where we are now.

As I mentioned in my last post, I like to give credit where credit is due, and since at times I may experiment with an exact copy or close to exact copy of someone else's idea, giving credit is only right and good.

In no particular order, here are the women whose work and homes continually inspire and challenge me...

urban grace interiors via pinterest

Erika McPherson Powell. Here's her blog, Urban Grace Interiors. Everything Erika touches is instant gold. It seems like it, anyway. Her style is more exacting, more polished, more professional, more well-funded than my own, but I look to her rooms to help me work in touches of comfortable sophistication. They're real rooms, but with a designer's mark. She challenges me to work with finishes, pattern, and texture to get the feel I want in our spaces. And she gets the old house thing. Her photos of hardware make me melt. Oh, and the color green. Erika made me fall in love with green.

Lauren Leiss of Pure Style Home. Lauren has this incredible signature style. Her rooms, even when fundamentally different, all have a little something that is just her. Her eye is incredible. Lauren, like Erika, is a professional designer and her rooms reflect that. They're a little too "designed" for my personal style - a little too magazine perfect. But that's what she does so well! The inspiration I take from Lauren is mostly philosophical. She has great things to say about authentic spaces and being comfortable in your own skin. Her own home is nothing to sneeze at... I'm interested to see how it continues to evolve as they add a third little one and as her children get a little older. Lauren also helps me think through pattern, texture, form, and scale - especially concerning neutrals.

Meg Duerksen of Whatever. Meg's is easily my favorite blog right now. She's not a designer. She's like me. A mom to five kids, staying at home. But she has this fabulously huge, gorgeous old house in Kansas. Everything at Meg's blog seems generous. Her style is a little more cluttered, funky, and flea market shabby than my own. However... however, I love it in her house! Meg challenges me to add color - bright color - and to not think too hard about what I instinctually love. Or take it all too seriously. If it makes you happy, why not put pom pom trim all over your wall?! There's a part of me that has always resonated with the Megs of the world. If I were going to list out a few Meg-like things I've loved for over a decade, they'd be pom pom (we had it on curtains in our previous house), silver plate, quilts, polka dots, and kids' art/crafts. She's the inspiration for letting life smile through our rooms :)

Ashley Ann Campbell from Under the Sycamore. Ashley is an amazing woman, amazing mom, and amazing photographer. Her style is very feminine, much more feminine and lacy/scrappy/crafty than my own. But, Ashley inspires me like no one else when it comes to capturing my home, family, and days with my camera. I'm still learning. Her posts, her photos, are just beautiful to study. I do, from time to time, take inspiration from her home or crafts, too. But, mostly, she challenges my phototaking.

apartment therapy via pinterest

Apartment Therapy. Hands down, the best thing about Apartment Therapy is the house tours. Real homes, real people, real life... usually in a small space. Right up my alley. I love scrolling through the tours, looking for bits of inspiration and ideas that fit within our aesthetic. Fancy talk for stuff that will work in our home and make it better.

There are other sources, too. Pinterest, Google searches, sometimes Lonny. But the ones I've mentioned in this post are the Big Guns. The ones I really feel like come together in bits and pieces in my mind to make our home what I want it to be.

Rockstars. Every one of them.

Thanks for the inspiration, ladies!

1 comment:

Deb said...

I follow Meg and Lauren too and I feel just the same as you do. Thanks for sharing the others, I'm going to check them out!