As you can probably imagine, I subscribe to a lot of magazines that focus on the making of a home. I adore being given a window into the houses of people with a lot more money, time, and creativity than I happen to have right now because I’m inspired to make my own house that much nicer and more comfortable. More often than not, however, I’m dismayed to learn that the individual being interviewed did not choose his or her own color schemes, furniture, and accessories, but rather employed the services of a professional who chose everything. How, I wonder, does that help the rest of us who have aspirations of chicness, but not the money to outsource our homes?
That’s why I was pleased to read this piece of advice from Mimi Reilly in Real Life Decorating:
“You’ve got to have a sense of yourself,” she says, “what makes you happy, what makes you tick. And then you have to make the leap: You have to trust yourself.”
In an interview, Reilly shared other, more specific tips like “Keep things a little quirky” and “Focus on the details,” but that first quote just nails it for me. Last week in the comments, the lovely class-factotum brought up the difference between being fashionable and being stylish. When you have a sense of yourself and you trust in that sense, stylishness will inevitably follow. You may not always be fashionable, but who cares about that?
Let’s say you want to integrate the side table below into your generally old fashioned decor…
Ask yourself if you love it, if you’ll use it, and if you think it will look sharp in the spot you’d like to put it. If the answer is yes to all three, but you’re worried about whether or not other people will like it or approve of it, worry no more. Trust yourself and your sensibilities, and YOU will create a home YOU adore. That’s what’s really important, right? You, after all, are the one who has to live there!