17 April 2013

Admire AND Inspire

Last week I told you about some of my favorite home bloggers and how I’m forcing myself to choose which blogs I simply admire and which blogs I’ll allow to inspire. On Thursday I went through the list of those blogger’s homes that I absolutely adore, but that I have to eschew in terms of using their ideas in my home. The list is here (shh, don’t tell the others, but Emily A. Clark is the hardest to let go). And I even realized after publishing that I missed a few of my absolute favorites (how could I forget Layla’s Lettered Cottage?! Ugh!)

So if I can’t do everything, what am I choosing to focus on? Well, today I’ll go through the blogger’s homes that I’ve decided to take to heart, whose homes should serve as inspiration for every room in my own. And perhaps it’s no surprise – and a good sign – that a couple of them were featured the last time I did blog crush posts, in Fall 2011. I loved them then and I loved them now, so hopefully the same can be said for my home if I follow their lead!

(As always, the photos below belong to the original author, and I’ve sourced their post with a link under each photo. If you want to pin the images, please visit their blog first! Do your part to keep Pinterest from becoming a wasteland of improperly sourced photos!)

First up is everyone’s longtime love, Kate at Centsational Girl. She of the incredible DIY, eye for furniture refinishing, and ability to make French-inspired furniture look modern instead of stuffy. No wonder her online empire can nearly rival YHL’s!

What I love about CG – and what no one else does nearly as well – is that she can take traditional, curvy pieces and style them in such a way that they don’t look too traditional or fussy. She’s gonna take your gramma’s style! But make it look way more awesome!

I also love CG’s classic neutral palette (duh), but she’s able perk up a space with a few bright colors with the shifting seasons (more color than neutrals lately, though). I usually shy away from bright colors (another duh), but her rooms illustrate how to work them in seamlessly... so maybe I’ll start taking more risks.

(If you follow the source linky above, you’ll see that CG herself is challenging herself to bring in color that isn’t blue. That’s the story of my life lately!)

Next there’s Freckles Chick. Her home-decor posts are far less frequent with her little one around now, but I still absolutely love the spaces she created and featured way back when (I’ve been a follower for awhile).

My favorite takeaway from FC is her ability to glam up a space without going over the top. At the very least, each room has a touch of shimmer. I always have this fear that adding something sparkly or shiny is going to instantly make my home look like Liberace’s palace, so her rooms can be my guide.

And FC can get away with all-neutrals because she uses so much texture! I spy with my little eye something rattan, something leather, something glass, something tweed, something wood, even something metallic alligator...

Shimmer and texture, yes please!

Then there’s Lindsay at Little House Blog. Another longtime love! (So much love that I’m currently right in the middle of straight-up copying something from Lindsay’s home – I’ll fill you in when that project is done!)

Lindsay is another longtime favorite, and generally a neutral girl. One of my absolute favorite posts is when she admits a mistake; she tried a brightly-colored fabric for her kitchen bench cushion but realized that it’s just not for her (a somewhat pricey mistake) and uses a gray linen-like fabric instead. The end result is stunning, and a reminder to myself that just because everyone else is using bright colors – even CG! – doesn’t mean I have to.

I’m also obsessed with stripes... I mean, c’mon. Stripes are like the neutral of patterns. And Lindsay’s blog assures me that they can be both stylish and classic.

(Even if Mr. P doesn’t like stripes. What is wrong with him?!)

And finally, there’s Myquillin at Nesting Place (yes, her real name is no longer verboten!). For some reason I was late to the Nester party, but I’ve fallen in love since re-discovering her recently. Perhaps that has something to do with the fact that she’s a renter (whhhat?!) and yet she can make her home look like this:

I die. I absolutely die. I want my rental to look like hers!

Nester’s house is the most like what I want mine to be. It’s collected without looking too eclectic, neutral without feeling too boring, personal without narrow appeal.

But above all, I love Nester’s decorating philosophy: “It doesn’t have to be perfect to be beautiful.” Unfortunately, my idea of beautiful usually is “perfect”, but I’m trying to take that philosophy to heart. I mean, if Nester can unabashedly decorate around a blue denim couch, I am going to get over all the little things in my home that seem not ideal. And just like that... my house is a more beautiful place to be, too.

Okay, but hers is still more beautiful than mine... for now.

It’s hard when there are so many great shelter blogs to turn down all the good ideas. Everyone else has their chevron and their bright canary yellow and their dang garden stools (so many garden stools!). It’s all so cute, which makes it hard to say, “No thanks, I’mma do this instead.” Especially because I like bright colors and bold patterns and garden stools!

But for the most part, I’m going to stick to neutrals, to stripes, to traditional lines and shimmer and texture. My blog crushes show me it’s the way I want to be! And as hard as it is to turn down great design, it feels pretty great to have focus.


Tina said...

I've loved Nester for a long, long time - even back before her tassel days... I'd like to observe her irl just to see how she gets it all done!