Does your home tell your story? 

Is your home honestly true to yourself, your family and your lifestyle?  In this short four part blog series, we look for clues to discover the rewarding process of designing a meaningful home.  We’ll explore the meaning behind the vision for your dream home, we'll identify how you naturally live at home, we'll learn what to shed from where you reside, and how to confidently and truthfully love the way you live.

Parting with what you don’t like, love or need.

A home is made up of material things, but it’s the stories behind those things that make them meaningful.  Our belongings may have deep meaning or sentiment behind them, or they may simply bring us delight and joy.  These are the elements worth keeping.  Be honest about what those elements are, and edit accordingly.  Look around you, anything that doesn’t meet these criteria – give them away, sell them, remove them from your home altogether.

Yes, we have all sorts of good reasons for keeping things.
-It was a gift.
-It was expensive.
-It's in perfect condition.
-It's a family heirloom.
-I might need it later.

These are the symptoms of clutter that sap our energy and joy.   If you don't love it, release it!  You'll be relieved you did.

"One of the biggest design mistakes people make is cluttering their world with too many things." (Kay Douglass)

Adding to your home's interior design may seem like a good solution for achieving a rich layered aesthetic, but adding without subtracting may result in a look very different from what you were hoping for.  You don't need to start over, but editing down to your favorite key pieces will best help you see a room's full potential.  Grab a cup of coffee, sit down and intentionally assess a space, then take action!

Now BEWARE!  Moving items to a storage space in your home can be a sly method of cheating.  Label a container in the garage, or better yet, your trunk "Give Away".  If it's close to or in your car or truck, there's a much better chance you'll experience the full satisfaction of letting go by having that container actually make it to a donation drop-off facility as often as you fill it.

If letting go is hard for you, for any of the reasons we've noted above, try moving items to a container or storage area marked with the date you put anything in it or moved it out.  Take extra caution in how you store and mark any furniture pieces that you don't want to sustain any damage or leave any permanent marking on.  If after 1-2 years, you haven't opened or used it, don't open or use it.  Instead, move it out and drop it off.  Someone out there needs it more than you do.  If it's still hard to part with, consider taking a picture of it, or use it once as a photo prop.  Then you can give it away with the comfort of knowing you can still visually remember it.

One last note.  Layering is a great interior design tool that develops the story and richness of place through the process of collecting and gradually changing an interior space over time.  However, layering does not eliminate editing!  A successfully layered look is one that is accomplished with a critical editing eye.  Go forth and edit away!