Life By Design. Inside and Out. Second Edition.

This is the Second Edition in a series of creative perspectives about life and the design process from Garden Designer, Heather McLean and myself.  You can read Heather's blog here!

"If your house is not in order, nothing else will be."  A saying of my Mother's that I heard repeatedly throughout my entire life.  She meant this literally and figuratively.  It is a statement that rings in my ear still to this day.  If your mind is cluttered, or your house is cluttered, it is nearly impossible to move positively forward.

So empty those closets, empty those purses every day and for goodness sakes, empty your rooms if you can.  Cleaning up is the first step to creating a beautiful home.

One of the reasons I enjoy working on renovation or additions so much because it forces you to clean out.  And then, the bringing back in of rugs, furniture, accessories becomes a very thoughtful process.  You are able to realign form, function and space.

All the hub-bub about Cleaning Out and Tidying up, brought a little more to the forefront by the recent book "the life-changing magic of tidying up" by Marie Kondo has struck a chord with many of us.

The Art of emptying a room, same as a closet, is something I get to help my clients do. Many times my client's find it very hard to imagine their space in a better light because they are looking at their room filled to the brink with things.  Lots of Things. 

Setting the Stage, like I discussed in the First Edition, is a process I love.  Creating a beautiful clean palate that allows for real life to take over, but with a little more respect and thought.  You know how it is ... you are not loving the space so you just continue to pile things in and turn your head in frustration.  

Since we have made it through winter and the impulse to clean up, open our windows, letting the light and fresh air fill our space is a necessity.  As you breathe in that fresh air, look around and see if you can take it one step further and take inventory.  What can you remove, what has outlived it's function, what needs freshening up?  

Spring is a very natural time for us to de-clutter our homes ... which in turn, allows us to free up space for new beginnings, new adventures and living the life we want to live.  

If you cannot commit to doing everything at once or are nervous about starting ... Adopt this attitude from Coco Chanel ... "I always take off at least one piece of jewelry before I leave the house ... to ensure I am not overdoing it."  If you are feeling your home getting out of control, step back and just begin by removing ONE item.  It just might help you make the next step!

Life By Design. 


Family Room Update ... Done. Sort of.

I whispered to Don a couple of weeks ago .... "don't commit me to this ... but I think the family room is done."

To which he gave me a sideways eyeball look ... and I responded, "just sayin' ... I AM JUST SAYIN'!"

So ... while I have already made TWO changes ... small changes, but still changes ... here is where we are (or were) when I had Emily O'Brien photograph.

Room 3 in #ProjectDownSize is Done.  mmhmmm.


I am going to break this room down for you in my next post.  Memories, Finds, Friends, History, Thrifting, Passion and Desire ... Life Makes a Home.

Making the World More Beautiful.  One Room at a Time 


Night at the MFA.

Nike of Samothrace with Gold Wing at the Museaum of Fine Arts Boston.

Hand embroidered on linen, Marilyn R. Pappas, born 1931, lives in Cambridge, MA

Every time I go to the MFA I see something different, something special.  Wednesday night Callie and I headed in to town to attend an ArtLifting event and wandered (got lost) in the museum.  I found Nike of Samothrace on one of our turns and she is amazing. I think she led me to her!

Making the World More Beautiful.  One Room at a Time.