When a snail outgrows his shell and needs to find a new home, he simply slips out of his shell and slides into another one better suited for him. If moving were as easy for us! Maybe I’ve spent too much time at the beach this summer to even contemplate such a thing!
This past year, the stars aligned for my husband, Mike, and I and we finally purchased the beach cottage that we’ve dreamed about finding for years. I think because I thought about what I wanted our house to look like and feel like for so long, it was easy and fun pulling it all together! I’ve been designing this house in my mind and in my heart for years and watching it become a reality felt magical and fulfilling.
As much as I enjoyed the entire process, I’ve been reminded of your pain. The process of designing and dealing with construction delays because of bad weather or backordered or defected items reminds me of the stress my clients go through with their own projects.
It’s been 19 years since we last moved and I don’t have to tell you how easy it is to accumulate and get bogged down, even for me, who is mindful of clutter and having good Feng Shui!
After figuring out the mechanics of turning a summer cottage into a year round residence (yikes, that was the painful part), furnishing our home was fun. We had 100 percent confidence in our contractors when it came to the mechanics and they did a great job advising us and making it happen. Our 1930’s cottage retained many of its original elements like mahogany doors with brass and glass door knobs, fir floors, wide casings and trim, and a beautiful stone fireplace. Its charm was worth salvaging and I loved that we were able to reuse and repurpose this home.
With only 1,129 square feet to work with, one bathroom, two bedrooms and a fabulous yard, we set some rules for ourselves. Anything we purchased had to be of good quality, super on sale, like on clearance or craigslist. It had to serve a purpose, if not two purposes, and we had to absolutely Love It! At this stage in our life, we pretty much know what works for us and what doesn’t, so there weren’t any “maybe we should get that because we might need it someday” moments. Been there, done that, and we weren’t going there. It was amazing how everything we did need seemed to magically appear and became available to us just when we needed it.
The truly amazing part though is feeling the freedom of living with less. We filled our little home with things we love and that reflect our taste, personality and wishes. This is a home where our practical needs are met but also a vibrant place where we feel happy and good, a joyous place that we look forward to coming home to each day.
I realize even more so now that my role as a designer is not to design your home but to guide you in making your home a reflection of your needs, wishes and dreams.