Yesterday I read a great post on Cowboys and Custard (brill name huh?) about how looking at other people’s blogs can make you feel “woefully inadequate” about your own home. This really struck a chord with me as I’ve feeling a bit like that myself lately – I have been having a few bad home days. (Kind of like bad hair days but house-shaped.) And I know I’ve not been the only one.
For me I think it started with the Orla Kiely wallpaper… Basically the wallpaper in the bedroom looks lovely, it really does, but by comparison it’s made the untouched floor, my old chest of drawers and that Ikea wardrobe I was never fond of look, well, pretty rubbish. I have to keep reminding myself that everything takes time – and that the outcome of all this effort isn’t so that we can have a Living Etc-style perfect home, it’s so that we can have a perfectly imperfect home that we love. One that suits my very patient tidy other half, our two little loco cats and my own level of un-minimalistic chaos I seem to create around me.
But as Cowboys and Custard said in her All in the mind post, it’s “so easy to become complacent with our lot”. As much as I love my new home, and I know I am very lucky to have been able to buy it, I do get frustrated at the difference between what I have in my head versus what we can afford and what we can actually achieve outside of our full-time jobs.
I also feel slightly stressed whenever the other half says he’s invited friends of ours round – my friend Orla calls this ‘visitoritius’ – so I always try to delay it until “next week” when we’ll have finished painting that wall, when I’ve rearranged the furniture, when we have a kitchen sink (yup, still not got one of those yet!). Which is a bit like saying you’ll only ever go to parties when you’ve lost that elusive stone. Thankfully the other half just ignores my random stressing (he knows me too well) so we’ve had loads of people round whatever mess this place has been in. So our friends have seen it all from the nicotine stains to the time when we only had half a window in the front bedroom… and it’s not really mattered one jot to them. (There should be a lesson learned right there.)
However, I’m still hesitant about posting any of my ‘during’ pics of this place. So far I’ve only really put up a ‘before’ picture from before we even did a thing to the flat… and although we have made great progress with the place (if you look at my flickr pics you’ll see what we started out with), I feel like I’m waiting until it’s finished and ‘perfect’.
But what is perfect? Is it being able to compete with a home in Elle Decoration? Or one that’s been featured in those sneak peaks on Design Sponge?
I mean really, what does it take for a home to look like that? Where is all their stuff? Surely there must be a cupboard, out of sight of the camera, that’s rammed full of their clutter?!
So I’m taking Cowboys and Custard’s post as a wake-up… to stop freaking out about being ‘finished’ with my new home and just enjoy/celebrate it as it is. And as a mini tribute to her post, I’ve decided to post a few pics of my favourite corners of my flat this weekend. So here’s to us all remembering to be proud of our homes whatever (and ignoring programmes like Kirstie’s Homemade Home which tell us otherwise).
Perfectly imperfect is the way forward!