Friday, August 29, 2008

Decorating paralysis

Ah, the week is ending on a good note.

I called yesterday and signed up my 5th and 1st graders (who are at two different schools) for PM bus service. And I have a ride home from volleyball arranged for Allie-15. Just reducing my carpool responsibilities by three trips is a huge mental load - GONE! Yea! I think I'll go celebrate my small accomplishment now. How about another cup of coffee?

This weekend we will have a bunch of family over - our first big get-together at our new house. I am the kind that needs a deadline to get anything actually finished (I'm great at starting things), so this will be good to MAKE me get rid of the remaining unpacked boxes (not the ones in the garage - they will have to wait until cooler weather!).

The main thing that has stalled is my walls. For one thing, this house is almost 1000 sf larger than our old one, so there are more of them to cover.

But the biggest problem is this: Our old house was "staged" to sell, so when I got here and opened the boxes of all the things I took down (which had been in a POD for several months), I lost all my decorating confidence.

I recall my realtor's pursed lips as she dispassionately pointed out what must go: my photos, my grandmother's aluminum ware, Jesus in Gethsemane, The Lord's Prayer. Now, when I go to put them up, I hesitate. Is this too "hick?" Is this just plain tacky? Was this awful all along, and nobody told me?


My sister Rachel Anne will be coming Monday. She's the artist in the family, and does not have the decorating paralysis that plagues me. Maybe after I've fed her a burger and some potato salad, I can get her to help me figure out what to do with my expanse of bare walls.

Rach, you'd better bring your hammer. It's gonna be a working party!


Lori - Queen of Dirty Laundry said...

Katherine, here's my philosophy: If I love it, then who cares if it's "too hick?" I imagine some people think my home is too shabby chic or country or whatever, but it makes me very happy.

Now if only I could get the carpet clean...

Lori said...

Katherine - Are you decorating to sell again, or do you love the items that once hung in your old house? I have faced this question myself many times, and yes I have a box of items that I never hung up in this house, that "worked" in the last one. Take a deep breath, look around and decide how YOU want it to look and go from there....and I'm sure Rachel will help as well.
Gosh, I'm speaking to you as if you know me...guess that comes from reading all of your posts. Thanks for sharing your life so openly!
Blessings to you!!!

Jen @ Rolling Through Looneyville said...

As our realtor said, "When you stage a house, it's totally not how you'd live, so don't take any insult from my suggestions"

It's a good thing he said that.

Anyway, I'm in the same boat... stark, freshly painted walls waiting for decoration. And I have NO idea what to do with them.

I totally agree though, do what makes you smile. If seeing the Lord's Prayer when you walk into a certain room is something you enjoy, go for it!

It's not like you have an entire room full of stuffed animal heads to arrange.... um, right? (Though that's right up some people's alley... and more power to 'em).

I personally love the aluminum ware.

Your house is your home... just remember that and make it so.

I love your blog so much. Thanks for your frankness and your openness! It's so encouraging.

Jen said...

I did the same thing here and had to have 2 wonderful friends come and help understand you. Have fun with family this weekend...enjoy yourself.

Susanne said...

It's your home and if you love it and it means something to you and makes you happy to look at it up on the wall, I say put it up! A "staged" house is not for living in, it's to help a bunch of random people wandering through imagine thier stuff up on the walls. You'll figure it out with the help of your sister.

Jennifer said...

I actually like the picture of Jesus and the Lords prayer!! Hey, you never know when just "looking" at these things on your walls could possibly bring you encouragement. If you like them, then put them back up!! Your home, your style:)

Tori Miller said...

Hey katherine! I have kept up with you and your blog!
I was thinking of you today as I blogged! Read my blog and I bet you will figure out the important role you played in our lives around this time 12 years ago.
i hope you are loving living in the country---I know a boy who is battling cancer on the high School football team where you live.
my blog info:
User Name: toristories
Password: toristories

Miss you---you were our first ever neighbors!

Raquel said...

oh my gosh i am battling the same issues with my walls right now! our new home is much bigger and there is a lot more wall space to fill. when i go to hang up my old stuff it just doesn't seem to work the way i want it to. i cant wait to see what you all come up with

Cassandra said...

I have a picture of the last supper that I am facing the same delima with. I am going to have it reframed (read that go to dollar general buy art and put my Jesus picture in the new art frame). I think its all in how they are matterd and framed honestly. And if YOU like it.

Enid said...

I have that paralysis ...but then I had been out more often and visit new friends houses latetly, You can always get classy pieces like Jesus and put a expression besides it or in top and make it more you, not that Iam an! But I love my uppercaseliving bussines, just give you that extra touch everywhere in your house.

JD said...

Oh I am decorating Impaired as well. I just can't commit to anything for very long.

Beck said...

Ah. Well, I can't decorate to save my life and so I'm not much help. But it's YOUR house, so it matters what makes YOU happy, right? And for the record, I think your house looks beautiful.

Michelle @ Sew-Krafty said...

I think everyone has already expressed this but...some homes are beautiful to look at, and others are beautiful to live in. I've always wanted my house to be like a magazine, but then it becomes just a house, not a home.
Hey, my grandmother's china plates may not match a thing in my dining room, but they are on the wall because they are MY GRANDMOTHER'S!

Kathleen Ellis said...

Hi Katherine~
I totally understand your dilemna and the overwhelming feeling of a new space!
I'm a decorator and I help many clients through those advice to them and you is...
* If you LOVE it, get it, use it, put it up...
*when living in a new space, don't in it for awhile and get a feel for it before you start putting holes in the walls
*remember the items you have can be repurposed or redesigned to look a little different than they do now
*remember also, that your tastes will change over time as you are exposed to new things...that is keeps things from becoming stagnant...go with it!
*above all, is YOUR home and YOU live there...make it pleasing to YOU!
Hope this helps...along with your sister's advice!
have a beautiful day~

Kathy ... aka Nana said...

Finally someone who's facing the same issues that I am!! Whew! I thought it was just me!!

We just moved from an old home (with lots of wall space) to a new home (with an open floor plan, and thus not much wall space). So that's really requiring me to rethink the stuff that I had on the walls before. And I think I'm still transitioning from a "country-light" style ... so a lot of what I had is now more rustic country than is my style now. So, now I haven't a clue what to put on the walls! ;) So I'm taking Kathleen Ellis's advice and living with it for a time, keeping my eye open when shopping for the right pieces.

P.S. Our realtor said that once the house is sold, it would no longer be ours ... she told us that we'd be better off if we think that way once we listed it. Then the staging wouldn't be so painful. ;)