Tuesday, 15 July 2014

Eye Of The Beholder

We took a walk this summer through some property that belongs to my in-laws. When we first came to this spot, I thought it was just an ugly old shed. . . which is why we were there; to bring boards home for a DIY project. I was picking out boards that I liked for the guys to haul back to the truck, when I walked around to the other side of the building.

I was just struck with how beautiful it was. Suddenly I wasn't walking around a pile of junk looking for boards to salvage, I was staring at a beautiful scene worthy of a calendar page.

My view changed, and I could see the beauty in my surroundings. The tall grass that I had been mincing about in looking for snakes, was suddenly gorgeous as the sun hit it and those old weathered boards took on a beautiful graphic shape that I was imagining would be the perfect backdrop for family photos.

So funny how that works -the same thing, viewed differently,can be an eyesore or the most beautiful scene. It all depends on your point of view. . . 

I used to have decorating paralysis whenever I had an idea that was a little bit outside the box. If it wasn't a traditional, classic decor decision I would question myself, doubt my judgement and chicken out when it came down to execution. 

I still have times where I waver or feel nervous about making the wrong decision or doing something that's a little too "out there", but for the most part now I just do what I like. I've learned that being afraid of my neighbor not "getting" why I have an old paddle hung on my living room wall is a stupid reason not to hang it up. Sure Grandma might gasp when she walks in and sees that I have painted my "Good wood" oak cabinets navy blue on a whim one Suturday, but Grandma (or whoever you feel you have to please) doesn't live here. I do. And if navy cabinets make me happy, then leaving them in their 70's glory is only taking away from my enjoyment of my kitchen and not really making anyone happy.

I guess it all comes down to who I am decorating for. Am I decorating my house to impress people when they come over? Or am I decorating it to make ME happy when I am in it? I am learning more and more that when I decorate freely the way I want to, my home becomes a reflection of our family. Our personalities shine through and all my wacky ideas and thrift store finds help create the atmosphere that I want people to feel when they walk in.

Do I get some raised eyebrows and confused comments sometimes? Sure I do. I live in a small town where everyone has oak cabinets and popcorn ceilings, and 95% of front doors are white. People don't always get my style and decorating ideas that are over-done in the blog/Pinterest world have never been seen by a lot of people here. My brother laughed when he saw that I had hung an old window on my wall . . . it just didn't make sense to him why a cracked old window with flaking paint was being used in place of artwork. And that's ok. Because when I make decorating decisions for ME, I don't feel hurt or like I need to defend myself when someone else teases me a little or just flat out doesn't like what I've done.

Because it's not for them. It's for me and my family, and it's about creating the feeling and the atmosphere that I desire to have in my home. And if I like it, then I should do it. It's not for them anyway.

The view is so much more beautiful when you are looking at something you love. And if someone else doesn't "get" what you are looking at, it's just because they are looking at it from a different viewpoint. 

They might see a pile of old boards, but you see true beauty.

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