The tin set shown above is from Little Cabin Vintage on etsy. I'm not going to get it, but I do love it in many ways.
I've been thinking about how I live and decorate these days. I've gone through many phases and tried all kinds of styles, but it always comes down to a mix. I can't choose one style over another. I've posted about this dilemma before and thought I'd settled on kind of an urban/ethnic/vintage hodgepodge and perhaps I have, but there's something else.
I've been watching Thirtysomething on Netflix. I loved that show when I was eighteen and it's still relevant somehow. Being older, I have more perspective, but I'm remarkably surprised because I see how much I understood about lives other than my own even at eighteen years old.
The only change is my view on Elliot. He was my least favorite and I thought he was such a complete jerk, but now I see more dimension to his character. I see how he was written to be a pretty decent father and I do see his pain. When I was eighteen I thought he was nothing but an immature cad. I still think he's both, but now I see other things too. Funny, I also see Michael as a bit more annoying. Ellen and Melissa are still my main ladies, but Melissa, more now than ever seems so real. Great writing and acting.
Anyway, what I've noticed is how much I love the houses and apartments. From Hope and Michael's big old house to Melissa's girdle factory turned apartment/studio. I love Gary's sparse apartment and even Nancy and Elliot's Swedish platform bed. Yet, the common link between all of these places is that they look so "lived in". They're messy, but not dirty and things don't match perfectly, but they function for dates, dinner parties, kids, reading, cooking and overall life.
I realized that for the first time in my life, I may have hit on something that is a game changer. I've been uptight about the way I set places up...worried that there isn't a "look"...but, now I realize that the look I want has very little to do with what I have. It's what I do. It's a feeling.
I like dish towels within reach and I like leaving my work around. I realized that I love being in places where you know if you spill your wine or drop a plate it isn't a major crises. I like order and abhor clutter (no space on a table for a coffee cup), but I love that lived in feeling. I like warmth and cheeriness. I like places that are comfortable.
This also transfers over to people and the company I keep. I want friends around me (and am lucky enough to have some) who don't clean when they know I'm coming or who can walk into my mess without judgment, push the books aside and have a comfortable seat while we visit. I need to be someone who allows people over even if I'm down to three clean cups.
It's easier said than done, to be someone who is so at home in my home that it always feels welcoming even if messy. I mean, on Thirtysomething, Hope and Michael live in the middle of a remodel for the the whole first and second seasons! It's a big mess, but life went on (yes, I do know this is not real life, but you know what I mean).
I have orange next to blue next to yellow next to red next to purple, but somehow it all fits. I'm working on being OK with it and not worrying about what people think. I happen to love my spices and vinegars out for easy access...who cares if someone thinks that the bottles need wiping off or that my colander isn't "pretty" enough to hang on the wall near the sink?
I've been working through this for a few years now and think I'm a lot closer to where I want to be.
I now know that I like:
- Being able to find things (order)
- Places that feel cozy and lived in
- Places that have warm energy
- Lots of places to set down a cup
- Things that work-no broken or poorly functioning household items
- Comfortable furniture (need more of this)
- Lots of natural light
- Functional items-vintage tins being used to store things, not just for display. Using odd little jars for spices and teas etc.
I'll get there.