Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Gratitude, Part II: My Apartment and Simplicity

As I mentioned below, I have many things to be grateful for.  Every day when I wake up, I thank the cosmos - the universe, or God (whatever you wish to call the miracle of creation) - for my apartment.   And every night when I put my head on the pillow, I thank the cosmos for my apartment.  It's small, noisy and humble. And I love it. My personal space is important to me, I prefer the peace and quiet of living alone.  Don't get me wrong, I have a lot of family and friends I love spending time with.  But I also love lots of solitude.  I adore living drama free. Over the past few years, as you know, I have been purging and simplifying.  I've gotten rid of many things and toxic relationships. I made a discovery along the way.  The more simple I make my life, the more content I feel.  I still love beautiful things, just not too many.  Clutter won't do.  I still adore minimalism, so I hope to achieve a flirtation with it.  Minimal and cozy sound like opposites, but they're not really.

I love simplicity.  Mid century modern is my favorite style of all time.  MCM's clean lines make it easy to layer many other styles on top of it.  Lately I've become interested in layering organic touches in my home.  I've been seeing many bloggers do this skillfully (perhaps the subject of a future post).  I particularly like layering Asian, Moroccan and industrial touches.  I want it to be girly - so hot pink must be prominent.  But, I don't want it too sweet.  Girly and a little edgy too.  Tall order.  The twist is it must be done with almost no  money.  Every now and then my mom gives me a little money (thanks so much mom!) and I buy a cute vase at the Goodwill.  Even though I try to live an austere lifestyle, let's face it - the artistry of the human race is amazing.  People make many beautiful things!  Every one needs retail therapy sometimes, and I'm no exception. The Goodwill meets this need for me without guilt.  Each time I go to the Goodwill, I bring one or more vases to redonate.  I don't believe in storage.  If something is in storage, you don't need it.  I take something out before something new comes in.  I like to think of objects being in motion and think of my place as an art installation.  My apartment is a dynamic  experiment in color, movement, sensuality and balance.

Sorry for the over abundance of words.  Why do I do what I do?  Because I have too.  More succinctly -  I friggin' love my apartment, even though it's tiny and lacking in funds.  Just wish I could paint the walls.

Here's a new obsession for me.  Rice paper lanterns.  The inspiration for these lamps are two of my favorite designs of all time:  the George Nelson bubble lamp and the Noguchi Akari lamp (which are only pipe dreams for me).   Now I absolutely adore the Nelson and Noguchi, but I'm poor.  Even if you're poor, you need pretty stuff and thank goodness there are cheap ways to find it.  No matter how humble, your home is still your refuge.  It's where you come to recharge.  It must satisfy your aesthetics and your senses, and allow you to relax.

The hexagon shaped lantern is new from World Market and was only $5.00.  I love it!  The cheapest Nelson I could find was $269! They have elements in common with the Nelson and the Noguchi.  For example, they look great hung in multiples.  When I first hung the second lantern, I was dismayed that my saucer lamp is hanging crooked.  However, after a few days I got used to it and now I love it!  As I've simplified my life, I've also learned to embrace imperfection.  Now I'm thinking of getting pink light bulbs, if I can find them cheap.  I prefer an ambient glow.  What about you, dear readers, have you used any colored light bulbs?

Pillows are the easiest way to add pops of color and texture.  Cute and inexpensive pillows can be found everywhere.  Even at the dollar store!  I've always adored pillows.  But mixing patterns is new for me.  I love these patterns together.  My mom made the pillow in front out of a placemat.

Another of my obsessions is painting vases.  I love finding abandoned, unloved vases at the Goodwill and giving them a new life.  I painted the blue vase on the bottom shelf recently, but forgot to take a before picture.
Here's what my living room looked like a few days ago.  All the hot pink makes me so happy!  I would paint the walls pink if I could!  Never too much pink for me.

I washed the pink sofa cover today, so thought I'd change the room a little.  Here is how it looks with a white sofa cover and white rug.  I like this look too.  If I had money, I'd probably do something drastic like totally redo the room in silver and gray.  Just because you live simply and with budgetary constraints, doesn't mean you can't make your home a stylish retreat.  Feel free to contact me if you'd like a consultation on simplifying and organizing your home.

1 comment:

Jessie said...

Gosh, all the clutter and stuff in my house would drive you crazy right now. ;) I just "staged" my first bookcase (be on the blog eventually) and I can't believe how FULL it is. I plan to live with it for awhile and see if I like it. It's mostly all picture frames!!! I try to display everything I have so that I am not storing things.


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