How To
Leave a comment

How To Get Out Of A Decorating Rut



Do you dislike your house but are uninspired, broke, and not motivated? Are you using all your energy to schlepp people and stuff to and fro? Do you rent? Are you a military family? Do you have kids that use your furniture as napkins? Do you own a dog that treats your furniture like a towel right out of the shower? Do you live in Northern Virginia on a tight budget? Do you glance at decorating magazines and then chuck them across the room because they are about as realistic as living here:

Well my friend you are not alone. In fact, the people that don’t fall into the above category actually live in that house pictured above. Let’s take a minute and ponder that.


Yeah, no. I can’t wrap my head around it either.

Ok, let’s put a stop to this nonsense.

Pick up the decorating magazine you tossed across the room and/or go on and figure out what you like. When you go on a road trip you have a destination and a map. So if you want to drive to California from Florida and you have no directions you may end up in North Dakota. It will cost you extra in gas, lodging and stress because of the lack of plan.  You need a destination. You need a goal. You need to know where you are trying to go.  Otherwise you are just frustrated with a lot of #$%^ in your house that you don’t like that cost you money you didn’t have and is a constant disappointment every time you look at it. I mean, really, who needs that??

Let’s use me as an example. I like these pictures:

wettling architects / jessica helgerson design / this old house

wettling architects / jessica helgerson design / this old house

Better Homes and Gardens

Better Homes and Gardens


Upon first glance you may say that’s great if you live in an old house full of architectural charm, have lots of money for renovations, have lots of money, and have lots of money.

HOWEVER, I clearly like sunlight, bringing the outside in, lighter colors and a more tranquil feel to my decorating style.  So just because the navy velvet floor to ceiling Pottery Barn drapes are on clearance and look amazing in the catalog’s picture doesn’t mean they are a good fit for me. Just because my budget is tight doesn’t mean I can’t open up my shades and maybe buy some plants. And just because my whole house, for example, is in browns, reds, and dark golds doesn’t mean I can’t repaint, or slowly phase these pieces out, or start to save towards something that is more in my taste.

You have to start somewhere but you need to know where you are trying to go—-otherwise you just keep buying more of the same that matches the stuff you hate.

This is the first step. I won’t give you anymore right now because you are probably out of time, someone is calling you to do something, someone needs to be driven somewhere, you need to be somewhere else, or you need to clean something off of something.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *