Updated: Dec 25, 2019
It’s June, and I ask you, how is your pre-summer summer going? It feels like summer. It’s been hot and humid, and instead of long walks, and lunch or sitting outside, I’ve spent a lot of time indoors. We sort of have 2-3 short windows during the year to really enjoy the outdoors. I say sort of, because I know there are some people who love eating outside and sitting outside no matter how hard the sun is beating down on our little part of the earth that day. I’ll drive by the front of the Nelson Atkins or Loose park and see someone stretched out on the lawn, reading a book, and I can feel the arms of the sun, bounce off of the grass and reach into my window.
Here are the things that make me feel at home at home.
Plants – faux and real
Pillows – I have them everywhere and mix them up.
Blankets - I use them even during the summer, because it's always cold inside.
Natural elements – crystals, stones, antique shells, branches, etc.…
I spend a lot of time in one particular room of the house, but don’t forget about the other places you visit, your bedroom, the office, the bathroom.
The following pics show a few of my favorite nooks:
An antique chair sits adjacent to the fireplace. It was found at Nufanle with a pillow purchased years ago at the Coveted Home.
The sofa has zebra print pillows on both ends. They were custom ordered from Nell Hill's.
A small pillow sits on a chair, that nobody ever sits in.
Amethyst and candle by the deskside
A collection of old hand made pottery, in the kitchen.
I want to tell you that my bed always had big fluffy pillows, but until this year, I only had the standard pillows, and maybe one or two smaller throw pillows. I saw these blush pillows at Nell Hill's (the pattern I think, is called Jazzy Oyster). I thought they would look great on the sofa - they didn't. That was pre-zebra pillows. You know what they say, "If you love something, you will find a place for it." I added this pillow from Anthropologie, and am now quite happy when I retire upstairs to go to bed.
A bar, of course. You don't have to be a big drinker to have a bar, and you can still keep your clear liquors in the freezer, but having a dedicated place or simply a tray with a few bottles makes being hospitable easier, and it looks pretty.
A trio of Hermes soaps in the bathroom with seashells. Quite possibly the only Hermes I'll ever afford.
A few faux branches in a clear glass vase sit atop a sofa table. On the left side, an antique Italian serpent sculpture graces the top of a book, and on the right a white Dwell Studio giraffe figurine stands over a set of decorative books - my coffee cup made it in the shot. Vintage coral lines the bottom and a small Jonathan Adler vase holds down the fort on the right. On the left next to the table, is my circa 1960s mountain goat manniquin. She is covered in Mongolian fur and has real horns, but it's not taxidermy. I found her at Nufangle Antiques, and as soon as I laid eyes on her, I knew she belonged in my home.
I recently read something that made me nod in agreement. In an interview with Interior Designer Nicholas Obeid in the June 2018 edition of House Beautiful, interviewer Fred Nicolaus asked him what he took away from his experience working with Jonathan Adler. He replied, “…how to shake up a room with an element that doesn’t really “fit” – something that adds personality and shows you aren’t taking yourself too seriously." So simple right? Yet, as much as we are a culture of DIYers, we’re also fast to hand over the reins of truly personal things to experts. Tell me how to arrange this. Tell me what looks good. What are people buying now? Who cares. Look around your house. Who lives there? That’s right, you. You have to be comfortable. It has to make you smile, or at minimum make you feel at peace when you come inside from where ever you go during the day.
I'm not saying you shouldn't seek help. Interior Designers do have a special skillset and formal training. All I'm saying is, if it's not within your budget at this time, don't let it keep you from creating a space that feels special and welcoming to you. Even if it's only one room.