Thursday, June 18, 2015

Build your own aspirational space

The most beautiful cake in the world is going to be the physical representation of today's topic of conversation: the aspirational space. 

It really is beautiful, isn't it?

And those are actual raspberry flecks in the raspberry icing.   The cake itself is chocolate.  Want to eat this cake?  Then your personal aspiration is to get yourself to St. John's Newfoundland and visit Rocket Bakery, home of the best cottage pie I have ever had IN MY LIFE. 

but I digress. 

When it comes to thinking about how we want to live, most of us consider comforts like a bed that doesn't turn your spine into a pretzel (still working on that) or an easy chair, or a table for dining as a step up from standing at the counter (mostly got that locked down). 

Many of us go farther and spend hours on Pinterest gathering images of a dream space. 

Some even create those spaces through the miracle of careful pruning and stylish decorating. And those spaces are often amazing, quite unlike the approach I normally end up taking, which mostly involves figuring out how to fit all the stuff I feel I should keep into the space I have, in the most functional possible way.

And when stylishly decorated space is amazing, it really, really makes you want to be there all the time.  Like for example the yarn store featured on SouleMama this week, in case you missed it: Tolt Yarn and WoolThe pictures... they are so, so compelling...

Seriously, I want my living room to look like this.  Why doesn't my living room look like this??  Admittedly we did decide on schoolhouse light fixtures even cuter than these from Schoolhouse Electric for the house-to-be (we are going for stripey shades), but after all the work that went into it the condo should look a lot more appealing than it does. I seem to have gone horribly wrong somewhere.

Thankfully Bob is in Toronto this week, and yesterday after his meetings were done he came over to help me assess the situation.  The word 'hoarding' might have been mentioned.  Also the instruction to 'get rid of some of this furniture' and 'seriously, rent a storage locker if the one downstairs is that full.'  H'mmm.

So I'm looking at furniture that can go - does one really need a hideously screechy 1960s metal filing cabinet in this new paperless age? - and considering at what point IKEA storage furniture has outlived its hinges.  The answer to that last one, incidentally, is 'after you've moved house once, or after X number of door openings, whichever comes first'. 

Here are the three rules of thumb for any style you might prefer:

1/ Is it worthy of the most beautiful cake in the world?

2/ Does it contain only charming furniture and attractive lighting?

3/ Can you move comfortably to whichever task area demands your presence?

Since we all have our own definition of 'charming' and 'attractive' and 'comfortably', I really think this applies to pretty much anybody who might read this.  So good luck realizing your dream space today!  And excuse me while I go empty out the garage-grade storage shelf I shoved 'temporarily' into the focal point at the end of the hall two months ago, so I can put something nicer there and then reward myself with knitting.

See you tomorrow!


Mimi said...

Have you read The Life Changing Magic Of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo? It has some odd parts that do not fit in with our American culture (she's Japanese) but still, after reading it, I did part with a lot of "stuff."

I understand your plight. I could still go through and get rid of more. Things shouldn't have such a hold on us, but they do.

Mary Keenan said...

I own and LOVE that book! but she doesn't tell you to put all your furniture on the floor in the middle of the room and pick out the stuff you just don't like or use. I did get rid of a lot of clothes and textiles before the move though...