Good morning blog friends.
I have to work today. Ugh. Shouldn't there be a rule about having Friday's off in the summer and everyone could be super happy. Like a super happy worldwide Friday convention. Here's wishin'!
I am today answering one of, not the most but, one of the most asked questions I receive in emails and comments on my blog is "What is with all the animal photos?" "Wouldn't your space look lovely with some old windows or something instead of the tigers? Just a suggestion!" Now this post is not soley about the animal photos in our home but about what led me to the concept for this post.
Every once in awhile I get bored of the computer, Pinterest (I know, horrors) and go hunting through my old magazines. There are only a few that I have kept every issue and my Canadian House and Home magazines are one of them. I have every issue for the last 10 years and a few sporadic ones from prior years when I was a teen.
I like to picture stare at my magazines the first round through and then go back and read all the columns and stories in the sections that interest me.
I was reading an old editor's column (August 2010 if you're interested) and her words really struck a chord with me and gave me the idea for this post.
Suzanne Dimma describes the journey she has taken to designing her space, clients spaces and finally amalgamating a space with her now husband. Learning to deal with the incredible amount of options and inspirations and knowing how to sort them for your unique space.
The keys to Great Style as written by Suzanne Dimma
Authentic: It's okay to find inspiration in another person's work, but you have to make it your own somehow.
Unique: The most memorable spaces tell us something about the occupants
Affordable: Decorating a home shouldn't cost more than you can handle.
Effortless: Style should fit with the way you live. Don't turn your home into a mini Versailles if you have kids, a hockey playing spouse and a lab to boot.
Confident: Above all, be bold in knowing your taste. If you choose things you love, you'll find a way to make them work together.
I think these concepts can be applied to all areas of life including the home but for this purpose we will deal with just the home. We hear it mentioned all the time that people don't understand how bloggers live in their spaces as everything looks so perfect. I always wonder if the people throwing those stones would read the blogs they make these comments to. If there were slippers scattered everywhere, dishes on the counter, laundry on the floor and toilet paper rolls a certain gray fuzzy cat digs out of the garbage and leaves all over the house like mouse trophies in the photos. Some bloggers have even written books/blogs dedicated to everything being beautiful doesn't need to be perfect.
Suzanne's words could be used to remember that we all live in our own ways with different budgets, tastes and styles.
This leads me to answer the question from above.
Trevor and I purchased our first piece by then new artist Edward Spera in 2002. It was a paper print cheetah limited edition and we carefully selected the mats and frame and were so proud of our joint purchase. It hung in my bedroom at my parents house and we would always visit his booths at fairs and go to his gallery showings at a local winery.
We got to know him over the years and when we bought our first home we saved up to purchase our first tiger "Mischief" on canvas. We had a heavily influenced African art home and that tiger sat right above our fireplace in the center of our small living room.
It was the beginning of our art collecting and Ed has since grown to be a large name in the art world locally and worldwide.
Over the years we have collected the pieces we fell in love with and placed them with pride in our home.
They aren't just random items we have placed in our home and they make this space ours. Sure sometimes, especially in the summer when everything is light and white I get the urge to trade out the tigers and replace them with windows and shutters. However, I then remember the reason that I want to do the change isn't really for me, not really. It is because at the bottom of it, it is a blog thing. No tigers would mean better more common photos. More views, more followers, more pins but less me and us.
I started this blog as a means to document our home and some of our journeys. I didn't set out to be the biggest blog and the most sponsored. Although being a stay at home blogger would be amazing, we don't want to live in a magazine. I'm sure many of you already think we do lol, but this is our home that we have picked, thrifted and purchased items to live around. 90% of the items in our home have a story behind them. We can tag team tell the tales about where we found items, how we installed them and the weird/cool people we have met along the way.
I very much realize that the African artifacts and animal paintings are different and not the norm but it is part of why I love them and if you knew us you'd know instantly we like to be a bit different.
So although not for everyone and I understand that, I mean to remain with the Authentic, Confident and Unique steps that make up the points of great style.
So now you know, and i am sure I will be asked many more times but now I can refer people to this post and hopefully it will remind even just one person that you need to love the place you call home or it is just a house with someone else's stuff and style.
Shop listing also happening more often now, not just Thursday. See what got listed yesterday.
Have a great weekend,
a stroll thru life
a stroll thru life