Thursday, May 23, 2013

Putting my home decorating style into a box. A cottage style type box to be exact :)

So, I got married at 20, and I had never lived on my own before. I had ideas what of what I liked, but I had never put any of them into practice before. I remember telling my mom I liked wicker, neutral colors, wrought iron.... that was about as far as I knew. I had this dumb rule in my mind that you had to pick a color scheme for a room and then you couldn't put anything into the room that did not match that exact color scheme. I liked Pottery Barn, and registered there for our wedding and got some lovely, staple items that I've been able to use throughout my journey to discover what my style is when it comes to decorating my home.

Lately I've been noticing that I MUCH prefer a room when it has a variety of faded, subtle vintage colors mixed together. I still like wicker, I still like wrought iron, but that idea of having a particular color for each room is g-o-n-e. Thank. goodness. I have been trying so hard to place my style into some kind of box-like container for my own benefit, so that I can define what I like a little more and not have to debate so hard over what direction I want to go with a certain room or feel. I knew I liked cottage style, and farmhouse (without being too country) but I hadn't gotten very far... I had spaces I had decorated that I loved (our mantle, Drew's room, the buffet in the kitchen) but I didn't know why, and I didn't know how to re-create that feel in other rooms... I felt like it took way too much trial and error to make a space feel like my style, and I wanted to define myself a little more. I've been dying to paint my kitchen cabinets white, and I'd love to paint our bedroom a pale grey blue, and paint our kitchen walls a grey white... But I didn't know why...

Then I read this post here, over at The Lettered Cottage blog, and oh my goodness, I feel like my style has a voice, a definition, and I am so happy!! She was talking about the definition of Cottage Style, and things to look for in a room that make it that style. Here's her list:

- chunky, warm wood tones
- lots of white
- pops of color
- fun fabrics
-painted furnishings
- typography

She said she likes to mix together all or some of these elements in a room to create a cottage style. So I've now labeled myself a cottage style lover. Here are some recent photos of Drew's room, and oh my goodness... it contains all of those elements. And I love it. 

I felt a little bad when I did his room that I didn't want to paint it, but I loved the subtle white-ish gray on the walls just how it was. Now I understand myself a little better (lots of white)

Then you have his four poster wooden bed, that I asked to borrow from my parents basement. (Chunky, warm wood tones

We're in a bit of transition in here, as Isaiah is eventually going to moving into Drew's room when the baby comes, hence the double bed frame propped behind the rocking chair. (Ironically, the only thing on the list that was missing from Drew's room was painted furniture, and this is a painted, iron bed frame. Also, I love the big numbers on that license plate clock. Typography?  )  

Speaking of typography.... I still love that reprint of the vintage car racing poster that hangs above Drew's bed. Not only does is tie in multiple colors, but I love the font used. Besides that, I loved mixing up the fabrics I used together here. His bed spread is a mainly red & brown patchwork type quilt. Then there's the pale blue and white polka dot quilt made by Drew's great grandma Kauffman draped on the end of the bed. The vintage cars pillow I made from a shirt that used to belong to my Poppop Marsh. The pillow propped in front of it is a navy fabric with green and navy plaid little moose silhouettes on it made by my aunt Kath. (Fun fabrics

Though there are many other areas in the room where I mixed several different colors together, I love these yarn chandeliers hanging in the corner over the little table. They were made by my oh-so-very-talented friend Salena for her son's birthday party one year. Since she didn't have anywhere to store them (and they smash easily) she let me have them!! Thank you, again, Salena!! (I do believe this counts as Pops of Color

Just a few more photos of one of my favorite little spots in our house, Drew's dresser. 
(Antique care from 1913 bought by my parents for Drew. Second hand mirror given to me by my mommom, with a post card tucked into the frame. Antique childrens' books tied together with twine, also from my mom for Drew's first birthday. The two fedoras I bought for the boys that are not often on the dresser because they love to wear them so much.) 

Love letting these hats that we actually use often sit out on the dresser as part of the decor instead of putting them away in the closet. :) 

Besides Drew's room I also mentioned that I really like the buffet right now. I just recently added some pink and turquoise into the house because it makes it feel so much more summery. (And maybe I subconsciously have boy/girl on the brain...) 

The candles were from target, the candle holders were a wedding gift (from pottery barn) the pretty blue bottle/vase and pink peonies were from Steph on mother's day, the tin cracker can used to be used by my mom's family when she was a little girl. The little milk glass vase I bought for $1 when Shaun's great aunt was having a sale. The mirror I made and had posted about here awhile ago. The wreath was one of the first decorative things I bought when we got married and was $11, I remember being very excited about that. The frame was made for us as a wedding gift and has one of our engagement photos in it with a Bible verse. The tiny little elephant pitcher tucked between the cracker can and blue vase was from sugar plums and tea, bought by my mom for Drew one day. The buffet itself was a piece of furniture that used to be my grandmothers and had bookshelves on top of it. She gave it to us when she downsized and moved into her apartment. 
(So, we have warm, chunky wood tones in the buffet, painted furniture in the painted mirror frame, typography with the graphics on the cracker can, pops of color in the candles, vase and flowers, whites in the tiny vase, elephant and candle, and that wall behind the buffet is the one I said I want to paint white in the kitchen. The only thing missing is fun fabrics.) 

And the mint in the vase is from my mint patch that was started from a plant my Aunt Kath gave to me from her garden when we first moved into our house. 

It was so fun to read this list and then compare it to areas in my house that I like and see all the similarities. 
It also amazed me as I remembered where everything came from how many things have been made for us or given to us.... Please know how thankful we are!!!! Not only are there good memories behind each piece, but you've helped make our house a home! :) 

Ok, well that about sums up my newly defined love of cottage style. 

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