On Life + Style

October 2, 2012


I’ve spent a fair amount of time getting clarity on what it is I really want – and that clarity is surprisingly freeing. There is a reason I have only 10 key handbags, but an actively-used service for 16 in casual dishes and china and melamine.

via Martha Stewart

Through vision boards and post-it flags and Pinterest each season I get a list of several material things I want. I’ve a LifeList of things I’d like to do, but I actually have four words (right now) that are guiding principles for all of it – even the post-it flags:


You see, we are bombarded with images and messages all day long. Magazines and, yes, Pinterest and style bloggers and award shows and social media attack us with what we must have, lest we be behind the style curve, less than.

But wanting less doesn’t make you less than. Wanting less and wanting better makes you a genius.

via House Beautiful

The area of “style” can be a silly thing. I mean, in the scheme of things, what you wear or how you wear it doesn’t really hold a candle to say, embassies being attacked and ambassadors being raped and murdered. But, if it runs deeper than the surface – if it’s more about how you live your life versus how you look, there is meaning.

Recently I’ve realized that my approach to style is seriously spilling over to my approach to life and how I choose to design it. I’m not sure why I haven’t recognized this before? I look around this house and there are remnants of lives past that are not relevant to life today. There are color palettes and remnants and furniture that don’t serve our life. The same way I crave simplicity, luxury, function and flexibility in my closet and life, I crave that, too, for my home. My style and my space now need to be congruous and currently they are not.

And so, I have every intention of selling this big house and seeking out a smaller, well-designed one. For this and many other reasons, it’s time to look for the right house. There are lots of discussions to have about the “needs” and “must-haves” and “willing-to-give-ups”, and there are lots more discussions behind those, but the lessons in those answers are powerful.

I’d love to say there is a timeline to all of this – to be where we want to be in a year – but nothing’s ever that simple (hey, hey, there, elections-economy-new business launch-New-York-next-summer!) So, we apply thoughtfulness to the search, add pins to Pinterest boards, and slowly start cleaning out an oversized house – because making decisions in pieces is better than making them all at once.

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5 Responses to “On Life + Style”

  1. Christine Says:

    I don’t know – we made the decision all at once and it worked quite well. It is shocking how quickly you can clear everything out if you are on a mission to move in to a new house that you adore but it is 1700 sq ft smaller! We moved some things that I’m now questioning a year later, so I expect a fall cleaning is coming along soon, and I’ll clear out even more things.

    Like you, I seek simplicity for my home & my closet. Timeless pieces. Quality items. Accents from trends, but not a whole new trendy wardrobe. I prefer classic staples – both in my house and in what I wear. Hmm… never thought about it like that before!

  2. Amie aka @mammaLoves Says:

    Oh I’m so excited to watch this!! I need to de-clutter my life in such a big way. I didn’t demand quality over quantity and now I have too much stuff that i don’t know what to do with and have wasted money i should have kept.

    Maybe you’ll inspire me!!

    • Pam Says:

      There is something amazingly cathartic and freeing about decluttering and generally “lightening up”. Start small – one room! Find your key words, make some guidelines and get biblical with it. No mercy.

      I bet there are some awesome charities that would benefit – and possible some consignment stores to help fund that photography business of yours. 🙂

  3. elz Says:

    What a great realization. Here’s hoping that your simplification brings you my way.