I’m not a professional decorator or stylist…nor do I play one on TV. I just like to be creative. Sometimes we learn best by trial and error and this is the case with some of my decorating/décor decisions.

Since hindsight is only helpful going forward….I thought I’d share a few of my mistakes in the hopes that it helps you navigate through your décor decisions.

5 Mantras to consider:

1. Black furniture is evil.

Now I understand the allure of the white shabby chic furniture – it doesn’t show the dust! We have a beautiful black entertainment center and a few black storage pieces from Ikea – I will never buy black furniture again, ever.

Unless you love to dust on a daily basis, in which case you should seek immediate medical attention, you can see dust on black furniture all the time. Even when I pass by and run my hand across the top to remove the dust you can see it less than 24 hrs later.

2. Rules were meant to be broken.

Decorating is such a personal thing. There are some standard guidelines that help and have proven to work; but the new rule is: surround yourself with things you love and it will all come together.

I remember as a newlywed going to Barnes and Noble and reading decorating book after decorating book in hopes of “learning” how to decorate my new home. The only thing I left with was a headache and even more confusion. How was I going to remember all these rules and guidelines!!! Not to mention I hated most of the pictures I saw in those books. Now what?

It’s taken me 15 years of owning several homes to come to the conclusion (here’s the hindsight) that rules and guidelines are helpful but at the end of the day – it’s your home. Surround yourself with colors you love, the items you love.

I think that’s one of the reasons why the vintage/flea/antique style of decorating has gotten so popular. You can decorate with what you love. It’s brought a sense of adventure and freedom to decorating.

3. Ornate ceiling fans look pretty but will be a pain in the hindsight to clean.

That one is pretty self-explanatory. Dusting the blades to clean off the collected dirt and dust only takes longer when the blade is boasting intricate swirls and adornments. Shoot.

4. Read the labels on rugs.

Even if you choose to break the rules at least you’re informed.

For example; there’s a multicolored rug in my home made of recycled materials. These are very popular right now. I did not read the label and now I have permanent stains on my carpet. Looks like the rug is staying right where it is.

It says to not place on “light” colored carpet – it should really say to not place on any existing carpet. These stains would show up on any carpet other than red.

5. And my last tip: Be sure to connect with your husband before purchasing a $1,200 couch at Ethan Allen (or any other decorating item that has a large price tag).

I knew he would say yes but instead of confirming this purchase with him, I just went ahead and bought it. Oops.

He wasn’t mad or even upset – he was just confused as to why I didn’t include him on this bigger purchase? He didn’t  think we even needed a couch for the front room.

This is marital advice learned through hindsight. COMMUNICATE with your spouse. Especially when it comes to buying things for the home. He may not care at all how you decorate – but he will care about the bill that arrives in his name.

COMMUNICATE.

In fact, that’s just great marital advice in general.

We tend to know more about the people we work with for 8 hours a day than what’s going on with our spouse.

COMMUNICATE.

And go decorate. But tell your spouse first if your idea is expensive.

Till the next time,

Julie b.

Black furniture is a display case for dust.
Black furniture is a display case for dust.
Bummer....the rug stained my carpet.
Bummer….the rug stained my carpet.
Dust gets in all the cracks - a pain to clean.
Dust gets in all the cracks – a pain to clean.

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