I saw an article yesterday about a conglomerate ‘perfect’ home made up using all the most popular pins from Pinterest of different rooms in a house. Unsurprisingly the resulting house is a mansion in a quintessentially American style, with colossal rooms and more space in the hallways than we have in our home. From perfectly delicious dining rooms to superbly styled sitting spaces, the perfect house is the type only ever seen in magazines, at least over here in England! I often wonder exactly what my American friends would think if they visited us in what would undoubtedly seem like a hovel of a pokey little house in comparison to the spaces they live in.
One thing our relatively compact but actually quite spacious 3 storey does have is a ‘community feel’ (read, you can’t do anything without someone knowing about it!) but that does means we have plenty of time to absorb what is going on with each other and we make the most of both company and relatively small pockets of quiet and space as best we can. In some ways our space use is quite unconventional – our living room is on the middle floor and opposite my bedroom, which means I can retreat to my bed and read and still be part of the bustle and chat. The living room has more clutter at times than I’d like but it can be moved back to Bene’s room easily and I enjoy still having play and chatter at the core of the house. The girls share to top floor but only one of them is a bedroom hider; hearing the sound of her gaming over Skype isn’t quite the same as the old games and high jinx that used to drift down the stairs but that is life, I suppose.
We’ve recently changed our kitchen dramatically; there is so much more space and storage and light that the rest of the house looks very drab in comparison. Next up on my list is the dining room, which has had nothing more than a lick of paint in the 9 years we’ve lived here. In recent years (for which you can probably read at least 5 years!) the curtain pole has fallen down and I rather ill-advisedly put slatted vertical blinds up across the patio, which quite honestly I hate. The carpet is old and the walls dirty, the furniture a mishmash and in need of tlc and worst of all it has become a dumping ground for stuff that isn’t put away, a graveyard for books no one ever opens, a table space we now rarely get a chance to sit down at together. It’s a shame because it really is a lovely room in many way – large, bright and south facing – but recently just too drab and unused, the second largest room in the house and rarely inhabited. As the only room in the house to overlook the garden, this seems a shame.
I’ve started to put together some plans for changing it;, partly with the help of Homify, a new kid on the block that is a way of collating home specific images together to help plan ideas and ‘looks’ for different rooms. You can sort by room and then also by ‘style’ to fine tune what you are looking at to suit your needs.
It’s probably old hat now but I want something more modern but with a twist of country folkishness to it. The floor is due to be laminated soon and hopefully the demise of the dingy carpet will lift it and I fancy yellow walls, bunting and some bright prints on the walls. Top of my list is making it more of a garden room, with a comfy 2 seater sofa facing the window, relegating the table to a quieter corner now that we get to use it less. There is something depressing about dwindling numbers around a once busy family table and taking the focus away from it feels like the right thing. Rugs, plants, lower, less cluttered book shelves with ornaments and a gradual reclaiming of the space from Lego and discarded shoes seems like the right thing to do. I want it to be a room worth sitting in when the sun comes back next year. If possible, I’d like it to be so inviting I make time to sit there myself and finally finish that novel, or at least have to face up to the weeding I’m currently ignoring!
Time to get out the paint pots again and make our dining room back into a room we enjoy being in.
In association with Homify.