Friday, July 7, 2017

Creating Cohesion, Part 1

Happy Friday my dear friends. Even though we have summer showers in our forecast today, I'm patiently waiting for my clock to hit 5:00 so I can start my weekend. It's my second long weekend in a row and I'm looking forward to keeping it low-key and spontaneous. That's the best way to spend summer weekends!

Today I wanted to kick off a new series on the blog to address a topic I think many lust after: creating cohesion in their space. Over the next several months there will be all kinds of insider tips to taking your home to the next level. So many of my friends are in the same boat: they still have some of those college furniture pieces that have definitely seen better days but they also have some great things they have invested in. How do you mix and match those pieces and still make your space seem "finished" or "adult" and not a hot mess? So far, I have a list of my favorite five things you can do to tidy up the loose ends in your home and feel confident about your space, including my favorite, selecting a color palette.

To start us off though, I'm keeping things really simple. The first step of any project is to clear out the clutter. Did you buy that vase just to take up space? Get rid of it. Has that rug been a hand-me-down for a couple years? Pitch it. To make it super simple for you, here is an easy checklist to follow.

1. Did you buy it?
2. Did you buy it because you love it?
3. Was it gifted to you by someone special?
4. Does it work (if it's an appliance or electronic)?
5. Does it evoke memories or happy feelings?
6. Is it appropriate for some room or space in your home?

Comb through your shelves, drawers, and hiding places. If the items you find don't meet most of these, I strongly encourage you to donate it or sell it in a garage sale. Do not keep things that you feel obligated to keep. If something doesn't fit your style but is still in great shape, offer it up to a friend who may love it. (But don't make them feel obligated to take it either! No one likes an instigator.) More often than not, your home is filled with place holders - impulse purchases or "this wall needs something" purchases that have little purpose or meaning.

Clearing out the clutter will make you feel lighter and less stressed. It's proven that not having a focal point, a place for your eyes to rest, can increase anxiety levels. Isn't it bizarre that the one place we are meant to feel most relaxed could actually be stressing us out?! So this is the first step. Lighten your load, then come back to see part two.