Interior Refining, Not Interior Design, Creates Homes Inspired by Our Lives

Interior Refining, Not Interior Design, Creates Homes inspired by Our Lives

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Creating rooms that inspire you can help you live and work to your fullest potential. However, most of us don’t need a total interior design overall. Instead, what we really need is a little interior refining. Think about what you already have and how your room affects the people in it.

Does a person not know where to sit because your couches are covered in too many pillows? Or, do you have so many items hung on the walls that a person’s eyes are constantly moving from place to place, never resting. Does the room seem composed and calmed? Or is it cluttered and creating feelings of chaos?

If a room is well thought out and put together, it can affect everyone who enters it in a positive way. A beautiful room welcomes you, invites you in, nurtures you and inspires you to love life. Seems like a tall order for a room, but if you do it right, a room becomes so much more than four walls.

Odds are, unless you moved in yesterday, you probably already have some great design elements going for you. Now, all you need to do to master interior refining is defining the purpose of your room and editing or adding only those elements that will create the proper feel for the room.

Your Interior Refining Should Still Be True to You

Authentic living is being true to who you are. It is finding daily joy in the life you have. When we are focused on creating a life we can actually live out and experience day to day, one that makes sense for us, we are more content and happy. Authentic living is the discipline of actually living a full, beautiful and meaningful life rather than only dreaming of one that may ever come to be.

Authentic style is a part of authentic living and describes our own personal style in our home. I think our homes should be a reflection of our style of living, our history and experiences. When you pull together life in a beautiful way through furnishings, accessories, colors and art, no one else could ever duplicate that effect. It is authentic.

It is better to have a quirky home design that you love than an award winning design that you hate.

How can our Life Inspire our Interior Refining?

Life should inspire our homes in many ways. Here is a personal example:

I’m in the process right now of creating a new home office for my business. While some of the things I am putting in it are just functional, I realize that in order to be fully connected to that space and drawn to want to work in it, I need to bring in things that inspire me.

Using colors I love, framing cards that my husband has given me, displaying artwork my children have created, having memory boards with encouraging notes from friends and clients, photos of places I love, pens in colors I love, notebooks that I find pretty, these are all ways I can create a space based on what inspires me.

In addition to visual connections to things and people that inspire me, it is important to me to be mindful of how I work and what my organizational challenges are! If I create a space inspired by me rather than someone else, it is more likely to work for me. I need to recognize my habits and tendencies and the kind of work I do in order to create systems that keep me on task.

Because I am a visual person, I need to use systems that please my eye in order for me to want to use them. It is all a cycle for me, I create a room inspired by my life and what I love, and then in turn that room inspires me to feel happy, productive and creative every day.

The Top 6 Interior Refining Tips to Create Rooms Inspired by Your Life

In no particular order, here are some tips for getting started on finding your own personal style so that you can interior refine your home like a pro:

1) Spend time living the life you want and gathering mementos along the way. Your home will come together as you experience life and naturally let yourself be drawn to things. Your authentic style is a collection of a lifetime of moments. It shouldn’t appear suddenly overnight.

2) Create rooms and spaces to inspire and accommodate your life. Evaluate what kind of life you really want to live and set things up to make that life possible and enjoyable.

Do you love to read? Have friends over for movies? Cook? Write? Have the neighborhood kids over to play with your children? Do you have hobbies? Do you host large parties? Make sure your house is set up to accommodate you.

Homes should never keep us from fully experiencing what we love to do. Nor should they be staged for someone else’s idea of a good life. Your home should make sense for you.

3) Eliminate things that are unattractive or don’t stir your senses in some way. Avoid random decorations. Most everything should have a story that makes you happy or reminds you of a special time or person. Or at least things should be attractive and facilitate your life in some way. If it is useless or ugly, get rid of it.

4) Make ordinary things beautiful. Most of our life is spent doing ordinary things. Those ordinary activities should inspire our homes even more than the few highlights of our life. Everyday we spend time eating, cleaning, bathing, sleeping, working. Take the time to make these every day experiences more organized and pleasing to your eye.

5) Don’t be afraid to ask for help in creating a beautiful home, but be careful who you ask. Friends mean well but can confuse their personal taste with what is appropriate for you. Friends don’t have to love your home, you do.

Designers can be a wealth of information and ideas, but can also lead you to spend money you don’t need to spend and end up creating a home that reflects their style rather than yours. Find someone who understands what you are trying to achieve and can use what you already have and love to create something authentic to you.

Not everyone is naturally inclined to be able to arrange things in attractive ways–we all have our strengths. Don’t feel badly if you need some help in organizing or pulling your belongings together so that you can truly love your home.

6) Find simple inspiration from your authentic life. Simple things inspire me. A note from a friend. A kiss from my 7-year-old son. My husband. Reading. Museums. Travel. Mementos that remind me of happy memories. Sunshine. Being creative. Nature. Music. I could go on forever. If you visited my home, you’d find tiny mementoes of all these things incorporated into my home design.

People inspire me too. People who challenge me to stay true to who I am while being the best I can be are high on my list. Women who live their own authentic lives in their own unique ways inspire me. They are especially inspiring when they are giving and gracious enough to share their experience with others.

What inspires you? Share with me in the comments below!

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