Truth in Decorating
Lots of readers have been clicking through my flickr set to photos of the new house, and a few have left some very nice compliments. Mostly these make me feel very, very good, but also just a little guilty.
Surely it goes without saying that the slice of life I serve up online is edited for public view. I don't go to the grocery store without putting some clothes on andon a good day brushing my hair. I don't let it all hang out here either. Not on purpose anyway (sometimes I miss a button).
But I can't betray people into thinking I have it all together in domestic stage management. Here, in the interest of truthiness, is how the unpacking is going in the back of the house:
The truly frightening thing is that it could well look exactly like this a year from now.
I notice I am procrastinating most over objects with sentimental meaning: photographs, art, memorabilia, bric-a-brac, and the like. It's incredible to me how much of our "stuff" falls into this category. I look at it all and think, what are we, the Smithsonian? I can feel the psychic weight of the contents of those frames and boxes, and frankly, I'm reluctant to unload it onto our living space.
I love the uncluttered feel and look of the front of the house, but I don't know if I'm ruthless enough to toss these things. Also, I know it isn't reasonable to expect to go on living in a catalog picture. Without a few personal items, a space can seem sterile, however pretty.
When we were packing up the old house, I wrote that the purging was a kind of yoga, a deep stretch. I need help with this next pose. What's your approach to sentimental objects? What's the golden proportion of space assigned to history and space left open to imagination and potential? And are you available this Saturday to just come and take care of it?
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