Do what you love. A pep talk.


This post was suppose to be about my trip to the library with my son and how I left the children's floor and rediscovered the grown up part and great old design books. I brought home a big stack to "picture read", but some words slipped in. 
                                                    One in particular was by Billy Baldwin:

"Only your eye can tell you what you will be happy with.
Today, thank goodness, we are more concerned with the personal than with perfection."

The first sentence rang true as crystal, but sadly I feel the second is so wrong for our current time.
After reading Jenny's at Little Green Notebook's post yesterday, "Are We Overexposed to Design?", I couldn't agree more.  As a blogger I am constantly absorbing ideas, colors and patterns and spewing them back both on this blog and in my home.  It gets maddening at times. The pendulum is swing so fast nowadays, bold color... neutrals... Hollywood Regency... reclaimed and natural... glossy...matte...its hurts your brain. 


 I have always joked about having Design Schizophrenia, but I actually think this is becoming a real thing.  With fashion and trends moving at warp speed I have moments when I just get disgusted and remove myself completely. (Many of you have probably noticed random absences here on the blog.) It is my way of coping.  I focus on another area of life... running, family... until my head is clear again. 

Regardless of how annoying the how cycle can be I can't stay away from it for long.  Design is my passion. It gets me excited and drives me to create. Without passion you are dead.
So how do we deal with this? Just do what you love.  Sounds so simple doesn't it, but this problem has been around forever.

Baldwin's last chapter of his book Billy Baldwin Decorates sums it up.  Its titled "The Big Question Of Change; The fashion versus what you like." He says:

"Never in my life have I seen people experimenting with so many marvelous, courageous ideas as they are today. It is a healthy time for decorating. Everyone is so uninhibited... Since I first came to New York in 1935 the taste level has zoomed...
 I have always believed  a room should begin beautiful and grow more so every year. Change for change's sake puts far too much emphasis on fashion.
Too many people are afraid to do anything that isn't currently in style."


I  think today we just have SO much "in style" we don't know where to start.
We just need to stop focusing on if its still current. So many "current" designs are actually from our past.
 Just ask yourself :
"Do I love it? Does it make me wildly happy when I think about it (object, color, style)?"
 If you answered yes than just do it.
 Mix colors and Eras.
Be fearless and stop worrying about what others might think. 
MAKE MISTAKES.
 Look to the past. Look back on your old decorating. What parts do you still love?  Its your space. Make it one that makes you happy.  And yes, you might change it, but that is part of the fun of decorating... change. Keep reading magazines, following fashion and blogs. They are there to inspire
. Collect pieces that make your heart sing. All these pieces put together make "your style"- and they will probably all look great together because it will be YOU. 
 I know there are plenty of people that probably hate my style, but I will keep on decorating my space how I want. I constantly fall into trends, its unavoidable. I see and absorb things, I'm human. But I will keep using my space as a canvas to create and experiment on- probably more often than most because I am crazy- but its what makes me happy. And I will continue to learn through writing this blog and reading others.
So folks just do what makes you happy!
 (And go to your library, they have some good inspiration there.)

"The wilder the idea,
the newer, the farther out,
the more it deamands that you know why you want it.
If you love something,
thats all that matters."

-Billy Baldwin

6 comments:

casey at loft and cottage said...

Thank you for such a great post! I totally identify with this feeling and wonder, like you, why I sometimes have to step back and take a breath. It IS too much design information sometimes, and it's important to refocus from time to time and figure out what you love and why you love it. Good thoughts! I needed this right now!

Janet said...

Billy Baldwin is my favorite! Love your blog, I don't even remember how I found it. Sounds like I need a break from "internet over-stimulation. ;)

Be faithful to your own taste because nothing you really like is ever out of style.~Billy Baldwin~

Ashley said...

Amen, Danika! I particularly love the last Billy Baldwin quote that you shared. It's important that our homes be the place where we feel simultaneously comforted and invigorated, relaxed and stimulated. A home that reflect the dynamic way we think about our style and ourselves is meant to change and evolve as we do.

Nest Studio said...

Great post and great follow up to LGN's post. I totally agree with you. Do what you love! And if you love what's in style, don't worry about it being overly trendy. who cares?

My Interior Life said...

Absolutely! Couldn't agree with you more. There's the saying "Live and let live." I think we should adapt that to "Live and let decorate (the way you like)!"

designchic said...

I so love Billy Baldwin...thrilled to find and follow your gorgeous blog!! How have I missed you?!

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