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You Have To Be You, Wonderfully You

Let’s have a heart-to-heart chat. I want to share some encouragement with y’all that I know I’ve shared before. In fact, I’ve probably written similar posts several times over the years. I’ll probably write another one sometime in 2020. But I feel like we all need a reminder every once in a while. And since it’s the beginning of a new year, I thought this might be the perfect time. So what is this reminder about? It’s this…

Your home should reflect you and those who live in it. No one else. Period.

This whole blogging thing is challenging at times. Not from a “oh, my job is so hard” aspect. I thrive on the actual work, and feel incredibly lucky that I get to do what I love every single day and make a good living doing it.

But from the “putting my life/home out there for public commentary and input” aspect, it gets challenging. And I’m not even talking about the meanies. That’s not what this post is about at all. This is more about others’ expectations for your home, and doing your best to quiet the voices and stay true to yourself.

I think that the sheer volume of input and suggestions that come my way would be confusing to most people. I love the input I get from those who read my blog, but there have been several times over the years that I’ve allowed myself to get confused and off track by the input. I have to make a conscious effort to stay true to myself when I make decisions regarding my home. It’s not always easy, but I find that generally when I let others have too much influence over my decisions, it’s out of fear. Fear of what others may think. Fear of whether others will like my choices or not. Fear of disapproval. Fear of having someone call my decisions ugly or wrong.

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When it comes down to it, none of those things matter. They don’t matter for me, and they shouldn’t matter for you either. While bloggers, Instagrammers, interior designers/decorators, etc., probably get way more input than people who don’t put their homes on the internet for public consumption, I think probably most people still get that input from somewhere.

It could be your mother-in-law who gives a disapproving side eye glance at your new dining table, or your nosy neighbor who pops over to see your new kitchen remodel and decides to tell you everything she would do differently and better, or your best friend who just can’t understand why in the world you’d paint your wall red because she hates red (even though she knows red is your favorite color).

Regardless of where the input is coming from, we all have to learn to take the grains of good and useful input, and toss the rest. We have to stay true to ourselves, because our houses don’t need to reflect our in-laws’ or our neighbors’ tastes and personalities. They need to reflect the people who live there.

I started thinking that we all may need this reminder again when I published my final pantry before and after post. As a reminder, this is what my pantry looks like…

pantry remodel - after 5 - back right corner with floating shelves

And one commenter said that it’s nice, but when we sell our house, I’d have to get rid of those tiles and put something neutral there.

Again, that wasn’t a mean or rude comment. This isn’t a post about meanies and online bullies, and I’m not looking for responses like, “Kristi, just ignore the haters.” This person clearly wasn’t being mean or a hater.

This is a post about mindset. And that comment revealed a mindset that I think is so prevalent among homeowners, and it makes so many homeowners fearful of choosing things that truly reflect their own personalities for fear of what the next owner may think.

Matt and I don’t plan on selling our house. When we bought this house, we decided it would be our forever home, and that really freed me up to put my own stamp on it.

Now I do know that some people purchase homes knowing that by a specific date, they will be selling the house again. Maybe they have to move every two years for work. Or maybe the house was intended as an interim home while they’re building their dream home.

But most people don’t buy homes with a definite sell date on the books. And yet, so many people make decisions for the next potential owner. I’ve known people like this — people who are afraid to paint the walls or paint the cabinets or use some colorful tile because what if they decide to sell the house, and a potential buyer hates the color?

Two homeowners I personally know who did this went on like this for over fifteen years before they actually sold the house. Fifteen years! That’s a long time to live with builder white walls simply out of fear that the next owner would disapprove of your love of blue.

Decorating for the next potential owner is something that far too many people do. And that potential future homeowner is an unknown, nameless, faceless person we’ve never seen or met before. And yet, we let him/her have far too much control over our decorating choices.

So if we let some nameless, faceless person have that much power over our choices, then the opinions and input of the people we actually know — the relatives, neighbors, friends, coworkers, etc. — are even more powerful. And while they mean well (hopefully), we have to weigh that input very carefully and remember that at the end of the day, your decisions still only need to reflect you and the others who actually live in your home.

Some input is very easy to brush off, because you know immediately that the person is speaking about their own preferences and not yours. For example, when someone tells me that they think I’d be happier with white cabinets, I don’t even have to give that a second thought. I know what they said isn’t really what they mean. There’s no way they could know me and believe that I’d be happier with white cabinets.

What they mean is that THEY would be happier with my home if I’d paint my cabinets white. But it’s not their home. It’s mine. (And Matt’s, of course, but he couldn’t care less as long as I don’t paint anything pink.). And I would never choose white cabinets.

But other input isn’t so easy to immediately put aside. I was told yesterday that I was obviously “going through a phase” with all of this color all over my house. My immediate response was a feeling of insecurity and embarrassment. And I thought to myself, “Oh my gosh, is this true? Maybe I am going through a phase!”

It took me a while to convince myself that no, this isn’t a phase. I really am being true to myself in my decorating decisions right now. And my love of color is consistent with who I’ve been for a very long time now. Remember our condo?

Our house before that was a rental, so I didn’t do much to it (although I did refinish the kitchen cabinets 😀 ). And our house before that was one that we had built in Albany, Oregon. The inside of that house was painted 21 different colors throughout the various rooms.

So no. This isn’t a phase for me. Unlike that commenter, I don’t have a need (or a desire) for “peaceful elegant surroundings.” I thrive on color, and look for ways to add more. And the last thing I need to do in my home is change directions based on someone else’s wants or needs, especially a person who doesn’t live here and will probably never set foot in my home. And I certainly don’t need to change directions based on fear of someone else’s disapproval of my home.

And that’s really the point of this whole thing. That’s the idea I want to get through to you.

It doesn’t matter if every single visitor to your home disapproves of your hot pink feature wall covered top to bottom in your collection of vintage neon signs. If it speaks to you, and you love it, that’s all that matters.

Let your home reflect you, regardless of what others think about it. I’m very passionate about this because I think decorating is more than just a way to pass the time making pretty things.

I truly believe that having a home that reflects you can have a huge impact on your mental well-being, just as having a clean and organized home can. Truly creating a home — a sanctuary where you can escape the hectic outside world — is so important for our well-being, but your home has to be filled with the things YOU love. Not the things your mother-in-law loves. Not the things your neighbor loves. Not the things that your best friend loves. And certainly not the things that you think some potential future buyer might love. But the things that you love.

So here’s to carefully weighing the input of others, using the input which is truly useful, discarding the rest, pushing aside fear of disapproval, and forging ahead with our own visions for our homes in 2019, regardless of what others think of the outcome. 🙂



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111 Comments

  • Reply To This Comment
    Theresa P
    January 18, 2019 at 11:53 am

    You go, Kristi! I love the advice to stop thinking about what another buyer would want! It’s so true! Plus, not only do you never really know what another buyer would want, if you really want to take your house back to builder grade, you can do that before you sell! 🙂 There’s a blogger out there who wrote a post about the tyranny of the white kitchen. It basically says that while everyone else is redoing their kitchen to be white marble on white cabinets, she’s going to do what fits best in her house, both in terms of style of house and what she likes. I wish I could remember the blogger. But, in a nutshell, it was a similar concept.

    As it relates to your house and blog, I think that most of us who have been following you for a while now are getting better about qualifying our statements of opinion. I try to always say, “if it were me, I’d be happy with XYZ, but you do what’s best for you.” We know all the feedback that you’ve gotten and know that you’re going to do what you love (and SHOULD do what you love).

    Keep it up!

    • Reply To This Comment
      Sherre
      January 18, 2019 at 12:28 pm

      I always enjoy reading your comments! I think that you provide nice feedback that provides good “thinking points” without being critical 🙂

    • Reply To This Comment
      Patti
      January 18, 2019 at 2:10 pm

      Kristi, we had a beach house for 20 years, and I put my love of color into it. My colors, however, were mostly light, and they were coordinated through the house. Every room was beautiful, and I loved it. But when we went to sell it, the idiot realtor insisted we paint everything white, and said my dark hardwoods (they weren’t that dark actually) be refinished and left light “because people wanted beach houses to be lighy”. My husband went along with everything he said. Including moving most of the furniture, books and tchotchkes our. Our beautiful house took almost 2 years to sell, during which time we couldn’t stay there. I so wish we had left it exactly the way I had it. I know it would make people with no vision for what it could be see how pretty it was. So carry on, Kristi! You just carry on!

      • Reply To This Comment
        Michelle Harmon
        January 19, 2019 at 7:03 am

        One time while my husband and I were house hunting, we looked at a house for sale whose owner was a real estate agent. Every room was painted white. It left me feeling like the house was very sterile and not a house where real people live. I think you are right to think that your house would have sold sooner if you had left it alone. I think a lot of people want color but are unsure how to achieve it.

    • Reply To This Comment
      Becky Zimmerman
      January 19, 2019 at 6:05 am

      Love the color. My last home was full of color and after reading your post this morning a bomb went off in my head. I think that is what I am missing in this home is the color for I am not a neutral person. Thank you and I can only say the wheels are turning and paint store here I come.

    • Reply To This Comment
      sue sauer
      January 20, 2019 at 3:25 pm

      I LOVE what you have done with your pantry. I have just joined so I look forward to what comes next!

    • Reply To This Comment
      Rachel
      January 21, 2019 at 10:47 am

      I love your new blog layout on that note! Looks great!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Lynn Martin
    January 18, 2019 at 12:15 pm

    Thank you for this! I realized that most of my life I do things and seek other’s approval rather than just doing what I like! You have given all of us freedom with this! I stand in awe of all you have done and can accomplish! You are amazing!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Nanette
    January 18, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    Great post Kristi! I agree 100% and I also think there’s nothing wrong with going through a phase. There was a time when I could not get enough red and white toile. I loved it. Give me all the toile. And then one day (after 10 years) I said, enough with the toile, I’m ready for something new. I kept a few things (throw pillow, valances) and changed out the rest and I love the new look too. So do I think the toile was a phase? Probably. But that’s okay because all the while I had it, I LOVED it and the dark red walls which made my sister remark, “Welcome to her womb.” Ha.

    As for a future buyer, you are spot on. A friend agonized over the faucet fixture in the bathroom – what would sell best and finally picked something using that criteria. Well, the house sold and guess what – the new owners TORE THE WHOLE HOUSE DOWN. You cannot predict the future but you can live in the now. Enjoy it.

    • Reply To This Comment
      Joan Ann Hornung
      January 18, 2019 at 2:40 pm

      Loved your comment Nanette. And, just like everyone else, I needed Kristi’s post today. I hear these very same words in my head sometimes when I am trying to make a decision for my home. JUST read a quote by Lao-tzu a couple days ago on my desk calendar…”CARE ABOUT PEOPLE’S APPROVAL AND YOU WILL BE THEIR PRISONER.” Kristi, you are SO SMART! Thank you.

    • Reply To This Comment
      Mariele Storm
      January 18, 2019 at 3:21 pm

      Excellent points all around. If we wait until we’re out of a phase… we’ll be dead. 😉

      Heheh, I look for time capsule houses all the time on Zillow to dream. And then I see so many brick ranches that have been “””””””updated”””””” with granite or marble and modern colors, everything looking oh-so-2010s, and do you know what the first thing I would do if I bought one of those homes is? Tear it all out!! Tear out ALL the new and put in my own vintage fixtures–which they probably tore out and replaced with modern for resale value. So no, you absolutely cannot predict buyers, and if you’re living your life based on what someone else expects, you’ll never enjoy a day.

      If you’re trying to make something that appeals to the next buyer, fix the big issues. Fix the rotted window, the issues with the roof, the settled and uneven foundation, and put in HVAC. I can assure you that absolutely nobody will complain about those changes, not even yourself, and that will raise the value of your home.

      • Reply To This Comment
        Rebecca Neustel
        January 18, 2019 at 5:13 pm

        I feel exactly the same way! Mine and my husband’s dream is to find a house with vintage bathrooms (in good shape) with the colored tile and colored porcelain sink and tub. I really love those turquoise porcelain tubs and sinks with pink tile! That seems to be what people rip out, though.

        • Reply To This Comment
          Mariele Storm
          January 18, 2019 at 8:49 pm

          Yay!! Those are my favorites as well. And Cinderella tubs! I’ve actually been working on collecting fixtures for years now, even though I probably won’t have a home of my own for close to five years, haha. I’ve gathered up a box of salt ‘n’ pepper tile, blue tile, matching blue toilet and sink, and some fancy pulls for kitchen cabinets, as well as far too many tchotchkes. My local Habitat for Humanity ReStore is a goldmine for this sort of thing, if you visit often enough. Don’t discount regular thrift stores, though, because I actually got both boxes of tile–mixed in with chunks of concrete, for some reason–in a miscellaneous box, all tucked away with dishes at a Salvation Army. They let me have it for $5. I practically ran with it to the checkout. 😀

          I’ve also heard some people have success in asking people who are selling homes if they can come in and buy some of the old fixtures–one person I talked to was able to score an entire pink bathroom set by doing this, only paying what it would cost to replace them with basic new replacements. I see lots of homes around here (middle Iowa) that have some of these old features, with homes running in price from around $40,000-160,000… maybe check out Zillow the next time Craigslist or the ReStore fails you. 😉 Good luck to your and your husband! I applaud your excellent taste. 😀

      • Reply To This Comment
        Sabrina
        January 19, 2019 at 11:59 pm

        Fellow Retro-Renovators!!!

        Yes!!! I love time capsule homes and Retrorenovation is full of tips on how to renovate like that.

        See the latest one from Gladewater TX on that site. Amazing bathrooms!

        I adore the 30s-50s/Mcm tiled baths too. When house hunting online it was a bummer to see so many old houses with a cute exterior flipped to blah white and grey. But with MCM still trendy I think more people are “saving the pink bathrooms!” Mine has none but it has a great 50s tiled bath with aqua green “atomic” star accent tiles and a cerulean tub. I was so happy to find it.

        And it will fit the scheme of blue/green Id like to decorate in.

        I did not think I would like white walls but they are a good backdrop for color.

        So embrace your pink baths and knotty pine! Or your farmhouse chic, but long live historic home style!

        • Reply To This Comment
          Mariele Storm
          January 21, 2019 at 5:04 pm

          Hallelujah! Sabrina, pictures of your bathroom, please!! It sounds dreamy, especially the aqua green star accent tiles. How do you keep the tub clean? I am always afraid of damaging the finish on my finds, even though they’ve been pretty well loved…

          I’m actually considering taking Kristi’s resin tutorial and making my own retro colored tiles from the cheapie basic white square tiles you can get at Menards and Home Depot and the like for $0.20. For a small place like an accent border in a bathroom or a kitchen backsplash, it seems pretty manageable, cost wise, right?

  • Reply To This Comment
    Deb Morehead
    January 18, 2019 at 12:19 pm

    Very well said !!

    • Reply To This Comment
      Sabrina
      January 22, 2019 at 2:37 pm

      Yes Hooray! Not sure how to upload pics but this is close:

      https://retrorenovation.com/2010/06/03/starburst-tiles-from-ann-sacks-and-barbara-barry-simply-gorgeous/

      It’s aqua/green salt n pepper tile and the teal/aqua starburst sprinkled here n there. Scroll to the kit backsplash. As for keeping it clean, I’d say Bon Ami, but check manufacturers instructions first. Our tub is by Kohler.

      And check out the
      Inspiration at Retro renovation.com.

      Yes do the resin tiles! The alcohol inks might have a cost but the custom look for a good deal makes it worth it. Those tiles are cool!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Judy
    January 18, 2019 at 12:19 pm

    Absolutely! This is wonderfully written, Kristi, and I think it should be required reading at least once, if not more, per year for everyone. It is so easy to forget this when the skies are drab, when Debbie Downers come to visit, when we are low and caught off-guard, and then we start to doubt ourselves and our own visions. Seeing your home Kristi-colorized brings joy when I read your blog, and courage to follow my own path. Thank you for your insights! Keep doing you!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Karen Walker
    January 18, 2019 at 12:20 pm

    Right on! Having recently moved to our final home this is the same way I think about my “decorating style”. I love color and memorabilia I’ve collected over the years and I don’t give a flip about what others think! My home, not theirs!
    Also, I love what you are doing and have done. I look forward to your posts. Thanks!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Kate S
    January 18, 2019 at 12:21 pm

    LOL! I had eight kids…. so I learned very long ago to ignore completely the opinions of others – had to! And my china hutch is filled with baseballs, trophies and photos of the seven boys who played ball, hit homers and got game balls over the years. Yep, folks take a second and third look at that dining room hutch! Love it! Doesn’t everyone have a glamour shot of joltin’ Joe Di Maggio hanging on their great room wall???? No? Wow….

    I love your colors and they’ve given me some ideas – one of these days I’m definitely going to move away from Navajo White…. really I will!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Chris
    January 18, 2019 at 12:25 pm

    Great post. I learned years back to just make my place somewhere that makes me happy each time I open the door. My brother made some unkind comments about my new citrus green ottoman coffee table and I just said, “Good thing it’s my house then and not yours.” (His house is a boring throwback to the 90’s IMHO.)

  • Reply To This Comment
    Jason
    January 18, 2019 at 12:25 pm

    Well said! I love all you do, it doesn’t mean id have everything you do in my house. When i seen todays post i was thinking it was going to be a what you were upto what you’ve been watching listening to,I’m pretty sure ive heard you say you have netflix Have you seen Orphan black? I was a big fan of the birds wallpaper mural in the entryway and when you redid that i thought that was a shame, this week i was browsing IG and seem you had reposted a picture of your current entryway( i can see it at the bottom of my page here) and i’ve got to say its perfect! the bird pic’s the color on the walls the green shades and that absolutely amazing built from scratch in uk we’d call it sideboard think you call it a credenza? I can’t wait to see what 2019 brings.Xx

  • Reply To This Comment
    Sherre
    January 18, 2019 at 12:26 pm

    This is a perfectly timed post. I have plans to move my mom in with me by the middle of this year, and I find that I’m trying to get ALL my decorating/repainting/big projects done before then because she has a tendency to talk me out of things. Since I’ve invited her to live with me, she seems like she is making a bigger effort to be supportive of my design decisions, but I can always tell if she’s unhappy with something I’m doing…and it always makes me rethink myself and get down about it. I think we’re working it out! 🙂 So far, she likes all my ideas for my new house. Admittedly though, I’ve toned down the color palette to something I think we could both live with. After all, it will be her home too!
    But I love this message!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Anne J Burke
    January 18, 2019 at 12:30 pm

    I think your blog is FASCINATING. What you are doing with your home is AMAZING. I can’t remotely understand why people would even comment on the fact that they would do something differently. Or theorize that you are “going through a color phase.” SHEESH! I personally am tired of monochromatic color schemes, but that is also irrelevant to anything about YOU and YOUR HOME. When I sew my living room curtains, I have your instructions bookmarked. Ditto when I build my wall of cabinets and shelving in my bedroom. They won’t be your colors necessarily, but SO WHAT!!! YOU will be helping me anyhow. That is the most wonderful part of your blog. I am SO amazed at your skills, SO GRATEFUL to you for giving me as a woman confidence to design and build things that will work for me in my house. Thank you so much!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Kathy
    January 18, 2019 at 12:35 pm

    Thank you! I do need the reminder that this is my home, and I live here!!! Have a fabulous day!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Jannelle
    January 18, 2019 at 12:36 pm

    14 years ago I moved into my husband’s grandparent’s home that they had built. It’s only been recently that I have allowed myself to make it our home. Your blog has given me that confidence. And while I love my husband’s family, I have learned to follow my heart instead of listening to all their opinions. Yes, I got a side eye when I painted the dining room a sage green, but it makes me happy. And your blog encourages me to add more color and happiness into MY version of this house. Thank you!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Jeannie
    January 18, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    Bravo, Kristi!

    I’m so sick of bloggers who say I should paint my beautiful cherry wood cabinets and go white. Then there are bloggers who promote the “collected” look while buying all their color coordinated accessories at Home Goods. If my accessories are dated, it’s because they mean something to me and I smile when I see them. Your accessories are you because you made them. There’s a blogger who bemoans “trendy” then posts about the next big color trend.

    I agree that you should do what pleases you. I love your use of color and am using lots of color in my new home. Green makes my heart sing so every room will have green—with red and yellow accents. The beauty of a whole house color scheme is that I can move furniture around the house and it will work.

    Your house is uniquely you. I like that.

    You do plan to donate your brain to science? Sometime in the 22nd century, of course, not earlier. 😊

  • Reply To This Comment
    Margie
    January 18, 2019 at 12:37 pm

    It was very freeing when I bought my then beige condo and had the time and luxury of ripping it all out and adding the colors I love and make me happy. I didn’t paint it the color of the year. I didn’t fill it with furniture I didn’t love. I made it my own and I’m so happy I did! I love your sense of color and imagination. I am fascinated by your knowing how to do all this stuff! I really love the new wall paper but it doesn’t go with my stuff! Nor should it. It goes with your stuff and makes you happy. And that makes me happy for you!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Linda
    January 18, 2019 at 12:39 pm

    Yes! Yes! And yes! I’ve said this all along. That’s my philosophy and I don’t really care what “others” think of my home. It’s MINE 😋 You go girl. You are great!!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Rose Marie Cook
    January 18, 2019 at 12:52 pm

    Not to mention… those tiles… make my heart flutter every time you show them. IF the house was going to be up for sale later… and IF the buyer didn’t like them.. they definitely shouldn’t be allowed to buy the house… those are a work of art.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Stephanie
    January 18, 2019 at 12:58 pm

    Reading your blog, for me, often feels like a breath of fresh air. I get so bored of the content that is so common place from bloggers, to builders, HGTV and even consumer catalogues. So many neutrals and light airy spaces, which in the proper setting work great, but in my life that’s just not realistic for my home. I can’t do all white bedding – we have a 65lb lab mix that sleeps in our bed. White kitchens and light couches – no way! I have 2 kids under 5. We “live” in our home and while i’m sure it shows It also has to accessible to all the creatures under my roof.

    We bought our house 3 years ago, and at the time I didn’t give in much thought but after a few months we realized the previous owners had repainted almost the entire house (hallways, basement, living spaces, kitchen, laundry) the color of bandaids not quite beige not quite pink right before they listed, probably at the suggestion of their realtor. What a waste of time! While we probably wouldn’t have loved their choices, we’re still repainting room by room regardless but it feels so wasteful because i can only imagine how much time and money that took.

    Lastly, I would love for you to do a post on how you go about finding your inspiration images. I am the creative one in my relationship and my husband often needs to “see” what i mean when i say “I want to paint the dining room dark teal with beige wainscoting” because he just can’t envision it. I’m pretty good at sleuthing but I find pinterest and housz often clunky, cluttered and just hard to sift through in general. especially when you don’t know the exact name for design feature but you know it when you see it.

  • Reply To This Comment
    MIssElaineous
    January 18, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    I’m glad I found you and your blog! You are a gifted communicator, teacher, designer, artist and decorator who’s down-to-earth, to-the-bone honest approach at home improvement is not only instructive but also sooo entertaining! I get so excited every time I see your newest post in my inbox because I never know what to expect. Will she build something new today? Has she found a new way of doing something? Did her project turn out the way she envisioned it? I wanna know! Thanks for all you do to keep it REAL. And really INSPIRING!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Lisa
    January 18, 2019 at 1:03 pm

    Bravo!
    You are an artist and an author…..which takes bravery to put your gift out into a harsh world. THANK YOU for your example and inspiration to me

  • Reply To This Comment
    Bobbi Jo
    January 18, 2019 at 1:05 pm

    Your blog has given me so much confidence in my decorating, and I have never been happier. I was actually a little sad to decorate for Christmas this year because I spent 2018 decorating my house the way I want it and didn’t want to move those things. I am a home body, and now that I have decorated my house in a way that makes me feel good I really love being home 🙂 Recently I made my office another sanctuary for me, I did keep the bulk fairly neutral but a pop or color or something that makes me smile here and there, like the llama and owl figurines. The color and pattern on the pots for my plants, and on the wall that I face, and that is to the back of those who enter my office I have 3 – 16 x 20 resin prints from the lilac fields collection, that I look up at during the day and they make me smile. I know they are not something everyone loves, but the movement and color and everything about them just makes me feel good. Thank you!! I look forward to EVERY post! Can’t wait to see what this year brings.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Mary Ellen
    January 18, 2019 at 1:10 pm

    You have amazing skills and it is my pleasure looking into your home, taking it all in!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Pam
    January 18, 2019 at 1:17 pm

    I love and admire your amazing talent, eye for detail and the skills to carry it out! I’ve learned so much from you and look forward to every project and post. Our homes are about US and should reflect what makes US (and our family) happy. Keep up the good work!!

  • Reply To This Comment
    chiflipper
    January 18, 2019 at 1:22 pm

    The Tyranny of Trends! I have painted my interiors grey since 1970. I was ridiculed, told I must be “depressed”, and generally thought to be nuts. For the last few years I have been considered trendy. And when the “grey mania” cedes to something else, I will continue to use grey…because I LOVE IT.
    Although the days of $10 a gallon quality paint have passed, paint is still the best way to make a space your own.

    • Reply To This Comment
      Mariele Storm
      January 18, 2019 at 3:13 pm

      Rock on. I will add that Glidden has always worked quite well as a two-coater for me while being rather inexpensive at Wal-Mart… so I spend closer to $15/gallon, which isn’t too bad. 😉 And absolutely no trim paint has been better than Rustoleum’s cans of paint, which I have painted doors, trim, cabinetry, and furniture with and it has always leveled out perfectly and turned into a super hard and durable finish… for about $10/quart. It’s there if you’re willing to give lower end brands a try!

  • Reply To This Comment
    merralyn
    January 18, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    Thank you Kristi!!!
    I think we are blessed in one way to have access to so many design choices on the internet that we can search for inspiration. But we are also bombarded with negative feedback constantly. When a blogger calls something dated or old or ugly it makes us believe that those same or similar elements in our homes are negatives as well. You are careful to say that your design choices are what fits your tastes without making the follower feel less than adequate if they disagree. I appreciate that so much. We don’t have to please someone in the future. I wish more bloggers or even pinners on Pinterest were more aware of the way their comments can be interpreted.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Andrea B
    January 18, 2019 at 1:27 pm

    Loved this post! I think it is funny how many people will tell you that what you do is wrong, just because they don’t like it. Years ago I painted hexagons in shades of pink, purple, and blue on two walls of my 6-year-old daughters bedroom. She helped pick out the colors and absolutely LOVED it. I made a YouTube video showing the process and I don’t know how many people told me which colors I should have used. Some people were so rude about it that others reading the comments actually yelled at them defending me since it was for MY daughter and it was what SHE wanted. In the end, I was just out to please one little girl and she was the only one living in that room.

    Thank you so much for sharing YOU. I think a lot of people are here because they enjoy seeing what you will do and what colors you will incorporate into a room. If you were just going to have white cabinets and neutral rooms, I don’t think as many people would follow that. I am definitely a huge supporter of making a house exactly what you want it to be (definitely not a future owner). And you know what, many times, it isn’t even that big of a deal when it comes to selling, we only think it would be.

    Keep doing what you are doing!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Stacye
    January 18, 2019 at 1:28 pm

    Amen Kristi!! I’m in the process now of redoing my entire house from the blah beige and taupe that I thought everyone would approve of to the kaleidoscope of bright colors I love. Reds, fuchsia, purples, greens, blues, coral, yellows, and even some orange thrown in for good measure. Welcome to my circus. I love it and it makes me happy! My husband couldn’t care less about what colors I decorate with either. Even about the fuchsia night stands in our bedroom. He just cares above the nice mattress and TV in there.

  • Reply To This Comment
    jan
    January 18, 2019 at 1:30 pm

    Sometimes the one you have to please is your husband! But when he asked me to choose a color for the living/dining room, I went with my gut. After putting it on the walls, he lived with it a couple of weeks and then said he liked it. Same with a couple of other rooms. Surprise!!!!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Linda
    January 18, 2019 at 1:31 pm

    AMEN!!!!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Brette
    January 18, 2019 at 1:35 pm

    “Be yourself. Everybody else has been taken.”
    —Oscar Wilde

  • Reply To This Comment
    Darlene Faye Ray
    January 18, 2019 at 1:39 pm

    Your house your decision. Personally, I love everything about your house. How many people buy a new home than start changing everything to suit there taste. Keep up the beautiful work which I look forward to hearing from you and seeing what you have accomplished.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Darlene
    January 18, 2019 at 1:43 pm

    My whole home is eclectic and I’m surrounded with pieces of furniture from my husbands grandparents farmhouse, pieces from my family and pieces I’ve picked up. . Our table is barnwood from the grandparents barn. A side table I hated because I was afraid to paint, because you “can’t “ paint vintage wood…..is now purple because you inspired me with your side table…..I love it now. My kitchen cabinets reflect yours. Nothing is themed in my decorating, but everyone loves my place and want me to decorate theirs. 🤣 We do plan to sell in the future because we are moving closer to kids in retirement, but while here, my heart is so happy.
    I have taught children and adults in many art classes and judged many county fairs. Never EVER EVER criticize a finished product! If the person is finished, then it’s what makes them happy. Sign it, love it!
    Btw……I’d buy your home and keep those amazing pantry tiles in all their colorful glory 😃

  • Reply To This Comment
    Marlyn
    January 18, 2019 at 1:46 pm

    Thank you. I needed to hear this!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Alta Craig
    January 18, 2019 at 2:03 pm

    Hear, hear! Very well said, and so very true. I painted my hall bathroom walls lipstick red, including the vanity, and I’ve loved it for 20 years. White fixtures and a tortoise shell mirror over the vanity are still classic to me. This is MY house, I’m the one who lives here, and that’s what matters. ‘Nuff said.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Barbara
    January 18, 2019 at 2:09 pm

    You have done a wonderful job and I admire you so much for taking on such a big job and keeping at it. I think it’s beautiful and would buy it because of the wonderful use of color! it brings me joy just looking at it!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Eileen
    January 18, 2019 at 2:15 pm

    I support your whole post. I admire your talent and especially with color. I’ve stepped up and now have a pink library with white shelves, shelving, cabinets, everything else vintage and white and I love it. Sorry, Matt!!!! lol . I get some crazy looks, but this is my happy place.

    BTW, I’d probably just move into your pantry; it’s so stunning. Those tiles, oh those tiles, wow!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Jane
    January 18, 2019 at 2:16 pm

    Amem sister Amen

  • Reply To This Comment
    Marianne in Mo.
    January 18, 2019 at 2:20 pm

    You are lucky that Matt doesn’t give a flyin’ leap what you do in decor. How free that must be, especially for someone who loves color as much as you do. Mine has to have input on EVERYTHING, which means the house is a bit masculine. I’ve slowly started to fight for my rights to have things I like. I figure after 42 years, I deserve it! I have always maintained one room that is truly me, with all that I love in there. But I have recently decided that our house needs more of ME and less of HIM. Guess without realizing it, I have kinda been that person who decorates for someone else, at the expense of ME. Not any more! And every time you or another points that out, I fight harder for my opinion to be heard! So thanks once again! I may have to go change something again, BRB…….. !!!!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Hilary
    January 18, 2019 at 2:27 pm

    So well said and a great boost of self confidence for all of changes our homes in big and small ways to be “more us”.

    Thanks for the reminder!

  • Reply To This Comment
    janice dinse
    January 18, 2019 at 2:32 pm

    I have loved everything you have done to both your condo and your home. I just wish I was an inth as talented as you are. My neighbor looked at my rooms and said, every one is a different color, you’ll need to change that when you sell. Well, I live here now and it will be the colors I want it to be, and maybe, I’ll have the entire house painted a more neutral when and if we decide to sell. When we moved in here, we started at the ceiling and replaced, painted and reworked every single room to our taste. As far as new buyers for my house, oh well, I live here now and it is the way I want it. So don’t remodel something because a future buyer won’t like it, I remodel for myself as I am the one right now that has to live with it and I am happy about it. So good for you Kristi making everything the way you like it and don’t live for someone else’s dreams.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Dione
    January 18, 2019 at 2:34 pm

    Your use of color is what interested me in your blog to begin with. It’s fearless and empowering. I applaud you for being you. I’ve had numerous people cringe at the choice of colors in my home but it’s my home and it makes me happy. I’m not decorating for the occasional guest or the future homeowners.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Marianne in Mo.
    January 18, 2019 at 2:34 pm

    Another thing I want to say is that I come here EVERY POST, because I always know there will be something exciting and new. I follow several blogs, but most of them I don’t read often, because they are decorating like thousands of others. Sometimes I have to remember which one I am reading, because I get them blended in my head. Not with Kristi – always see something that makes me wake up a little, or teaches me something I didn’t know. So keep doin’ you, and for those of you reading, be kind in comments, always!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Carswell
    January 18, 2019 at 2:35 pm

    Yeah, I have never understood the concept of confining your choices to what some potential buyer of your house might want. Make yourself happy while you are living there and let a future buyer worry about their own choices.

    My good friend has a condo and about five years ago she took out the bathtub and put in a walk in shower. She was not one for taking a bath and she hated being cooped up in a tub with a shower curtain. Her small bathroom now has the appearance of being wide open – she opted for a single glass panel that separates the shower from the toilet and vanity and she is no longer showering in the dark.

    The next owner can put a tub back in if they want – but her condo is perfect for an adult on her own or a pair of empty nesters. I am sure that when the time comes she’ll have no issues selling – in the meantime a daily activity has gone from being a chore to a pleasure.

    And that is what living in your own space is all about. Pleasure.

    I just painted my previously red kitchen cabinets black. I have always loved lots of colour and never been afraid to indulge that, but I realized that I like contrast just as much. I am moving towards lots of black with creamy white and warm wood and linen tones with small hits of colour. I am loving it.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Mary Connacher
    January 18, 2019 at 2:38 pm

    I love navy and white. And pin stripes and Paisleys. And midnight velvet cushions with dark wood furniture. I decorated my guest room, the Debbie Downers, (love that), couldn’t quite envisage it. It’s done, I love it and some of them love it too. But I don’t care, it’s mine.

    • Reply To This Comment
      Mariele Storm
      January 18, 2019 at 3:07 pm

      Sounds like a very moody and romantic room you’ve got going on in there! I could see some Indian inspired decor going in there seamlessly. Brava for knowing what you want! 🙂

  • Reply To This Comment
    Holly C
    January 18, 2019 at 2:40 pm

    Hmmm. Now you’ve got me thinking about a hot pink feature wall covered in vintage neon signs. That could be pretty awesome.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Hope W.
    January 18, 2019 at 2:41 pm

    Beyond Spot On!
    If, by some way-off the wall-crazy odds, I were not able to get my hands on a color for my home……I would cease to exist!
    Give me my red, blue, yellow, teal, chocolate, and I feel alive!!!
    White on white on white topped off with white….NOT GONNA HAPPEN! Ever.
    Kristi, your home is simply gorgeous! And most importantly,it’s YOUR home. Please continue to build it, make it and fill it with more of you and Matt. (I know he’s not into the decor thing, but I know he loves the outcome.)
    Mahalo!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Vicki
    January 18, 2019 at 2:46 pm

    Fabulous post! BTW, I would buy your house just for the pantry it is so good! Don’t doubt yourself, you have a great talent.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Charissa
    January 18, 2019 at 2:48 pm

    Oh Kristi! How badly I need to read this today… we are in the process of building our new – hopefully forever- home and I have been struggling with my design decisions for the interiors and exteriors for the past 6 months.
    First it was the MIL who hated the fact that I wanted to paint our exterior in pistachio green, others who wondered why I wanted such a huge wrap around verandah, then my choice of floor tiles in the bathroom.
    My biggest thing has been my choice if kitchen cabinet colour in the kitchen… I thought I had settled on white, but you know what? I don’t want white- I want navy!!! So I am going to just do it!! Thank you so much for reminding me that it is MY home, and I will love it!
    Thank you ❤️

  • Reply To This Comment
    Julie
    January 18, 2019 at 2:48 pm

    AMEN!!!!!!
    Just remodeled a bathroom in the house we’re going to sell in about a year. It was rather neutral but jacked it up with coral accessories.
    Now contemplating the next phase of our main living space, have been adding color. Yahoo. Painted bench and rockers for our porch in nearly same blue as yours so bringing that blue inside with other colors. I have done all of what you have said, yikes! So thanks to your declarations I’m off to the paint story for a pretty color to start experimenting for that change. Now hate the wall color I loved for so long. IT’s TIME!!!! Thanks for pushing us as you are so right!!!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Jennifer
    January 18, 2019 at 2:56 pm

    This is so true. I see this happening way too much in the home building world. We make crazy, illogical decisions on a daily basis, or just accept crazy, illogical decisions that are commonplace in the building world.

    For example, we’ll spend $10,000 extra dollars to make an interesting looking roof with gables, and multiple levels, so that our neighbors think our roof looks cool, even though it doesn’t affect a single moment of living inside the house, but we balk at spending $10,000 to put in laundry facilities upstairs. Where the actual laundry that we have to manage on a DAILY basis is.

    Why? Just because that’s what everyone else is doing.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Lizabet
    January 18, 2019 at 3:01 pm

    We are now trying to sell a home that is true to our tastes. If I had it to do over again… I would decorate exactly the same way – Lots of color and and an ever evolving design aesthetic. We put a paint allowance in for prospective buyers and will take our lumps. Our homes are to enjoy!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Mariele Storm
    January 18, 2019 at 3:03 pm

    I agree. I’ll use an odd quirk of mine as an example. I actually have a hard time living with walls that are NOT light pink. It’s true! I hate green, blue, red, yellow, orange, purple, black, brown, tan, greige, cream, and grey walls. And I /dislike/ white walls. 😀

    I have tried a million different samples, tried white walls, found them lacking, painted a work room a rather nice greige, a closet a deep jade with silver trim and pine stained to look like purpleheart, and my bathroom right now is actually a deep blueish grey with metallic gold starbursts all over the wall. In the end, the workroom I found slightly dreary even though the greige I picked leaned warm and was my favorite out of dozens of samples. My bathroom I love, only because I spend limited time in there and it’s such a small space that when I go in there it feels spa-like… but it’s certainly not something I could have in a larger space. The same goes for my closet–while very cool (and very Star Trek: TOS inspired!) and fun in limited quantities, it’s nothing I could have in a larger space or in a space I spent any more time in than just grabbing my outfit and putting laundry away.

    And I’m not counting the variety of other colors on walls that I have lived with but not painted myself, including but not limited to: living rooms, dens, kitchens, and bedrooms painted tan, yellow, orange, red, brown, sage green, blue, forest green, or cream. And I hated ALL of them!!

    Light pink is the only color that can go on walls. That is it. Finito. That’s been my entire house wall color in two separate places for almost 4 years and I can’t get enough of it. Any husband I have will have to understand that this is a fact of life and anything else might turn me psychotic eventually (or maybe I’ll be lucky and he’ll be color blind and think it’s a lovely tan, heh).

    Aside from wall color, my decor itself runs ’50s-70s time capsule and I have a distinct dislike some of the trendy MCM “revivals” that purge some of my favorite aspects of the original style. Yay for cozy wood paneling, pastel bathrooms and kitchens, small and efficient kitchens, laminate, brick ranches, small square footage, cozy decorations (I’ve got a collection of lady head vases and brass candlesticks), and a well planned and intentional style! Boo for concrete, anything “industrial”, large spaces, designs meant for California and not frigid Iowa (where I live), and miserably uncomfortable furniture.

    Point is… even when I’m doing something that seems trendy and on-point, like blush walls, gallery walls, and MCM style, my own version of it runs far enough off course from what is popular that it makes people pause and want to recommend something else. Trends can be useful if you figure out what it is you like about a particular trend and apply it to your own sensibilities, rather than just embracing it wholeheartedly because you see it so often that it is familiar and thus must be good.

    Jeez, Kristi, I think my response to your post ended up almost as long as your actual post. 😀

  • Reply To This Comment
    Laurene
    January 18, 2019 at 3:19 pm

    Kristi, I realized one day whil reading your entire blog that I was unhappy with my home because I had chosen colors “appropriate for my area!” What a revelation! I painted my office BM Cherry Malt and my dining room my favorite shade of persimmon. At our annual Thanksgiving dinner, our friends raved about our decorating (we had only changed the paint colors). Thank you so much for your inspiration; reading your blog has created so much joy.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Ame
    January 18, 2019 at 3:22 pm

    Kristi, I love all kinds of decor and on Instagram there is a lot of grays, neutrals, and whites.. While I love it, it isn’t me! I can not mix colors as amazingly as you can but the pictures you post are wonderful for those of us who do not want that look everyone seems to be trying to obtain.. not that there is anyhting wrong with it.. but I have started to realize that I really like color.. love your blog!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Debbie
    January 18, 2019 at 3:38 pm

    Amen! I grew up in a house with white walls, beige carpet, and white tile because it was all nice an neutral in case we had to sell the house. I graduated from college and my mom ended up living there for around 16 years, living in a house she decorated for the next occupant. I’ve decorated differently for that past 35 years and loved every minute of it. Absolutely decorate for yourself.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Laura H.
    January 18, 2019 at 3:45 pm

    I couldn’t agree more! I cringe when I hear people say that they are picking things based on what some future buyer of their home might want if they don’t have any idea of when or even if they might be selling their home. I’ve never understood why you wouldn’t make your home someplace you want to live and be happy to come home to. When I think about possible future buyers, I feel like they will probably want to make the home their own anyway and even if I were to paint everything white, gray or beige, they will most likely change it. I watch a lot of home buying shows and get so tired of seeing people who look at a house and find everything wrong with it, mostly cosmetic things, like paint, that are easy to change. It just drives me crazy that they would expect a house to be perfect just for them in every way. Why wouldn’t you want to put your own stamp on your home?

    I follow a few blogs and I see some of them change how they’ve decorated based on the latest trend – painting everything white or gray, doing blackboard walls, etc… I get disappointed when I feel like they are just following the trend instead of them doing it because it is something they love. That is the difference in you and them – you always follow your heart and do what is best for you and your home – not what’s best for anyone else.

    Thank you for this post and reminding everyone that you are decorating for you and they should do the same in their own homes!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Jill
    January 18, 2019 at 3:50 pm

    Yes…yes…yes!! (I was thinking Meg Ryan but that would be weird) In a land of white cabinets white walls and ship lap… you have brought me to the light. My house has wood kitchen cabinets, wood floors and neutral soothing zen walls and I love it! Thank you!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Charlotte
    January 18, 2019 at 3:54 pm

    I’ve been a long time reader of your blog…and was thrilled to see you decorating again with your love of colour! Welcome back….lol! (I’m the same). I too would decorate my home listening to everyone who had an opinion…and I always hated it. I now decorate my home with colours and things I love. When my daughter and her husband purchased their new home, she asked how to decorate. My response was to decorate the way they loved it! Not their friends or family members…or anyone but them. Your home is a reflection of you! We don’t live in a white (or beige) world….so why live in a home without colour!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Cathi Wright
    January 18, 2019 at 3:54 pm

    I just watched a show where the designer said to get out of the boring trend of having everything white. I laughed because I had just read an article recently about how blue kitchens sold a house faster than white.

    I have a small house (932sf) and my kitchen and living room are open to each other. I painted them and the hall a little brighter blue than your bedroom in the condo. I love it! It had been white for years but I was so ready for color. Yep, some people were shocked and others were telling me I should have gone lighter, darker or another color all together. It does make you question yourself. But I went on to paint my kitchen cabinets a very light blue that is almost white and they are beautiful. After it was all done, my son came over and said, it looks good Mom, it looks like you. Great compliment IMO!

    That is the trouble with trying to be trendy. Trends come and go. And what everyone is saying this year will be something else next year. Some things come back around some things should stay in the past, lol.

    I love what you’ve done with your house and have watched you “come into your own”. It’s nice to have other opinions, sometimes that sparks a idea or another direction. But whatever else, you need to be true to yourself. I’ve learned that reading your blog and seeing you struggle with doubt. In the long run you have done it your way. Even if you had to redo it, the end results made you happy. That is what matters most to me. And once I decided it was only paint and could be redone it set me free. Yes, it isn’t fun to repaint but it isn’t the end of the world either. You are a good inspiration and most of all you are real in all you do.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Debs
    January 18, 2019 at 4:06 pm

    If potential buyers consider colorful tile a make or break deal, they need to go buy a house that is totally white, inside & out. I live with my son Matt (cause I’m old) & he bought a house a few months ago. Thirty year old ranch style that was gutted & totally remodeled in ’17. Open floor plan, beautiful light fixtures, plenty of room, new flooring & what was formerly the 4th bedroom is now the master bath, complete with a huge walk-in shower & a soaking tub. When he saw the tub, he asked me why it was short. Guys! I use the small hallway bathroom which is fine because if I were to ever get in that “short tub”, I’d need the fire & rescue guys to get me out of it. And that wouldn’t be pretty! Touring the house with our realtor whom we’ve known for years, Matt remarked that he really didn’t want the carpet in the bedrooms & he didn’t like the chandeliers. Realtor said, “It’s cosmetic, you can change it, but don’t walk away from this excellent deal over it”. After the closing, Matt had the carpet ripped out & new flooring in the bedrooms & had those light fixtures replaced with ceiling fans (because Alabama!) before we moved in. Yes, it cost him a little extra but it was worth it to make HIS house perfect for him! We have white cabinets & barely beige walls but he loves it. And really, I don’t mind it at all because he loves it. I try not to suggest painting, etc because this is his forever home & still will be long after I’m gone. I imagine that when he ever gets married, there will be some color changes then, though. But boy, would I love to have your kitchen and/or pantry colors in here!
    I guess my point to this long rant is:
    Don’t allow other people judge you or your home by their standards because those standards are probably a lot lower than what they believe!
    You do YOU & enjoy your home!

    (Btw, I still need that 2×3 colorful turquoise painting for above my bed when you find some extra time to do it. 😉🤪🤣 Matt says I can do whatever in my bedroom since he can close the door & not see it. And it SHALL be turquoise)!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Diane
    January 18, 2019 at 4:27 pm

    I live reading this! I love navy, burgundy and butter yellow. Not everyones palette I know. But my navy leather couch looks good no matter what neutral is on the wall. And if I have a navy wainscotting in my kitchen with custom med oak cabinets or a burgundy accent wall in my living room with gunstock color hard wood floors, it’s mine and I love it. I say go for what you love. Life is too short!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Susie
    January 18, 2019 at 4:30 pm

    Thanks for the heart-to-heart. It’s such a good conversation. I’m going through the same thing with my room renovations….having to politely cope with people who think their opinions are waaaay too important. One thing I’d like to add is to be aware that contractors/remodelers will also try to push you around. I do always listen, because they might actually say something helpful. But, for the most part, unless it’s something critical to the structure… like “load bearing walls”… I tend to listen and then go with my gut. So I suggest to just do your homework before you talk to a remodeler so you can be confident in discerning if they are piling on baloney. 🙂 And then yes, do it your way!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Linda
    January 18, 2019 at 6:45 pm

    I had a sales clerk tell me that the third colour I had to make my son’s afghan was a bad mistake and I would be very sorry (Dark Navy, Dark Red and Cream). I kept it anyways because I didn’t like her tone. When it was done I got many compliments on it. I would have complained to the owner of the store, but that was her son. It did teach me to not be negative when family or friends wanted my opinion on their colour choices just because I didn’t like it.
    Love your blog Kristi. I would ask that you show us the animals as they look now. Great job

    • Reply To This Comment
      Mary Hall
      January 18, 2019 at 7:32 pm

      My daughters and I make quilts and I can’t tell you the number of times we’ve bought fabric for a quilt and someone asks what we’re making, we tell them and get raised eyebrows. I also can’t tell you the number of times someone has looked at our final product and falling in love with it!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Mary Hall
    January 18, 2019 at 7:29 pm

    So funny to read this–15 years with white walls because a potential future buyer might want white walls??? Crazy. When I was house hunting, my realtor sent me multiple listings to review. Couldn’t find any I like enough to make an offer. Until one day, she sent me a batch that had a house with yellow living room walls. Who in the world paints their living room walls yellow? ME! I feel head over heels in love with the house, just by looking at the photos and quickly made arrangements to see it in person. “Bring a contract,” I told my realtor. Unless there was something horrible about the house, I intended to make an offer that day, and sure enough I did and the sellers accepted. My living room walls are now a golden yellow (I did repaint) and there’s ONE room in the house with white walls (and even then, one wall is a gold accent wall). My home is my oasis and I love spending time in it–after all, I decorated it for ME.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Sharon
    January 18, 2019 at 8:11 pm

    Thank you for this reminder, Kristi!

    I’ve recently started painting my furniture, partly because your posts have inspired confidence in me. It’s scary, but I’m actually doing it. Your posts and your instructions have been so useful to me and I am so grateful.

    I’m painting my furniture white. Now and then I doubt myself and think, maybe I should go for some colour. Thing is, I like white. It fits with the French Provincial feel that I am attracted to. Though I don’t like the distressed look and I am not into Shabby Chic. I have to live with my efforts so I do need to remind myself that as long as I am happy then that’s all that matters.

    My Mathew is rather like your Matt. He doesn’t care what colour I paint things or decorate with, as long as I give hot pink a miss. I did show him some towels recently that were a lovely shade of fuchsia and he practically gagged. Seeing that has been his only objection ever I am happy to compromise with him.

    So thank you for reminding me that as long as I am happy then I can decorate things in a way that makes gives me pleasure.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Berry
    January 18, 2019 at 8:56 pm

    I must admit, I think you are going through a teal and purple phase, and eventually you will get tired of them and want, I dunnoo… bright green ferns and toucans everywhere. And you will repaint and be happy. And after that maybe it will be a super deep moody blue and emerald. 🙂 And frankly there are no “safe” choices in decorating anyway. My grandmother wept for joy when she installed wall to wall carpeting over her hardwood floors, my house looks nice in engineered wood but I wish I had gone with hardwood or vinyl, and my nephews think wall to wall carpet is unsanitary. Maybe when they have grandchildren everyone will be back to wall to wall carpet.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Tara
    January 18, 2019 at 9:43 pm

    This is such a great reminder! I love filling my space with unexpected vintage things that add texture, color, and kitsch to my space. I know my aesthetic isn’t for everyone, but it’s not meant to be. It makes sense that my space reflects the things that I love, since I’m the one decorating it.

    I love your bold use of color! If that is what brings you joy when you step into a room, then that is how your home is meant to be. I have only just recently put neutral colors on my own walls. It was a difficult decision for me because I feared living in a drab, stark environment, but I have learned two things about myself in the last 10 years: I get bored with colors quickly, and I greatly dislike painting walls. The white and neutral painted walls ended up being a really nice change for me because I’m painting my walls a lot less, and my happy compromise has been using color when painting my furniture. It’s instantly gratifying to me when I paint a table or a dresser, and swap out some colorful accessories from other spaces in my home. It allows me the opportunity to play with color without having to disrupt my small, but bustling home. I’ve had family members shake their heads when they’ve heard about my plans to paint a piece of solid wood furniture, but that’s okay, because I’m the one that gets to enjoy my finished product at the end of the day, and I always do! 😊

  • Reply To This Comment
    Ramona
    January 18, 2019 at 10:04 pm

    Kristi,
    I am brand new to your blog ! Such good advice . My friend and I always laugh because she hates my countertops and I don’t care !!! Imagine if everyone had the same taste BORING ! I am learning from your blog already …of course there are some ideas that I won’t use and many that I will try . Keep up the awesome designs and advice !!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Toni
    January 19, 2019 at 1:43 am

    A phase…. lol! It sounds like you are 13.
    I loved the condo and oddly I sort of miss it.
    I totally agree, make it your own. This year I decided I wasn’t ready to not have the sparkle of the Christmas tree. I kept the lights on my mantle! Makes me happy. Do what makes you happy.❤️

  • Reply To This Comment
    Nancy
    January 19, 2019 at 7:34 am

    Christi,

    Bravo!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Carol-Anne Powell
    January 19, 2019 at 9:43 am

    Like you, I’ve always loved colour and get so bored with “elegant neutrals”. I can admire that look in other people’s homes, and in photos, but not for me.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Kristi's mom
    January 19, 2019 at 10:13 am

    Kristi, you should have mentioned that when you sold the condo the buyer said it was with the understanding that you would leave everything just as it was, meaning with all the color and accessories you had added. And you sold it for considerably more than other condos in that area were selling for. The difference was that they were all very neutral.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Phoebe
    January 19, 2019 at 10:53 am

    While it seems to me that americans do a lot of this buying and selling of houses, it amazes me that nobody ever thinks of the possibility that a potential buyer may in fact PREFER your home BECAUSE it stands out and is not devoid of personality. I mean, your blue/green/yellow condo selled quite well and for quite more than the blah condo of your neighbours’ if I remember correctly…

    • Reply To This Comment
      Phoebe
      January 19, 2019 at 10:55 am

      Ha! And now the comments expanded because I posted, I see that your mom said pretty much the same thing – I did remember correctly! Of course, YOUR personalisation is done with taste, not sure this would apply to anyone doing it… (still, they could hire a decorator to help).

  • Reply To This Comment
    Julie S
    January 19, 2019 at 11:03 am

    Hear hear! We bought a fixer upper which was last decorated 20 years ago and I’m delighted to put my stamp on it one space at a time (about half done so far). It’s my understanding that a lot of people (not us types who read decor blogs) have little imagination to see past how things are/could easily be changed, and want a turnkey house that feels tasteful and newish to them, hence the annoying realtor advice to paint everything light neutral and bore you to death. It is sadly ironic that a lot of sellers do expensive renovations right before they move out, and never got to enjoy their home with features they would have loved. Here’s to more of us with no plans to move deciding to make changes for US! I have a reading nook that wouldn’t suit the Generic Future Buyer and plan to make the hall bathroom a bit bold, and this is what gives our home soul and life!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Elle
    January 19, 2019 at 12:44 pm

    Right on girl !!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Marion
    January 19, 2019 at 1:48 pm

    This is so true and I think the reminder is great. I’ve hesitated doing things for fear they would be out of date too soon (too trendy) or not appeal for resale – and yet, we aren’t selling anytime soon. I think it’s also a good reminder for those of us who read blogs and comment because, without meaning, we can convey a negative message. I don’t have to like everything a blogger does or colors they pick but I can sure appreciate their creativity and talent. No one will likely design exactly as we would for ourselves, why even express that kind of message? This might inspire me to actually get the wallpaper I’ve been eyeing for my spare bath – I’ve had cold feet but I think I should just go for it! BTW, your blind corner cabinets in that pantry are the bomb!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Monica
    January 19, 2019 at 4:50 pm

    We’re selling a townhouse we lived in for 10 years that was built in the 80’s with soaring vaulted ceilings. We updated the bathrooms and kitchens (black cabinets and light countertops. It has professionally installed oak trim, built-ins and flooring. We painted medium beige with green undertones (SW universal khaki) and other similar neutrals. It fits the house beautifully. According to the realtor buyers like the kitchen and bathrooms but want gray walls and white trim and is advising us to paint. The HGTV’ing of young buyers. Sigh….. So I like Kristi’s “moral of the story”. Live with what you like! I like gray and white but it just doesn’t fit with this house. So even your neutrals can be wrong. P.S. We’re NOT painting! It will sell!

  • Reply To This Comment
    AlisonG
    January 20, 2019 at 9:10 am

    What prompted this post?

    • Reply To This Comment
      Kristi
      January 20, 2019 at 9:21 am

      From the post:
      “I started thinking that we all may need this reminder again when I published my final pantry before and after post. As a reminder, this is what my pantry looks like…And one commenter said that it’s nice, but when we sell our house, I’d have to get rid of those tiles and put something neutral there.”

      “For example, when someone tells me that they think I’d be happier with white cabinets, I don’t even have to give that a second thought. ”

      “I was told yesterday that I was obviously “going through a phase” with all of this color all over my house.”

      • Reply To This Comment
        AlisonG
        January 20, 2019 at 9:31 am

        That is what I figured, people and their comments. Who cares about re-sale, enjoy the house the while your in it and let the next person make it their own.
        Sheesh.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Robin johnson
    January 20, 2019 at 5:34 pm

    My husband and I have always laughed about the people who leave the plastic on the furniture/upholstery/car seat… so it will be nice when they want to sell it. How sad to live for other people

  • Reply To This Comment
    Fay
    January 20, 2019 at 8:50 pm

    Well said Kristi! My husband and I built a new home several years ago and I was so proud of it! I had spent countless hours planning and decorating it. It was so beautiful to me! A neighbor dropped by one day to see my house and I was blown away by all the negative comments. The house was in a newly developed subdivision and all of the houses were fairly new homes. Her home was beautiful! After she left that day, I questioned so many decisions I had made and pondered over redecorating for a while after that. Suddenly one day it occurred to me that while her house was beautiful, so was mine! It was my taste and exactly what my family loved! We had made the decisions together as a family and we loved it! Our homes should reflect our taste-and people have different tastes and opinions. It doesn’t mean that our opinion,or theirs, is right or wrong. God made us all different! We shouldn’t criticize others! We have since sold that house and are getting ready to sell the one we now live in so that we can move into our forever home. I’m not going to change one thing here to put this house on the market. And as my husband says “Some things can be the next homeowner’s project”! Love what you’ve done to your home! I look forward to seeing your future projects!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Laurel
    January 21, 2019 at 9:37 am

    I am very impressed with the care and personal vision you put into your home.

    The back button doesn’t work in the website. Can you please fix that? Thanks.

    • Reply To This Comment
      Kristi
      January 21, 2019 at 1:13 pm

      I’m not really sure what you mean by the “back button.” I’m not aware of a back button on my blog.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Sue
    January 21, 2019 at 10:00 am

    You have posted similar blog posts in the past and are the main reason that when I do something in my home, I make sure it makes my husband and I happy. Frankly, its nice to hear a compliment from someone else but as long as I can walk into a room and feel comfortable, happy and/or relaxed I’m good. Thank you another reminder and know that you inspire me in more than one way with your blog.

    Have you ever thought about writing a book about all your homes/remodels with this theme? I think you’d have a hit.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Danielle Marie
    January 21, 2019 at 12:09 pm

    I personally love all of the color in your home. And while I wouldn’t make the color choices that you have, I also respect that those are the colors you have chosen. Sometimes when you post options, I pick different ones from what you end up with but no matter what you are in the right because it is your home. I have had to defend my color choices in my own home several times. My living room is bright blue, my dining room orange, my kitchen is burgundy, my hallway gold, my bathroom is grape purple (ceiling and walls!), my bedroom is deep red, upstairs – the stairwell is navy, the hallway is bluish grey, my closet (which i built inside a room without a closet) is strawberry pink, my guest bedroom is kelly green, and our office/library is turquoise. It all works together because everything is bright. I don’t worry about future owners because I plan to live there for the rest of my life. It will be whoever is willed my house (not sure who that will be because we don’t have children nor plan to) and frankly that is their problem!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Becky
    January 22, 2019 at 8:11 am

    OMG what a timely reminder! I think the last time or maybe the time before when you posted this message I had moved and I knew it wasn’t going to be long term, so I held off on hanging the pictures and doing some things to personalize the space. After I read your post I thought, I have to live here, I should Love it. And I hung the pictures and did the decorating to make me happy. And I loved where I was living. I have moved again, to a shared space, and Im not happy about the situation, but circumstances have made it necessary, And I am stuck with only having 1 small room that is mine. I have already hung some curtains I love and my favorite piece of art, and hopefully the plants will perk back up, so its a work in progress, a challenge to stay true to me in my very small footprint. I was discouraged and sad this morning, But after reading this I am encouraged and optimistic that I can make it work. Thank you for sharing your house and life and wisdom with us!!!! I am so glad you do!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Joyce Prescott
    January 22, 2019 at 9:18 am

    Amen!!! So many people think our homes should look like that other Waco family 🙂 Personally I love their look, but I also love your home!! It reflecks the kristi we all love. I keep trying to get braver with my color usage in my home. We will be selling our house soon and I could care less what the new buyer wants. I am decorating MY home, not theirs.

  • Reply To This Comment
    Cara
    January 22, 2019 at 9:00 pm

    https://stylebyemilyhenderson.com/blog/best-paint-color-trends-2019 . Looks to me like you are ahead of the crowd! Your favorite palette featured in Emily Henderson’s blog as the up and coming trend in colors! Including in kitchens!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Beth Swartz
    January 24, 2019 at 5:12 am

    I wonder if working from home impacts your feelings about your space? I love my home palette, which is all neutral whites, greens, and grays, but I wonder if I would love it as much if I spent more time at home? Instead I work in an office with blue carpeting, red upholstered furnishings, orange-y faux wood furnishings, yellow-cream walls, and little natural light. It’s no wonder I have turned my home into a neutral, light filled refuge! I wish you could come to my university and show them how to use color to strategically uplift a space rather than muddying it!

  • Reply To This Comment
    Renette Hier
    January 31, 2019 at 12:07 am

    Bravo! Couldn’t agree with you more. Thank you for this wonderful post.

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