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Wednesday, August 28, 2013

To Be Trendy or True to Yourself?

Way back in January I wrote a post about the beginning stages of decorating one of the smallest rooms in my house, the man cave. Last Sunday you saw that the space it is a well used space that seemed like the perfect location to put all the awards, plaques and memorabilia from Mr. Décor’s Air Force career

Last winter I started the decorating process by purchasing these chevron curtains from Hobby Lobby. Very manly. Man and boy approved.

jacket 001

How trendy was I? Chevron is everywhere!

And that is as far as I got.

I would go to Homegoods, West Elm, Pottery Barn… you name it, look around and walk out empty handed.

So the room consisted of the curtains and this couch:

The man cave 004-001

and this chair…

The man cave 001-001

It stayed like this for months. (Ouch my eyes!)

I would walk in, look at the space, maybe vacuum a bit or dust and then walk right back out.

(I’ll let you in on a little secret, designers often have the hardest time decorating their own homes.)

Then one day last month I walked in, took one look at those curtains and tore them down faster than Scarlett O’Hara.

It didn’t matter that they were trendy.

They weren’t me.

Mr. Décor came home and went into the man cave and said “Finally.”

But here’s the thing, I went with something just as geometric.

The uber classic Greek Key design.

The difference is that both Mr. Décor and I have a relationship with Greek Key design. For the first year of our marriage we lived on the island of Crete surrounded by Greek Key. It is a happy memory.

I tell people over and over “Your home should tell your story.” Too bad I wasted 6 months not listening to myself.

Now I couldn’t exactly afford the Clarence House Grand Galon Athenee trim in navy as shown above. I went all over searching local sources looking for a deal. I could find Greek Key trim in every color but navy. Isn’t that the way? I finally broke down and bought 6 yards from  M & J Trimming. It was a bit of a “gulp” for me. But yes, it is perfect.

On Friday I will be sharing the curtains I created. 

Larger Image

“To thine own self be true.” ~ William Shakespeare (Act 1 Scene 3, Hamlet)



Debbie said...

Yes! Yes! Yes! I know I am the least decor adept person in blog land but I couldn't agree more. I fell victim to trend regret way too many time in the past thirty years. My new attitude is that I want my house to be filled with what I love and not what everyone else loves.

Julie Tucker-Wolek said...

Totally agree!! Because in 20 years from now ... someone will walk in and think ... this is sooooooooo 20 years ago! LOL!! I have always bought what felt good to me ... not the latest trends :)

Calypso In The Country said...

It takes me so long to decorate that I usually stay away from trends - by the time the room is finally done it's dated! Having said that, I do have very similar chevron curtains in my son's room but they work in there. HE actually picked them out from the choices I gave him! Anyway, I love your greek key idea and I love that they will have special meaning form you!

Heather{Our Life In a Click} said...

I love those chevron curtains but if they didn't feel right, you were smart to change them out. I've been wondering if chevron is on the way out anyway these days (I'm always late on the trend!). Can't wait to see your new curtains!!

April Dunlap said...

Very good! The chevron trend reminds me either of sad Charlie brown, cheap rick-rack trim on badly made clothing(shudders from childhood!), or cheesy gas station jingles...needless to say there's none of it in my home!
I cannot WAIT to see your beautiful curtains!
The man cave project has intrigued me for several months... :)

GSGreatEscaper said...

Curtains are never a waste, anyway...they'll either show up in another room or turn into something else such as cushion covers, a skirt, a new look for the Fashionista's bathroom, right?

Denise said...

Oh Laura, I DO love this post! I'm always behind the rest of the world on trends, and it's just as well because I'm just NOT a trendy person. I love classic, mixed with our own personal touches and sometimes a touch of whimsy. I couldn't agree more with your advice that our homes should tell a story (preferably our story). :)

I love that you ended with the quote by Shakespeare, and love your pic of Scarlett O'Hara. :-D You have such a great sense of style, you don't ever need to do trendy.

I can't wait to see your curtains, Laura!


Denise at Forest Manor

Debbie@Debbie-Dabble and A Debbie-Dabble Christmas said...

Love this!!
I am not trendy..

Many years ago I tried to be but I quickly found that I was unhappy in my own home!! And that is something that should NEVER happen to any one.
Your home is supposed to be your haven.
So I went back to the style, which is so out of style right now, that makes me HAPPY and gives me the most JOY!


As I out of style but it is truly what makes my heart sing!! So I decorated my small townhouse that was built in the 1970's to look like a Victorian Bed and Breakfast that i would want to stay at when I went on vacation.
And now, after working all night long, when I walk in the front door in the morning, I want to drop to my knees and Thank God that I am HOME! and it makes me very HAPPY and gives me a lot of JOY!!!!!


Pat@Life At Lydias House said...

I am with you. I don't do trends period. Maybe its because I am money conscious, but trends change often which means you have to buy the next trend. Great design is timeless! A well designed room doesn't need to be switched out every 6 months or even every 6 years.

marty (A Stroll Thru Life) said...

I know they will look fabulous. Can't wait to see them. Hugs, marty

Connie said...

I was truly hoping when I first started reading the story those weren't really the ones your chose. But when I got to the end, I just smiled. Aaaah, a woman like me who doesn't decorate "in the trend" like everyone else, especially around here in Idaho. If I did, it would be "cowboy" and that just does NOT cut it with this chick, sugar! Very wise choice and definitely beautiful!

LadyLydia said...

Sometimes people think I am following a shabby chic trend. They do not realize that way back in the 1950s we were painting things to give them a fresh new look, and we were covering furniture, making tablecloths and matching curtains out of gingham, or dying white fabric with rit dye and adding ball fringe. It was not a trend, it was a way of making the house nicer and enjoying your own style.

LadyLydia said...

Sometimes people think I am following a shabby chic trend. They do not realize that way back in the 1950s we were painting things to give them a fresh new look, and we were covering furniture, making tablecloths and matching curtains out of gingham, or dying white fabric with rit dye and adding ball fringe. It was not a trend, it was a way of making the house nicer and enjoying your own style.

Lorrie said...

I can so relate, Laura. I've tried to be trendy from time to time but always end up hauling out the paint can. The worst was when all the muddy earth-toned neutrals came into style - I've decorated with light blues and greys for most of my life and now I say that the trends just caught up with me.
Your Greek Key curtains will be lovely!

Karen Albert said...

Hi Laura, I think that Greek Key pattern in trim like this is forever classic! Great choice!

Feature: Love Where You Live"

openid said...

Dear Friend, Laura,

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you. This post was so long overdue in the blogging community. Too many blogs (dare I say most) are more concerned with trends. Your Greek Key pattern not only holds special meaning but is beautiful as well.


Shenita @ Embellishments by SLR said...

Laura, this is such a great post! I have tried going with trends, in the past; and it just never felt like "us". I agree, surround yourself with the things that you love; and it will always feel like home.

black sabeth said...

i prefer carol burnett as scarlet. i forgot to ask how eric liked the room!

looooovin you (minnie riperton style)

Charm Bracelet Diva {at Home} said...

I'm with you. Love the love story part! Can't wait to see the curtains (I'm jealous, I absolutely can not sew!)

Deidre said...

Love this post!I too agree your home should tell a story but right now mines shouting old and broke! lol love the trim on those curtains!

Jill Flory of Sew a Fine Seam said...

Amen! And I love the greek key - so classic and timeless. And I'm with you on things that tell a story. That is one reason I love crowns so much in my decor - I was a 'King' before I became a 'Flory' and I love the symbolism of the crown - Jesus is my King of Kings.

ourwolfden said...

I agree. It is your home, you have to live in it, it has to work for you. We have an oversized sectional in our front room. And by oversized I mean it goes wall to wall is in front of the fireplace and window. But it works for us. We need that huge sofa for my husband and I and our two BIG dogs. We did that room, it doesn’t matter that furniture shouldn’t be in front of the fireplace. Although when we go to sell we will have to move the sofa out but that is down the road.

WendyBee said...

Don't you love it when life confirms your axioms?

Diane Higdon said...

I couldn't have said it better myself. I think trends are wonderful, but the question is, can you live with it??? Too much money is spent to just trash it in 6 months. I just can't do that, and with that said, I think that makes me a little more conservative in some ways...but the big ticket items are just too expensive to let go so quickly. Love your post, and can't wait to see the greek key!!! :)

Shelia said...

I love it and that's exactly the way it should be done! It's your home and I love your pretty style. Love the new trim.
Be a sweetie,
Shelia :)

Auntie Em said...

Smart decorator you have there!!! You were very wise to listen to her. lol
Too bad we can't always view our home through a stranger's eyes. (BTW...chevrons hurt my eyes. Can't help it. I don't like them, trendy or not!)
Your Greek Key trim will be beautiful and so much for fitting for the dignity of the awards on the wall. (And Sweet Boy is growing up. In a year or two, he's going to outgrow the boy stuff and prefer the manly stuff) ~sigh~ I remember the day our son came home from school and wanted to go shopping. He finally acquired good taste and left the little boy behind. Unfortunately, it was a little before he started his part time after school job so Momma had to support his good taste! That's what you get for teaching them the difference! lol
Can't wait to see your transformation in this little room. You are so skillful and talented!
Thanks for sharing all your stories! :)

Patty Rumaker said...

Your drapes are lovely! I like being aware and in the know about new trends, but that doesn't mean I am going to include them in my own decorating, of course it doesn't mean that I am not going to include them. I am a traditional person, but I like a kick of something new, and dare I use the word trendy, but I am not going to redo my house every time a new trend comes along. I just found your blog and I am your newest follower.
Thanks, Patty at Home and Lifestyle Design

circusberry said...

What a great message. I know many who try to be trendy and then are stuck in a rut because it just doesn't work. I think your new selection is fab, and manly...and it seems personal too. Looking forward to the finished product!

And that scene from Gone With the Wind is one of my faves. Great usage.

Kayla Janachovsky said...

Good job! Always be yourself - you'll love living in your home all the more. Don't forget to link up to The DIY'ers.

Richella Parham said...

I LOVE this post, Laura! Thank you so much for sharing this wisdom. And thanks for linking to Grace at Home--I featured you this week! :)