STEPHEN THOMPSON: Farewell 2013 and hello beautiful 2014!



Last year’s holiday decorations are boxed and stored away. By now it is likely your family room’s furnishing have been returned to their rightful places and the spaces where Christmas trees spread cheer in homes are finally bare of branches. When you returned your home to normalcy, did you pause? Were you mindful in a moment of thankfulness for the many belongings that color your day-to-day life, for the things – large and small – that make your home beautiful?

When we walk into a room or see a decorative object for the first time, our minds register its color before anything else. Color forms a subtle language of mood, energy, insight and exerts a gentle effect on mind and body, influencing our emotional temperament and health. Next we take in the particulars, the focal point, furniture and the decorative details of the space and how the room is put together.

As you returned your home to normalcy, did you try to organize or rearrange the details of your life. Did you pause over a gift from a long ago friend? Did you touch some treasure you found beach combing? Did you touch again the smooth stone a child once placed fondly in your hand? All such memories are precious because they are visual, tactile remembrances of people and places you’ve loved.

Or, as is sometimes the case, did you have an impulse to sweep your home clean, air it out, and clear away the excess in an effort to declutter, simplify and free your life? You may be thinking that giving in to both these extremes is a little crazy, but they are actually a wonderful, workable contradiction – wanting to see and appreciate all you have, but needing it ordered and functional to make your life livable.

The decor in which you live everyday can make you happy or sad, invigorate you or drain you, and even linger to affect you when you go to work. The specific way you arrange, combine and display a lifetime’s worth of remembrances in your home is highly personal. The key is to find what works for you. What do you need around you to make you happy? Be unapologetic! Display things that make you the best of who you are; make them a part of your decor.

For creative people, it’s easy to jump from one thought to another – back and forth between the world of imagination, dreams and fantasy and that of the real world. Decorating, rearranging and repurposing involves leaping into an imaginative world that is quite different from the one before us. Interestingly, to be both creative and practical, our imagination must work hand-in-hand with a heightened awareness of reality. The attention we pay to real details helps us to imagine new ways to improve decors.

Creative types, like me, tend to be smart and innocent at the same time. To be effective we must be clever and have the ability to generate a great many ideas; flexible enough to switch from one perspective to another; and original enough to pick up on unusual associations that can then be used to group furnishings in the best way.

Try thinking creatively the next time you decorate or reorganize. Look for multiple ways you can arrange things; don’t just settle for the first idea that comes to mind. Dream for a while about what your decor can become and see it as more than it is. Examine the underlying connections that your belongings possess, then group them accordingly and not haphazardly. But most of all, work into your decor the special remembrances which have made you the person you are today.

Live in beauty!

Stephen Thompson, has been creating tasteful, coordinated interiors since 1975. For questions, comments, or consultations text (662) 231-5519 or contact Designer Connection, P.O. Box 361, Tupelo, MS 38802

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