Saturday, October 18, 2008

My Style

From Sunday Scribblings.

I immediately thought of my house, not my clothes. Why? Because my "uniform" is pretty standard: jeans, tshirt or blouse, sandals or sneakers. I'm lucky that I can wear that stuff to work.

I dress my house with more care than myself, I must admit. It's because I can see my house, but I live inside clothes.

When I lived at home, my style was dictated by my mother's style. There wasn't a lot of individuality allowed: hand-me-down furniture (usually hers), tan carpeting, bedspread with the pillows rolled into bolsters underneath.

When I first got married, my house was still hand-me-down chic, only someone else's hand-me-downs. My in-laws. Everyone had just moved to Florida and they had extra furniture from the larger house they left behind. So, in Florida, my style was Early American with heavy, dark wood and heavy, dark velour upholstery. That house never felt right.

When I moved to Tennessee, I had left my husband because I couldn't deal with the drinking anymore. I left almost everything behind. What I had room for were things that couldn't be replaced: photos, a few momentos of my childhood.

I moved into an apartment with nothing except an air mattress. No table and chairs for the kitchen. Nothing to sit on in the living room. No pictures. Nothing at all. Over time, I got some old lawn chairs and stuck them in the living room and used a card table in the kitchen.

As more time went on, I slowly started to get some furniture - used, of course. My brother sold me his old living room furniture because he got some new stuff. I liked this furniture - it was much closer to my style and it was adaptable, depending on the look you were going for. It could be country, or it could be a rustic modern. The lines were clean and the cushions were black.

Fast forward a few more years. The husband and I got back together, then split up again, this time for good. After he left, I got the first income tax return check that I ever got to keep, all to myself. I went out and bought some new living room furniture. The first new furniture I ever had.

My style is mid-century modern. Clean lines. No clutter. My couch is red, the loveseat is blue, the armchair is green. The colors work together because they have the same tone.

Getting that furniture set the tone for the rest of my house - lots of black and white photographs. Round mirrors with beveled edges. A collection of vintage barware in the dining room.

My style is me. I'm comfortable in it. And whenever someone new comes over, they always say the same thing:

"I knew that your house would look like this. It's perfect."

And it is.


angel said...

I love black and white photography! I think it can go with almost any style.

I'm glad you get to do your place the way you want now.

heather said...

so, the in-laws didn't waste any time before blowing town once they got their son married off.
ouch, that hind-sight can be nasty sometimes can't it. i've been bitten by that myself.

heather said...

how cool is that feeling to have someone look at something you've done all by yourself and think it's perfect. that nice little boost to the self-esteem.
i like that you've got that. and i can respect your reluctance to give that up for less than everything.
why should you? you worked for it.

Roadchick said...

Angel~ Thanks! Fortunately, my boyfriend seems to like it too.

Heather~ Nah, actually I moved to FL too. They got there about a month before I did. I've been finding as I get a little older, I really do care less and less about what other people think. God, that's liberating!

Jennifer Hicks said...

your "style" sounds like it has always found it's way back to you, no matter what! great post...

Linda Jacobs said...

I'm still dreaming of having my own place. I loved reading this post and living vicariously thorugh you!

paisley said...

and it sounds stunning... well worth the wait wouldn't you say?????

Roadchick said...

Jennifer~ Yes - sometimes it didn't seem like it ever would, but it did work out in the end.

Linda~ You can start getting ready now, by collecting small things that you love. Good luck!

Paisley~ It was definitely worth the wait!