What the interior designers don’t tell you….

reality in decorating your home

We all do it… we watch the beautiful decorating shows on tv, look at the stunning magazines, and walk into furniture stores and see the beautiful way the designers have decorated.  Everything looks so perfect, gorgeous and not realistic at all.  Why do you say that, you ask?  Because the items they decorate with are all generic, and similar.  They don’t take into account that you have lots of items that are sentimental, lovely and not at all stylish.  So how do you incorporate these wonderful items with today’s decorating styles?  I do it as much as I can in my home, and wanted to share my own hutch.

We purchased a lovely hutch a few years ago from Jordan’s furniture.  Oh how lovely it looked in the showroom.  All white dishes, with a few similar items, tied in with yellow flowers throughout.  Just lovely.  And unrealistic!  It sold me anyways, and we purchased the new hutch.  Then I got it home and struggled to make it work.  And struggled.  I finally think I got it, and wanted to share with you.  Instead of getting rid of all my lovely sentimental items, I grouped them together.

Yes I realize it looks a bit cluttered.  And it proved my point how their styling is unrealistic.  How many of us live with items from stores perfectly styled?  Most of us have knick knacs, inherited items, gifts and most importantly, items from our family that we cannot just hide away.  So I kept them arranged this way, but put them on the ends of my hutch, so they are not center stage.  I put a bunch of farmhouse styled items in the middle, to take center stage.  As shown below.

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And I think this worked in my new hutch.  But honestly, even if it does not work, I am fine with that.  Because they are all beloved items, which make me happy to see, rather than generic ones to make my hutch look stylish.  This means much more to me.

So below is my personally styled hutch.  With items from my parents, grandmothers, children, hubby, sister, and friends.  And that means so much more to me.  It may not be featured on a decorating show, but it takes first place in my home.  I hope this gave you some ideas as well!

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The art of heirlooms

In the midst of cleaning my cellar, I found another project to do….. I came across a bag of handkerchiefs crocheted by my Great Grandmother Antonia. This would be the same Grandma you hear me refer to when I mention the silver I use at all family gatherings. She loved to crochet, and crocheted many, many handkerchiefs that she gave to family, or sold for a small fee. She even sent one to the White House!!! Yes, you read that correctly. She thought Mamie Eisenhower would enjoy one for her inaugural ball, so she sent her one, with a note. Mamie sent a nice note back, and it actually has her signature. Being pack rats, we actually have the original letter, and an article written in the paper about the handkerchiefs going to the White House.

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But back to my project….. the handkerchiefs were always bright colors, and very dainty. Seeing them today made me think of her, and also to think of what to do with them. Carrying handkerchiefs is not as popular as it was in the past, and even so, I have so many! So I visited Pinterest for inspiration, and decided I will make them into a table runner.  I took the handkerchiefs and arranged them various ways till I was happy with a layout.  Then I measured how long the design was, and cut a fabric I had gotten at a local store to the length needed.  I ironed the edges to make a nice straight line for easier sewing.

Once the background runner was done, I pinned the handkerchiefs the way I wanted them sewed.  I carefully stitched them along the lace, but not through it.  This way if someone decides to take it apart in the future, it will be easier to keep them intact.

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The final runner is a mixture of the handkerchiefs my Grandma made, on a pretty fabric background.  I also saved a few handkerchiefs for future generations to use at weddings.  I think my Grandmother would be pleased with the final product and happy that I am using them.  And remembering her.  Thanks Grandma!

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Below is Great Grandma and her husband Charles, at their 50th Wedding Anniversary.

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