When I blogged about keeping the brass fixtures in our house last month, I got several comments from readers who mentioned they appreciated that I was working with what was already here instead of replacing everything. For starters, the brass has grown on me—especially as I’ve started to decorate around it. Also, it’s just not feasible with our budget to go around taking out and tearing down everything that isn’t exactly “me.”
I started thinking that there are a lot of us in that situation. Most of us aren’t living in houses we’ve built specific to our tastes and needs. We’re living in real homes, decorating around other people’s design choices or a builder’s ideas. Or, maybe we’re living with hand-me-down furniture or a set of couches that we invested a lot of money in before we discovered design blogs and our tastes completely changed . . . While small changes and updates are feasible, most of us aren’t working with the budgets or DIY skill sets that it takes to completely redo, remodel or even reupholster.
So, this month, I have several posts planned that center around “working with what you have.” I’ll be sharing easy ideas and design tricks that will hopefully help you learn to fall in love (or at least live with) those little things about your home that are driving you up the wall.
Here’s a quick example of how I tackled the problem of small windows with no moldings in our last home:
We used tall curtain panels to disguise the sides of the windows, making them appear taller. (I think we hung ours almost 12” above the actual window in the room above, but in our living room—where the ceilings weren’t as high—we went all the way to the molding.)
We also layered bamboo shades underneath. Mounting them above—instead of inside—the window also disguised the actual height of the windows. (More on my favorite shades and the ones we used in the last house here.)
What things are you currently trying to “work with” in your home?