Interior Resolutions

By Lesley Myrick

New Year, New Look, New Home

Pictured: Karolina Grahowska

Fresh year, fresh start. I’m sure you’ve already thought about some personal resolutions to commit to in 2018 such as lose 10 pounds! Eat healthier! Learn a new skill! Kick that bad habit! While riding the New Year’s wave and upgrading yourself is always a great idea, have you thought about upgrading your home this year too?

It’s not just for aesthetic purposes — living in a home that looks great, feels awesome and functions well can totally empower you to make movement on your other goals. When your home looks and functions the way you actually want, it frees up a lot of mental energy that can better be used to resist cupcakes at a party instead of fighting feelings of annoyance every time you walk into your living room.

So in 2018, go ahead and lose those stubborn 10 pounds! Eat healthier! Learn a new skill! Kick that bad habit! But how about also — finish decorating the living room! Paint the bathroom a bold color! Buy a vintage rug for the bedroom! Explore a new design style! Call a designer to start the long-overdue kitchen remodel! I know a great one, in case you’re interested.

You know the old phrase, “The cobbler’s children have no shoes”? Admittedly, that’s me. I’m the cobbler, and my poor 4-year-old son, Ford, is shoeless. Don’t worry, he has actual shoes to wear. And a comfortable bedroom to sleep and play in. But his room has been in interior design limbo for the last year. We installed crown molding but have yet to paint or even prime it. He has a new big-kid bed but nothing hanging on the walls.

He’s started to notice that we’ve dropped the ball and even asked me recently, “Mom, can I paint my bedroom this weekend?” I like his go-getter attitude and DIY spirit. There’s part of me that’s considered hooking him up with a paint roller and a few drop cloths so he can get to work. (Kidding. I cannot even imagine the disaster that would ensue when a preschooler is left alone with a gallon of Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray.) However, there’s nothing more motivating than your kiddo calling you out!

I spend my days happily making magic happen at home for my clients, but all that design energy spent on others doesn’t leave a whole lot of bandwidth for my own home. So in 2018, I’m committed to finishing Ford’s room and our kitchen. I’m totally over wasting mental energy groaning over these two spaces that need some serious design love. I’d rather be thinking about choosing cucumbers over cupcakes in my kitchen instead of remembering that we have four gallons of paint in our garage waiting to be applied.

I bet you’ve got a similar space in your own home — one that’s unfinished or that you know needs a new look. A room that’s been nagging at you for years and desperately needs an update. It can be tricky to bust out of boring, though. You’ve been surrounded with the same stuff at home for quite some time, and it’s hard to see things with fresh eyes. But the new year is the perfect time to embrace change and explore a new design aesthetic.

The key is to start small. It’s okay if you don’t have a fully realized design plan yet. All you have to do is grab a design magazine or open up Pinterest and start browsing. Just start. Starting really is the hardest part.

Pay attention to what you’re drawn to. Do all the photos you save have crisp white walls or perhaps brightly colored velvet sofas? Maybe you’re attracted to spaces with a lot of greenery or interiors with minimal decoration.

If the images that make your heart flutter with happiness don’t match the current look of your home, that’s okay. It’s just a gentle nudge that it’s time to make a change. Ride the wave of inspiration that a new year brings and get going. Bookmark your favorite photos, search online for a new sofa or call a painter to get a quote.

You can also gain major motivation and find inspiration by hitting the pavement and getting your hands on real, tangible design elements. As a touchy-feely, kinesthetic learner, there’s nothing more inspiring to me than handling tile samples, paint swatches and fabric cuttings. This is also why I have a really hard time in art galleries and museums — I want to touch everything.

Waco has a ton of great design resources from large home centers to independent furniture, decor and antique shops downtown. Get out there! Spend a Saturday asking questions, taking samples (with permission, of course) and being open to new ideas. Play with colors and materials to develop your design style. Your home is a reflection of what you once were, but who are you now and where do you want to be?

January is a season to embrace change. New year, new look, new home. Are you ready to resolve to have a home you love in 2018?