A Designer's Secret to a Perfect Home

I'm going to share a secret with you. You know all those pretty rooms you see in magazines, on Pinterest, and HGTV? They're fake. Yep, fake-o. I'm seriously not even kidding. Let me explain.

It’s fake, like you sent your kid to school for picture day wearing their best outfit, hair done, their body is clean, and it doesn't look like they've been crying at all.

It’s fake, like you got dressed up for a date with your love, and actually put on lipstick, a dress, some heels and did your hair.

It’s fake, like you can hear your neighbor knocking at the door (you're hoping they have cookies), and you're stuffing everything, I mean everything, into the hall closet before letting them in.

Do any of these things sound familiar? If yes, keep reading!

Look at that pretty table! It's so perfect and clean! And oh so not like that all the time.

Look at that pretty table! It's so perfect and clean! And oh so not like that all the time.

Behind the Scenes

All the real stuff, the life stuff, is in hiding. Just like we put on our best selves for others, all those magazines and perfect Pinterest and Instagram photos are doing the same.  For instance, a lot of the furniture in the photos probably lives there for good, but not all of it. And, yes, it's immaculate for the photograph. But none of those spaces always look like that. Most people don't live in a perfect world where nothing gets messy and unorganized, covered in dog hair and dust (guilty), or full of crunched cereal in the sofa cushions (you think I'm talking about kids, but I'm actually talking about me *Captain Crunch* obsession).

Unless you've got A LOT of money to have a maid come over everyday, no one's space looks pristine and perfect all the time. Behind the scenes of those photos looks like this: furniture is brought in or moved out and re-arranged on picture day. Accessories and flowers are added for punch. And, of course, it gets cleaned like nobody's business. Oh and I can't forget to mention photo editing. It happens to every single photo that's made public. So, you've not only got all the staging beforehand, but the touch up afterwards.

That's a lot of fake.

See? Backstage pass to my life at work. Messy, mug that doesn't match anything, dog toy, papers on the floor, and unattractive cascading robe. Gosh I love that robe. So blissfully cozy.

See? Backstage pass to my life at work. Messy, mug that doesn't match anything, dog toy, papers on the floor, and unattractive cascading robe. Gosh I love that robe. So blissfully cozy.

What About My Friend's Perfect Home?

Oh my gosh, I hear you, friend! I'm not going to tell you that maintaining a beautiful place is impossible (or a crime if you happen to be a Martha Stewart type, in which case please share your magic). But it takes a lot of time, discipline, and commitment (or money) to keep it looking great. There are some people I know whose homes are pretty darn clean and nice looking, but there are housekeepers involved on some level, they have to work really hard to keep it that way, and pretty much they just don't have a lot of "stuff" to begin with. And, guess what? They still get crunched cheerios in the carpet and in the sofa cushions, and some days, it looks like an explosion went off.

Let Perfect Go

So, my friend, are you going to let yourself off the hook a little bit? I hope so. Life is messy. Life is unorganized. Life is flying by the seat of your pants sometimes, just hoping everyone eats, bathes, sleeps, and makes it to wherever they need to be safely, with their clothes on.

Mmmkay, so with all that being said, won't you give yourself the gift of decorating your home? There's never going to be a perfect time to do it. Life is always going to present you with some reason or other not to. Amiright? And, oh my goodness, let me share this with you, friend! There are so many kid, pet, crazy-life resistant options out there to ease your hesitant mind. Here, let me give you some examples:

  • Sunbrella fabrics: while they don't produce their velvet anymore (sad day, but hey it was really expensive anyway), you can get some indoor fabric in pretty patterns and colors...even cheetah print! Their fabric is tough and cozy, for a soft touch and easy, just-wipe-or-wash cleaning. They also offer rugs, accessories, and drapery fabrics, so you can incorporate it into every corner of your home.
  • Use paint with higher sheen: it's typically used for bathrooms and kitchens and places that have high traffic, like hallways. But if your kids, pets, or other crazy life activities end up leaving traces of themselves on the walls, try using it everywhere. Makes walls a lot easier to clean!
  • Durable furniture: break up with your college dorm room stuff and opt for well-made, sturdy pieces that can withstand the hurricane that is life. If the family and pets are going to jump on it, you might as well make sure it won't break. (Hint, save money and buy sturdy stuff that's already showing it's age. You can spruce it up, or leave it a bit scuffed to help blend the new scuffs in).
  • Clean lines and off-the-floor: clean lines make a room look more streamlined, and using furniture with legs that allow you to vacuum underneath helps make it easier to get dust balls and toy balls behind it.
  • Take time to purge: now's your chance to get rid of those chachkies or put them away for a while. No sense dusting them or worrying about breaking them. Keep out a few select, special items and put 'em up high where hands can't reach.

Yes, you could actually have something that looks like this using all the tips I just mentioned!! But remember, it won't always look this perfect and that's okay. As a matter of fact, I hope you get messy, because that means your're living your life. That's the real secret to a perfect home.

One Last Thought

You don't have to spend a ton of money on decorating, which you can read about in this post. But if you're ready to make an investment that will last through the lifetime of whatever crazy you've got going on right now, go for it! There's really no better time to get started on making your space work for you than now, and enjoy it, too! Really, if your space is causing you more stress than help living life fully, it's worth fixing.

Thinking about hiring a decorator to do the work for you? Well, hey there, friend! Take some time to poke around, read this post on how to pick the right decorator for you, and send me your questions! I can't wait to hear from you!

As always, thanks for stopping by, friend!

xoCarole