Just Jill’s 2012 Retrospective

This is THAT time of year:  Season of Lists.  “Best of…”.  “Worst of…”  They are everywhere.  It’s when we all look at where we have been, what we have seen, what we have done. 

I don’t really think that that a great use of time.

Wouldn’t a better use of time be to figure out where you need to go?  What changes need to be made?  How are you going to do that?

So here we are.  Same sad room.  Old sofa in need of SOMETHING.  Builder beige paint.  And that area?  Not a clue.

 Where do you begin? 

 Deep breath!   Get out a pad and pencil and sit in a corner of this pathetic space.

 There are four things that you’ll need to decide so you can get things moving:  Function, Mood, Style and Budget.

 Function seems easy.  What DO you want to do with that space?  Everyone seems to have at least one room in their house that they are at a loss for.  Not another bedroom.  Never use a home gym.  One home office is plenty. Or if your home is smaller, you have the issue of dual functioning spaces:  guest room/office or kitchen/dining room?

 May be the function isn’t so much what you DO in the space but HOW you do it.  Does the traffic flow in the space well?  Are people able to move without tripping over the ottoman?  Can you watch TV without having your husband block “American Idol” when he walks to the kitchen?  Can the dog get to the window without hopping on the sofa? 

On your pad, write the issue.  Does the room need a function or does it not function well?  If it’s the former, what does your home need?  If the latter, write what currently works and what doesn’t.

There is one way to achieve mood:  color.  Add it, take it away.  Either way, the room will make you feel completely different.  I can spend an entire article talking about the psychology of color!  Just remember that nothing gives you a bigger visceral reaction to a room than a can of paint.

 Go back to the notepad.  What mood does the room have now?  What colors do you see first.  Close your eyes and count to 20.  Open them again.  How do you want to feel when you walk in? 

 I always laugh when people tell me that they have no style.  Silly!  Of course they do!  Where do you like to shop for clothes?  What is your favorite place to go on vacation?  How do you spend the weekend?  All of these things put together make you YOU.  That’s your style! 

 On your pad, write things that you like to do, places you like to go, and why. 

 Despite what my husband may think, I do think budget is important.  What are you comfortable spending now?   Designer secret:  I spend one third of my client’s budget on accessories.  It’s how I go from, “what a sweet room” to “Oh my gosh!  This place is amazing!” I also advise clients to always keep 10% in a separate bucket:  you never know what you’ll find when you rip up the carpet.

 Note pad:  What can you spend now?  Are you able to spend more later? 

 Look at your note pad now.  There’s the game plan!  Now go do something about it!




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