Change the room, change my world. S E Mendenhall
Making changes in my home environment is something I am constantly doing. From switching up my bedroom as a child to shifting the furniture in our living room last week, stuff moves at Simplicity. A friend once commented that I did not require travel to rejuvenate and refresh my life. This was accomplished by simply adjusting my living space. I do have a love of travel, but there is truth to my friend’s statement.
Some people dislike change, especially in their homes. While I have an understanding and deep appreciation of the confidence and comfort of familiar spaces, I tire of the same old arrangement. A stale space effects my mood. Restlessness and dreariness set in. By moving things around, I gain energy.
Over the years, Don has become a willing participant in this fruit basket upset. Rarely the one to suggest this indoor activity, he resigns to the inevitable. As he adds his muscle to save my aching back, before long he is offering great suggestions. He does have a knack for this. Such was the case on Sunday afternoon.
Simplicity’s living room has several challenges for furniture arrangement. Boxy in nature, furniture placement can often feel squared off and constrictive. Six doorways open into the room, adding to the quandary. Each one of these entrances provides a necessary and well used traffic pattern. Bathroom, kitchen, dining room, front door, and stairs to the second floor are working entry points. The door to the basement is not needed so we have blocked it by furniture. All this said, moving the pieces of our living space is always a creative act that involves some degree of frustration.
Back to Sunday afternoon. Both Don and I had committed ourselves to finding a new arrangement for our living room. As we moved, shoved chairs and tables, it became obvious that we had too much in the space. What piece was the culprit? What item of furniture made this such a complication?
I remembered this same issue, of a table being the cause, when our son and family lived with us for a few months. Our daughter-in-law sat with me in this very room as we were about to move our furniture world around. Her clarifying designer mind quickly assessed our problem. A large antique baker’s table. While it added interest to the room, everything else had to work around it. Once we moved it from the space, magic happened. She and I started placing the sofa and chairs at angles. Quickly this new arrangement brought energy to the room and a noticeable peace to my restlessness.
Sunday’s culprit was too many upholstered chairs. Once one was removed from the room, every other item found a place to play. A small round table came up from the basement, replacing a square lamp table that then moved into Don’s office. A gold lamp left the room, while a silver one from the bedroom took its place. The sofa hugged the corner and traded spaces with a chair and table. Like wooden building blocks, furniture and accessories moved into new arrangements. The frustrating frowns on our faces changed into delighted smiles. We could feel the difference. The room opened, felt bigger, less congested, looked happier. Each addition or subtraction of furniture brought a fresh viewpoint. Gone was the ho-hum and same old routine. The room woke up and so did we.
Moving furniture is like a game. One that might begin, ‘What would you do with a chair, a lamp, and a table?’ I know!