When this post goes up, Anand and I would have completed three full months of being together. It’s amazing how two really different people choose to live together in a marriage and slowly start making little compromises in their personal space while making the other feel welcome and comfortable.
The first step to making a house home is to start embracing one another’s color choices and living preferences especially when the partners have contrary personalities.
I have lived most of my adult life in a bachelor pad and have had many phases of interior decor – from using a color-riot theme to having a room full of fake plants, also had a brief Fab-India-vibe of home decor at one time that I am most proud of. Fast forward to five years, now I live in a big apartment with my husband in an unknown country. An apartment that gets very little sunshine, comes with a grill in the kitchen that I have never used before, an awkward toilet without a jet-spray and a washroom that comes with two sinks I have no idea why.
Welcome to That Home, a new series on my blog about my love for living spaces where I share my experiences of listening to my heart while making a home.
I am a slow turtle when it comes to doing interiors which means it takes me months to understand what I really want out of my (now our) personal space. Doing up a home is a way of life and I most certainly don’t believe in home-makeovers. Home-decor should be a slow process that you unconsciously indulge in every single day when you are learning about your favorite nooks and spaces in your home, like the one that great to lounge or the one that’s the quietest for an on-call meeting. It’s definitely not just about picking Pinteresty themes and splurging on home accessories for the sake of display.
As partners, we for sure do not follow a preconceived definition of a living area, a kitchen or a bedroom. If you are a couple who loves to dine sitting on the floor in the living room on your tea table watching TV, so be it. Start working your way out to figure out how you can transform your living room into a transitional eating area. In the last couple of months since I moved in with Anand, we have spent a fair amount of time understanding our natural preferences in picking a spot for eating, reading, working or even lounging at home.
The living room is certainly the heart of every house. Isn’t it? This little nook of our living room is the most “lived” corner at our home currently. This is where most of the working, reading, writing, banter, and jamming happens. This area gets the most sunshine and now is our preferred spot for lounging too. Our 1-bhk in Amsterdam came with a cozy bedroom that unfortunately doesn’t have good natural light and I really struggled in getting ready and doing makeup in there. The lights in European homes are very dim and soft and did not work for my makeup and skincare. I was very tempted to switch things up and move my long-mirror and vanity to the living room just so I could get the perfect light. But, I was also having doubts about teaming in my vanity area with our living room that led to an argument that I was not winning.
After some thinking, my husband created some space out of nowhere like magic. There was this neglected corner on the left of our sofa that was almost invisible until we created some space for the vanity area. We wanted the vanity area to look like a conspicuous addition to the living room blending in well with the space. Here I have used a side table where I could keep my makeup stash in a pretty jute bag from H&M home so it doesn’t look noisy. The green-tinted vase on the side table is my recent favorite purchase from Hema and the fake flowers from IKEA are just too pretty and seemingly unfair to be called fake.
We are truly fortunate that the house that we rent in came with really good neutral furniture that allows us to play around a little bit with home accessories. For example, we have dotted up this grey couch (came with the house) with cushions from H&M home. This little corner is perfect for Anand’s guitar too as it gets a comfortable space to rest and is also very reachable when he feels like playing it. Like you can already tell, that we desperately try not to worry about trends here. It’s all about creating a space that is more practical than just a show.
It’s amazing how the little vanity corner blended in so well without losing its essence and that we chose practicality over the standards of a home layout. It was honestly such a hard decision but now I absolutely enjoy the sunshine while I get ready in the living room. I almost quite love the idea of sitting on the floor and doing my makeup. It’s so comfortable and relaxing and makes me look forward to getting ready before heading out.
It’s been a lovely experience understanding spaces and discovering corners that can serve a real purpose at home and yet look attractive. We hosted a few guests at home recently and this nook was quite a conversation starter. I am already looking forward to documenting more such stories on home and spaces and even any dribs and drabs of advice for first-time purchases for our home. Do you think it will interest you? Please let me know.