We all have our favorites: Veranda, House Beautiful, Traditional Home. That gift to myself that arrives once a month. I can’t wait to curl up with my coffee and pour over every photo. Perfect rooms full of beautiful things, owned by (we can only assume) beautiful people. Even as a professional, I find it relaxing, even therapeutic, to be transported to someone else’s perfect life. Where there are no piles of stuff, discarded sneakers by the back door, or trim that desperately needs painting.
Honestly? There are times that those images just annoy me. Why do we believe this concept that order and beauty will make us happy? Or secure? As a recovering perfectionist, I honestly struggle with this misconception. Is it some residual 1950′s housewife gene of my mother’s at work or have I just seen too many Martha Stewart Living episodes? Or maybe, in this hectic and uncertain world, the pleasure, the escape, is just the idea that at least I control this harmonious haven.
But, “picture perfect” is exactly that. Just an image. We have been fortunate to have our work published by national and local magazines alike. Those beautiful magazine rooms look just like yours until hours of styling, lighting, and editing transform it to perfection. Trust me, the mail, laundry, pets, their real life, are all just out of the camera range.
As interior designers, we are challenged daily to create spaces that give you that sense of harmony, pleasure, and pride. But it will never be perfect. We live in the real world, and reality – with kids, and pets, and family – is where real happiness resides.
Special thanks to Meredith Corporation. Publishers of Elegant Homes and Better Homes and Gardens Special Interest Publication, Beautiful Kitchens & Baths.
This post originally appeared on PM Blog on 1/31/13.