I have always been enchanted by homes that, rather than having a "decorator" look, reveal the personalities, tastes, and values of the family members who live there. The presence of family photos, heirlooms, and collectibles illustrate the author's observation that "a house is not a home unless it displays our most cherished possessions." Living with What You Love gives us the inspiration, tools, and suggestions to approach our own possessions with the goal of reminding ourselves (and others) of who we are, and how we can display our precious objects with creativity and style.
I have years of accumulating photographs, books, and other precious items behind me; my challenge is to be selective in my choices for display. We are reminded, though, that "cherished objects are not just things of the past. Whenever we take a photograph, add a personal touch to something that belongs to us, or select a new piece for a collection, we are in the process of creating heirlooms."
A section of the book shows us the value of mixing the old and the new all around the house, especially in regard to photographs; mixing generations of family members can introduce discussions of the past and present. Also within the pages of the book, you'll find ideas for displaying large and small photos, as well as using technology for always-changing photo display. Photographic illustrations include an heirloom silver tray holding small, intimate photos framed in silver and a large tv screen devoted to rotating family photographs.
Since my home is filled with books, I was particularly interested in the ideas for mixing them with photos and other items.
I was also reminded that other precious items can be framed, including certificates, letters, and diplomas and placed on the wall with treasured photographs. For a start, I'm going to copy the back of my and my husband's birth certificates, showing our baby footprints, for a photo area in our guest bedroom.
Other suggestions included leaving albums and loose photos out in open boxes or baskets for friends and family to thumb through.
A chapter heading called "Intimate Landcapes" refers to little areas that remind us of what is important to us. Tabletops, shelves, mantels, buffets, wherever there is a flat surface can be used to put together family vignettes, which can include memories to hold in your hand, such as individual or collections of rocks, jewelry, or other mementos.
Devoted space can be places individual members of the household use for their own purposes, including personal offices or studios or spots as small as a closet or even an open drawer -- any place that can be used to reveal and enjoy the individual's personal choices of photos and memorabilia.
I would highly recommend this book for anyone interested in decorating the home with a more personal touch and especially for the beautiful photographs, which can serve as a springboard to more ideas for creativity and personal pleasure in our surroundings.
You can purchase Living with What You Love from Amazon or borrow it from your public library, as I did.
- ▼ March (3)
Recently Read Fiction Favorites
- A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly
- A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick
- Alice I Have Been by Melanie Benjamin
- Between, Georgia by Joshilyn Jackson
- Bridge of Sighs by Richard Russo
- Broken for You by Stephanie Kallos
- Confessions of a Former Rock Queen by Kirk Bjornsgaard
- Every Last One by Anna Quindlen
- Faithful Place by Tana French
- Fly Away Home by Jennifer Weiner
- Freedom by Jonathan Franzen
- Gods in Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson
- Home Safe by Elizabeth Berg
- Homer and Langley by E.L. Doctorow
- Innocent by Scott Turow
- My Name is Mary Sutter by Robin Oliveira
- Noah's Compass by Anne Tyler
- Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
- Private Life by Jane Smiley
- Remarkable Creatures by Tracy Chevalier
- Roses by Leila Meacham
- Sing Them Home by Stephanie Kallos
- So Much For That by Lionel Shriver
- South of Broad by Pat Conroy
- That Old Cape Magic by Richard Russo
- The Children's Book by A.S. Byatt
- The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Steig Larsson
- The Girl Who Stopped Swimming by Joshilyn Jackson
- The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson
- The Given Day by Dennis Lehane
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- The Help by Kathryn Stockett
- The Last Time I Saw You by Elizabeth Berg
- The Lonely Polygamist by Brady Udall
- The Murderer's Daughters by Randy Susan Meyers
- The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake by Aimee Bender
- The Sky Took Him by Donis Casey
- The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas
- The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski
- The Swimming Pool by Holly LeCraw
- The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell
- The Wind Comes Sweeping by Marcia Preston
- Where the God of Love Hangs Out by Amy Bloom
- Wolf Hall by Hillary Mandel
- World Without End by Ken Follett
- Year of Wonders: A Novel of the Plague by Geraldine Brooks
Favorite Nonfiction and Memoir
- All Over but the Shoutin' by Rick Bragg
- Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life by Barbara Kingsolver
- Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life by Anne Lamott
- Book Lust: Recommended Reading for Every Mood, Moment and Reason by Nancy Pearl
- Getting Over Getting Older by Lettie Cottin Pogrebin
- Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis
- Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting by in America by Barbara Ehrenreich
- Sharing the Journey: Women Reflecting on Life's Passages by Katherine Ball Ross
- Stuff: Compulsive Hoarding and the Meaning of Things by Randy O. Frost
- The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey
- The Artist's Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity by Julia Cameron
- The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin by Benjamin Franklin
- The Children's Blizzard by David Laskin
- The Emperor of all Maladies: A Biography of Cancer by Siddhartha Mukherjee
- The Four Agreements: A Practical Guide to Personal Freedom by Miguel Ruiz
- The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
- The Worst Hard Time: The Untold Story of Those Who Survived the Great American Dustbowl by Timothy Egan