Friday, June 4, 2010

style vs. comfort/dream vs. reality/country mouse vs. city mouse

Do you know what your style is? There are all sorts of online tests you can take to help you find the real you... stylistically speaking. Every style test I have taken has told me I am pretty practical when it comes to style. Minimalist, comfort-oriented, sporty... all things that quizzes say I am.

When I try to pin my style down I find myself stuck somewhere in between two polar opposites. One version of who I want to be is kind of like who my grandma was. Feminine. Hard working. Living the good life on a farm in the country. The other version is a sophisticated lady living in a loft in some big city- modern furniture with clean lines, spacious, artsy, still feels warm and lends itself to easy entertaining.

Who I am today is a lot closer to who my grandma was than the sophisticated lady I once dreamed of being, and I am happy about that. I would, however, like to think I have a little of both in me. What I really want is a farmhouse in the country right outside of a big city with good shopping. A medium sized house furnished with modern furniture with clean lines, spacious, a little artsy, feels warm and lends itself to easy entertaining. A fair amount of land for my kids to run and play in. You get the picture... anyway, on to the point of this post.

My problem with trying to bring "my style" to my home is that it is not really realistic for my lifestyle. Maybe I am drawn to white couches with clean modern lines because I know I will never have them... you know, the whole the grass is always greener on the other side issue.

I love interiors like the ones often featured here (example below).

Click here to see more of the above interior.

Beautiful right? Realistic for me.... um, I wish.

Reason # 1:

I have kids. A white fabric couch with two little boys running around? Yeah, not happening.

Reason # 2:

My husband is a big guy who puts comfort as #1 priority when it comes to furnishing our home. Don't get me wrong, I love being comfortable, but stylistically speaking, the most beautiful things don't really seem to be as comfortable. Oh and did I mention he is a big guy? He is 6'7" and was an offensive lineman in college (that is meant to be a nice way of saying he's a big guy without mentioning his actual weight). Our first couch lasted us a year. Lesson learned. No couches with wooden frames. Ikea doesn't quite cut it for people our size unfortunately either.


Comfortable and more practical(?):

Pottery Barn often feels like it comes close to my style. It just seems a little overpriced for what it is to me and I don't think I can trust my kiddos with fabric furniture.

One of the hardest things to find in my opinion that is stylish and comfortable is a rocking chair. A rocking chair is really the one thing I am most willing to spend a little money on. I am one of those people that needs a rocking chair. Go ahead. Look for a stylish looking and comfortable (and reasonably priced) rocking chair. I dare you.

Do you really think nursing a baby in the middle of the night is going to be that comfortable in your beautiful Eames rocking chair? As comfortable as a La-Z- Boy?

This is the closest thing I have found for a somewhat modern looking and kid friendly rocker. It's actually a glider. And I really do love it.

I guess I will close this before I ramble on too long about this. What, you say, I already have? Oh well. I have thought about it a lot. Am I destined to a life full of comfortable leather furniture because of my practicality??? I suppose there are worse things in life;)
But please, if you can, show me the way to stylish, comfortable, kid-friendly, big husband friendly, furniture.


Ali said...

Leather furniture (or easily washable microfiber) is seriously the only survivable way with kiddos...and once the kids are out of the house, it's not like our styles will change much, cause then there'll be grandkids:)

Anna said...

Sometimes I see things on HGTV that are more kidfriendly than you'd drapes that look like silk but they are really made out of something washable like polyester. Thing is, my hunch is that these fabrics/finishes cost more...which is also a problem for those of us on a budget.

I sympathize with your dilemma. I guess I'd say that if you go for slipcovers you can always bleach/oxyclean white maybe just go for it and be strict about koolaid only in the kitchen and hope that the dirt/grass/grime on the white slipcovers can come out through bleaching?

Btw I'm in love with that sofa from West Elm.