How To Live With Decor You Don’t Like
We all have decor in our homes that we don't like! Here are smart ways to live with those things and make the most of our homes.
The real title of this post is how to live with decor you don’t like and cannot change right now or maybe ever. I’ve wanted to chat with you about this topic for quite a while now because I think you are like me. And I have a confession. I don’t like everything about my home. So how can we live with decor when we don’t like things about it?
First, let’s just state the obvious… no home is perfect! No home ticks off all our decor boxes. And all homes are or should be a work in progress!
Please remember these things. Sometimes we get so frustrated and think, “if only I could change such-and-such I would be happy with my home”. No matter who you are, we all live with things we would love to change in our homes.
I am certainly in that club, for sure!
And because of blogs, and Pinterest and Facebook and Instagram you see only a slice of real life in our homes and that slice is our best!
My biggest UGH about our Tanglewood home is the flooring! I am so thankful we have hardwood floors and they are a beautiful blessing but they are an ugly color! We are living with them as is. Period!!!!!
Our ugly colored hardwoods are all over our home which means I see them every waking minute I am home. And I am home most days, all day!
I’m telling you this because I want you to know that I have made my peace with my floors.
Once in a while I look at them as the sunlight magnifies their orange tinge and cringe a bit but then I remind myself that I am blessed to have these floors. And I have decided to not spend one ounce of energy fussing over something I cannot change!
We moved into a home that was already built. But it was new. It was quite perfect for our needs and our season of life, but I definitely wanted to change some things. And I knew there were things I had to live with too.
So here’s the big question again, how do we live with things in our home that we cannot change right away or ever?
I think the Serenity Prayer really was on to something when it comes to our lives, but maybe decorating too! And I’m not kidding!
Dear God, Grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, The courage to change the things I can, And the wisdom to know the difference.
We need to live by this little prayer!
THINK BETTER OF YOUR HOME
It’s important to not let our emotions run away when we think about our homes and what we are not happy with.
I live decor! I breathe decor! I love decor! And I am a home person. So I want to love my home. Does this sound familiar to you? Maybe just a little?
If left to my own bent I could get very emotional about my home and the things I don’t like! And maybe that is okay for just about three seconds! But if we focus on the bad or ugly we will miss the beauty and joy of our homes!
I always told my children when they were growing up to think better of people and not worse. So let’s do the same about our homes! We are so hard on them!
Wouldn’t it be nice to get up every day and just think lovely thoughts about our homes? Really this should be our default.
One thing I love about the Tanglewood House is the sunlight! It streams through our windows and our home is light and bright even on cloudy days. Oh, I love love love this!
When I think about the beautiful light in our home it makes me so happy!
Thinking loving and lovely thoughts about our homes may be a test of our wills but it is so worth the effort. LIVE out happy thoughts! Give your home some grace!
Just do it!
MAKE A PLAN
Let’s chat about the things in our home we possibly can change, but maybe not right now.
We may not be able to change things now but we can think about changing them now. Dream a little and plan!
It’s so important to have a plan. If you read StoneGable then you have heard me say this many times…
IF YOU FAIL TO PLAN YOU PLAN TO FAIL
How true, friend!
Right now I’m working out a plan I hatched about a year ago to decorate our loft. We have an open living area on the second floor across from the bedrooms and the bathroom.
It took me a long time to really know how we wanted to use this area. Bobby and I have plenty of space on our first floor so we would not primarily use it. But our guests might.
We finally decided to make a small sitting area with a place they could use a computer. Our daughter and her family visit us often and both she and her husband work from home. So, we thought it might be the perfect place for one of them to work.
I started out by making a plan! And a list of what I could change and could not. The floors are on the could-not-change list. Right now we have a very tired-looking bookcase and I’d rather have no bookcase than that one. So we are planning on getting rid of it.
Our goal is to make this a comfortable area for our family or guests to sit in and possibly work.
I have spent a few months finding the right pieces for this area and figuring out what things I already have that would look nice there too.
If there is something you are thinking about changing someday it’s really not too early to make a plan.
I love to peruse Pinterest, blogs, and decorating magazines for ideas. These ideas can start our creative minds working and collecting doable ideas will help us not feel overwhelmed.
Make calls and get estimates. Yes, now! Collect samples and more samples.
BUDGET TO CHANGE THINGS YOU DON’T LIKE
Without a realistic budget our dreams to change things in our homes will not become a reality!
One of the smartest things we can do is have a budget for decorating changes.
We budget for everything else but for some reason, many of us don’t have a decorating budget. It’s okay to acknowledge the importance of living with beautiful things and plan for things in our homes to wear out or go out of style.
A budget is an important part of moving towards changing the things we don’t like in our homes.
EMBRACING THE THINGS YOU DON’T LIKE INTO YOUR DECORATING PLAN
Remembering that all homes have their flaws and everyone lives with something or probably many things they are not in love with in their home! This sounds a bit counterintuitive but we should embrace those things and invite them to be part of our plan!
To do this we must remember to think better of our home and focus on the great things about the spaces we live in.
Here are three great ways to embrace those not so perfect things in our homes…
HIDE AND CAMOUFLAGE
Some things in your home can be hidden easier than others!
Just think of my floors! Not so easy to hide. But my rugs do a great job at calling attention to themselves and not the floor that supports them! And I’ve planned to put a nice size rug in the loft area.
Hide an unfortunately placed door by painting it and the trim the same color as the wall.
Paint a bed you do not like. Actually, paint almost everything you do not like! Paint is your best decorating friend!
Add a pretty throw and pillows to a sofa you just don’t want to look at.
Get creative and fool your eye by calling attention away from what you don’t like in your home.
This is so much easier than you think! I think most of us are decor blind when we live with something we do not like for a while.
Do the best you can to incorporate the offender into your decor and then be okay with it! And please, please, please do not let it steal your joy or prevent you from sharing the hospitality of your home with others!
And never, ever apologize for having something in your home! Love the good and ignore what you can’t change. There are many more important things in life to stress over!
THE TIDIER YOU ARE THE BETTER EVERYTHING LOOKS
When our homes are neat and organized our homes look better! Actually they look amazing! Even if there is something in your home you do not like.
Clutter does not hide the offenders, it makes it look worse! When homes are pretty and clean and organized they look lovely!
Did you see the floors first or the pretty flowers and uncluttered space in the dining room?
I came from a humble home. It was not opulent or posh. But it was sparkling clean and we respected what we had. And it looked so pretty!
When my home is clean and no clutter is lying around and I have a vase full of just picked flowers from my yard on a table I don’t even notice the floors! Actually, most of the time I do not notice the floors!
Dirt and clutter enhance a home’s flaws. So let’s put our energy into things that work to make our homes lovely!
There is no magic to get rid of what we do not like about our homes. We can do our best to plan, budget, enjoy, hide, camouflage, ignore and, tidy up! And that is something! Something good!
Love your home with all it’s imperfections!
CLICK FOR SMART DOWNSIZING TIPS
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I needed this post today
I also hate our floors and cannot change
Thank you I love your taste and also like white and naturals
Hating our floors seems to be a very popular problem. At least we are in it together! LOL!
I wish you’d get past hating your floors. Flooring fads have been changing very quickly – from dark to white oak in a decade. Previously from narrow blond oak to country pine. And now removing “ugly” wood floors to grey LVP. Designers need to stop promoting this type of thinking. I appreciate you are keeping your floors as they are!
I don’t hate my floors because they are not in style, I dislike them because they are orange and don’t work at all with my color palette. Sweet Connie, I’m not promoting any kind of thinking! I’m just telling you that I (me) don’t like my floors! I am like a broken record saying, use what you love and do what makes you happy.
Where can you find the white and tan Pottery Barn pot on your chest? The store no longer has it.
I know! Check on Etsy or Ebay. Hope this helps.
I kinda love your floors… they remind me of my parents farmhouse, though their home was built in the 1950’s, but they have that same warm color wood floors throughout. They make your home feel older than it actually is… more vintage, and in my world, that’s a good thing!
My carpeted floors are something that I’m living with until my budget allows a change. Our master bath is in the same status! But I have found so much decorating inspiration on your blog, and others, that since I retired I’ve made small changes that have made big differences! You are so right about a clean, uncluttered, tidy home. I’ve grown to love my home again! Thank you for all the inspiration!
Oh, Dixie! You are so sweet! LOVE your icon image.
I lived with orange plush carpet in our home for about 20 years. I just ignored it the best I could and learned to live with it. I was very happy the day it was changed, though!!
I bet you were Jane! This gave me a good laugh! You are the queen of understatement!
Good advice Yvonne. We should appreciate our homes and get over the little things that might bother us. In the big scheme, they are little things.
All the Trend articles say wood furniture is back. Painted pieces are out! Having said that, my daughter refinishes old pieces she picks up at thrift shops or on marketplace, sands them and paints them giving them a new lease on life. In a case like that you are saving them from the landfill. But a perfectly nice wood piece – why paint it?
Joanna, just because something is “out” does not mean it might not look gorgeous in your home. I agree about saving furniture!
I am so happy to know there are like-minded homeowners/renters who would love to change things but have learned to live with these (in our mind) flaws. I’m like you Yvonne, I live and breathe my home decor and always have. I’ve had to learn to accept certain things about my home. Like you said, when the house is tidy and I’ve done the extra touches like flowers, etc. I find I don’t fret about the things I know I can’t change. Great post.
Yay, Karen! Good for you!
I moved into a home with Brazilian Cherry hardwood floors. They are a kind of orange/cherry red color. And to make things worse (to me anyway) they have a high gloss finish that looks uneven and I am NOT a fan at all. But, I have to live with them and my husband will never let me refinish them.
So, I too try to hide what I can with rugs. It is a lovely home but the floors could spoil it for me if I let it. So I work hard not to let that be the case. And if I mention it to others, they don’t see the problem. So I guess neither should I! But, I do understand…
Yes, hardwood floors cover our homes! So we need to make our peace with it.
Great post! Every time I walk into our entryway where both the garage door and front door merge I tell myself, “what was I thinking 35 years ago”! We built our home. Both of our sons were linemen in middle and high school with no mud room it was always an adventure I didn’t look forward. Once they were in high school all gear was taken off in our garage and they would cautiously walk up the stairs to shower muddy shins and drippy sweat. What’s a mom to do😊. I have given up and embraced it with a beautiful cabinet and mirror as well as a very nice rug just as you come in the front door. A large vase of dried hydrangeas from my yard draw the eye up and are reflected by the mirror over the cabinet. My biggest challenge is finding a washable rug to coordinate with the foyer rug. As I have mentioned before we are hopefully downsizing this year. So for now I ignore it and work with what I have. Why? Because I know that pet peeve will someday not be. I have to say however, I miss those stinky football days.
I miss those days too. I had one football player and one ballerina and a cheerleader. Those were such fun times and they flew by! Don’t miss my downsizing series. I think it might be helpful. Blessings to you as you transition to your next home. See my downsizing series here: https://www.stonegableblog.com/category/downsizing/
May I ask where you got your wall hung coat tree? I love it and I am looking for something just like that
Hi Diane, I found it at Pottery Barn years ago. Unfortunately, it is no on their site anymore. This vertical coat rack is attractive:https://amzn.to/3QPw9cQ
I love the color of your floors! Very high end, classic and timeless! Grey is already taking the slow train out! Wait! They will be the latest trend!
Yvonne, I just love reading your posts! You always share things that we can learn from. Thanks for all the many hours you spend in preparing these awesome posts! I appreciate you so much & thank God for you!
How sweet Mary Ann my lovely Canadian friend! Thank you! My brother-in-law is from Canada and he is the best! So it makes me love my Canadian friends all the more!
You are an inspiration and have a wonderful design instinct. Thank you for all your great ideas and suggestions.
You are so welcome Carol!
My floors too! Light cherry laminate, which seemed like a great idea at the time, as we had/have dark cherry furniture. They had a better guarantee than engineered or real wood floors…not. I don’t really mind the color, but they are all nicked and scratched and I cannot keep them clean. However, in looking at replacements with hubby, he leans towards weathered gray colors which I don’t think will go with that formal cherry furniture. We just vehemently disagree! I’m dreading when we get serious about looking. I hope I stand firm…maybe the gray stuff will be demode and unavailable by that time!
I also have overstuffed dark brown leather sofas from 2006. They are still in good shape, but man, they are heavy and ugly! Pillows and throws, pillows and throws, pillows and throws…
I like your attitude, Carol!
The biggest thing to take from your post Nadine, is choosing to have the ‘right’ attitude about things that we cannot change. In my case, the tile on the floor in the foyer was laid crooked, I disguised it with a long runner. When the floor was finally replaced, thirty five years!!! later, I told my husband I was so happy to finally be rid of that crooked tile. He said, “it’s crooked? I never noticed!” My too small sewing studio, which I wish I could change but can’t; was a too small bedroom, so I decorated to be pretty, and keep my supplies organized, tidy up after every session, and remind myself frequently to always be grateful to have a place to create! Attitude!
Thank you for your very wise comment Faviola! You are so right
This was a great article and really good information and ideas on how to deal with the things we don’t like. In my home, my husband is an avid hunter so we have a lot of “dead animals” hanging around. I really hate them but know that my husband is proud of them and enjoys reminders of good hunting trips (he can tell you everything about each one!). Fortunately, we have high ceilings and walls so I have hung them up above so I don’t have to look at them constantly. I still feel like this limits the decor options I have. I have some antique pieces but would really like some soft, fluffy table linens or pillows or accent pieces but I just don’t think they would blend with the rustic feel of the “trophies”. Thank you for your advice and tips. I will try harder to work around what I have and continue to remember the Serenity prayer. Kathy
Hi Kathy, I think that trophies, although not for most people, are beautiful! And they make stunning decor. Just go with your fluffy linens but use them in the same color palette as the trophies.
I’m crying right now. Because I feel so seen and understood. My husband and I bought our first (and realistically, only home) and I felt like nothing about it is what I wanted for my life.
I hate myself for being upset about it, because why can’t I just be grateful for what I’ve got.
Thank you for validating my feelings and making me feel like I’m not just a spoiled brat.
Of course not Ashley. Women like us are so connected to our homes. We are so grateful for them but we also want them to look their best. Decorating takes a long time! I hate to tell you that but it is the truth. Just know decorating is a long process and enjoy every little step closer to creating a home you love!
Great article! I too do not
like my warm brown fading to Orange hardwood floors. I keep wanting to refinish them, but I have a senior kitty who would not work in a hotel for a week. I too use lots of area rugs etc. What color would you change your floors to? I was thinking of a light gray stain over the oak but want more of a timeless look.
I would go with a lighter neutral brown.