Surroundings & Personal Style

I love art, interior design, and all things aesthetic. I have been on a “surround myself with beauty” quest for decades, and I have been establishing my surroundings & personal style for just as long. It has been only with the addition of Pinterest that has aided me to finally solidify my own personal style. Which by the way, is constantly evolving.

I have been intentionally implementing my personal style within my surroundings for about a decade now. That being said, most of the larger purchases that I’ve accrued have been only in the last three years.

“No matter where you find yourself, you can begin to elevate the energy of your surroundings.”

– Tonya Leigh

Here are some of my inspiration images from my Pinterest h o m e board!

Several years ago I read a great book – L’art de la Simplicité: How to Live More with Less by: Dominique Loreau. In one of her early chapters she writes about the importance of our surroundings, and their impact on our energy – from the actual pieces themselves, to their placements throughout your space. This exact thought would later be reiterated by my coach Tonya Leigh.

Late in 2019 as we were building our home, I decided to actualize my personal style that I’d been honing on Pinterest. So I decided to establish my overall color inspiration, thank you Cyprus (my calico cat). As you can see throughout the images below, I have pretty much held to that color scheme. However, the above inspiration images that reflect my personal style, have a classic, romantic, transitional, and an almost Parisian feel to them.

I first started reinventing my surroundings in very small ways. A coffee table book here, a candle and a decorative piece there, and eventually graduated to a side table here and piece of art over there. I DO NOT have this all figured out, I am still on my own discovery journey. I do find the process of defining my personal style to be so much fun though, just like life, I am practicing enjoying the ride.

If you are just beginning or midway through your journey, here is a great place to start. Ask yourself – are your surroundings elevating or draining your energy? Are your surroundings shaping you, or are you shaping your surroundings? Does your space elevate your dreams, your goals, or your life? After all, our surroundings tell a narrative about ourselves. Do you like the narrative?

Do the mental work and start believing you are worthy of beautiful surroundings that tell your personal story. Then, take responsibility for your current space and the narrative it tells. Question your thoughts, and beliefs about your surroundings. Don’t judge where you’re starting at, or your thoughts about what led to here, be kind to yourself. Do the work to love your current spatial situation unconditionally, then move forward from a place of love.

Lean into that next-level you. Make your space reflect you, the you you are aiming for – the future you. Figure out your true style match. Lose the descriptors that box you in. Throw away labels that feel dated. investigate your style, have your likes & interests outgrown your current setup? If the environment feels dated, try to up-level it.

Elevate your style! Get creative & conscious and create a new, or re-edit your old, home board on Pinterest. Look for recurring patterns and themes within the pins you pin. Allow room for your style to evolve. Notice what actually draws you in, as well as what pushes you away. Don’t deny your thoughts and feelings about your personal style, embrace them and allow them – and lean in!

Declutter! Sometimes this simple act can help uplift your energy and mood. It also can help get the snowball rolling in the direction you are heading. Start small with a drawer, or closet. Question if the items to keep are useful, beautiful, or align with your aesthetics. Would you buy this item again?

Don’t forget, an empty spot allows the mind to seek the right item to put there, in lieu of something that drains your energy and causes unwanted thoughts & feelings.

Think also in terms of a “capsule” approach. Make a list of staple items needed; dresser, dining room table, desk, etc.. Hierarchy the list by investment cost and prioritize what works best for you. Begin to bring in the best quality you can afford, it doesn’t have to be expensive. You can always find affordable items at Target, HomeGoods, World Market, and even Amazon.

And if you just can’t be bothered to shop, or wait around for those long delivery times, simply re-zhuzh what you already have. Repurpose its use. Paint it. Replace the hardware. Get creative. Move things around based on how it feels to you. Just like we evolve ourselves over time, some of what we already own can also be elevated.

Whatever you end up doing, have fun! A good rule of thumb is, if you aren’t having fun with it, you are probably doing it wrong. Keep it light, keep in functional, and definitely keep it fun. 😉

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