Simplifying and Decluttering

Yesterday I took down the scattered decor I had on top of my bookcase and leaned a painting atop it instead. It has a cleaner look.

I like the way the painting has leaves that overlap the frame. Which fits right in with the vine garland I already had up there.

Being inside a small space all the time when it’s really cold makes me want to simplify and declutter.

I like to be able to read the spines of my books in the bookcase, so the only thing I have in front of the books is a clock.

There are people who like to turn the spines of their books the other way around. But I’m not one of them.

Actually there are several other decorating trends that have been popular that I have not really cared for.

One was shiplapped walls. I guess I just really didn’t see the point in that.

And taking old books and removing the covers and oftentimes the backs of them. I understand it makes them look old and vintage. But I just never cared for it.

Seems a bit like destroying books, though I understand it’s for decorative purposes. I just have such a love of books that I don’t think I could tear them up.

What decorating trend have you not really liked?

22 Comments

  1. Oh I love decluttering!….now!! Was not always like that, but I just moved recently to a new state into a brand new house and I had to clean out a whole entire house full of stuff I collected over 25 years and I ended up donating 150 boxes and bags of all kinds of things and it made me feel so good! And now decorating my new house, it’s clutter-free and it makes me feel so at peace and I know when I start going through boxes I will be bringing a lot of things to Goodwill to donate. I went from Victorian, to romantic country…adding in farmhouse style. I’ve changed from formal to simple, and I love it. I lived in Suburbia worked in the city and vacationed in the country and I always loved the country life.
    I dislike Trends and doing things just because other people are doing it. I do not like gray even though it was trendy and “in” and even my realtor painted the rooms in my house that I’m selling gray…. but she said that’s because it sells so I said go for it!! Personally I’m not a stainless steel appliance person and I too do not like books backwards. But everyone has their own way of decorating and I accept what they like for themselves as long as they don’t try to push it on me. And I feel good if it works for them, as long as they’re doing it because they loved it not because it’s that months Style in a magazine. I do what my heart tells me and what I like and my house is an Eclectic mix of romantic farmhouse.
    And…. I have to tell you that I ordered that painting that you have on your bookcase and it should be here this week. I saw it on a YouTube Shopping Channel and fell in love with it. Good choice! Thank you for your Insight. We all need to declutter our surroundings which I learned will fill our souls with peace and happiness.

  2. Looks wonderful, Brenda.

    Well I really dislike a lot of trends, I think because they all think more of the trend is better. Trends have become sterile and decorating, store-bought. Slathering everything in grey is terrible. I’ve seen grey walls, grey cabinets, grey floors all in the same house. Ugh. Also, everything white, along with grey is just so sterile. I agree with you on books. Books should be read and “abusing” their functionality by turning them around is just silly. It seems like most homes I see on decor sites are all exactly the same. It just lacks warmth, comfort, and personal touch. They add in a few family pics… Homes should be a reflection not a trend. I’ve actually stopped following decor sites and moved to look at homes for sale for decorating ideas. They’re real.

  3. I love the way you’ve featured that painting!! Striking!
    Books placed backwards in a bookcase??? Seriously?? Ok, that puzzles me. Why? LOL
    I’m not a fan of a modern look and I prefer eclectic. If I like it I want in my home.

  4. I learned something by reading your Blog..just about each day..lol Today, I had to google the Karate Chop pillow definition. Count me in on the “dislike” side of that one, too..like a lot of things..it doesn’t make sense to me..lol With that said I like your new display arrangment..it looks nice… :0) .. It is always refreshing to rearrange and spiff up a bit. Today I moved some things around in my kitchen and tried to clean up a bit in other areas…anything to get us through the Winter…ewe..So tired of the rain, cold and gloom and doom..yuk..lol I am not a fan of the black and white Farmhouse decor..just seen it around too much. I am like some of your other fans/followers above..I like to make the home more of a personal thing than a staged and ready to sell look..I have done that several times in my lifetime to sell houses..not fun for me.. Your home always looks nice and cozy. I like a lot of different styles especially shabby chic and Victorian..but mostly…eclectic look…use what you love is my theory. Thanks for sharing and entertaining us. :0) Just a few weeks until Spring..well, at least on the Calendar. :0)

  5. I really like the painting on top of your bookshelf. It goes perfectly up there. As for decorating trends, I never did like shiplap either. I like wainscoting, but not shiplap. Also, like you, I don’t like the trend of turning books around so the pages face out. I like to see the spines and titles of books. I’m not big on the farmhouse look though I like some of the decor here and there. Just not total rooms done in that look. I do like gray, as long as it’s not overused. One of my bathrooms has walls painted in a dark gray and we really like it. I like to use white accents with pops of bright pink or blue. Our bedroom is painted a very faint gray but with blue undertones. You can really see the blue during the day. It’s a very soothing, peaceful color which is what I wanted for the bedroom.

  6. I also don’t like gray. Depressing color unless it’s more on the blue side. Don’t understand the backward books. Would rather have wainscoting than shiplap. And all white cupboards and everything white. I had white cabinets (albeit old painted ones) and there were always fingerprints from my farm guys. Ugh! I don’t mind a little painted furniture – I have seen some new styles that were more traditional and definitely not chipy. More tasteful.

  7. I like the bookcase arrangement!! Backwards books seem a waste of time, effort and books. I like my book shelves to look like a library only better. I wish I had a full room to dedicate to books. A real library like in British mansions.

  8. I have to agree with you Carol. I have never liked gray. It makes me think of a gloomy overcast day. About 6 months ago I sold my home and downsized to a much smaller house. Every room in this house was gray! Even the carpeting throughout the house is gray. I don’t have the funds for all new carpeting. However, my family has helped paint the rooms with colors that I love. I still have a couple rooms to go to finally be rid of the gray. I also don’t like dark painted walls, chippy paint on furniture and karate chopped pillows. I’d really like to know who started that trend. Things that make me cringe…books turned backwards and also books with the covers torn off. (I’m a book lover too.) I also cringe when someone paints a beautiful piece of antique furniture. Recently a young YouTuber bought a 100+ years old house. She wants to remove the beautiful entryway and remove walls to modernize it and create an open concept living space. Ugh! Why didn’t she buy a modern, open concept house instead of destroying the character of that vintage house? I just don’t get it.

    1. I don’t like stainless steel appliances or the trend to have double sinks in bathrooms. When I am in there I want to be in there by myself and I would rather have the space to put things.

  9. Love the way the bookcase looks. The picture looks great there, it is very pretty! I don’t like the modern look either!

  10. Black or dark grey walls. I just don’t get it. To me that would be like living in a dark cave or in constant night.

  11. I actually remove all book jackets because I don’t like the way they look but I save them in a box I case I change my mind. They are just like a piece of paper so they lay flat. I don’t like books turned backwards and don’t like “farmhouse” which seems to be everywhere.

  12. Maybe I was born in the wrong generation, but I’ve never really liked modern furniture. A room decorated with modern lights, furniture, decor, light colored walls, seem so cold and uninviting to me. Country, Old World, Boho, Garden, anything with character evokes warmth in my opinion.

  13. I agree with you Brenda 100% on what I consider book desecration! I want to see my books. I buy books for 2 reasons only: If a novel, it has to one that I know I’m going to read more than once; and non-fiction books that are on subjects (multiple) that I find fascinating. Why would I want to make it harder to quickly locate a book I want to check a reference in, or re-read on a rainy cold afternoon cuddled underneath a throw? To me, books are not decorating accessories, they are necessities of life! I find that during the winter I tend to add layers to everything around me: extra throw blankets and cushy throw pillows, rugs on top of rugs so my feet sink in, lots of gold and brass decor and candles everywhere in my living room. I don’t start stripping things back and switching out accessories into spring/summer colors/accessories until we’re well into spring. And around here, that could begin anywhere from mid-March to mid-June! I love the look of some painted furniture, but it irks me when I see a perfectly good wood piece that only needs to have a little touch up with a marker pen and a good shine-up painted over instead. Why would anybody ever paint over a piece with burl inlay, intricate inlay decorations or made of tiger-stripe oak that can be restored to functional beauty? I don’t understand treating a perfectly good traditional piece of furniture like it’s a piece of junk just because the finish may not be currently in style. Fads come and go. Classics are forever, black and white, marble, brass, silver and crystal, Chesterfield sofas, books you love and books that convey knowledge still in their covers – even if a bit tattered and taped together or reinforced with a strategically applied lining. I don’t want to feel like I’m living in a house that is continually “staged” for sale. Besides, I don’t have money to throw away on every trend that comes along and then goes out of style 18 months down the road. I’d rather keep investing what I have and give earnings to charities. Goodness knows there’s more than enough need right now.

  14. Oh, I didn’t know that. Well, I like to be able to see book titles so I can figure out what next to read. Seems pointless about the copyright, I agree. I don’t like gray either. I tend to go more for beige if I don’t use white.

  15. A lovely display… some of the decorators are turning the books around in pictures so they don’t get into copyright issues with publishers….I don’t know all the details but somehow some writers/publishers want to make decorators pay a fee for having a book title visible… doesn’t make sense to me as it seems like it would be free publicity for the book… anyway the decorator trend I dislike is gray walls… and yet every realtor will tell you to paint the walls that color when you go to sell. I’m not a fan of gray at all so it won’t be showing up in my house. Hope you are staying warm and safe… the weather is frightful!

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