Apartment Therapy recently ran this great piece, adapted from Maxwell's book, about "warm people," and "cool people," and what their homes say about them.
Image from BHG
Maxwell's basic thesis is: warm people care a lot about their homes, tend to have too much stuff because they love stuff, and are social by nature (home bloggers, he's talking about us); cool people have more spartan homes, aren't as attached to stuff and thus don't have as much of it, and are less social. And his whole thesis is that warm people should focus on weeding things out while cool people should focus on allowing things in ("planting"). In general, I totally buy this idea.
(Note: this isn't about warm or cool colors necessarily. More like warm and cool attitudes.)
But I think there's another way to think about what your home says about you and also, more importantly, what it does for you: Do you want a home that energizes you, or a home that soothes and relaxes you?
I think if you answer that question honestly, it's much easier to design the home that's right for you. But turning that answer into the home of your dreams is about more than just color palette and contents.
Take all of these rooms, for example (from Room Remix blog)...
They're all done in pretty neutral color palettes, which should read as "soothing," right? But the effect in each is actually more energizing. Why is that? Answer: the letters, numbers and words.
My theory: Letters, numbers, words, maps, etc. are all stimulating to the mind, and are therefore energizing. Spaces without any of those allow the brain to avoid thinking (within reason, of course), and are therefore more relaxing. You can have a totally relaxing home done in warm colors, or a chaotic, energizing home done in cool colors. It's all about the other mental stimuli.
Any guess what our home is designed to do for us???
(UPDATE: You can see our latest home pictures, including some more vibrant colors, here.)
I recently had a bunch of vintage-style travel posters framed, with the intention of hanging them in the bedroom, but with this new realization, I'm thinking that perhaps they belong elsewhere in the house, and not in our uber-comfy, super-soothing bedroom.
Some of the framed prints
The inspiration, from Apartment Therapy and BHG
So as far as the bedroom goes, it may be back to the drawing board. But at least I know that I won't accidentally spoil our peaceful sanctuary.
What about you? Do you prefer your rooms to wake you up or settle you down? Or do you prefer a mix throughout your home?
Better yet, think my theory is total hogwash? Do share!
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