By Jill Garber
Decorating a home is an art, and the most wonderful homes I have been in over my life seem to speak sincerely about the people who dwell there. Like a wonderful coffee table book of life, each object, painting or piece of furniture has a story.
Because I am an artist first, and it is from there that I have directed my efforts into many years in design, I am especially in love with the homes of other artist’s. It is from their unique perspective on color, shape, texture and the blending of varied objects that are meaningful to them personally I have taken my lessons in decorating.
In the exquisite book Artists’ Houses, by Gerard Georges Lemaire, we are able to travel back in time and into the homes of many of our most beloved artists. He writes: “artists put as much care or more, into the design of their homes and gardens as they put into the creation of their work”. This is a most simple yet profound truth. In order to create, we must be inspired, so artists create an environment that serves this very important purpose, and over the course of their lifetime their homes and studios seem to effortlessly become their “own little world”.
"Never let the things you want make you forget the things you have"
Claude Monet rendered his greatest personal masterpiece in three dimensions at his home in Giverny, France. His world gave birth to many of his most prized paintings, including his series of water lilies, which were painted in every type of light over looking the pond that he created with loving hands over many years. He planned and planted with great skill and understanding, and inside his home he used every color from his artists palette as he turned each wall, nook and cranny into and his own very personal vision of beauty and life. You could say that our beloved Monet lived inside of his own paintings.
What are your treasures and inspirations? Where do you find serenity, what are the stories of your life and the people you love that are of consequence to you? From these things you can find the seeds to plant your own garden inside and out of your home. Large, small – it does not make a difference when you begin to look around. A tiny apartment in Paris can be as exquisite as a grand home surrounded by acres of land if it is filled with objects that are interesting and meaningful to you.
Live first with what you love. Take time to build your own little world and trust that in the end you will dwell in a place that inspires you and others to feel enriched by life.