Have you ever tried going to a coffee shop to work? While some people may be able to make it work by drowning out the noise, I would guess that the majority of us struggle to do so. We have every intention of going there to work and to focus but between the grind of the machines and the conversations at neighboring tables, our attention ends up being constantly diverted. Couple this with the regular alerts coming from our phones and there's no hope. Coffee shops and our phones are just a couple examples of distractions or "noise", that we encounter on a daily basis. This "noise" can disguise itself in many forms, from physical possessions and interior spaces, to the thoughts that we play on repeat. It is what we surround our-self with on daily basis; what captures our attention to the point of distraction. While some of this noise we can't control, a good part of it we can.
When it comes to our homes, the act of simplifying our decor and letting go of what is no longer used or needed, goes a long way in minimizing noise. By taking away the excess we are creating room to breathe or allowing "the eye to rest" as we say in design. For example, when we have something hanging on every wall, furniture crammed into every corner, books spilling out of shelves - there is a lot going on. There is no sense of peace. By having a wall or two with nothing on it or by having a well curated and styled shelf there is a sense of order and restraint.
It may be hard to believe that our possessions really do have an effect on our physical and mental state of well-being but they do. I challenge you to give this whole de-cluttering thing a try and see how you feel after a couple of weeks. One of my family members experienced the power of de-cluttering recently and couldn't believe how much better he felt because of it. He told me that while at first he would just get rid of a few things here and there, after a few days he was letting go of things by the bag full. His eyes were opened after years of not seeing the noise in his life and he was experiencing the benefits of it.
Its not just the things that we have in plain site though, that can be a source of noise. The possessions that we have boxed up and tucked away can also be a cause of distress and distraction; a metaphorical and literal weight. While they are out of sight they are not necessarily out of mind. Though we may not think about these possessions often, we know that they are there and we are aware of the space that they take up, as well as the cost (if they live in a storage unit).
Another way in which noise manifests itself in is in the thoughts we choose to meditate on in our day-to-day lives. This could be the to-do list that we have running in the back of our head, regrets and guilt about a decision that we made, negative memories that we have playing on repeat - it could be a lot of things. Just as with our physical possessions, our thoughts take up space. They too are a source of weight. One way that we can relieve some of this weight and to lighten the load is by releasing any negative thoughts. We can sit with and reflect, but after a while it's time to let them go. We can commit to change by showing ourselves grace in the way we speak to ourselves and respect by taking our to-do list seriously. By letting things pile up or get back-logged we are just heaping onto the stress that we already encounter on a daily basis. This pile is an obstacle in obtaining the peace that we so desire.
While there is some noise that we cannot control there is a lot of it that we can. We all possess the ability to choose what we allow into our homes: what we hang on our walls, what we wear, and what we have stored away. We also have the capacity to choose our thoughts; to "take them captive".* There is a lot of noise that we encounter on a regular basis but the freeing thing is that we have the ability to choose what we surround ourselves with. There is a lot of peace in that.
*2 Corinthians 10:5
So many of you have been asking about this piece and how to make something similar, so today we are giving you the step-by-step on how to create a sculptural wall hanging.
Both husband and wife coming from metropolitan backgrounds (Chicago, Norfolk and Northern Virginia) their desired look was Urban Modern with a dash of Scandinavian and Fixer Upper. The spaciousness and contemporary finishes of their home provided us with the perfect launch pad for pulling off this look.
One of my favorite things to do is to create a gallery wall. I think that they’re great as an accent wall, down a hallway or in a home office. So many of you have reached out asking how we put together our gallery wall in our home office, so today I wanted to walk you through how.
We have some sad but exciting news to share with you today… we are moving! After six years in grad-school my husband is finally wrapping up his PhD and is in the throws of securing a job back up home, in Northern Virginia.
While we are by now means looking for a sprawling lawn or land to farm on, we do dream of having a space where we can entertain our friends and family, have a raised bed or two, and maybe even indulge in a hammock.
As my husband and I begin the process of looking for a new home this summer, one of the main things on our check-list is…outdoor space! While our 5’ x 10’ balcony has served us well we have been dreaming of having a small yard for years now; a place where we can entertain, grow some produce and herbs, and start our own compost.
This fervor has continued over the years resulting in spontaneous gallery walls and painting of furniture (as well as many holes in the wall much to my husbands dismay); all the while teaching me many valuable lessons, one of them being that not every one is going to be as enthusiastic about the design choices that you make, and that’s okay.
When shopping for storage containers you want to make sure that they check off three boxes: beauty, functionality, and sustainability.
We are still jumping up and down over here after learning that our home has been featured on Apartment Therapy!
One of our core values here at Making Room for Peace is adopting a slower way of life. This movement, also known as “slow living” stands for "sustainable, local, organic, and whole and is about having little impact, shopping local and avoiding mass produced and processed things."
Have you ever felt blessed by simply being in someone’s presence? That’s exactly how I felt working with the Rivera family on the styling of their home this past winter.
There are days when I wake up, roll over and immediately start scrolling through my phone. Sleepy-eyed and with my hair still in a messy bun I begin to check my email, take a look at the weather, and head over to Instagram to see what’s going on.
I am excited and honored to share that Making Room for Peace is featured in the newest issue of ORIGIN Magazine!! A small team of artists working in LA, NY, Dallas, and Paris, it is Origin’s belief that beauty and art can uplift the world.
For a lot of people, selecting storage containers for their home is the “fun” part of the decluttering process. However too many people jump to straight ahead to this step before tackling that not-so-fun parts which then mess up the entire process.
While the bones of the room are neutral, we added in pops of color via hanging plants, caned furniture, and the colorful vintage area rug. A sleek mid-century modern table is centered in the room, beckoning for a game of monopoly or for a cocktail, which can be concocted within the discreet bar-set up we made in the pie-safe.
Over the past couple of years, we have methodically worked together on styling the Hurt’s home, infusing their love of vintage and travel finds with the more traditional bones of the space. It has been such a pleasure getting to know Rebecca not only as a client but as a friend. Today, Rebecca shares with us a little bit about herself and how she is currently making room for peace.
After reading through my friend’s core family values, listening as they shared their dreams for their home and walking through their space, my heart overflowed with gratitude. I could clearly envision a design for their home that would capture warm hospitable vibe that they were going for; creating a space that would be enjoyed by family, friends and neighbors alike.
When you first walk into the Hurt’s home one of the first rooms that you see is straight ahead, the den. A small room, right off the kitchen and the sun-room the den is the gathering space for the family. Between the deep leather sofa and the cozy swivel chairs, there is truly a place for everyone (including their 60 lb. puppy, Bacon!) to rest and to recline.
Something that I like to do throughout the year but especially during these cold winter months, is to make up and distribute bags of affirmation. These paper bags are filled with snacks, clothes and encouraging words created for and handed out to those who we see standing on the street corner asking for money.
Not only do Phillip Adam products perform but they are of substance. Along with being paraben free, they are also: biodegradable, vegan, cruelty free, gluten free, SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate) free, and GMO free.
People matter more than the things that we buy is a belief held close to our hearts as well as our friends at Made. Owner Holly and her team work hard to ensure that every item that Made sells supports this belief not just in theory but in action, by caring for the artisans who make their products.
To help out with any shopping angst, we’ve put together a guide of thoughtful, creative, and sustainable gifts for this holiday season. The key behind a lot of them is that they are consumable - aka you appreciate it, enjoy it and then are able to recycle or reuse the item.
Why not elevate your gift wrapping this holiday season by using some sustainable alternatives to all of the wrapping paper, bubble wrap, or cello sheets out there? Not only will you show your loved ones how much you care about them but also how much you care about the environment!
Do you want to know something? A used to be a shopaholic. You know how after you graduate from high school and everyone generously gives you money for your next endeavor be it college or a job? Well I spent most of mine.
When I would think of thrift stores and consignment shops I would envision dirty, poorly lit spaces with clothing that couldn’t possibly be stylish or in good condition. Years later, through some humbling and personal experience, I’ve found that this image that I had had in my mind couldn’t be farther from the truth. While shopping second-hand can be hit or miss, for the most part it is really an enjoyable experience.
Our homes are supposed to be our refuge but did you know that they could also be making us sick? Asthma, headaches, coughing, and allergies are just a few of the signs that you may need to make some changes to your home. Lucky for you, we've outlined some of the problem areas and what you can do to create a healthier environment for you and your family!
The healing benefits of tea are amazing and something that I recently met up to discuss with Mai-Anh of Discover Teas. Along with getting into the nourishing properties of tea, we also talked about the story of Discover Teas, about women supporting women, and the importance of community.