If the style makes you happy, keep it

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January means I spend a lot of time indoors. By “a lot,” I mean almost all my time indoors. I venture out just long enough to remind myself that I am NOT a fan of any temperature that begins with a minus sign, and that snow is only delightful when accompanying Santa’s sleigh.

What this means is that I have ample time to sit indoors and realize that we are living in squalor. All those golden days of summer and crisp autumn evenings have given way to a house that hasn’t been deeply sorted out since, well, probably last January.

I’m really on top of clutter control, just don’t look too closely into the closets.

It is notable that I am a person who LOVES to get rid of things. I jumped so hard and firmly on the “keep only things that spark joy” bandwagon that it’s a wonder we have anything left in the house.

Minimal decor

These days I love minimal decor.

There was a time I loved floral prints, knickknacks and ruffles galore. That time was the ’80s and early ’90s.

Then I liked hunter green and burgundy-everything and we had a bold checkered plaid sofa in those colors. When I purchased it — our first adult purchase — I was sure it was the most beautiful thing I had ever seen and I swore I would love it forever. I believe it lasted less than a decade.

Our next trend was ivy wallpaper (it was huge in the early 2000s, I swear!), and a rich jewel tone paint on the walls. It was a time that if you didn’t have at least one wall or room painted deep crimson, you might just want to return to living in a cave.

I’ve been on a light walls, dark leather, and throw pillows galore kick for years now. I also recently renovated our kitchen in classic white (always classic white for me). The color scheme is white, pale grey, cream, and a faded oak floor. Yes, friends, I have been bitten by the Fixer Upper bug.

Both of our bathrooms look the same way. It may be the last time I’m sort of on trend but the truth is, I’m probably on the end of it.

Barn door look

I’m really into the barn door look being added to homes. More than one friend has them and I think they look amazing!

Our home has heavy oak pocket doors that glide in and out of the walls and bring a certain formality to any occasion, but barn doors would look ridiculous here.

Out

That homage to how awesome they are aside, let me predict what will happen in the next few years in relation to interior sliding “barn doors.” (Keep in mind I love them and they are just one example of anything “trending” right now.)

It will begin in the way media depicts them. Now described as “a fun and functional way to add texture and life to your room,” they will become “an odd homage to bringing the outdoors in, interior doors best suited for the barnyard should be returned to the wild.”

See how easily I did that? Slowly, but surely, coverage of today’s “it” thing will turn to derision. The goal? To convince consumers that what they love is now “so last week” — or last “hit HGTV show” ago.

Kitchen style

Case in point: I’m already reading how white kitchens that were “clean and fresh” as recently as 15 minutes ago are now being mentioned by designers and home interior “experts” as “harsh,” “stark” and my favorite — “dated.”

Never mind that all white kitchens have flourished since at least the early 1900s. They are clearly about to drive a stake through the “farmhouse fresh” white kitchen with the same zest they showed for killing off the love of all those dark wood Tuscan kitchens (I loved the grapes).

Why is today’s “timeless classic” almost inevitably tomorrow’s (or later today’s) “tired and dated?” Just as in fashion, “they” — the people who sell programming, designs, furniture, accessories, paint, home decor, construction and remodeling services NEED you to believe that “everything new is old again.”

Dissatisfaction with the state of your home drives changes, which means sales and that equals profits. Now, I’m all for profit and helping keep the economy rolling, but I’m still thrilled each time I visit our new kitchen (it’s either “classic” or “dated.”)

I am equally thrilled with our 10-year-old living room furniture and the throw pillows purchased at a friend’s garage sale.

My point in all this?

What we really need to toss out in the New Year is the idea that we have to surround ourselves with what other people say is trendy.

If YOU love it, it’s always in style.

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Warm, witty and just a wee bit warped, Kymberly Foster Seabolt is a native of Kent, Ohio, who survived childhood exposure to disco and grew up to marry and move to the country. Her column weaves her special brand of humor with poignant, entertaining, and honest portrayals of parenting, marriage, and real life. She currently lives in northeastern Ohio with her husband, two children, two dogs, two cats, and numerous dust bunnies who wish to remain nameless.

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