Over the last year or so, I’ve been admiring the way of wabi sabi; accepting imperfections and appreciating character, accepting our individuality and the beauty of it all. It’s easy for us to get swept up in the digital world of social media where everything seems so perfect and put together.
Wabi-sabi is a Japanese philosophy. Julie Pointer Adams, author of Wabi Sabi Welcome describes it as “a way of life that celebrates the perfectly imperfect – beauty found in the unusual, unfashionable places or objects, and in moments usually overlooked or unappreciated.” It’s the antithesis of modernism – the beauty of imperfections like a wrinkled napkin, a chipped plate or the worn leather of a beloved handbag.
While I’ve been on a journey of being intentional and curating my living space, I’ve also been enjoying my own journey of acceptance along the way. That everything is beautiful just as it is. So that of wabi-sabi living, when I began to notice the details, it all just seemed to sing this beautiful joyous song. I’ve become more laid back and started to shift through our belongings. Bringing the items that we love and cherish out of cabinets and found ways to display them so that each time I see the silver platter or crystal bowl that we got from our wedding, we’d be reminded of happy times. Overall, it’s been creating a space that’s more comfortable and you’ll have to excuse the overused term here, but a space that sparks joy that I have truly enjoyed.
While life has slowed down the last two years, it’s opened my eyes and heart to the fact that we are so blessed. If I can give any words of advice, it’s to look for beauty in the little things. Living in the house we purchased just before we got married and had only planned to be in for a couple of years, I’ve come to love and appreciate its imperfections and am grateful for the fact that it’s been a great roof over our heads. I used to get so frustrated when we would have a leak or something would fall apart and rightly so. However, once I realized that it’s not just our house but what happens when it comes with owning a house whether or not it’s a new build or an older home. Sh*t happens. This home has been a place of beautiful memories filled with love and laughter, the not so beautiful moments and every day in between.
I used to stress to the nth degree that my house had to be spotless to have company. Realizing at some point that my expectations were unrealistic and I’d way rather enjoy the company of family and friends over a little dust in a corner (or two) that I’d missed. It wasn’t until I flipped through the pages of what’s now become a favorite source of inspiration, a European magazine called Country Living Modern Rustic, where I noticed how cool it was to create a home that was unique with personal touches throughout, each home telling a story of who lived there. I noticed how each space that spoke to me had similar elements throughout that usually included natural elements. From stone walls, to wood floors, natural fibers like linen, leather or wool. There were touches of bright white, ivory pottery and usually textured throws and pillows. Nothing too precious. All welcoming, warm spaces that were more laid back, exemplifying wabi-sabi. Page after page, there are beautiful examples with details both big and small.
I did my best to narrow down my favorite pages in hopes they’ll inspire you like they have myself to relax.
photography credits: Country Living Modern Rustic, Issues: 15, 16, 17
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