Monday, March 14, 2011

What Is Your Editing Style?

I recently did  a post on “A Place For Your Eyes to Rest!” In this post I talked about how important it is too be in touch with how many patterns and colors you have going on in a room. I emphasized the point that you will need a place of neutral color and no patterns in which to rest the eye in a room.

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Phoebe Howard

This really does boil down to your style of editing. I have been told that my home is well edited by some friends that have visited here.

It made me think about how I go through the editing process. First, I realized that it is very important to be in tune with what you love and how much “stuff” you can tolerate in a room.

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Suzanne Kasler
I remember reading a story once about a well known designer (whose name escapes me now so I will not be name dropping) who purchased a beach house.
 She vowed to herself that she was NOT going to clutter up this new fresh white space with her collections and vignettes as she had done in her previous homes.

via simply seleta (556x387)
via Simply Seleta 

At first she was enjoying the sparse new fresh look, but then, after about six months she found herself going to the still packed boxes to bring out some of her beloved collections. She then realized she was not the type to live without collections and “stuff” in her enviroment.

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untitled (325x397)

I think that is a very important illustration from which to learn from. I believe you must stay in-tune to what you truly love and incorporate it into your home. I believe that will be the first step to being a good editor in your own home.

For me personally, I have to have "a place for everything and everything in its place."  Remember that saying that all of our Mom’s chanted?

house beautiful phoebe howard well edited (360x460)
Phoebe Howard

There is a real fine line that I am totally aware of when it becomes, “Just TOO Much” for my eye and brain to take in.

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Styled by Sherry Hart from Design Indulgence blog

I read a long time ago that if you love something and are drawn to it, you should buy it and take it home and you will find a place for it. I know most people are of that school of thought and I love that they buy with their heart and find such treasures.

I will say this, I am drawn to elements with my heart, but and I do mean a big BUT, as soon as I am drawn to an element I start the editing process in my mind right then and there.

I immediately think of my home and where I will add this new found love in my home. If I cannot place it strategically in the perfect spot or even in two or three spots. I will pass it by. I am sure I have left many treasures behind, but because of this editing process that I go through, I believe that is why visitors say my home is well edited.

I realize that "more is more" is a philosophy that many hold on to and I applaud you for keeping that in mind when you purchase with your heart. But, for this girl her editing starts before she ever brings it home!!

How do you edit? Are you aware of how much is too much for your eyes and brain? Do you purchase with your heart and find a place for your new found treasure no matter what?
I would love to know how you all edit!!

“Enjoy the Process!” Of:

Discovering your editing style.



Trish @ A dream house for Trish said...

Great post Kathysue, Im with you, I edit before I purchase, often I will go home & think about it first, although this does sometimes mean I miss out on some wonderful finds, Oh well, musn't have been mean't to have that one!!

Anonymous said...

The older I grow the more editing I do.

I go through the same process as you when I am drawn to something. I like things I can use in different applications. I've left a few things behind, in this process.

I don't remember which fashion designer said this or if it was someone who had a wonderful sense of style...this is what she said (paraphrased), when you are dressed and ready to leave your home, look in a mirror and remove one accessory and your look will be perfect. I use this idea when editing, whether clothing or home furnishings.

I've been told by more than one I have good editing sense. My home style may not be the style of most, but it's my style and that is what counts with me and my family and friends.

Confessions of a Plate Addict said...

Oh my, Kathysue! I am not a minimalist, as you know, and I have a very hard time passing on something I really love! Sooo...I edit by making my stuff take turns!lol The rest sits patiently in the closet! Love those "cluttered" pics! Happy week!...hugs...Debbie

sissie said...

Good Morning Kathysue,
When we built our new home here on the coast, I was determined to keep it simple. However, as time went on I kept adding more. So, I guess I am the type who must have lots of stuff!
I like the edited look, and sometimes I go on a frenzy and start editing rooms, but I always return to stuff. Can't live without it.
I'm glad that you have the eye and style to keep things simplified and beautiful.


lizziefitz said...

I tend to be from the school of thought Less is More. I can't really do collections , but I am still intrigued with how others display their collections :)

Babs said...

Kathysue, I guess I'm somewhere in the middle. I love my "stuff" but probably because the rooms in my house are so small, I try to edit it a tiny bit. A lot of my "stuff" is in boxes hidden away, sometimes being rotated seasonally.
Great post. Thanks.

Melissa @ The Inspired Room said...

I am with you on the editing. I do love color and pattern and having things I love around, but I cannot handle too much. I am very in tune with home my home FEELS, and there is always a line where I have to just stop and say no more in this room! There is a balance that can be important to find, everyone might have a different tolerance for what that balance is. I see rooms that stress me out with how much stuff they have hanging or sitting everywhere, and I see rooms that don't feel lived in or homey because they have so little personality. I so enjoy finding that balance in my own home! Great thought provoking post!!

Cherie said...

I edit by hesitating on buying. I will see something, go home and do enormous research on the item, comparing it to other like items, that I might find at a more reasonable price, etc. That lag time works through the emotions of wanting an item and I find after those emotions subside a bit, then I can look at "things" more clearly, appreciating the design and function or even finding out that I can live without it easily enough. I will return to the store if I discover a place for the object and, like you, Kathysue,the object must have have versatility, and if I appreciate the beauty of the piece over this hesitating time, then it might become a treasure.

What tests this process is if an item is on sale, a really good sale, then it could be gone if I return to get it. That's when I am challenged to think well on my feet!

Compare this process to the dating process (a way back when time for me). Do you grab the good looking man or woman every time? do you take it a step at a time? do you know that this one is a treasure and he or she might not be there if you hesitate?

Karen@StrictlySimpleStyle said...

I may edit too much! I think collections are wonderful for personalizing a home, but one well edited collection per space is much more interesting. When there are too many things in a space nothing can be fully appreciated.

Maya @ Completely Coastal said...

I think I love space more than stuff..., and have only a few things around..., very few things! Which also means that I don't shop much..., there's definitely benefits to that, haha.

Luciane at said...

Hello Kathysue,

Thank you so much for your kind words!

Great post!

Have a great week!


Luciane at

Post of the Day: Restored Chateau in South of France

Anonymous said...

Phoebe always has the most beautiful ideas!!!
Have a wonderful week!

Stitchfork said...

Looking around now and needing to edit!

Kim @ Savvy Southern Style said...

Kathysue, this weekend at Scott's antique market in Atlanta I found a lamp I really liked, but stood there and thought where would I use it and what other lamp would have to be moved out. I did not buy it. I do like you and think where will this item be used. If I can't think straight I pass it by, too.

diane@onlinefabricstore said...

Kathysue, I am like you and edit before I purchase. If I dont have a spot for it or it serves a specific purpose then I leave it behind. I am naturally organized and this is just my way. Also, I was raised with that naval officer father who truly believed the "everything in its place...." adage and I cannot get that out of my mind if my house becomes a bit messy or overcrowded. Did we do this to our kids as well? Looking at my daughters rooms it appears not! Fun post..thanks

lvroftiques said...

Well Kathysue I'm getting better at the edit...because I will pass things by that I really like if there's just no way it will work....I call them the "cool buts" Cool but nowhere for them. And there have been lots of those for me lately. But if I LOVE something? I'll bring it home regardless. And I always have found a place for those "LOVE" pieces, however sometimes it means something has GOT to go. I'm definitely a more is more person tho! *winks* I wish we lived closer to each other KS because I'd love to hear your take on stuff. I'm sure you could get me to put the darn thing down! LOL! Vanna

Sally@DivineDistractions said...

As you know, I'm in the throws of the 35 yr clean out at my house. I am being ruthless getting rid of stuff. Being an artist and craftsperson, I have a history of "saving" things to redo, or resell, and as a result, I'm comfortable with alot of 'stuff'. Since I have worked in design over the last 10 years, I am more and more comfortable with an edited room. I am only keeping things I love, and I'm not buying more until everything I don't REALLY love is outta here! Less really is more for me these days!

Tote said...

Kathysue, a wonderful and thoughtful post as usual. I find the older I get the more stuff I need to get rid of. I have collections that I haven't even unpacked. I want my home to be welcoming and comfy. I want it to be my personality, my husband calls my style eclectic. I get compliments on my decorating so that is a good thing.


Bringing Pretty Back said...

Kathysue, I have never really edited before , mainly because even after over 20 years of marriage I have never really had a home that was "me".
In the new little house I plan on being very choosy in what I bring into the home.
I will really edit before it even goes through the door.
Have a pretty day!

Designs By Pinky said...

It's funny, usually I am a MORE person but then I get in a mood and need to remove some things. Right now I am struggling about decorating for Easter. I really think I may REALLY cut back and instead of so many bunnies etc., I will just do a generalized Spring decorating. I do ahve some things I will NEVER let go. Treasured pieces that I ahve inherited and will always love. Thanks for the post. XO, Pinky

quintessence said...

Lovely examples of beautiful and well edited rooms. I am such a pack rat that I try not to buy too much new stuff unless I know I have a place for it. I have done a good go through since we moved 4 years ago - clearly it's time!!

My Many Moments said...

Hi Kathysue. I wanted to stop buy and take a look at your blog and I'm so glad I did! What great inspiration. I am an editor like yourself. Not always that way though. That is why I have a closet of Goodwill donations :(
Take Care,

theLENNOXX said...

Fantastic well thought out post as usual Kathysue! I too need to find a place for something in my mind before I take it home. Until I started doing this I always came home with stuff I liked, and it just lead to a cluttered look. Now I'm able to see something, fall in love with it, and think: where would I put it? If I can't think of a place for it right away, I know I won't later either, and it will just clutter up my home. It took some time but I'm so glad I finally got there!!

xo Linda

Room Service ~ Decorating 101 said...

Another great post ! Oh do I ever edit! I think it is much harder to limit your space than to find a place to put an object. I have a big walk-in closet (now that my girls are gone) with shelving all around, floor to ceiling and I rotate things. I never buy a piece of furniture unless I know exactly where it will be going ,as for accessories, I can always rotate them in and out. I am a very neat person and I can't stand for anything to be out of place. So that makes it easier for me to stay on top of things.

Privet and Holly said...

Okay, KS, did you
wake up and think,
"Hmm, here is a post
that Suzanne needs
to hear?" because, I
did!! We have lived
in our home for ten
years ~ the longest,
in any one place, ever,
for me ~ and my hubby
commented the other day
that he felt there was
too much "stuff" around
the house. So now, I
AM in editing mode. One
of the biggest challenges
is lack of wall space in
our main living area, due
to a lot of windows. No
place to really display
"stuff!" Anyway, I remember
that you were going through
your own cache of goodies
recently, and now I'll be
right behind you: ) Thanks
for the reminder that although
less is more doesn't work
for everyone, more and more
and more doesn't work, either!
xx Suzanne

Mona Thompson Providence Ltd. said...

I am definitely one who loves to edit. I love "things", no doubt about it but pretty frequently I just have to edit and remove and rearrange. I wish I could get more clients to do this. For all of us, the space can be perfectly lovely and balanced and day after day we haul more things in and never take anything out. We wake up one day to a mess. Here is a trick I use and I think I'll blog about. Take a picture from every angle of a room and look at it. You will notice things that you never notice when you are standing in the room. This is a sure fire trick to help you be more objective.

LiveLikeYou said...

Hi Kathysue- a great topic as usual. I used to love neutral , faded colors and lots of staged accessories. But in later years when I've been drawn to a bolder palette I like clean, uncluttered spaces and surfaces. They relax my mind and feel peaceful for my brain and is perhaps what allows for more color.


Kathsue...I think editing is the hardest thing for everyone...including myself at times. By the way that last picture is from a cabinet that I styled for a project in Rosemary Beach, Florida for BH&G! So funny!

Kellie Collis said...

Wonderful images! I am also a believer of keeping things you love where you see them the most. They make me smile everyday. Have a gorgeous day, Kellie xx