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I'm Bri Garbani, a designer + photographer living in San Diego, California. It's here that I express my passion for dogs, design + DIY through writing + photography. If you like what you see, you'll want to check back often as I have a constant need to create + Native Blonde is my prime creative outlet.

Love Your Space

Love Your Space

I love looking through images of beautiful spaces for interior inspiration, but sometimes all the ideas start to clog up my brain + I become overwhelmed.  I compare my space to picture-perfect, stylist-cultured, magazine-ready spaces + I inevitably feel discontent about the walls I am surrounded by.

To combat this catalog burn-out (a.k.a. Pinterest fatigue), I think it’s important to reassess our homes for what they should be — a place to thrive, to create memories, to have a shelter.  I have to ask myself if I am striving to create a space that looks impressive or a space that represents me + feels right.  In order to get back on track, I take a step away from my computer + amend my goals...

Here are a few things you can do to refresh your perspective + gently nudge your home or apartment into a more graceful, creative space that is unique to you.

• Organize what you have.  A clean, organized home is halfway there. Clutter is the first enemy of a peaceful, inspiring space.  Simply de-cluttering a space is an instant energizer!

• Donate, recycle, or sell extra items.  An important part of de-cluttering is paring down what you have to the essentials.  When preparing for my move halfway across the country, I found myself handling things that I never, ever used.  My personal rule is that If it goes unnoticed or unused for a year, it’s a goner.  I was able to purge more than that though when I really considered how badly I wanted a fresh, new start.

• Bring out things you love. Once you realize how much space you have freed up with the clutter gone, you can choose several things that represent you to use in your space. For example, I have what one would consider several small collections.  White ceramic owls, natural geode gemstones, even vintage dog photographs that I recently made into a collage.  I have come to the conclusion that having these things out in view brings far more enjoyment than just stashing them away in a closet, never to be seen.

• Carefully collect new things to love. I am what some would (lovingly, of course) call frugal.  I almost never buy an item on impulse, even if I love it. But I have learned that if I’m crazy about a piece (+ it’s in the budget) to go ahead and get it.  Slowly collecting things that I love over the years will really help make my home feel unique + personal.  On multiple occasions I have wished that I made a purchase because of the regret that lingered after passing up such a unique item.  Trust me, it’s not a fun feeling - so don’t let this happen to you!

• Reconsider existing wall art.  Imagine taking down everything currently hanging on your walls + looking at it in a fresh way.  Keep in mind that changing out frames or mats can go a long way toward revitalizing the pieces that you cherish.  Plus, I firmly believe that you are more artistic than you think (trust me, I know from personal experience).  Which leads me to my next point...

• Make some new art!  I have painted over old canvases that I’m ready to say goodbye to + even have made my own artwork through the years that turned out much better than I ever expected it to.  If you’re not the painting type, create some easy art with unconventional materials. Pinterest is full of DIY ideas for this type of thing.

• Rearrange furniture.  I love rearranging a room to give it a new feel + fresh perspective (it’s also a good excuse to clean those never-seen parts of your rugs + floor too).  A new furniture layout means you get to rethink your space.  Or how about switching rooms?  It almost gives you that just-moved-in feeling when you get to decide where everything will go in a new space.

• Bring in some fresh foliage. Even in the winter, you can bring in evergreens or bare branches. Plants provide instant life + perk up a room in seconds.

• Try to ignore trends + imagine what you like.  Sure, I have picked up many ideas on the internet or in magazines, but the things that have lasted in my home have been things that I was drawn to because they spoke to me.  Don’t be afraid to try something that you have never seen anyone do in their home—all great ideas were at some point done for the first time.

Remember that what makes your home special to you is the extension of you + your family’s personalities. If your home is clean, comfortable + represents you, it is special + timeless.  Sometimes when I start feeling discouraged about my space, I remember that nobody will remember how stylish or trendy it was was years down the road.  What they will remember is the feeling of being cared for, sheltered + maybe even inspired by the space I call my home.

What about you? Do you have any tips for making your home special?  Do share + in the meantime, I hope you have enjoyed mine!

Green Living Room

Green Living Room

Happy Place

Happy Place