Sunday, August 8, 2010

“Slow” Home Shopping

Slow is not a four-letter word!  It’s not that I can’t count . . . (smile), it just seems to be, whenever we use this word in most everyday conversations, it can conjure up the following derogatory aspects:

  • Slack; not busy. 
  • Passing heavily or dragging, as time.
  • Not progressive; behind the times.
  • Not prompt, readily disposed, or in haste.

I prefer to think more in terms of the definition:  “Moving or proceeding with little or less than usual speed or velocity”.  I like the idea of slow referring towards being deliberate in action.  It’s a more positive position.  Taking your time can be wise in many aspects of life, and so it goes with your home.

Part of the enjoyment in creating a “Slow Home” can be the process of shopping.  I know I personally love perusing through various shops and tucked-away places, as I source for a client’s interiors!  By taking my time, I get to know the vendors or proprietors, on a first name and handshake, or even hug, basis.  We chat about my projects and what I have in my mind as the vision for each client.  If they don’t have the solution, they can make a note to find it or send me to another source.  Great vendors are open to sharing and collaborating.  They know, even if they miss my purchase this go round, I’ll be back on another day.

If you promise not to rush, I’ll take you with me, on my “Slow” Home Shopping Saturday.  Come stroll the aisles with me to see some of my latest finds:

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I stood and looked at this zinc pediment fragment, for the longest time.  My mind went whirring with the possibilities.  A fabulous shelf for a stove hood.  A great corona for a bed canopy design.  A top treatment for a floor length closet mirror.  Slowing down allows for more creative possibilities.

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These antique violet/amethyst bottles make such a color impact, by grouping them in mass.  Manganese creates this rich hue.  It has been used since ancient Egyptian times to color glass.  Slowing down allows you to become better educated.

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This has found a home as an “objet d’art” in the Horton’s garden!  It’s a ceiling vent from an industrial building.  The dealer was happy to find someone who actually “got it”.  Slowing down allows for mutual appreciation.

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To reproduce these doors would cost twice as much, or more, than their selling price.  While it might be easier to go to a catalog to order a set of doors, taking your time to search for something this unique gives you the satisfaction of renewing a find.  Slowing down can save you money.

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Sometimes there is a weird and wonderful item which captures your attention.  This was big and heavy.  I know because my husband carefully carried it away.  Slowing down makes for more interesting finds.

Slow Home, to me, also means that the process of selecting and filling the home with items you love, shouldn’t be rushed.  I think the housing heyday created a lot of mass-produced dwellings with copycat interiors by well-meaning folks who thought their neighbor’s home and style was the one to emulate.  I’ve seen a lot of catalog/internet cloning, along with the attempt to take Colonial brick dwellings to an inappropriate level of European Manor House – and to do it F-A-S-T!  Taking your time means taking a good, long look at who you really are, what your needs might be, and if your home is an accurate reflection of it.

“The trees that are slow to grow bear the best fruit.”  Moliere

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Post Script:  I’m very excited to see more people in the design world speak of a process called, “Slow Home”.  You can even read about it in a trending topic on Twitter.  There is a website, by two Canadian architects, John Brown and Matthew North, who believe it’s best to approach anything to do with home design and building, in a slower manner.  Their website, Slow Home, is totally dedicated to this cause.

Update:  Please be sure to read another Slow Home post by my Twitter friend, Amy Beth Cupp Dragoo. A Smaller Life – Signs of a Slow Home Movement? Her comments are spot on!


Norbridge Antiques said...

Wanda, Thank you for this beautiful post giving us a tour of your shopping trip seen through your creative eyes. I do hope the double doors find a good home.

Geopology Designs said...

Great post Wanda! I too love the concept of a slow home and life. When you rush to make a decision, it's often the wrong one. When you rush through life you miss the meaning and purpose; true joy comes from taking the time to enjoy and savor each moment of the journey.