Decorating Tips

We’re Movin’ On Up

August 20, 2010

The movers came! The movers came! They gave us an estimate on our October 1st move and I’m thrilled because it’s a little under budget and that is always a good thing. So it’s done, we are packing during the month of September and heading around the corner to our new place. I can’t wait. Okay that’s the understatement of the year. I CAN’T WAIT. That’s better. It needed to be all in caps because I’m in an all caps mood today. I feel like screaming from the rooftops, but I’ll scream out into blogland instead — I’m moving! I’m moving! Yay, yay, yay! Are you moving soon too? Are you equally thrilled?

We're Movin' On Up

{images: ethanollie, mes petites curiosites, jessalyn hope (notice the kitty on the bed? cute!), a few things from my life, jardino Me and Live Bohemian}

It feels so good to know that I’ll be living in my big new pad soon with lots of decorating projects to work on, a shiny new office to call my own, and a guest bedroom and guest bath for friends — I feel like my life is starting to come together after living in Germany for a year now and being a bit in limbo. I am not homesick at all, but I am tired of living in our former vacation apartment because it was never meant to be our full-time digs. I furnished it for vacation purposes only, so lots of IKEA and stuff from big box stores, and then flea market finds and things from local shops but still — it’s mostly IKEA and though I don’t mind a piece or two, I really miss the feeling my former home had because I had accumulated lots of mid century pieces and some pretty Room & Board stuff over time, along with Eames chairs and lots of art and stuff… So my home felt more like home, with feeling and warmth because it took time to pull it all together and lots of searching for the “right” piece. In my next place, I plan to take time to furnish it and slowly sell off the IKEA stuff from this vacation flat and slowly build my life back up again — my home decor life anyway. It took us a little longer than I expected to find the perfect place to move into, but the wait and frustration are over and the time has come to start packin’ (insert celebratory gesture, like a fist pump, here) and plannin’,and  decoratin’ and shoppin’ (mostly flea markets and eBay)… we’re movin’ on up people!

We're Movin' On Up

{images: Kristena Derrick, Studio Meez, Les Tissus Colbert, Dottie Angel, l’aria and Mundo Flo.}

If you’ve followed this blog for some time you’ll recall that back in June of 2009, I packed an entire house in New Hampshire, minus the furniture which I sold, to relocate to Germany and my boxes arrived in October 2009 and guess what? Those boxes are still waiting in our basement to be unpacked. I don’t even know what is in them anymore, I mean I know my wardrobe is down there, and my art work, and all the things that I love and need — but I badly want to open them and organize my life because I crave to have places to put everything and to have some kind of inventory system. When I need a stamp and envelope, I want to go to my mail drawer. When I need supplies to make cupcakes, I want to refer to my baking cabinet. When I need to find a back issue of Domino magazine, I want to go into my office, open a cabinet, and find them neatly cataloged there. Are you with me on this? It’s nice to know where your stuff is!

We're Movin' On Up

{images: Les Tissus Colbert, Les Tissus Colbert (what can I say, I love Karin’s work!), Emma Lamb and Jutta.}

So yes, very soon my chaotic two room apartment lifestyle with both of us working full-time from home will come to a happy ending. My office is currently in the living room, his is in our bedroom – a real romance killer all around because candlelight dinners have been replaced with my laptop and piles of paperwork! Today is a very good day friends because of those darn movers — the move is on – and I say bring it!

We're Movin' On Up

{images: ish & chi, ish & chi, wood & wool stool, Facily Sencillo, Miss Vu, jardino Me, ATLITW and Wood & Wool Stool.}

Okay so what is this post really about anyway, besides me, me and more me? Ha! I know, right? Well it’s about home and the importance of feeling at home, having a space that supports you and your lifestyle, and being productive at home — which usually involves being organized because the more organized you are, the less time you spend wondering where something is and the more time you spend on using it to create stuff (a shelf, a piece of art, a cake).  Do you agree?

In this post, I’ve rounded up some spaces from the many creative contributors to my Interior Styling group on Flickr (over 2,350 members!) to share some inspiring rooms and nooks with you today. Perhaps these corners will get your wheels turning for the weekend — a new project to try, a cabinet to organize, a flower arrangement to pull together as a centerpiece for your table. No matter what little improvements you make at home, they all add up and serve as real well-being boosts so why not make some time this weekend to give your home a chance to make you a bit happier? I have about 10 minutes to myself this weekend, but I plan to sit down and draw up some floor plans for my new place so I can get a sense of what I have, what I need and just so I can have crazy fun playing around with ideas because isn’t it exciting to move and decorate? Weeee!

(images linked to their sources above)


  • Reply Ludmila {} August 20, 2010 at 3:44 pm

    Yay, Holly! I can feel your huge excitement through these words and I’m So happy for you! And I can’t wait all your decorating projects and how you design your own home! Best of luck to you and congrats again! xoxo

  • Reply Mona Kay at Home August 20, 2010 at 4:01 pm

    Not moving, but re-decorating! Still a nice feeling :) Enjoy getting ready for your adventure!!

  • Reply laura trevey August 20, 2010 at 4:02 pm

    Moving is always exciting… new possibilities!

  • Reply Eleni August 20, 2010 at 4:03 pm

    I’m so happy for you! Living a disorganized life for so long sounds really scary! Today is the first day of the rest of your life =)

  • Reply Amanda August 20, 2010 at 4:04 pm

    I love this post, thanks for sharing your excitement with us. Congratulations on the move and having space again. I am still searching for a few perfect pieces for home from my last move. But my small LA place has finally started to feel like home and it really helps to keep my inspired while working on my jewelry.

  • Reply Lulu24 August 20, 2010 at 4:09 pm

    Congratulations Holly!

    I was super excited when we bought and moved into our new house in June. In fact I still am really excited about pulling together the “look” I have in mind, slowly but surely.

    I’m looking forward to further updates on your decorating here or on haus maus, I’m sure it’s going to be beautiful!

  • Reply Brigitte August 20, 2010 at 4:15 pm

    Congratulations! All the waiting is finally paying off. Can’t wait to see what you do with your new place.

  • Reply Ann August 20, 2010 at 4:17 pm

    How exciting! I love moving to a new place! Boxes can be overwhelming, but most of yours are already packed! Lucky you!

  • Reply hillwards August 20, 2010 at 4:49 pm

    YAY! I sympathise wholly. We’ve been ‘camping’ in our house while renovating and extending it since April 2009, with almost all our belongings packed up and stored since Jan 2009. It has been a long slow haul, but finally FINALLY we almost have a kitchen and this week I started to unpack the first couple of boxes of (very dusty) kitchen stuff that hadn’t seen the light of day for so long. In the next couple of months we should finish the last of the decorating, plumbing, tiling etc and get carpets fitted, and then.. all our worldly goods will be restored to us and we can begin to put them to their rightful place and our house will become our home. It is a truly amazing thing. And we shall have soft textiles again, rather than hard surfaces covered in sawdust and plaster… And there will be time for creativity! My knitting and sewing projects can emerge from storage and all those ideas rolling around in my head for so long may finally see the light of day… Home is so important. I hope you settle into yours very soon!

  • Reply Lichen Frank August 20, 2010 at 5:18 pm

    I define ‘home’ as a place where you know where everything is: Your dog, your husband, the milk, scissors, pens, your favourite scarf, and your hidden stash of M&Ms.

  • Reply Laura August 20, 2010 at 5:22 pm

    I’ve got a real love/hate relationship with moving. I do it often because I’m inherently restless for new people and places, but I love having my comfortable space to come home to. There’s always that adjustment time period when you move in somewhere until you’re fully comfortable there. And I despise the packing/unpacking process. But I am so excited for you and your new space and hope it’s everything that you want!

  • Reply elisa arnaud August 20, 2010 at 5:25 pm

    How I understand you… a year ago I moved for a temporary apartment, while I wait for my new “old” house… a house full of light and space, with many years and very charming… all the boxes are still closed, waiting for this September… now it´s next and we are very happy! Bye and see you in new home…

  • Reply Ana August 20, 2010 at 5:30 pm

    I’m really happy for you, Holly. It feels good to have our things at hand’s reach and having them in a basement is not enough for you to feel safe and at home!! Besides, we’ll also be enjoying your decorating ventures!! I can’t wait also!! Bring on the movers!!

  • Reply simone August 20, 2010 at 5:35 pm

    Holly that’s such wonderful news! I can’t wait to follow you thru the process of making your new house a home. Congrats congrats congrats!!

    HAppy moving!

  • Reply Alicia August 20, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    How exciting for you. Congratulations.

    I am moving too. I bought a house close to my new-ish job and it is being renovated right now. Fortunately, I don’t have to live amidst the renovation, which is so uncomfortable (been there, done that). My budget is modest, as are my ambitions. I just want a sanctuary, not super plush or luxurious, to retreat to after a long, punishing day of work. I will have, for the first time in my adult life, a *gasp* dishwasher.

  • Reply Christine August 20, 2010 at 5:49 pm

    Congratulations to you!! I’m so happy to hear you’re on your way to “home”.

    Enjoy and have a wonderful weekend.
    :) Christine

  • Reply Torrie @ a place to share... August 20, 2010 at 5:50 pm


    It is so incredibly nice to have a home… a real HOME. I always read statements (in books/articles) such as, “happiness comes from within” and where you are (‘outer state’) should have no effect on how you are on the inside (your ‘inner state’). But when it comes to our actual home- to the drawers and artwork, and collections, structure, and colors- it’s a true reflection of our journey, or dreams, our future- and our state of mind.

    As I commented here before…


    Our safe spot.
    Our center.
    Our pride.
    Our shelter.
    Our gathering place.
    Our canvas. our bulletin board, our journal.
    Our heart.

    So, a true congratulations to you for making it “home.” :)

  • Reply shellie August 20, 2010 at 6:20 pm

    congratulations on your move….its always wonderful to move into a bigger space….especially if you have a cleaning lady!

  • Reply Eve August 20, 2010 at 6:34 pm

    I can feel your excitement too because I’m moving in 3 weeks. My husband and I are moving back to France! We were living in California for about 2 years now and we look forward to be near the family with our 1st baby to come in December… I wish you the best in your new place and hope you’ll enjoy a lot organizing it !

    • Reply decor8 August 20, 2010 at 7:02 pm

      @Eve – France! Oh bliss! Have a lovely move, I am happy for you. I LOVE living in Europe, it’s the best move I’ve ever made and I will most likely stay here for a very long time!

  • Reply Victoria Bennett Beyer August 20, 2010 at 6:40 pm

    So excited for you, Holly! Decorating, having things organized, it doesn’t always sound important but it FEELS important, doesn’t it? It is amazing the inner calm that outward surroundings can bring us.

  • Reply Nuit August 20, 2010 at 6:42 pm

    oh Holly I totally hear ya! I NEED to know where everything is. {which is definitely not happening now} and so I am feeling a bit anxious to start the organizing projects.

    How exciting for you to finally move into the larger place. I do remember all the packing you did when you first moved in 2009 and I say you are a Pro ;)


  • Reply Cheryl August 20, 2010 at 7:06 pm

    Congrats! We had to move into a rental while our home was being built so I get what this phase has been like for you. Pesky problem about that rental was that it was a huge former B and B (Victorian) and was haunted, I swear! unnerving . . . not that I was a believer in such things prior to that rental. I’ve lived in a lot of old houses but this one was decidedly not happy to have anyone around. I knew it from moment one but we were pressed to find a rental for 4 months without signing a lease of any kind. It just sold I noticed — time for a major cleansing!

    • Reply decor8 August 20, 2010 at 7:29 pm

      @Cheryl – HAUNTED? OMG. I could not live in a house with spirits! Eek. I’m glad you moved!!!!

  • Reply Sandra Kuwartowski August 20, 2010 at 8:28 pm

    I wish you an untroubeld move. Do you still have your Eames chairs? I adore Eames furniture (I live near the Vitra Design Museum in Weil am Rhein and have the chance to look at them in their shop once in a while). We moved a couple of times and unpacking is definately nicer and easier – and I suppose if their are Eames chairs among the boxes it must be real fun!

    • Reply decor8 August 20, 2010 at 8:42 pm

      @Sandra – No, I sold them to Nichole from Little Brown Pen!

  • Reply josephine August 20, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    Congrats to you and T! Every time I would read an update on your flat-hunting journey, I would think, “Just hold on, Holly. You’ll find the right place.” I’m so glad it worked out and that your new flat was worth the wait.

  • Reply Ariana August 20, 2010 at 8:57 pm

    That’s so great, Holly. We moved to Germany (Amberg) about a month ago, and sold EVERYTHING before we left. So, I feel you! We’ve got mattresses and a dining room table, but we’re waiting to find the furniture we really love. I have really appreciated sources from your hausmaus blog, and have been ordering from Zara Home. Thank you for all of your helpful information, and I wish you well in your long-awaited move!

  • Reply Shirley August 20, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    Hi Holly, I visit your blog often for a creative fix! Found myself going YES !!!!!! when you got your apartment. I think we were all rooting for you. Totally understand why you need your “things”. Moved across continents years ago ago and home just didn’t feel like home till……. my “things” arrived.
    Its not just the material aspect or the beauty of our things, its the memories and the layers of our lives they represent. Wish you much happiness and contentment in your new home.

  • Reply jennifer ramos August 20, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    YES, I believe we are moving too and the estimate date is Sept 30th or Oct 1st :)

    • Reply decor8 August 20, 2010 at 9:36 pm

      @Jennifer Ramos – Where are you moving to???

  • Reply frauheuberg August 20, 2010 at 10:41 pm

    how wonderful news…;)…and how exciting to plan all the new rooms…would be fine to have a look on all the wonderful things you will do the next weeks and also i must to send my little thank you present from BYW to you…gosh, holly…i didn´t forget it…but time is so flow away…so will send it soon as possible…;)…cheers, dear and have a wonderful sunny weekend…hugs…i…

  • Reply amarshall August 20, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    Yeay for you, Holly!! As a Navy wife who moves every 3 years or so, I can completely understand what it’s like to see all your stuff in boxes! We are enjoying the last few months of our tour in Italy and I am so grateful for the opportunity we had to live in Europe. It has changed me in ways I never expected. Next stop is the Seattle, WA area and we’re looking forward to a new adventure (just not the part where are stuff goes into boxes!). I’ll be looking to you for inspiration as we make our next house a home!

  • Reply Lori August 21, 2010 at 12:47 am

    So happy for you!! I can totally relate to being in limbo. Our townhouse was on sale for 2 years. (So you can imagine, neutral, depersonal, etc) We finally thought we had sold it, so we downsized to an apartment for a few months while we looked for a place. But then we had issues with the closing and now we are landlords of the house instead of it selling! So at this point, we are not sure whether we are going to sell it at the end of the year or if they are going to offer us a price we can’t afford at that point (based on a new appraisal) and we have to move back in. My husband and I kid that it’s going to be like Christmas going through our Storage Unit whenever that maybe bc there’s probably stuff we got for our wedding (6 years ago!) that we haven’t ever used. ;-) … Such is life! … So I will live through your journey! :-)

  • Reply Susana August 21, 2010 at 1:27 am

    Beautiful posts, beautiful images, lovely inspiration – as usual. I’m looking for a bigger house, myself. We are 4 living in a two bedroom (one is a baby, but it’s still crowdy). So I totally sympathize.

  • Reply alexis August 21, 2010 at 3:57 am

    I am craving an office (as a entrepreneur who also works from her living room). Although moving is not in my near future, you have inspired me to redesign my desk space so that it represents me and inspires me.

  • Reply Carmella August 21, 2010 at 6:36 am

    Ah, wow, Holly! So, so happy for you!!

  • Reply JEN RAMOS August 21, 2010 at 7:59 am

    Same state…much nicer area and a bigger house….closer to my dream home in style, let’s just say. :) Looking forward to it too!!

    • Reply decor8 August 21, 2010 at 1:54 pm

      @Jen Ramos – That sounds wonderful, you must be dying to move in and decorate it! :)

  • Reply Janine August 21, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    Sounds like you are over the moon, and so you should be! As creative souls our private spaces are also our sacred spaces… so I totally empathize with your need to find order at home again! Best wishes with your move, and thank you for the kind photo inclusions:) Happy weekend!

  • Reply Anna August 21, 2010 at 4:47 pm

    Dear Holly,
    CONGRATULATIONS!!! I´m so happy for you! I can really understand your point of view. After 25 years in my mom´s house I left and headed to Japan (yes, those tiny apartments…) and then to Brazil. So, basically, I dont feel like I have a real home right now. I think a HOME is a sacred place, where you feel free and in peace and where you can express your personality. At the moment I have no furniture and my clothes are in boxes and bags, so… I´m still waiting to have a place to call home!
    Anyway, enough of me… One more time – congratulations! And good luck with the whole moving procedure! Viel Gluck!

  • Reply Kristi A. August 21, 2010 at 7:20 pm

    I just moved! I just moved! However, since I am a broke, recent college graduate that moved across the country for grad school, I don’t have my things from home that I desperately want to have around me, like my art and my easel and etc, so I can sympathize with that feeling.

    Is there a way to design for being in limbo? I know there must be. Like living in an apartment or dorm where you can’t paint the walls, where you have cheap carpet that you can’t do anything with, and you aren’t necessarily allowed to nail into the walls to add extra shelving or hang pictures? I just hate how my place looks so…”college” with posters and pictures and art outside of frames. Limitations should make me more creative, I suppose.

  • Reply Wikkie August 21, 2010 at 10:25 pm

    Dear Holly, I very much enjoy reading your blog! Can’t wait to follow your decorating plans for your new home… Maybe you can also find some inspiration on my website or blog.
    Au revoir from my holiday stay in France. Wikkie

  • Reply Kirsten August 22, 2010 at 12:27 am

    I am also moving in the coming month. In fact I found out about my new apartment on the day that you posted about yours!
    I’m very excited about the move but also feel quite overwelmed by it. I never knew how much planning goes into packing and furniture shopping.

  • Reply diana strinati baur August 22, 2010 at 3:26 pm

    Holly, everyone is thrilled for you. I think I might be more happy than every one.

    First of all, you have found the ultimately beautiful “clean slate” on which to impress your unique, wonderful style.

    You were patient while looking for the right home. You did not sell yourself short. You did not give up. And your patience and eye and perseverance paid off in a market which is really, really tough.

    You have accomplished more behind the scenes of this blog even than you have on it, which is amazing. I know this and feel it because I myself moved near to where you are and changed my whole life too. I did not have a blog or a book when I did it. I have great respect for how well you have not only adapted but for the “beautiful, positive face” you have put forward while doing it. I could not have done it with nearly the same style or clarity that you have.

    You are building a bright, beautiful, dynamic future. We all are here to cheer you. You have given us hope, inspiration, and so much more.

    May your blessings continue.

  • Reply Aude August 22, 2010 at 6:10 pm

    Dear Holly,

    I follow your adventures from Paris & since a long time now and all I can is “félicitations” !
    And thanks for sharing your enthusiasm & decorations ideas and inspiration, as a future mover too (not so soon unfortunately, as I am in renovation phase), those are wonferful and give me motivation too to go on !

  • Reply Stacey August 22, 2010 at 6:47 pm

    Congratulations! It’s a great feeling, knowing that you’ll soon be living in a better place. Back in January my husband got signed on for another year at his work, so we were finally able to move out of our dinky 300-square-foot apartment and into a one-bedroom! It’s amazing what 350 extra square feet will do! Now we have room to spread out, I have room to decorate, we have a dishwasher (!), and we gained enough space to get a dog – moving definitely made our lives better!

  • Reply tiina { sparkling ink } August 23, 2010 at 1:58 pm

    Sounds wonderful, Holly – Congratulations! I can join your excitement 100% since I just got a call saying we got an apartment we applied for, and will be able to move in next month. We will have more space and a gorgeous lake view, and most importantly for us foodies – a bigger kitchen! I’m so excited and will for sure look for inspiration for our new home from here. Once again decor8 is full of style details just to my taste. Have a lovely week, Holly!

  • Reply The Jeanny August 23, 2010 at 2:21 pm

    i love your blog so much! i’ve just found it for a few weeks, but i love it! your ideas, your design, all of it! its so great :o)

  • Reply sunny August 24, 2010 at 5:10 am

    Oh, I feel your pain! Living in a rental while renovating and I miss being organized and having a place for everything. In the meantime, love all the ideas I’ve gotten from your blog for decorating the new digs once we finally move in.

  • Reply Nadine September 10, 2010 at 10:58 am

    I could almost ‘cut and paste’ everything that you’ve just said and post it as my own! lol! We’ve been moving from rental to rental over the past few years and I am so OVER ‘make do’ furniture etc. I CAN’T WAIT to move into our new home. Thanks to my new blogging obsession; I have probably too many ideas and they are bursting to be used. Ha, ha…. We’ll be out of this rental mid October whether our house is ready or not but hopefully we’ll be in our house by then. It’s going to be nice to see my own furniture again and to be organised… so, so nice! It’s coming soon….. so soon……. :) Good Luck with it all.

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