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Thoughts On Redecorating & Home Ownership

I’ve been thinking a lot about redecorating lately. Pinterest doesn’t help and neither do my bloggy friends (Ahem ladies Steffi, Bri, Victoria). With so much inspiration around me, the dominos are leaning in my direction and I’m about to fall into the whole redecorating trend too. In fact, it started this morning when I ordered this minty green desk lamp. Now I’m thinking to host a big yard sale in early May so if I do, I’ll let you know so you can come help remove things so I can add things again. Ya know, a decorating support buddy system.

My sitting room

My home (sitting area shown above, shot by my husband for Decorate Workshop) is in my own book now, and has appeared in magazines and around the web, which gives me that added boost to redecorate again so I can show some new ideas. I love to inspire people and I LOVE to decorate so why not. Plus, I want to paint and wallpaper and buy a new rug and experiment with a new palette and and and AND. Always and.

Mood Board

When I think about changing up everything, I can’t help but think back to my childhood and teen years as I ran from home store to garden shop to flea market with my mom picking out things for our home, yard, garden and patio. I remember being in my twenties decorating my apartments in Boston. I constantly moved around trying out new apartments, new roommates, new arrangements of things… I loved the thrill of moving and setting up all over again. It was somehow a kooky hobby of mine. I think I lived in 10 different apartments in 10 years. Each new place held promise of a new decor. A clean slate. And now, several years later, here I am with my husband in northern Germany with a full schedule and very little time to decorate and “play” in my home. I guess when you get older you kinda realize you’re a little nuts to move so frequently because it’s expensive and a little draining after awhile… though since I got married, I’ve lived in 5 different addresses so I guess I’m still unsettled. I live in this super gorgeous rental apartment and  I still dream of moving to another one and starting all over again.

But today something happened that scared me a little. I wonder what you will think.

This morning my husband woke me up with a one year plan. He always does this to me… ‘heavy talk’ first thing in the morning. By this time next year he wants to buy a home or a big city apartment with space for work studios. I sat in my bed thinking, “Honey, can I first shower and get a cup of coffee?”. Seriously. A one year plan with my eyes half shut. Yippee.

Then I thought in the shower, OMG. Now that I have saved up and thought about this moment for years I’m anxious. “Do I WANT to buy a home?”.

What if I move and find that I just can’t stay in the same house for the rest of my life? I worry about this. I moved around a lot as a child and as a young woman – and the pattern seems to work for me. It’s not like the real estate market is the same in Germany as it is in America – house flipping and people moving in and out just doesn’t work the same here. Plus, my husband would never buy a home only to move out – he’d want that home to be ours for life.

OK so the decorating queen here needs you to help me out this time. Do you guys understand when I talk about settling into a home and the feelings of OMG that accompany that? How many of you are homeowners? Or do you rent? I wonder if you think about moving as much as I do? Does anyone have the redecorating bug right now?

Loads of love to you today – hope to hear from you in my comments section, I’d love to connect.

(image: top Thorsten Becker, bottom Holly Becker)

Posted in real talk on March 19, 2013

#bloghug – Show Your Love!

It’s time for a hashtag party – care to join? It’s called #bloghug but first, why I’m bothering to do this? I was thinking a lot lately about the connections we make online and the connectors who lead the pack in this effort (maybe one of them is you) and how some have told me that they feel like their hard work isn’t a) getting them anywhere b) receiving much feedback OR that c) they aren’t really feeling so excited lately about blogging. I thought #bloghug could help spread a little internet cheer.


While you are out there pinning and dragging and dropping and clicking and scrolling please take a moment and think about where all of this content comes from and give a blogger a little high five if you can. I can’t imagine the world going back in time to when blogs didn’t exist BUT it is sooo super easy to take for granted those who blog and inspire us all day, isn’t it? I am so proud of our blogger community overall, aren’t you? To all of you out there who are connecting others through your blog, your website, etc. I value you. We value you! You have value – a lot of it! So, I ask you…

Have you hugged a blogger today?

Seriously, have you? Not in real life… I’m talking about a virtual hug, a virtual high five. Maybe this week you can comment on their blog, “like” their Facebook page, send them a friendly tweet – simply to say YOU ROCK.

How to be part of #bloghug

1) Write a blog post about your favorite bloggers or blogger and tweet it to me (@decor8) with hashtag #bloghug so I can pin it.

2) Make a video and post it on your blog and tweet the link to me (@decor8) with hashtag #bloghug so I can pin that, too!

3) Get creative! Have someone snap your photo of you reading a favorite blog on your iPad (just not your own LOL!), or holding a sign that says “I Love Blogs #bloghug” or something that just shows a little love. You can use Instagram for this too – just tweet the photo to me (@decor8) with hashtag #bloghug with a link to your page so I can pin it!

Deadline: February 15.

Here are some previous hashtag parties I’ve hosted with themes: #stripemania & #discomania to give you some ideas.

I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with!

Remember: #bloghug

Here is the #bloghug board on Pinterest where I’ll pin your stuff!

(image: holly becker)

Posted in real talk on January 30, 2013

Never Give Up On Your Dreams

I was recently interviewed by British interior designer and author Kelly Hoppen since she featured a week of inspirational posts from business owners who, like me, are in the design world and have had lots of struggles but have still managed to keep going forward and fight the tide. I was honored that she approached me and so I wrote a huge and quite candid essay on her blog HERE if you’d like to read it. There is an excerpt below…

Kelly Hoppen

Imagine this. You are in a career you sort of enjoy but definitely do not love, and you’ve been at it for around 8 years and one day you just have a mini breakdown on the job. That’s what happened to me. I was typing yet another action item into a massive Excel spreadsheet when I felt this wave of emotion hit me. I have no idea, looking back, where it came from but this wave was massive and I felt like I was going to break out in tears. I lifted myself quietly from my chair, walked swiftly to the nearest conference room, and with overwhelming relief, I shut the door and turned the lock. With a typical all-beige and chrome corporate décor surrounding me, I sunk down on my heels, then to the floor where I laid and cried for what felt like days. I remember wishing I could click my heels and know what I wanted to do with my life. Laying on a conference room floor…. READ THE REST HERE.

So now it’s YOUR turn… After you read my essay on Kelly’s blog, why don’t you return and tell me YOUR STORY. I could use the encouragement like all of you, to keep going forward, and I find that by pulling together and sharing our stories we become stronger somehow.

Can’t wait to hear from you in the comments below. :)

(image: kelly hoppen)

Posted in real talk on November 16, 2012

Is Pinterest Killing Blogs?

I heard someone predict recently that Pinterest will ultimately kill off our blogs. I felt a bit put off by that. Maybe they don’t realize that most of what is pinned is from blogs. If there are no more blogs, where are people going to find all of the fab DIY projects bloggers are posting, the great decorating tips, home tours and inspiring art and graphic design… Sure, people will pin from websites but when you look at what you are pinning, isn’t most of it from blogs? That is why I think that this prediction is a bit off. But…

Is Pinterest Killing Blogs?

BUT there is one thing that rings VERY true and that is this: Pinterest can kill SOME blogs, or shall I say, harm some bloggers. Here is why: Pinterest forces bloggers to STEP IT UP a notch simply because Pinterest is showing our readers EVERYTHING in one place. Pinterest is like a boat with a massive trawling net catching everything thanks to its massive member base. This sheer volume of stuff forces bloggers, magazines and even book publishers to step it up. I don’t think that is a bad thing, the better we each nudge one another to become a bit more polished, then there is nothing wrong with that. Iron sharpens iron.

The point is that none of us can repetitively toss up photos and leave it at that on our blogs. A little chit chat is needed. A little of, “I love this because…” and “This works because…” and “I think you can learn from this because…” goes a really long way for any blogger. If you want to add value through your blog content then put your heart into it. Be a bit more bold and lay your opinions openly out there, express yourself more freely than ever (as long as you don’t become a meanie, not what I encourage), be honest and funny (if you want to be funny), be yourself… Blog YOUR way. That will set you apart from the pack. Then Pinterest does not threaten your beautiful blog – you can use it to promote your blog and Pinterest will continue to tap in to all of us who are using it for their content. Currently, Pinterest drives more traffic to decor8 than – so I’m not complaining – that’s good stuff. Thanks, Pinterest.

I wonder what your honest opinion is when it comes to Pinterest. Do you think it is killing blogs? Do you think it is making bloggers step back and reexamine their blogging approach? Do you USE the content you are pinning on Pinterest to create anything – are you doing anything with all of that inspiration? As a blogger, are you finding more traffic coming in to your blog from Pinterest? I’d love to hear your take on it.

By the way, I’m on Pinterest. Follow me if you’d like, I’m @decor8.

xo, Holly

Posted in blogs, real talk on October 23, 2012


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