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THE TIMELESSNESS OF WHITE

 

Decorate your windows to captivate.

It bugs me no end to walk into a messy home. Why is it so difficult to put things back in place? Isn’t easier to return things to their places in that instant rather than waiting to do everything together at the same time? Gosh! Dirty mugs, clean clothes and dirty clothes, books and magazines, computers, chargers, cigarette packets, coke cans!! I just don’t know how it is possible to have clarity of thought when there’s so much begging for attention – a cluttered room leads to a cluttered mind, which leads to skewed thinking and random behavior! One has a cupboard for a purpose. Or a drawer, a basket or a shelf! Why would you leave a shampoo bottle uncapped or with a flap open when you know it can be tipped over to make a mess??!!Or why wouldn’t you return the coffee carafe back to its place on the coffee machine? Well, the list is endless, and when the mess piles up, it’s hard to see reason among the twisted clothes and jumbled stuff, not to mention the riot of colors.

 

Keeping Things Simple.

The best way to avoid being messy is to be minimalist – don’t go overboard and keep getting stuff; make a mental note of what have and consider if you really need something before buying it. As humans, the moment we have a bit of cash in our pockets, we want something we’ve not previously had, or something we crave. That impulsive part of our psyche needs to be kept tightly reined! It’s getting unnecessary stuff that leads to overflowing cupboards and ultimately, confusion. Not overcrowding spaces gives you an idea of what you have and what needs replenishment. If your grocery cupboards are always over stacked, you will never know if something important needs to be bought, and when there’s so much, you’re often landed with expired products!

 

The Stimulus of White.

When the home is enthusiastically done up in a mix of colors, the occupants can be seen to be hyper, on the move all the time, easily irritated. What does the white dove signify? Peace. In the western culture, the bride most often wears white to signify innocence and purity, but in the eastern culture, white means death, mourning, and sorrow. In the west, black is worn to funerals whereas in the east, white is worn to funerals. Black very often is the other end of the yardstick to white – white is today as black is to night. In Taoism, the yin and yang is depicted as black and white to balance out the good and evil. White suggested omnipotence and purity in ancient Egypt, and the holy city of Memphis meant ‘white walls’. Wassily Kandinsky, a Russian painter and art theorist, describes his perception of the color white: “… white, although often considered as no color (a theory largely due to the Impressionists, who saw no white in nature), is a symbol of a world from which all color as a definite attribute has disappeared. This world is too far above us for its harmony to touch our souls. A great silence, like an impenetrable wall, shrouds its life from our understanding. White, therefore, has its harmony of silence, which works upon us negatively, like many pauses in music that break the melody temporarily. It is not a dead silence, but one pregnant with possibilities. White has the appeal of the nothingness that is before birth, of the world in the ice age.”

 

De-cluttering.

As today seems to be one to quote Russians of eminence, the psychologist Bluma Zeigarnik, in his study of memory, tells us that we remember better that which is unfinished or incomplete. This theory really doesn’t account for messy people – they are those particular people whose brain cells have shorted out to leave them living in the proverbial pigsty! My sister’s house needed some respite from the mess that was driving her insane. I got her on a declutter drive, insisting that she start with throwing out unwanted and expired stuff, and all those clothes, bed and bath linen that were redundant, old electronic stuff she didn’t use anymore, unnecessary pieces of furniture, pillows, and cushions, knick knacks – yeah, if she wanted my help, she was going to have to listen to me unquestioningly! Next, I got her to tackle the common areas first – got the walls painted a neutral beige, in contrast to the dark wooden floors, had all the cornices and painted white like the ceiling. She also had to get rid of her multi-coloured upholstery and have it all redone in champagne jacquard, and this elevated the indoor appeal to such an extent that she couldn’t believe how pristine everything looked. The thing about having plenty of white elements is that one thinks twice before having the feet up on the sofa, or eating on them; white also encourages cleanliness! I also got her to throw out her dark pile rugs in exchange for the white dhurries with dark brown borders I got her as a gift to having acquiesced to my suggestions.

 

In order to encourage her to go the extra mile and get rid of her heavy stultifying drapes, we sat down to some research on blinds. She had lovely large plate glass windows that were inoperable, and two sets of French doors. In order to have matched window dressings we opted for 2 inch Faux Wood Blinds that were really a dressing as she didn’t want to do any more heavy spending. These blinds seemed just like the solid attractive and graceful Real Wood Blinds, only a lot cheaper – all the benefits were the same, in terms of light control, privacy, and colors; though she would have preferred the cordless lift option, seeing as it wasn’t available in the Simple Selections (SS) range from Graber Blinds, she went with the corded option with hold down brackets that would be provided free of cost, for her windows. She decided on the C630 coconut color from the Simple Selections (SS) range with a common decorative valance for her windows, and the 5630 coconut white cordless faux wood blinds from the Lake Forest range with individual decorative valances for each of the eight French doors, all outside mounted with the window and door frames for a neat, sleek and unfussy appearance.

 

“White…is not a mere absence of color; it’s a shining and affirmative thing, as fierce as red, as definitive as black.” G. K. Chesterton, Atlanta Bartlett’s At Home with White. With her newly color coordinated interiors giving her uncharacteristic confidence, my sister is ready to take on her messy family with iron control. More power to her.

 

 

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