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The Soul of a Home

Updated: Oct 24, 2021



There are courageous homes out there, but they are rare and demand regular attention. A home needs to change or it becomes a sanctuary: It must reflect its residents' life facets through light and shadows, volumes and flow, colors, heirlooms, objects, perspectives, dust and perfumes -layered clues of complex lives.

All homes have a scenography, just like museums or plays, and whether you want it or not.

Home designers may give you a home fit for the person they see in you. The result will look somewhat frozen in amber, the way you'd like your life to look like, or maybe the way your friends imagine your life to be. No decorator really knows about your childhood, your dreams, your roots, your darkness, your light. How much could they ever know about the underlying currents of your life? What chance is there that something authentic emerges from decor conformity and paradigms of good taste? Your peculiarities and oddities are so much more interesting and engaging than the aesthetics of a picture perfect house.


Your personal universe is made of heirlooms, art and travel experiences, memories and ideas. Only you have access to this emotional landscape, and your home should summon all of them.

  • Objects can carry an emotional weight – travel souvenirs, memorabilia, family heirlooms. More precisely, objects can encapsulate a part of your personal history or your family history. Losing an heirloom hurts beyond parting with its function because you mourn the connection it represented. Displayed as collections or trophies they become stale -they feel powerful as they're stumbled upon, found in unexpected places, or featured alone in their special glow.

  • Works of art (books, paintings, sculptures, music...) also carry an emotional weight – whether you own them or not, whether you saw them in their original form or not. Experiencing them becomes part of your memory, you like to have a reminder of this experience around you, but it is not required: you carry their emotional imprint in your heart. They leave their mark on your sensibility. In a sense, works of art matter less than your experience of them. They live in your memories and in your style– their essence lives through your decor style.

  • Ideas are like ghosts inside you, not memories but the ghosts of memories that sometimes haunt you forever. Your home, no matter how transient, should obscurely hold the secret to channel them. Inspiration is evanescent. When you have an idea, it comes and then goes if you don't grab it and materialize it somehow. If you don't write an idea down, you are at risk of forgetting you even had it in the first place. So unlike an heirloom, an idea doesn't have a physical presence, and unlike a work of art, it doesn't stay in your heart. Ideas are an abstract extension of your essence waiting to be pollinated. Sometimes, these fecund moments happen and evade you. Just like when you randomly hear a song you love and desperately try to remember some words so that you can look for it later. But you forget. A home can operate as a reminder and catalyst through notes left in books, notebooks, posts its, highlighted print outs, juxtapositions effects (of things modern and ancient, huge and tiny), contrasts effects (between furniture styles, light and shadow), and other figure of speech (irony, apostrophe, understatement,etc.).


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