Because you’re reading this, it’s likely you share my love for interior design and decorating—whether in a formal way, or just in the “I love my home and want to make it my own” way. Like me, you may also have a passion for redesign. If you’re not familiar with redesign, then you’ve come to the right place.
To put it in simple terms, redesign is design for people who: A) love to save money; B) love to reuse and repurpose items whenever possible; C) love to put their own passion and personality into their home’s interior; or D) all of the above.
Redesign combines a lot of terrific “re” words: reuse, repurpose, recycle, reinvest, recover, refinish, repair, and one of my favorites: reimagine. Redesign means before you head to a big box store to purchase something new, you look around your space and imagine how you might revitalize it without spending as much. Asking this question whenever you want to change your home’s interior becomes a mindset—a habit, if you will. And the results are almost always more personal and more satisfying than if you had rushed to the store for the more convenient but less inspired alternative.
I bleed red(esign)
You might say redesigning is in my blood. Clearly my interest in furniture and interior decorating traces back to my formative years. My dad epitomized The Greatest Generation, a blue-collar man who began working in the Pennsylvania coal mines as a 14-year-old boy. In the Army he learned to build bridges, and as a civilian he turned that knowledge into a carpentry hobby. My childhood is filled with memories of my dad turning scraps of wood into beautiful furniture. I spent hours helping him in his shop, learning how things go together, how to refinish furniture and, most importantly, to love and respect the pieces you work on.
We didn't have a lot of money to spare, so mom was very good at moving things around—pulling a lampshade from storage or taking a painting from the guest bedroom and moving it to the living room. I didn’t realize it then, but she was teaching me how to redesign a room, using what you have to breathe new life into a space. She also taught me never to throw out something if you think it may have a later use for you or someone else.
Redesign by trial and circumstance
In my earlier married life, money was tight, so I found ways to make our home beautiful on a budget. This involved a lot of experimentation, which has been one of my greatest teachers. You can’t let fear prevent from turning your home into a place you love. Jump in there. Learn from your mistakes. Over time you’ll see that there are very few challenges you can’t fix by moving on to the next logical alternative.
While I’ve cherished my formal design education and value all of my experimentation, I would have loved having access to a site like The Redesign Habit years ago. That was impossible since I was well down my path of redesigning before the internet became the powerful tool it is today. But that was then and this is now, and I’m thrilled to take full advantage of this wired, connected, collaborative world we live in.
So here I am—at a point in my life when I have an amazing opportunity to share my knowledge and experience, and to provide a community for other “redesigners” to share as well. I feel very fortunate to have been able to launch this website. I can’t wait to share stories, answer questions, see your projects…and learn from all of you. I hope this will be our place to connect. The place to share our humble successes—and our candid failures—in an open, fun atmosphere. Words can’t describe how exciting it is to imagine the potential positive impact The Redesign Habit and The Redesign Toolkit (description, demo)] may have.
Thanks for your interest. I look forward to making this a blog that will keep you laughing and learning. I hope you’ll be a regular visitor and make The Redesign Habit a habit. Most of all, I hope through this venture, I can help you learn to love where you live.