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Creative Craving

February 7, 2012

Cravings are a problem for some of us at this time of year.  You may crave a vacation but can’t take the time off.  You may want to shop for anything, just to feel the thrill of the hunt, whether you need the item or not.  You may want chocolate, lots and lots of chocolate, or pie, or potato chips…you get the idea.

I think I crave a little of all-of-the above, but what I rarely crave, because I am a designer, is to do something creative.  I’m lucky to do be able to do something inspired every day, and I know that it is a privilege to do so.

Have you noticed that a craving can be exchanged?  One way to distract yourself from an obsession with chocolate is to go shopping for a piece of clothing, flowers, or an object for your home.  Feed the craving and satisfy the addiction, for a time.  I’ve been told to work out or go for a walk when a food craving threatens my diet, but I have to admit that shopping works better!

A few years ago I taught decorating classes, first at Mohawk College, and later at my own school of decorating at my shop, Barrett Interiors.  My classes where a great success, in part, I think, because of the many folks who wanted to inject some creativity into their lives, and homes.

I heard from nurses and office workers who spent their days dealing with pain and paperwork who sought to focus on beauty and to inject it into their homes.  Decorating allowed them to do this.  Learning about it gave them a creative focus, as well as material to dream about.

Picture of a spring table setting from Homesense.   Satisfy a creative craving by making some small changes, such as buying some accessories in a new colour scheme, or painting a fresh new colour.  

I don’t teach any more, but I see the same decor-lust in the eyes of people who wander the aisles of Homesense, hoping to find that perfectly exquisite item that will transform their room.  As preposterous as that image is, who hasn’t been merrily carried away by a fabulous accessory from that store and walked out with it under your arm, even though you were there “just to look?”

There are many other sources for stylish inspiration.  The large garden centres, such as Holland Park Garden Gallery and Terra Greenhouses, are enormous temples of interior decoration, as well as exterior, featuring beautiful pots, lanterns, candles, and cushions to name only a few items that can feed a styling appetite.   Not to mention the colourful flowers.  Pottery Barn, West Elm, Urban Barn, Restoration Hardware; all have colourful web sites loaded with inspiration.  Locally, Pure Home Couture and Muscari Floral Atelier, both on Locke Street, beautifully display wonderful objects of desire.

I find, especially at this time of year after the holidays and even more so on grey days, an injection of creativity into your home, whether through colourful accessories, such as throw pillows or glass art, or a new paint colour for the walls or piece of furniture, all will satisfy your creative craving.

In fact, a decorating project can lift your mood, and make it easier to weather dull winter days and long nights.

No guarantee, though, that when you satisfy your decorating impulses the chocolate cravings will go away for good…

About Adele Barrett

Adele Barrett is a consulting interior designer in Hamilton and Dundas. Over twenty years of conferences and continuing education classes keep Adele Barrett Interiors design practice both on trend and timelessly classic. She started collecting paint chips from the local lumber yard when she was 3 years old, and a seed was planted that grew into a career. Continue reading...