• Cecilia Macaulay

Already Beautiful: The Postcard Method for Uncovering the Quintessential Style of Your Home.

Its surprings how we don't see the reality of our homes till we get a camera, take a photo, and gaze at it. Maybe its having the four edges as boundaries, we see the composition for the first time. Common responses are mild amazement: 'How did I allow so much clutter?' and unexpected delight 'How did I not notice all the beauty, already here, hiding?'

Here are the '10 Postcard' photos I took this weekend at my friend Bodhi's house.



Every household member usually notices and chooses quite different 'beautiful' arrangements. Its such a surprise, the different worlds we all live in, in exactly the same house. Revealing this through taking photos helps us understand and be generous to each other. But mostly, it gives us the blueprint for how to expand on whats lovely. We next describe to each other what qualities we see that make each combination beautiful.


For example, the tea towel:



This humble tea towel could be the reference for all aesthetic choices at Sharehouse Rosanna: soft and pretty secondary colors, retro, worn but not worn out, the best of the past, savoured, with lovely rhythms and patterns.


Kat I’m told is the one who keeps the beauty of the house protected, and this vintage towel is hers. I vote everyone defer to her judgement, unless their heart's desire is something different. Bodhi tells me thats actually whats happening. 'Most of the lovely things are from Kat' he says.

Do this yourself, with someone you love, and be surprised by the result.

Though we didn't today, in a regular home reset session we then make 10 ‘anti-postcards’. These photos are combinations of objects that discourage us, scatter our attention, and make us feel poor. It often includes tangled cords, mismatched materials, and lots of advertizing. After gazing at the pictures, defining exactly why they make us miserable, we will slowly and surely usher these patterns out of the house, never to be endured again.

This method of choosing what to keep was inspired by Permaculture gardening. You create a self-sustaining garden by finding whats already there and lovely, and encouraging more of it. The other half of the stratagy is to find things you don't want there, discourage them by shade or goats or whatever removal method you like. After you subtract discouraging things, you must reset by adding more beauty. Don't forget about space. Useful space is a thing in itself, with its own right to exist and contribution. Its to be protected and enjoyed.

'Before' picture at Bodhi's share house. What would you change?

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Cecilia Macaulay All Rights Reserved