Remembering home decor from years gone by

I have just finished cleaning my car. It was a beast of a job getting everything out and put away into the shed. Between the real estate signs and dog paraphernalia I had to make quite a few trips! My best friends from high school are travelling to Alberta this week from far and wide and I need to make room for the luggage (mine included) that will be piled into my vehicle while we road trip to our old stomping grounds. It’s a 30-year-old version of us bombing around as teenagers which will start with a pit stop for Coke slurpees.

Our lives have taken different paths and have moved us to various parts of North America so the act of us coming together is no easy feat. One girlfriend’s mom and dad still live back home so it will be wonderful to visit them and remember the days of making Kraft Dinner in her mom’s kitchen. All the rest of our childhood homes have been sold and inhabited by new families and most of them (thanks to my access to MLS listings) have been re-decorated and configured for the new owners.

When you are young, it is hard to imagine living anywhere but your home. Your room and your house are the definition of your world and you feel safe and secure in your family home. When I remember my family home and the awful basement space where we would watch TV I only have wonderful memories of the time spent there and not the lack of décor or even carpet in that 100-year-old cellar. The need for every space to be completed and beautiful is a trend which has become more popular in the past 30 years as I remember most of my friends’ homes having unfinished or partially finished basements.

Most of us will remember our childhood homes with fondness and memories will reach out and touch us at the most unexpected times. For me, it is certain smells like cinnamon buns or walking by a lady who wears the same perfume as my mom used to. Those fragrances whip me back and I can vividly recall every detail of the kitchen or my parents bedroom. The wallpaper, carpet and even the texture of the cabinets and wood trim is all clearly visualized and I smile because the décor of the 70s would certainly make me frown and immediately renovate.

Do you remember your childhood home and how things were decorated? Perhaps you had crazy gold and black wallpaper or red and green shag carpet and just maybe you were lucky enough to have a bathroom adorned with blue or purple toilets and tubs, just to make things funky. Kitchen and bathroom carpet were a staple and usually came in bright and dizzying patterns which were created to hide dirt and stains. That memory makes almost everyone cringe!

I hope that you have wonderful and nostalgic images of your childhood home in your head and that you are able to revisit the happy times when a memory is triggered. We didn’t care how ugly the carpet was when we sat down in our equally ugly pajamas on Christmas morning. It’s more pleasant to recall the delicious cookies baking than to wince at the crumbs which would inevitably disappear in the shag carpet.

Kim Wyse is a local freelance designer. Find her on facebook at Ask A Designer/Ask a Realtor.

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