Once I went to Hawaii and hiked through a rain forest. The air smelled like a chef’s souffle and the waterfalls and plant-life looked more alive than the tourists. I ducked under a tree that grew what looked like giant bananas. And I hula danced in a pond teeming with life.
What if we could decorate our office spaces to simulate that rain forest? “Look for inspiration everywhere—in the changing seasons, at an art exhibition, in children’s drawings or your favorite movie” (McIntyre & Stevens, location 48 of 834, 6%).
My Grandma had a gorgeous house brimming with bold red colors and glass cabinets filled with ornaments. Grandma’s home exterior was lined with red brick trim and a red brick gateway. On either side of the brick gate entrance perched two white lions. And Grandma often dressed in red, her appearance flawless. I love her dearly; so, I came to love red, too.
True to my passion for red, I once decorated my home in Chinese décor. I had a red and gold Chinese lantern hanging from my ceiling, giant red hearts and red dragon calendars on my walls, and gold placemats on my dinner table. In a Buddhist store, I found a soft-orange colored lamp. Orange and red lights host health benefits as they simulate sunrise and sunset. Whether you love red or not, “choose your style, find your colors. Do not be afraid to seem boring or, on the contrary, too extravagant” (McIntyre & Stevens, location 48 of 834, 6%).
But I grew anxiety-riddled, so my home soon reflected my state of mind. Despite the chaos, a dear friend enjoyed time in my home, saying it was messy, but filled with love. Yet, “scattered things, chaotically arranged trinkets and photographs, unshaven shoes and a mess in the kitchen …. From household appliances, to ballpoint pens—everything should be in its place” (McIntyre & Stevens, location 91 of 834, 11%). (The day my shoes get a shave, I’ll know I’m on the right track.)
I dream of turning my home into a Tibetan monastery: water fountains, giant amethyst rocks, relaxing Reiki-like music, dim lights. Weird? Well, some people harbor even more radical homes. Two artist friends painted their bathroom with caricatures of themselves. They love Comic Con and Manga. And their home reflected it. With graphite paint, “you can turn the walls of an apartment into a huge canvas on which you can draw, leave messages to your beloved and implement any ideas into life” (McIntyre & Stevens, location 160 of 834, 19%).
Another artist friend collected the world’s priciest art pieces. He had Rembrandt, van Gogh, you name it, lining every horizontal inch of his walls. All originals. He also had the stunning life-size Vanity statue. When his maid broke the statue, she blamed it on me. She also got caught on video camera surveillance stealing his gold-trimmed ceramic pig, which she blamed on me, too. Twice in my life I’ve been wrongfully blamed for stealing ceramic pigs. If I ever decorate, it’ll be with anything but oinkers.
In my mind, the most stunning home would boast a ceiling mural, like those found in famous European churches. I went to the Notre-Dame Basilica in Montreal, and the art looked stunning. I wonder if you can buy wallpaper in that style and hire someone to install it on your ceiling? I knew one woman who decorated her room with a giant cross. And when I had anxiety, I wore a crucifix around my neck. The crucifix and religious ceiling mural would surely act as fine conversation pieces. “Instead of the usual white ceiling, there will be a vault or some castle or mansion above your head. Such paintings visually stretch out any space; the main thing is that they fit the style of the room itself” (McIntyre & Stevens, location 177 of 834, 21%).
Buddhist walls with a Michelangelo ceiling and a tropical rainforest interior? That may not serve as your ideal, but it may inspire you to craft your home into a fantasy getaway.