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HOME: A PLACE TO EXHALE

By Phyllis Bowie

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As far back as I can remember, I have always found inspiration in beautiful ascetics, especially in my environment. From my childhood bedroom, college dorm room, my first apartment and then my first home – all had one thing in common, I created a space that was uniquely inspiring to me. My childhood bedroom had a canopy bed with all the princess trimmings. To create something that was uniquely mine, I covered the walls with Jackson 5 posters. And covered the ceiling with torn out pages from Right On! and Sixteen magazines, of Michael Jackson. By the time I purchased my first home in San Francisco, I had a strong sense of what type of style inspired me. I discovered it was less about design style and more about how I felt when I was in my space.

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As an interior designer, I developed 5 essential design principles. My favorite is Luxury Consciousness™, to surround yourself with things that make you feel good. Home accessories and colors can evoke a sense of well‐ being, and allows you to exhale from your daily responsibilities, independent of the size of your space or your budget. I used the Luxury Consciousness™ principle during the recession, I would save my pennies, put on my feel good clothes and spend hours at the Ritz Carlton. I would sit in the luxurious down filled chairs and sip my tea from a porcelain cup. Being served and taking in the fragrant fresh flowers, I would feel like a queen. This simple get away for a few hours would empower me to face my challenges, knowing that things have already improved. It would make me feel prosperous and hopeful that the recession would end soon. This confirmed for me that your environment could change your mood. TIP: You can create this same environment in your own home. Just clear a corner free of clutter, add a comfy chair, a budvase of 1 fresh flower and enjoy your favorite beverage in a crystal glass or your favorite cup or mug. Easy breezy –a little effort with huge impact!