The Power Of Serendipity When Creating Your Home with Melissa Jenkins

Melissa Mary Jenkins is a Canadian watercolor and mixed media artist who also makes her own inks from plant materials she grows or forages on her rural property.  In our conversation today, we talk about the art of layering colors, materials, moods...both in art and in our rooms.  We also share the same passion regarding serendipity: you must slow down to make room for it.  And you need to make room for it because that's when the magic happens.  If you want to create a home that truly reflects who you are, it's going to contain all of the layers of your life.  And to do that, you can't just go to one shop on one weekend and outfit your home.  Sometimes you gotta wait for the gems to come across your path.  Which means, always being on the lookout for the unexpected. 
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* Melissa Mary Jenkins on Instagram
"Picture This" app (helps you identify flowers on the spot)
* Melissa's post on making your own natural inks
* Melissa's stamp and ink collaboration with design studio & shop owner, Lemon Tree Interiors
Hello, and welcome to Another season of the Style Matters Podcast brought to you by little yellow couch. This show is for people with real lives and real homes, the kinds of lives and homes that have constraints and are sometimes messy and never perfect. But despite all of this, if you're still obsessed with creating a home, you love this podcast is for you.

I'm Zandra your host. And I believe that how you set up your home can actually help you live your best life and how you set up and design and decorate your home. That becomes your signature. Style the first step toward, this has nothing to do with design rules. The first step is a knowing who you are. So to that end, I have a question for you.

What do you think is the number one mistake you're making in your home right now, if you're curious to know, go over to Lily yellow and take the quiz, and then I'll be sending you some actionable steps that you can take to start addressing your particular mistake and hint, hint. It probably has to do with a shift in your mindset. Okay.

One more announcement. I want to make before we get going. If you've signed up for the little yellow couch newsletter, you may have received an email invite to join me as a founding member of my newest project. This Slow Style Society. Now I'm going to be opening up this membership to everyone in 2021. But right now I'm looking for a small group of founding members who want to give me a lot of input into what this membership will be all about.

And as a thank you, I'll be offering founding members of very low over a lifetime membership rate. So while I don't have all of the components laid out yet, I do know that the purpose will be to give you ongoing, actionable ideas and workshops and inspiration using the Slow Style philosophy that I've been talking about for the past several months. And I'm already super excited about the things I have planned for founding members starting in October.

So if you've received one of these email invites to join me as a founding member, please take a look at it and jump in if you're interested because the founding member opportunity is only open this week through September 13. I want to get cracking if you haven't received an invite, but this is sounding pretty cool to you. Just shoot me an email and I'll make sure you get one.

My address is simply [email protected], creating a home that reflects who you are, where you've come from and who you want to become is no small endeavor. And I am to help. Now, before we get started with today's interview, here's a word from our sponsor. Beauty bio is a skincare company that doesn't fool around with its ingredients. Jamie O'Bannon founder of beauty bio worked for years in a cosmetics lab and found that most companies,

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And the best part, I didn't need a ton of their products to achieve this. I'm just using one product called the reversal for a six week stint to purify and rewind the damage. And then I'll continue with a daily moisturizer called the quench. Now they do have plenty of other products that target specific issues that you might be having. That's what's so great about it.

You only need one or two of them to get the results that you're after. Check them [email protected] and use code Style. Matters all one word for 15% off your purchase. That's beauty, bio, and use the code Style Matters at checkout. Now let's get into today's episode. My guest today is Melissa Mary Jenkins. She's an artist whom I found on Instagram and I love not only her abstract art work itself,

which is what first drew me to her. But I also love her photography, how she talks about her home, the process that she uses to create her art and also the inks that she makes herself in order to create her art. So I knew that I wanted to interview her at some point because there's a lot of depth to her. And so I knew there was going to be a lot of depth to a conversation,

which there was, and I'm excited for you to take a listen. We also talk about the importance of slowing down so that you allow for serendipity to come into your life. And I really believe in this as well. We don't really get into it too much in this interview, but when she was talking about the need for slowing down and Slow design and Slow lifestyle,

and of course made me think of the Slow Style philosophy that I've been working on. And one of the most important things about taking your time to create a home that you love is finding pieces that you aren't necessarily looking for. Right? Because filling our home With things we find through Google keywords is not going to be very fulfilling. So anyway, um,

I'm, I'm going to stop talking and let's get started with Melissa, Melissa, Mary Jenkins. I am so happy to have you on the Style Matters Podcast because I've been following you as an artist for quite a while now on Instagram. Well, and I am so excited to be on your show too, because my daughters and I love listening to your show.

In fact, I remember telling someone my daughter will be let's listen to the yellow pouch show. So they've really enjoy listening to you. And you're awesome. Don't like Adam Podcast right? Of course. No. I mean so much really. Oh, wonderful. Well, you know, when I'm looking for potential guests to interview the first or, or if someone's pitching themselves to be on the show,

the first thing I'll do is go to their about page or in your case, your bio page. And what was so refreshing is that instead of talking about your credentials and the press you've received, you talked about your surroundings and how they inspire your work. I actually really felt like your home and where it's situated is a big part of you. And the space you live in is central to who you are,

which then comes out in your work. So tell me if I'm on the right track with this, and also describe for us the setting of where you live. Well, I've really appreciate that you pointed out that my bio page is actually a reflection of how my surroundings inspire me, because I hadn't even realized that I had taken. Um, but I guess to begin with,

I grew up on a Lake in the Canadian shield in Ontario, and I spent almost every summer of my life surrounded by water. And we were living in the beaches community in Toronto, Ontario, close to the shores of Lake Ontario. But when my family, when we decided to move away to the country, um, I had never lived in farm fields or even appreciated a landscape really away from a body of water,

right? And slowly over the years, the fields have really, um, seeped into me. And a few years ago, we sold our house here in Aron, and we were embarking on converting an old farm house. Um, it had beautiful old beams and a gorgeous view of rolling fields. And so we needed to rent a place while we were going to bill.

Uh, we sold our house. We sold our house in about five days. And then I only look, we only looked at one house to rent during quickly and quickly decided it was perfect, especially because there was a studio they'll talk to the back, overlooking the fields and upon. So, but then in the meantime, we found out that the man that we were purchasing the property from had decided to take the house off the market and give it to his daughter.

Oh no. So even though we were disappointed, we actually decided to settle into this house and to do Living in the rental. The one, the only place you've even looked at, Oh my God, Exactly. And we decided to do a slow build up North at our Lake property to build like a retirement home. And so everything turned, but we actually just kind of eased into it.

And we, my children absolutely love living here. And, um, let me describe the house to you a bit. It has huge thick stone walls and it was renovated in the nineties, but it, they retained a lot of the original character. Like the kitchen has stone walls and beams. Um, but there are still a lot of things we would change if we were to actually purchase the house.

But what really has grown on me are the surroundings because there's a long driveway framed by an Apple orchard on one side, and then there's a row of pine trees on the other, protecting the house from the fields, from the wind. And then we look out onto a pond that attracts, you know, blue herons, wild ducks and bull frogs. But now we have four pet ducks that swim in the pond all day and we have chickens as well now.

And then beyond the pond is a forest and farm fields. And we, yeah, so we have access to all of these, um, different, you know, forests and fields. And it's just incredible. And it has just melted my heart. I just like kind of perfect. Oh my goodness. And then there was an old barn behind our house,

but it was starting to be a bit of a safety hazard. So our landlord had, um, some local Mennonites take it apart and they were going to reuse a lot of the beams. We got to save a few beans too. And, but he left the stone a corner of the stone foundation because I, one day my dream is to do workshops in it and it overlooks the sunset and the fields.

And it is just so beautiful. All I know is an excavator and things I can't do on my own. So one day, one day, So great. That is such a great goal. Um, before we go any further, I, I realized that I'd like for you to describe what you do in terms of the medium that you work in and your artwork.

Um, and then we'll get into a little bit more about the tutorials that you have. So go ahead. Oh, definitely. Well, I, um, how do I say I used to be a high school teacher and I was an English history,<inaudible> geography sort of teacher. And then when I had our twins, uh, 12 years ago,

I, um, didn't go back to work, but I started painting and I actually had my, a very good friend starts, uh, give me a few lessons on painting. And then it just kind of went from there. I had a sewing business as well. And, um, and then I say it's about three years ago now. I was an abstract acrylic painter three years ago.

Now I had an artist friend show me avocado wink, and I was hooked on avocado ink, ink made from avocados. And I know you've talked about this before, um, with Melissa from, is it the Slow home? Yes. Yes. So Slow were home yet. So avocado inc. And from there, I, uh, was gifted the make in calc by the,

by Jason Logan and the Toronto in-company and girls. And I began what I like to call experimenting. And, and from then it's grown into a steady business of crafting inks from the wild botanicals around our farm or at our Lake property up North. Oh my gosh. If you're taking your photos of creating the inks and using the inks are so beautiful, they,

they, they really make me want to do it because the process looks so, um, refreshing, rejuvenating it, you go out, you forage, um, and then you create these things and then you make beautiful paintings with them. So tell us a little bit about that process. How do you go from a stock of wheat or whatever it is to,

to, uh, You never know, really, like I did try and make ink out of the corn husks, um, in our backyard fields, but there was no, so I have tried many things, but I guess I'd like to start by saying I live my life in conversation with nature because I'm noticing what it has to teach me. And it's all tied into my health,

uh, health journey, which we'll maybe get into later, but for now whatever seems to work. But I, I notice things in nature that I never did before. And that has helped me, um, like that natural creativity to figure out what it is and what it'll create has tied into ink making. And, um, so the first part of my process is noticing what's new every time we kind of,

we're going back and forth between our cottage and our, our farm this summer. And every time I come back to the farm, I noticed new flowers. And so what I do is I often use an app called picture this it's a free app and you take a photo. I just learned about this app, picture this, I'm going to link to it in the show notes page.

Okay, go ahead. And I know there are other ones available, but I've just kind of stuck with this one. And so I, I take a photo of the flower or the plant, and I make sure that, uh, you know, it's not toxic before I do end up picking it. And, um, and then I, I learned the name and then I love going into the history of it later,

but, and that's what I do on my phone. Just to explain the app, uh, you take a picture and then the app tells you what the plant is awesome. And if you, And if they don't, if the app doesn't really know what it is, they'll give you other options of it, or they'll say, take a different photo.

And so what I've been doing is taking a photo and then I'm learning whether it's toxic or not learning about it. Oftentimes in our back in our backyard, there are fields of just wild flowers and most of them are invasive species. Most of them are flowers that people don't even consider flowers. They just think of them as weeds. And this has really taught me to find the beauty in the plants that I've looked at my entire life,

but never really thought anything about. And a lot of them form in places that are waste places, like if it's been an old driveway that's been dug up and then we're around the dump, uh, up at our cottage. And it's when the soil has been disturbed and the flowers of the seeds, you know, start to grow there. So it's things that plants that most people are overlooking along the side of the road.

And I find just so many. And so you, so you forge the plan and then do you put them in water or how do you what's the next step? Yeah. So, uh, before the one I did just want to mention that, um, I try not to take the approach of just taking and taking and taking. I try and make sure that I'm only taking about one third of the plant and oftentimes I'll hear my kids in the backyard.

Mom, remember you're only supposed to take a little bit and, um, reminding me that because sometimes they get excited, you know, um, I want to be a steward of the land, so Exactly for the animals or the birds, or sometimes it's for the soil that the plant is there. And then I bring them into our stone farmhouse kitchen.

It's rather dark. It's not my dream kitchen, but there are some elements that, you know, are lovely. So, and then I pretend that I'm scientific and I start experimenting and I often use distilled water because everybody's water is slightly different pH levels and all those sorts of things. So I like to use distilled water, but you don't have to,

you can just use whatever water you happen to have. And then I add additives depending on the plant, if it's a very wild, very often, I don't need anything to help bring the color out, but sometimes like with golden golden rod, which grows so much, um, I use alum for that and it just brings up this bright yellow. And then,

so you, I love that you experiment because you're probably then creating new colors or new shades or variations of a color all the time, which is what makes I think your paintings so vibrant and so richly layered. Um, so you have several tutorials on your website about how to make your own ink that are very, I think that they're very user friendly.

I know they're not intimidating. Yeah. As a former teacher, that means so much to me to try and make it easy to understand. So, Oh, that's right. You're teaching part really? Yes. That helps. So anyway, we'll link to those in the show notes page, um, as well. And I think too that you, you,

you have a couple of posts about it that were even saying you don't even have to leave your home because of the whole Corona virus and everything. Right. It just, it's, it's very doable. Well, and that's, especially during the Corona viruses, I really wanted to help in my own way. And, um, I just thought, you know what,

they're probably people with their children at home, not sure what to do, and they don't want to go out to the grocery store because they're trying to limit their exposure. So let's see if I can try and make something that they have at home. And, um, and, um, even, you know, there to thicken up the entire afternoon,

he's gone there a bit, but, um, I've been trying to research some other options for how you can fit ink with just using things like it's the leftover liquid in the, um, it's called, aquafaba spell that for us. How do you, so a Q U a faba F a, B a and it's yeah, it's the cooking liquid found in 10 beans and other legumes like chickpeas and people often use like vegans we'll use it to replace egg whites.

I've often had people ask, why are you giving away recipes? Like, isn't that how you, you know, run your business and make money. And my philosophy is, well, um, I want to help people and I want to help people have a more sustainable art practice. And so, um, oftentimes I have a lot of repeat buyers.

And even though I send, when I send a bottle of ink to people, I include the recipe, but people will continue to still buy from me. Um, even though they could make it themselves, but it's, it gives it empowers people and it helps people, um, have activities to do with their children and they can reuse the bottle and create more.

And who knows what it'll inspire. So, Oh, Well, and I do think there's room for both for buying it, the buying ink that you've made and making it yourself. I mean, you people aren't, you know, they might try it once for fun and then realize that they don't want to do that again, because it's more work than they want to do.

So they're just going to buy it from you, but they know now your process of making it. And it, it really, I think probably feels very good to purchase something where you understand the process, which leads me to my next topic of conversation, which is understanding the process of how artists work. And in your case, you're, you're even making the materials that you then use to create the art,

but there's also a process that artists have for just making the work itself. And let me just say, I've said this many times in the Podcast, I am a huge believer in choosing art for your home. I, I think that art is reflective of the souls of the people who live there. And so I really want to help people get over the mental blocks that are in their way when it comes to finding and art,

because I think people, people feel a variety of things about this. They feel unqualified to know what to buy because they aren't quote art people. They might feel out of place in a gallery. They don't understand the value of a particular piece of artwork because they don't understand the process. And so the price kind of stops them in their tracks. And I think there are two things that really helped me know if a piece of art is right for my home.

And one as we've just been talking about is learning about the process that the artist uses and the other are the stories that are embedded in the art that they're, there are two stories, the way I see it, the first story is whatever the artist was thinking and feeling when she created the piece. And the second story is the story that my husband and I layer on top of it with our own thoughts and feelings that we get when we look at it.

So I want to start with this first idea, understanding the process behind the artwork. I'm thinking specifically, in your case of a couple of posts that you've done, one where you talked about setting the mood for working by playing music and using things like rock sometimes as inspiration for an entire color palette. Very cool. And also post you did about a poem that inspired a whole series of pieces called,

uh, it wasn't renovation. Resonance. Yeah. So tell us about those. Just tell us where you get your inspiration from. How do you go about creating something where it's inside your head and you get it onto paper? Well, it's funny. Um, I know your trademark question on this, on your show is to ask people why Style Matters.

And I think Style Matters for me because it's essential to setting the moon to evoke creativity. So in my studio, I'm surrounded by nature, um, both inside and outside and have forged fines for my outdoor adventures and my thrifting adventures. And they mind my window sills and shelves, and as well as my artwork in various stages. And even though my studio is generally a mess,

the bones of the space establish a kind of organic atmosphere or a natural atmosphere. And, and the reason I incorporate a lot of rocks into my work is because I actually grew up and who spend her summers now in the mineral capital of Canada. Oh, I used to sell rocks at the end of my driveway. Um, rocks are always have always been a part of my creation,

um, from their process, like part of my process because their color schemes, their shapes, and even I use them to hold down my paper because sometimes when you add ink to the paper, the paper starts to buckle or depending on how much water you put on. So rocks are just a part of my whole process. And so is music. Music is a simple way for me to my what's in my head,

into my hands. And So I'm good. I just want to interrupt for one second and ask them, go back to the rocks for a second. Um, so I think most of most people they'll see a rock and they don't give it a second glance. Right. But when you look at it, there are stray patients and there are different colors.

And tell us a little bit about what do you see in a rock? Well, I think it all ties into the idea of, I create my inks from unwanted or unnoticed, um, botanicals outside. And I think it kind of goes the same with rocks. Like there, there are, like, I grew up in an area where they, they create the basis of the actual land that we're on.

And I think that's kind of how it creates a basis for my artwork. Like you can see the lines, oftentimes in my abstract landscapes, I will add in lines of thread of a glue, the thread onto the paper and that line you'll see in some of my Instagram posts actually stems from a rock that I have beside it. And I'm following the lines of the rock.

Oh my gosh, it's so cool. It's been really like, there's this little place where you can take your children where cottages, and they can go in and, you know, chisel any rocks that are in the back. It's a huge mine. It used to be a huge mining community, thrown all these different rocks in. And so we would come home with buckets of rocks and they're all around my studio.

Um, and, uh, I often just have them sitting there to help me kind of create those lines in my artwork that aren't, that are perfection in nature, but ness is not necessarily would be considered perfect. You know, if I was just, Yeah, they're not a straight line right. Straight line. And so, and that also helps me because when I see artwork on the wall,

I want it to be straight, but this is kind of a release for my mind and I'm being creative because it doesn't have to be perfect. Right. Um, and I think rocks really teach me that, that there's so much beauty in them. Um, I collected rocks when I was traveling in Europe with the, with white lines across them. And it's just,

you know, it's, um, yeah, I actually didn't realize how important minerals and rocks were. And, you know, I have been experimenting with making my own, um, paint as well using, um, rocks and I, the first one I did was I actually found a brick in my garden and I crushed it down and use because I was in the pandemic and didn't have a,

didn't have the proper tools. I used the bottom of a glass jar to grind it down. And I'm learning from a lot of pigment artists, how to create my own paint as well. Gosh, see, this is why I love to hear the process. Yeah. Okay. Cause now I feel even more attached to your work. I mean, I was drawn to it for the,

you know, simply on the surface to me. It's very beautiful, but now I understand the process. I feel even more attached. Okay. Continue. So, uh, in the, the idea of what inspires me or what helps my process is I listen to Podcast generally all day because then either making things or in painting and I love to learn.

So I will often replay them and write the ideas down. And I also love to read, I'll read magazines, books, anything I can get my hands on. And I'm also, and so I take quotes when I'm reading a novel and I write it down and it's a special little book and I'm also a bit of a hobby musician. And so all of these things spark these ideas that might start a series.

And I was reading a novel, um, called Ellian the heart maker by Hazel Pryor. And there was a quote in it that just really, I really resonated with, do you remember my whole series it's called the sound was rich, wild and resonant. And it struck a chord with me because sounds and music and the wild, the idea of the wild,

they all are such an integral part of my process. So it was just perfect. And this series is based on a, uh, black archival ink that it create from making lamp black and it's all black and white paintings with, um, with created with this black ink. So it's called resonance. So when I, when I create a series, they love to go back and I love to tie it all in with a quote or with how it resonated with me,

or just, you know, the research of the lamp path, black, it itself. It just all is a huge part of the process with, for me. Um, and that's what makes art important. I can sink my teeth into it more when, when I'm looking at other people's artwork and I can just sink into the colors, but also the story behind it,

it just makes me want to impulsively buy it or have it on my wall. Right. And that's, I just want people to feel, um, that art is meaningful to them. And that's why it's on their wall. I do try to encourage people if they like a piece of art to try to talk to the artists themselves. The second best thing is a gallery owner,

because they will often know the artist personally and be able to, you know, explain the process for you. And it does not have to be, you know, a $50,000 piece of art. I mean, art gallery sell $85 pieces of art. I mean, you know, so, so it's not just for the really, really elite amongst us who can afford really expensive paintings because in your case.

So if I then know, I see the art, I, my initial reaction is I really like how it looks, then I learn about how you made it. And then I learned the, about the, the quote from the novel that you were reading. And then I think about that quote, and then now my painting has all of these layers to it,

of story and meaning, and, and it, it, again, it just makes you feel connected. And so I want to talk about the second, the second thing I mentioned when I, when, when I, my crane, my own criteria of whether or not I'm going to buy a piece of art, and that is the story. So my husband and I will buy a piece of art when it either hits us in the gut,

or just brings up this kind of like a bubble of happiness from, but, but happiness from somewhere deep inside of us. So there's always our story of what we see in a piece that's layered on top of whatever the artist was feeling and wanting to express. And Yes, yeah, I was sorry to interrupt, but I, the idea of my paintings themselves,

there are layers upon layers. So we have the ink while I've created the that's a whole story. And then there's the layer of the thread that goes on top. And then there's another layer of the little black marks that I often put in. And then there's the layer of sometimes adding in other lines as well. So it's a, it's a fully layered experience,

not only with the story, but with your personal layer that you add onto it. Oh, what a, what a vision I have right now. That's why art is so important in our homes. It's not an afterthought. It's, it's really, it's the soul of our homes. Now in terms of story, I feel like there there's two good examples that you have on,

on your website of how the people who buy the art have layered their own stories on top of it. And I was wondering if you can remember them and share them with us. One was like, um, I think it was a painting that was it's abstract, but you can tell there's water involved, a pond or a Lake. And then I don't remember what the other one was,

but the woman kind of had a sad story. Oh my goodness. And it just, you know, I was, it was so such a blessing to be reminded of this, um, is the story she says, every time that she sees it hanging in her living room, she says, my husband is dying now. And it seems an affirmation of all he was.

And all our relationship was when it was good. Thank you for making this beautiful piece, which resonates so close to my heart. I mean, what more could an artist asked for than to hear that it was, it's so touching and it's so touching to be reminded of that. And then the other one, actually the person who bought the painting, we put into words exactly what I've been trying to capture for years about how water is my solace and my retreat and my soul.

And my favorite thing to do in this summer is to go swimming in the Lake and to look up at the sun. And I've been under the water under the water, and I've always dreamed to be able to paint that experience. And, and I've even, you know, you take underwater photos trying to capture that moment. And, um, I'm just going to read you the quote from the lady here.

I often look for original art on Etsy, but I've never purchased this morning. I opened my email from Nancy and saw your painting and instantly loved it. Yes, it would be fair to say it spoke to me. I always like to know what people read in art. I like to know what people see and how they interpret. Perhaps you'd like to know how your painting spoke to me.

I love water. I crave water. I love the color of water. I dream of someday, hopefully sooner than later at this point in my life of living on a small, quiet Lake. When I look at your painting, I felt as though I was in the water floating underneath the surface and looking at, I saw flowers floating on the surface and I saw hazy rays of sunshine coming through the water.

Surely it's the view of a mermaid and almost brings me to be a writer herself. And Oh yeah. It a moment to read that again. Thank you for reminding me. Yes. So, so this is what I want to, um, share with people who are listening, who are maybe still not sure, like how do you even go about finding art,

deciding which art you're going to buy, you know, and that woman could have bought a, kind of like a standard photograph of the beach, right? A wave, a wave scene, but, but she kind of waited. She didn't, she, she hadn't bought anything. And then she found this, this painting of water that spoke to her so much more deeply than just sort of,

you know, I don't know, going to a big box store and buying up a paint, uh, you know, a quote unquote painting that's been scanned of, you know, the beach. I mean, it's just, It was serendipitous moment for her. And I think that, that happens a lot with artwork is that she was looking for something at sea happened to feature the foe,

the painting. And it was just like, it clicked. And I, I just had this experience with the designer. Um, a few months ago, we just both came together. I walked into her store. I was looking to create a stamping ink with my natural ink. She had these gorgeous, she had these gorgeous teak hand carved stamps from India,

and she was looking to do something with it. And, and we came together and it's just being released actually today, I'm going to sign it the word. And it's on handmade paper and it's with lemon tree interiors. She's an incredible she's kind of designer. And she was a beautiful store space in a LoRa and online, and it, it was serendipitous.

It was just, I saw her outside the store. I asked her if she was Sophia from lemon tree, I'd seen her on Instagram. And then I said, do you need help carrying those boxes? And from there, we've now created a most beautiful series of, um, of artwork that is so unique and has such a history to it. So we're going to link to that as well.

Correct. But this, this aspect, this idea of serendipity, I don't know if I talk about it enough on the Podcast, but to me, that is how my entire home has evolved over time and come to be what it is today is the serendipitous moments where I find something, it could be anything from a chair to a piece of art, to an idea for me to make my own thing,

curtains or whatever. And I think we need to be open to having those moments. I think, I think we're so used to shopping in a way that's that's by Google keyword, and then it limits what you're going to find, right? I mean, Google is great. Don't get me wrong. I love the Google, but, but it's, if that's the only way you find new things,

you're, you're not going to have any serendipity. Well, and you know, it ties into the whole idea of Slow design is the whole idea that, you know, and my husband has taught me this he's, he's a very wise, and Slow thinking processing sort of person. And with the build that we're doing up at our cottage for a cottage,

we are living in it for years before we're eventually finishing everything and it's allowing the house to speak to me. It's allowing myself to have those serendipitous moments where I find this beautiful a few weeks ago, I was driving along in the farm fields and this little old man had a little garage sale. And I found this hand carved, um, bull basket with a handle on it.

And it is just, it was a moment where I said, you know what? And I've discovered the most beautiful piece. And that piece is going to be held. So such meaning in our home. I've just learned so much about having patients with my creativity and having patients knowing that the ideas will come. And that whole idea where, where I created this artwork with,

um, Sofia from lemon tree interiors, like I was waiting for the moment when the right piece would come to me. And she had, she had the stamps, I had the ink and we put together, and this is not something that comes naturally to me Because you are you're, you're inpatient typically. Well, I'm someone who likes to go for something if I,

but, but I've had a struggle with Lyme disease for years. And it has taught me the importance of slowing my life down. I can't, I can't to no longer be the person who just goes after and goes all day and finds all the thrift fines. I just, I can't do it anymore. And so this has taught me to actually cherish this Slow lifestyle.

Melissa, thank you so much for coming on the Style Matters Podcast Oh my goodness. When, when I received your email that you'd like to chat on an interview, I mean, it just meant so much to me. Thank you. I hope these episodes leave you feeling energized and inspired to create a home that gives something back to you because in this crazy world we live in,

it's good to remember things like beauty And happiness are within reach. Now don't forget to take the quiz. What's the number one mistake you're making in your home [email protected] And we really appreciate all of the reviews that you've been giving us over on iTunes, or I guess it's called Apple podcasts now, whatever. Please keep them coming in because they help other people find us,

which makes it possible to keep this show running. Have a great day. And I'll be back in your earbuds.

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