My Auntie Maisie has the coolest house I’ve ever seen. I mean, it’s not that the house itself is that amazing, although it has decent bones – high ceilings, lots of light, big garden. What makes it really awesome is her taste in home decor. It’s kind of eccentric – some might say overwhelming – and constantly changing along with Auntie Maisie’s ever-expanding thematic palette.
At the moment, she seems to be going through a Nordic phase. For example, she’s just installed this enormous forest-themed wall mural in her dining room. It’s a photo she took on her recent trip to Finland, digitally printed onto a self-adhesive wallcovering fabric that’s been custom-fitted to the dimensions of the wall. It’s epic, to say the least.
When I went to check it out yesterday, she told me that she’s so pleased with the effect that she’s planning to hang a similar one in her guest bedroom. That one will be based on a geometric design created for her by a friend whose family lines stretches far back through time immemorial in Iceland. I guess I’m starting to realise, as I’m writing this, that maybe Auntie Maisie’s tastes aren’t so much wildly eccentric as deeply personal.
I told her I’d never heard of this approach to wall decoration before, and she said she’d never have thought to buy digital wallcoverings until recently, when the daughter of a friend of hers had a photo of her new baby blown up to a massive scale and plastered over her bedroom wall. We both agreed that this sounded pretty far to the wrong side of tacky, but acknowledged that it all comes down to personal taste.
I guess thing about Auntie Maisie’s home decor is that, because it’s so strongly based on her personal experiences and friendships, people who don’t know her all that well (like me) often arrive at an under-informed first impression of it. But talking to her about it has shown me that it’s not merely ostentation for ostentation’s sake.