Like many women I enjoy pottering around my house, ordering it and creating a home. I enjoy the fact that it’s a place where I can express myself freely and find sanctuary from the outside world with all its expectations and demands. I admit that it heartens me that in recent years there has been a surge in popularity for home crafts, in parallel with the increased desire of many for a simpler, more natural, lifestyle.
He is happiest, be he king or peasant, who finds peace in his home.
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
However, while I wholeheartedly applaud and support the effort to turn away from the synthetic and embrace a more organic and green life, what I’m increasingly seeing is fake. As with most genuine movements, the media and celebrity culture have hijacked the genuine desire by many to live well, commercialising it and creating something that is based on image over substance. Now, a simple, healthy lifestyle has become something aspirational that can be created with just the right designer furniture, organic cotton clothing and beauty products labelled as being made with natural ingredients (but are, in reality, often far from it).
The ache for home lives in all of us, the safe place where we can go as we are and not be questioned.
The good thing is that more women are recognising that domesticity is not a dirty word and finding pleasure in the simple tasks and creativity involved in making their nest. Yet our homemaking is now often polluted by unrealistic expectations based on magazine spreads and the lifestyles of the elite which create dissatisfaction rather than contentment. The word ‘Homemade’ has become synonymous with ‘luxury’ (which generally translates to expensive goods!).
The strength of a nation derives from the integrity of the home.
What does your home mean to you? My home is a place of comfort, refuge and hospitality; it isn’t a showcase for the latest trends or a place to be aesthetically perfected according to someone else’s standard. For me, true simple domesticity is managing with care what you have while respecting the earth’s resources and creating a peaceful, comfortable and ordered home that meets the needs of your family. Your home should reflect your personality without being self-conscious – a place where your heart is at ease, not anxiously striving.
Our homes, imperfect as they are, must be a haven from the chaos outside. They should be a reflection of our eternal home, where troubled souls find peace, weary hearts find rest, hungry bodies find refreshment, lonely pilgrims find communion, and wounded spirits find compassion.
A side note…
I have finally set up my own shop here on my web-nest where you can buy artwork directly from me. At the moment there are only prints available but in the coming weeks I will be adding cards and possibly a few original works as well. If there is a particular painting or drawing that you would like in the form of a print or card but cannot find it in the shop then do drop me a line and I will make sure that it is added.
The artwork featured in this post is a little charcoal drawing from my sketchbook