As we come to the end of the first week of Balancing Beauty and the Budget, we’ve tackled some thought provoking, and necessary topics, this week.
While my favorite thing here on this blog is to encourage women with fun, practical and easy to implement ideas for their home life, the bottom line is that unless we place money in its proper perspective, all the DIY tips will not leave us fulfilled in the area of personal finance.
Families can get down and dirty with getting out of debt by cutting up their credit cards (something I recommend if you grapple with consumer debt) and still not understand the most important principle.
We can begin peeling the layers back of the Dreaded “B” word (Budget), and then really get serious by assigning every dollar a job. Dollars are told what to do, and every dollar in our budget needs to have a task. While there’s such freedom in understanding and figuring out what that means for your family,  one can do that and still not understand the most important principle.
Contentment: a state of happiness and satisfaction.
It’s the kind of thing that money can’t by – a deep abiding peace. Contentment brings peace, and yet often we confuse “stuff” with happiness.
We work, we budget, we buy, we dream, all in the hopes that eventually we will be happy. We count on the fact that the one day, “IF ONLY” dream will meet those core needs, but until we completely believe that cool stuff will not buy us  contentment, our dream life will not be realized.
Now, don’t get me wrong. I am not saying do not buy stuff. If that was my mantra, I’d be in huge trouble.
Just get it into perspective.
So what do you do if you have Pottery Barn Taste, but not a Pottery Barn budget?
You have two choices.
Pottery Barn inspired Desk
First, a great option is to put your dream Pottery Barn piece on your wish list, and then save up cash for it. Pottery Barn has quality items, which last the test of time, so I am definitely not against investing in key pieces.
I have a a large closet area, initially designed as a small laundry room, that I will be turning into my office. I’m in the process of getting inspiration for it, and I adore  Pottery Barn’s clean, yet casual look of the Chelsea Desk. But at $399, that isn’t an investment I want to make at this time, especially for a desk that only I will see.
Your second choice is to engage those creative juices and find a second hand furniture piece to create some trash to treasure magic. I often see side tables similar to this at yard sales and thrift stores for under $10. Typically, buyers can not see past the initial dirt, grime or color to appreciate the gem that is staring back at them.
This entire look above can be copied for pennies on the dollar. From the table, vase, mirror, chair, and even the cake plate – I can recreate it for $20. For those that are handy, you can make curtains by sewing a rod pocket, or use fusible webbing for a no-sew option. I love how they embellished with a coordinating scrap fabric along the bottom edge. For me, I will use a  hot glue gun to add that and then you have pretty second hand curtains to hide storage. Hang the curtains between the table legs using tension rods.
Like I said, I often find similar Pottery Barn knock off tables for under $10, and I can’t wait to paint this one. This is such a quick and easy painting redo. It will be done in about an hour.
This was $7.99 at a thrift store, and to be completely authentic, I took a picture minutes ago in the exact spot it sits – in that “catch all” large closet. You know the one when company comes over, and the kids asked where to put things, and you yell, “Just shove it in the closet.”
Yes, THAT closet. 🙂
( I never claimed to write 31 Days to an Incredibly Organized Life.  If I wanted you to think I had it all together, I would have just slid the desk out of the closet and taken the picture against a perfectly clean back drop, but I don’t have it all together and that is my closet’s reality. 🙂 )
How do you engage your Pottery Barn Taste? Have you attempted any Pottery Barn inspired looks?