Anyone who’s ever even picked up a design magazine knows the edict: Edit, edit, edit. But rarely have I heard it so soulfully articulated as from lovely Houston designer Jane Moore in the September-October issue of Veranda. We both think it was the second time I’d interviewed her but we couldn’t be sure… I have come to the point in life where that happens.
Downsizing after a divorce, Jane moved into a townhouse and embraced the opportunity for inspiration and self-expression in an entirely new way.
“I got to be me,” she said. “I took out anything that wasn’t exactly what I wanted.” Transitions in life often induce re-appraisal of both heart and home. Jane found that the more she edited the calmer she felt. “It was like getting rid of excess baggage. I ended up with favorite things from every era of my life. I love to come home.”
How appealing is that?
And better yet, editing is FREE. I’m going to make a deal with myself, by the end of the weekend, to put at least five things in a get-rid-of pile, to give away or sell at a tag sale in the not too distant future.
I feel calmer already.
It must be contagious. Just looking at this beautiful house is calming. You see exactly what she’s talking about, don’t you? Pared down but not minimal. Spare but not severe. Simple but luxurious. Moreover the palette is soothing, the fabrics and textures sensual, the discipline strong, the touches soft. It’s a steel magnolia sensibility of design.
The kitchen has to be one of my all-time favorites, and we spoke about it at length. She’d had the old French architect’s desk in her shop for years without selling it. Apparently it was mean to be hers. She re-purposed it as kitchen counter and installed no upper cabinets (!). Note the pretty linen curtain in place of doors for lower shelves and the big baskets for storage.
She did confess there is more storage in a large walk-in pantry and for the things that aren’t pretty. Like ketchup bottles and soup cans. Thank goodness there’s a mess somewhere, I thought.
And if you want to know how much charm you can put into a postage-stamp-size garden, here it is.
To see more of Jane’s work, I discovered a wonderful blog called Indulge Decor with a nice post on Jane Moore Interiors that ran a couple of years ago…. And this just in from an alert reader: A post on Jane Moore a few days ago on the Cote de Texas blog. It is extensive with lots of photos and more about the talented Jane–you’ll love it.
Do see the full copy of Veranda to get more of Jane’s story and decor details. It’s a very strong issue that also includes a pet project of my buddy Richard Keith Langham. It’s an amazing Pennsylvania farmhouse that belongs to a longtime friend of his. And other of his longtime friends, yours truly included, have been hearing about this place for years, I exaggerate not. I nearly collapsed with the publication of it.