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Architectural Clutter

architectural clutter


It has been a long time since I last wrote about The Idea of Home.  Somehow it is easier to puzzle it out in my head than on paper, so this is an attempt to get back to it:

For me, life is very much related to architecture and the mysteries I tackle on a daily basis.  Trying to be a good partner, parent, and human being seems to be entangled with architecture, especially in my home.  We have young kids and it is never easy to keep our apartment clean.  In fact, it is never so clean as when we have family coming to visit and we want to deceive them into thinking that we always pick up after ourselves.

Despite this acknowledgement, we have yet to create a system that maintains order, and I have noticed that the more clutter there is around our house, the more chaotic our lives feel.  One may very well be a symptom of the other, but I think the clutter magnifies our emotional state, proving yet again that architecture affects the way we feel.

I ask myself how my house would look if I could design every aspect of it, bearing in mind that a 120-year-old structure is not very easy to change.  I think I would make my house more modern, but that would throw the whole Victorian-farmhouse thing it has going on into disarray.  Could I just make the interior modern and sleek or would it feel disjointed?   Should I build in country cabinets to take care of the clutter even though it isn’t really my style?

You start to see the problem and the lack of progress I have made.  All of these decisions have to be made to include the needs and wishes of my family and, if I were smart, some possible resale value for the future. For now, I just keep inviting family to visit so the place gets cleaned every now and again.

An essay by Patrick Kitzmiller, staff designer at Austin Design, another in an occasional series featuring voices and viewpoints here at ADi.

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