In the past week I have moved into my first house at university, a student house but still my first house all the same. At first I loved the dark wood and old, characterful feel – very unlike the usual cramped student home – but now I am starting to think it is too grown up and prefer the typical student house. My housemates are all pretty clean and tidy people, which I thought would be great but no, it is not as amazing as it sounds.
I visited my friends house just 10 minutes away and was shocked by how messy it was already! There was not a clean plate in sight and their living room was littered with take-away boxes, sweets, half drunk drinks, ect. And it felt great. Their home was so warm and welcoming I wanted to stay forever. I stayed all evening and felt at home. They had cosy blankets and cushions scattered about, fairly lights strung around and it was all so cute.
Eventually, the time came for me to leave and I was feeling pretty sad already that I wasn’t living with them. Then I got back to mine and noticed how bare it all was. We have 5 huge shelves that are completely empty, a stark black leather sofa and one grey cushion. There was no mess or clutter. There was no dirty cups or even any dirty cutlery. It was so stark and felt extremely un-homely. It was as if no one had ever lived there. This coupled with the old building was horrible, if it was a modern build we could at least say we are going for a minimalist look (which I hate anyway because I love having stuff).
This is when I decided to ignore everything I have been told about being tidy and make sure at least my bedroom is slightly messy and looks lived in and comfortable. At least then I have somewhere to go when I feel uncomfortable or sad in my surroundings. I am a very messy person anyway so it only took a few hours of me not cleaning up after myself to leave a trail of clothes and mess in my room. I can 100% say that I felt so much better once I knew I lived in a mess. It was so strange how much it affected my mood.
I decided to keep downstairs tidy, just to keep the peace with my housemates so instead I bought some decorations for the empty shelves. I bought the ugliest vase I could find from a charity shop and added some pictures and ornaments onto the shelves. To at least give it a bit of character. Unfortunately, one of my housemates does in fact love the minimalist look and wanted to keep the shelves completely empty – completely empty. This just does not make any sense at all for me, shelves are there for things to be put on not to be used for nothing. Anyway, I kept the things up (there are about 9 things on 3 shelves so it still looks empty to me) and I will have to just keep quiet about the large empty floor space, table and sofa.
However, if I had free reign this whole house would be happily and comfortably messy. I would ensure nothing is too dirty but that it feels warm and homely. I think I have proven to myself that I am happier and more at ease when I do not have to worry about tidying and when I am surrounded with stuff. Be happy, be messy!