I’ve been in an identification disaster for many of 2021. Personally and professionally and it made planning the longer term very exhausting. WHO ARE WE POST-LOCKDOWN??? The yr 2020 shifted the weblog (and all our lives dramatically). Our design content material pivoted (are we finished with that phrase but?) fairly shortly to assist remedy issues, create consolation, and provides assets within the dwelling as we had been all in lockdown. However we did it in a really low-budget, informal means that required means much less manufacturing on our finish. And I LOVED the liberty and ease of that stage of manufacturing. We went from 4-7 photoshoots per week to possibly 1-2 with my iPhone, at my home, in my pajamas. I’m speaking REALLY LOW QUALITY when it got here to photographs, styling, and many others. I simply rewatched and browse Brian’s publish about Matty Matheson and I actually beloved that vibe. We had been far more centered on what was sensible and relatable than making an attempt to be good. And never solely was it enjoyable/quick/simple to do nevertheless it was truly what we needed to see on the web, too. Even myself, a stylist obsessive about completely but effortlessly styled images did NOT need to see somebody’s dwelling wanting annoyingly lovely throughout that yr.
Reduce to the top of 2021. In the previous couple of months particularly, I’ve seen this actual shift again to “perfection” on a lot of the web. And y’all I don’t need to return full-time perfection pushing. I discovered myself, for the primary time in my profession, actually evaluating myself to others, feeling jealous their houses regarded so good, their content material so skilled, and pissed off that the world is simply again to enterprise as normal – that what we discovered within the final two years has already been forgotten. However after all, that was simply my very own insecurity, grappling with my need to not develop into the machine that I as soon as was, and simply making an attempt to determine learn how to “do all of it” whereas sustaining the sense of slowness that I’ve had. I even have felt confused about what individuals need, and like there’s a backlash for something we do as a result of the viewers has gotten so massive. Right here’s an instance – If I put on an American-made, costly costume, persons are irritated that they will’t afford it and I get known as out. If I put on a $19.99 Goal costume, individuals really feel like I’m selling quick trend and I get known as out, and if I put on one thing classic/thrifted individuals really feel pissed off they will’t click on and purchase. And I totally perceive all three viewpoints, however it doesn’t matter what I really feel unhealthy that somebody is sad and it appears like a lose-lose. The sauna blanket posts is a good instance – so a lot of you discovered it helpful (and the visitors/engagement had been very excessive which sure, produced a number of income) however a lot of you discovered it was off-brand for me – which I totally get, nevertheless it was sincere and I had enjoyable doing it. It made me suppose what’s “the model” anyway post-pandemic.
hey from my sweat sleeping bag
Whereas the weblog was doing nice (because of you all) in 2020 and 2021 I used to be nonetheless confused concerning the future. Brian and my priorities shifted and we actually needed to decelerate. So we left the town and centered on making an attempt to create a life off of the hamster wheel in Oregon. However what does that appear like business-wise? Do I need to develop the enterprise or hold it “as is”? Are you able to even exist with out eager to develop or progress? Isn’t that simply a part of the human situation? How do you exist as a content material creator or “influencer” with a crew to assist with out getting again on the hamster wheel and saying sure to every thing good that comes our means? DO I HAVE TO BE ON TIK TOK???? Can we probably sustain with each platform and do them properly??
After which I noticed, wait, we are able to do all of these issues and possibly that’s truly the place we should always reside anyway (and at all times have, however with much less psychological possession). We will nonetheless do low-budget mirror-selfie posts whereas additionally doing the upper funds styled-out photoshoots. And that’s not solely OK, however maybe having a looser method can even have a broader/extra inclusive enchantment. We may be extra issues to extra individuals and simply personal it.
So right here is the analogy that I pitched to the crew – We’re like a big Hollywood studio manufacturing firm that tells tales about dwelling and design. We will do big-budget blockbusters (the tent pole superhero movies that pay for every thing else), the low-budget indie movies (funds tales, developments), documentaries (actual course of and schooling), off-broadway performs (experimental design posts), commercials (sponsored content material), and even the free theater within the park (really feel good makeovers) – WHATEVER WE WANT so long as we do them within the EHD means. Not each manufacturing (publish) shall be for all individuals, and that’s okay. Like Hugh Jackman – I want him in The Best Showman over Wolverine, however he does them each rather well. Some persons are right here for the large well-produced reveals, some for nitty-gritty farmhouse documentary course of, some for home looking, some for developments, funds merchandise, trend, and a few for sauna blanket evaluations. And that’s GREAT. We hear you and we all know that a lot of you need funds design concepts whereas others need discussions round sustainability. And that’s good! Each issues can occur right here. With my crew and our contributors, we may be extra issues to extra individuals, however we are able to’t be all issues to all individuals each single day. All of us can agree that if at the moment’s publish isn’t for you – simply come again tomorrow and hopefully it is likely to be.
left aka “blockbuster”: photograph by sara ligorria-tramp | proper aka “low-budget indie movie”: photograph by me…clearly
And pay attention, if coming right here many days in a row makes you are feeling unhealthy, uncomfortable, or snarky in any means – then I believe we aren’t the best match for you. And that’s okay, too. We’ll be extra on prime of the feedback this yr to make sure that this stays a web site filled with optimistic, productive, and constructive design conversations, schooling, inspiration, assets all with a private connection to us. No snark in the direction of one another, or the author of the publish within the feedback allowed, and if you wish to snark about me there are darkish locations on the web you possibly can waste your time. Go for it. After all, dialogue and constructive criticism are ALWAYS welcome, however I’ve had too many readers attain out saying that some days the remark part kinda ruins the spirit of the weblog and bums them out and we agree. Nobody ought to really feel guilt and disgrace for his or her decisions of their dwelling. I do know many days I’ve prevented the remark part myself out of hysteria and we’ve got some writers that don’t need to write for us anymore due to it. And pay attention, it’s only a few commenters so I believe will probably be simple to manage (we all know as a result of we are able to lookup IP addresses even for those who use e mail aliases like a number of of you do). So don’t waste your time, you’ll be shortly deleted (which FYI mechanically deletes any remark that replies to the unique one so don’t reply to them). Boundaries, y’all. We aren’t good individuals. We’re human, and we try actually actually exhausting to assist encourage, educate and entertain it doesn’t matter what your funds and magnificence.
I’m truly tremendous excited and really feel re-energized – and I couldn’t have mentioned that 2 months in the past. I really feel extra empowered to teach and use what I’ve discovered that can assist you all by way of your design course of. And I’m not alone! With the assistance of my crew (and former crew), we’ve actually was a publishing platform and have been capable of broaden the voices, kinds, and budgets and need to proceed to do it in 2022. I believe I simply wanted to personal my shit extra, be pleased with the mess, course of, the reveals, and throw up some new boundaries (the buzzword of 2021).
I believe simply giving myself permission to do the big-budget blockbusters and the extra experimental low-budget indie movies has unlocked my creativity and made me much less exhausting on myself. Going again to completely produced every thing gave me nervousness and simply didn’t really feel proper. I imply I’m dwelling in a home with sheets on the home windows for curtains and renovating what appears like an absolute mud/money-pit. My hair is frizzy on daily basis due to the rain and I principally put on yoga garments and bogs. I don’t actually really feel like a method inspiration proper now and I refuse to place it on only for the digital camera. How do you present that mess “completely”? I believe you don’t, you simply embrace it. And but I can’t WAIT to type out the farm, making lovely photographs and movies to disclose this insane challenge (sure, the “blockbuster”), I LOVE styling branches in a vase to digital camera and inserting the slippers subsequent to the mattress, *like so*. However I additionally love speaking about my mudroom or closet woes, with iPhone photographs. I really like working with a associate to inform a narrative round their product, which regularly pays for the feel-good makeovers. We love discovering actually nice funds furnishings and researching good merchandise for higher dwelling. And I really like writing private posts about parenting, marriage, and faith.
WE LOVE IT ALL. So as a substitute of feeling like we’ve got to be one factor, we’re embracing the truth that we are able to do posts of all budgets/kinds, and many others, so long as we do it within the EHD means.
So anticipate all of it – it’s going to be an actual “throw it on the wall and see what sticks” yr – which truthfully isn’t that a lot completely different than the final 10 years, it’s only a clearer mind-frame and fewer apologizing. And in digital and social media there’s actually no predicting what’s going to work – properly besides speaking about useless cats, vasectomies, lounge rug sizes, hair, and sauna blankets. I suppose I ought to determine what all these have in frequent and plan our editorial calendar based mostly on that? 🙂
An enormous thanks to my crew, after all, who has caught with me navigating my identification disaster this yr. There was a number of “speaking it out” and moments of privateness and I do know that isn’t simple for a small crew to navigate, each personally and professionally so thanks Jess, Caitlin, Ryann, and Mal. I respect the hell out of you. And thanks to our new contributors who’ve created among the finest content material on the weblog – taking a look at you Key, Malcolm, Albie, Ajai, Anita, Lea, and Rashida. I’m so pleased with the entire EHD household for the unimaginable content material produced, even when your chief is having an identification disaster. 🙂 You’ll see much more faces this yr as we develop a small crew in Portland.
And because of you readers, significantly. Twelve years in and I do know that a lot of you had been right here from the start and are available on daily basis and I can’t TELL YOU how a lot which means to me. I’m not a “individuals pleaser” normally, however boy do I need to please you, as you guys actually do know me and have supported me on the way in which up. So simply thanks for sticking by me, coming again, and embracing the entire modifications, transitions, and self-indulgence 🙂
CHEERS TO 2022 being a VERY fascinating yr!!!!!
Opening Photograph Credit score: Photograph by Suraya Barbee