Praise for mismatched dining chairs

Even though it's the norm, I find matchy-matchy dining sets boring and really enjoy dining tables with mismatched chairs that go well together. I also really like the solid wood tables in these pictures; good-looking, easy-going and practical -built to serve its owners well for life instead of with an intention to impress.

Top image source, bottom image source

Beauty & utility of using broken tiles

Broken tiles can look amazing! If you have broken tiles no need to throw them away. You or someone else can create beautiful and useful spaces with them.  It is great when such value (& beauty) is created from what some might consider trash.

Broken tiles add a lot of character and an easy-going, relaxed flair wherever they are used.

I posted about broken tiles before. If you'd like to see more broken tile inspiration, just search "broken tiles" in the search bar on the right column.

Sources: Top image, middle image, bottom image

Live on porches and patios

I am a fan of life outdoors. Eating, sleeping, a coffee break, a conversation...etc, almost any activity can be improved by taking it outside, and covered porches/patios/balconies extend the time you can stay outdoors by protecting you from the sun when it's hot and from rain and snow when it's not. Front porches are especially great since they increase curb appeal. They also improve neighborhoods and bring neighbors closer together in my opinion. Plus it's fun to raise your glass as people go by!

Image sources: Top imageImage 2Image 3, image 4, bottom image

Timeless materials

It makes sense on many levels to use materials that will not only last but will also age well and look good with wear and tear (less time, money, and resources spent on maintenance and replacements.) Such materials also create less stuck-up and more relaxed, cozy spaces.

Image sources: top image, 2nd image, 3rd image, bottom image

Simple and smart DIY furniture

These are some great efficient designs. Intelligence should help us meet our needs more easily with less effort and materials saving us time, money, and creating a less of a burden on resources. These look great as well!

This coffee table made of recycled pallets is one of the best I've seen. The colored tiles add character and look great.

Top image from, the pallet coffee table with tiles image is from dishfunctionaldesigns, the cool coffee table with 3 boards image is from, and the last coffee table made of three pieces of plywood image is from

Gravel for natural garden paths

Along with a mixture of plants and boulders, gravel is a "natural" choice for relaxing and easy-going landscapes. Gravel is:
  • easy to live with, you can move it around, adjust it's path/shape/size easily
  • will keep dust and mud under control
  • inexpensive compared to other options
  • it is permeable so it keeps the soil under and around it more healthy, and
  • looks great as part of a natural looking landscape.
Gravel generally does better in relatively dry climates, and it has been used extensively in Mediterranean landscapes and in the American South-West for good reason.

Image 1 from, image 2 from, image 3 from, and image 4 from

Colorful fabrics and textiles

Whether it's simple quilts, kilims, ethnic patterns, or western florals adding colorful textiles add character, make spaces look better, and more inviting. Patterns are also easier to live with. They will age better and they will hide any fading or subtle stains, making them also a very practical choice. The human animal also must find patterns cozier, homier, and appreciate the visual interest since most cultures around the world preferred to decorate with patterns rather than solid colors.

Image 1 from, image 2 from Tamar Schechner's flickr, image 3 from, and image 4 from


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