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Rattan Furniture: Beyond Coastal Living

Beyond Coastal Living.


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Rattan, cane, and wicker furniture are not just for beachfront or resort living anymore.

These beautiful and natural materials started making a comeback hitting cities and the burbs dwellings in 2019, lending a light and airy feel to many homes.

Popular more so today due to many having to work from the dining room table and homeschooling. These products not only offer functionality but brings nature indoors.

This material goes back centuries, fading in and out in interior fashion though it has been widely used in coastal and resort décor.

Light in weight, cane furniture is made from the rattan tree, where approximately 70% is grown in Indonesia. Other countries like Malaysia, the Philippines, and Bangladesh grow and supply rattan trees as well.

How Sweet the Cane: Rattan, Cane, and Wicker Furniture.

How sweet cane is? Like most accent pieces, versatility is a plus. Rattan accents and wall art offers the same versatilities with the benefit of being raw and natural-looking. Larger pieces like beds, chairs, and tables are adhered to other woods or metals to give them durability.

Not to be mistaken for sugar cane. The rattan tree is a stainable plant much like the bamboo tree. The woven wicker appearance and cane furniture’s are created using the same rattan tree simply, using a different method in the weaving process separates their look and feel.

Thinking Back

When I think of rattan furniture, I think back to the hilarious 80’s hit TV show Golden Girls, where four women (including Betty White) retires in the sunshine state of Florida.

Cohabitating, the Golden Girls rattan, bold and floral cushions set the stage of their living room filmed at Walt Disney from season 2 until the last episode aired in 1992. The first season was filmed in Los Angeles, where these aging women brought viewers to tears with their gut-boosting and witty punch lines.

Today, updated florals and print pallets in pastels, greens, and blues mimic the same 80’s aesthetics paired with new and old abstract blonde and expresso-stained cane and rattan pieces from headboards, dining tables, and chairs, plant holders, and wall décor to name a few.

Like plants, rattan furniture brings a natural element and warmth to any room especially, when many of us are operating from home for health safety.

If you are not sure if this interior trend suits you, try adding a planter or small table to see if this natural element could bring nature into your home décor.

Whichever flower you choose to be sister BLOOM!

Dawn

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I Did It! I Downsized

I did it! Find out if I am happy that I did.

I’ve gone from a 1010 square feet apartment that offered two bedrooms, two full baths with a laundry/storage closet within the unit to a 730 square feet one-bedroom apartment, one bath: without laundry inside the apartment unit (access in the building).

About ten years ago, we, as in myself and my children, resided in a five-bedroom single-family home. It had always been a dream of mines to live in a large house that had a big backyard surrounded by soothing noises of nature where the kiddos could swing or swim in a pool.

My children would all begin to exit high school by the time we moved into our largest home. But nevertheless, we got to experience the joys and pains of living in a single-family house.

The house did not have a pool in the back yard or in the community, but a wood swing set stood in the wide-opened backyard. I love the look and the easy care of the hardwood floors throughout and space to entertain family and friends during the holidays and special occasions like birthdays and baby showers.

Pruning the small flower garden in the spring and summer months was relaxing, but unfortunately, nature was not always so calming.

We experienced raccoon and fox invasions, spiders the size of our hands, the spawn of mosquitoes, and a lot of leaves to rake during the fall season: a townhouse would be easier to maintain.

So as each child earned their walk across the stage, grabbing their high school diplomas from the administrative hands. They were ready to spread their wings to take off into the real world and, downsizing begin.

I climbed and reached that goal to live in a five-bedroom home then downsizing from a four townhouse to a two-bed apartment with a den to two bedrooms, and now a one but I think I need a little more space.

And yes, they have all left the nest visiting often. I have to say I am a proud momma. But I never had imagined myself here in my smallest home to date (#lifeatdawns).

The downside of downsizing

Making it work with one bathroom.

If you are thinking of downsizing: BEWARE. There are as many cons as there are pros to tiny living.

Many have been forced to downsize or are considering it due to these unknown times. And I am here to tell those thinking of doing so, it can be challenging. Well, I know for me it was the most challenging move to date moving amid corona.

The search for a place to live is stressful enough, but to add the corona lockdown on top of packing, working from home, and one flood issue after another I was experiencing in my then apartment had me stretched to my limits.

However, I survived the madness, experiencing the downside to downsizing: the lack of storage space is the biggest downfall.

I did a quick walkthrough of the unit I reside in now and decided on it because it has a walk-in closet in the bedroom, a coat closet, and a large linen closet: plus a small storage unit in the building.

In my mind, as I rushed through it: masked, it appeared to offer room to store my clothing, coats, linens, and DIY materials if I got rid of my five totes of Christmas decorations. Boy was a wrong (closet post coming soon)! I am still purging my clothes post-move in almost four months later.

Another con is not having a separate guest room when the g-kids visit and my daughter visits from out Florida.

In my old place, the second bedroom served as my office and guest room. Now I am trying to figure out if I should purchase a futon, sleeper sofa, or the chesterfield sofa I’ve wanted for many years for the living room. Whatever buy, I need it to be a transitional piece for when I upsize into a house.

Some other cons to downsizing are entertainment space, sharing one bathroom with guests, and purging of sentimental items.

I had an old Singer sewing machine that belonged to my mother that needed to be serviced.

I recall the day she and I walked into Walmart to buy it. She did not know how to sew, so I kept the machine at my house.

I didn’t want to let it go and wouldn’t have but, I had received a new one as a Christmas gift a few years back and decided to let my moms go in the move.

Why I Did It & Pros to Downsizing

Florida Trees

Several things played a role in my decision to downsize. You can say I was somewhat influenced by this Tiny Living concept all over the home décor channels and social media but also the pros of downsizing.

I watched a TV show once where a family of six shopped for a tiny house to move from a 2500 square foot house to a 600 tiny square foot house to get out of debt and save for their children’s college funds and thought, if they could with a family of that size, I could easily manage to live in a smaller footprint.

But I have questioned my decision many times after moving in. And wish those television shows would follow up with a Where Are They Now series? I am curious to learn how they are surviving seeing how I still find myself all over the place to find a spot for what I still own.

Also, some years ago, I watched a documentary on the happiest countries in the world and how people living in Denmark have less stress and are happier having less stuff to worry about.

Viewing countless shows since then on how other countries: people are living longer lives than many areas of America living with so much and the benefits of tiny living. I said, why not?

The Pros and Benefits to Downsizing

The pros and benefits would be to have more time with my family and friends creating and writing, less time cleaning. It would permit saving more for traveling, investing, and education and less cost in utility bills in return for lesser energy usage that impact world climate.

As I stated, in the cons, sharing one bathroom with my guest is a big downsize: I kind of wish I had a separate half bathroom for them to use.

However, one of the best lessons I have learned in downsizing is what I want and do not want when buying a home.

Sisters, I am still settling into my small cozy space, so visit again to see how I decorator and differentiate zones for the apartment to function.

The photo above is sneak peek at how I decorated the bathroom to escape the DMV (D.C., MD. & VA.) weather this fall and winter based on my Florida trips.

Thank you for visiting sisterslikeus.com

Whichever type of flower you are sister, Bloom!

Dawn