Catching up with The Sentimentalist

Lindley Pless is a force to be reckoned with.  She is an entrepreneur – producing videos through her production company, Pless Productions, a philanthropist – having founded the Little Wings Foundation offering help in organizing charitable donations,  and last but not least, she is a wife and mother of three!

As if that were not enough, she also pens her own blog – The Sentimentalist, covering topics ranging from art and film, to the ins and outs of decorating her first home.

Part of the charm of The Sentimentalist is how openly Lindley shares not only about her décor projects, revealing which aspects have been challenging as well as what has been a pleasure, but also favorite books, brands, and family activities.

Here, she reveals what she has learned by going through a home design process and where she turns for inspiration when she needs a fresh perspective.

img_4240-768x1024Photo Credit: Lindley Pless

TLV: You have been sharing photos of your home re-design project on your website. What have you learned by going through this process and sharing with your readers?

LP: First off, I am so lucky to have such thoughtful and kind readers. They leave nice comments, and seem to really enjoy seeing the projects we have finished. It’s a pleasure to share with them. It’s also amazing what I have learned from the actual projects themselves. This is my first time really decorating a home, as we were renters in the past and decorated with things our families had given us. I’ve learned not to be afraid to ask for help and advice, and I even hired an interior design team to work with us on decorating our home. I really understand now that patience is certainly a virtue! When I was younger I wanted instant gratification when it came to home design. Now that I am living in my “forever” home, I have learned that it is well worth it to wait for just the right piece. I also now understand that many things on the decor front have a 4-6 week wait time. It makes it that much more exciting when you finally do the install. 

before-and-afterPhoto Credit: Lindley Pless

TLV:  You mention having experienced stress when shopping for your home in the past.  How have you moved past this and what do you enjoy about choosing pieces for your home now?

LP: I used to get stressed by too many options, and fear of making a mistake. I have been spending a lot of time over the last few years reading magazines, scrolling through design blogs, and following great designers on Pinterest and Instagram – that has helped me to really find my style and hone in on the colors that make me happy. Now when I make choices I feel confident. I also really rely on the “joy” theory. I only buy things that make me feel happy.

Photo Credit: Lindley Pless

TLV:  How have your children impacted the way you think about designing a space? 

LP: Our house is a family home first and foremost. I grew up in a home with many fragile things and I was too aware of not wanting to ruin them. We ask our children to respect our home, but there is nothing they could spill on or break that would devastate us. A wise friend once pointed out to me that scratches, stains, and dents actually add to the patina of your home. They make it look lived in and loved. That has helped me to enjoy the imperfections and accidents a little more!

TLV:  What do you find to be the biggest design challenge when putting together a room from scratch?

LP: I really ruminate and take my time when choosing a color scheme for each room. I want them to feel unique, but also a part of the whole home design plan. Our designers propose different colors for each room and then we move on to choosing specific fabrics and decorative pieces. There are so many great materials and patterns once you choose the color, that’s when the fun begins.

dsc_0500-678x1024Photo Credit: Lindley Pless

TLV:  How would you describe your personal style? 

LP: I have always been a bit of a chameleon. I love antiques, but I also really appreciate transitional pieces. I find newer pieces are usually a little more fresh, clean, and often they lighten up a room. It’s funny because I often think I have found my “style”, and then I’ll visit a friend’s house and fall in love with their style. I think that we can all find inspiration from each other, even if we have different styles. I like sharing images of the work we have done so it can inspire others, and likewise I love searching blogs and social media to get inspiration from my friends, great brands, and blog peers.

TLV:  Do you have any design rules you follow?

LP: None at all! I choose what makes me feel happy when I look at it. I’m a little bit of a design nerd. I recently was gifted a beautiful coffee table by some of my girlfriends for my 40th birthday. I adore it! I walk into our living room daily just to look at it. It’s sleek and made of off white lacquered wood with brass details, and then a few feet away I have an antique mahogany demilune. No design rule followed, just two great pieces I love to look at.

Photo Credit: Lindley Pless

TLV:  What current trend can you not get enough of?

LP: I absolutely adore bold wallpaper. I think it’s especially fun to choose something really vibrant and unique in a small powder room. It’s like a little surprise party for the person who walks in to use it.

TLV:  What is one item always worth investing in?

LP: Light fixtures and bathroom fixtures really need to be well made. We have a home in Vermont, and we didn’t invest when we were choosing faucets and handles. I regret that now as the ones we bought were more affordable but haven’t held up well. And we recently splurged on some amazing light fixtures in our kitchen. I have yet to see them anywhere else which makes them a conversation piece when people come into the kitchen. They also cast a beautiful shadow on the ceiling in the evening. When you buy a well made piece, they are conscious of every detail.

TLV:  What do you turn to when you need a dose of creative inspiration?

LP: I love surfing around on Pinterest, and of course sites like The Local Vault. I also really enjoy flipping through magazines like Architectural Digest and House Beautiful.

dsc_0008-678x1024Photo Credit: Lindley Pless

TLV:  What item or element of design in your home makes you most happy?

LP: I love our library. It’s cozy and charming, and will be even better after we paint the walls a lacquered bottle green over spring break. People always walk in and say, “Ooh, I’d love to have a glass of red wine in front of that fire place.”

Thanks, Lindley!

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