Disclaimer: I have never been to France sadly, however, these are lessons I have taken from the book Home Sweet Maison: The French Art of making a Home by Danielle Postel-Vinay and they inspired me to think differently about my home and what’s inside.
So, let’s get to it!
1. Have Dedicated Rooms
As supposed to open floor plans in a modern American home, the traditional French home keeps each room a separate space. The reason for this being that every room is a dedicated space for a particular activity. The kitchen is for cooking, living room for entertaining and so on. The French believe that it is important to focus on one stimulus at a time. One should not cook while talking to friends but rather make them separate events. This type of separation in activities allows for us to be more present in the moment and truly experience each part.
2. Your Entry Way is Important
Your entry is the room you enter as you walk into somebody’s home. In the states, it’s usually a place to take off your shoes or hang your coat. In a traditional french home, your entry way is much more than that. This is a place where you showcase your favorite art or photograph. It’s a place to showcase an event that has transformed your life. Only one’s favorite pieces or important experiences is shown at the front. It is a great talking point for people who come in as it says a lot about the person’s home in which you are about to enter.
3. Control and Mindfulness
Everything in moderation. The author of the book describes how her French husband came to New York with her, didn’t change what he ate, yet he had gained 15 pounds within the first year of moving. Turns out, we have much bigger portions and plates than the French. Who knew? In their culture, it is frowned upon to eat without control. Food is eaten mindfully as is the consumption of alcohol.
Which of these ideas do you think could benefit you in your home?
Thanks for reading,