Today’s A to Z post topic is Design.

When I was a little kid, I used to dream about houses and then wake up and scramble to sketch out the floor plans before they vanished from my memory. My favorite notebooks were graph paper so I could complete to-scale drawings. I used to (and still do) monitor the local MLS daily, and back when my mom was a Realtor I’d beg her to take me to see fresh-on-the-market homes that appealed to me. I rarely miss the Charlottesville Parade of Homes, because I’ve always been interested in the latest and greatest trends in new home construction.

I started watching Trading Spaces on TLC way back before interior design was “trendy.” Once HGTV hit the big-time, I spent my teenage years glued to it rather than anything on MTV or any of the other networks watched by my peers. I knew from the time I was 8 or so years old that I wanted to be an architect when I grew up. I took two years of Technical Drawing and Architectural Drawing classes in high school, only to have a crisis of confidence my senior year and decide to apply to college as an undeclared major, because I didn’t think I’d get in to Virginia Tech’s School of Architecture.

I majored in English (because it was easy and I was good at it), and I regret settling. During my senior year of college, I applied to grad schools, two of which were the Masters in Architecture at Virginia Tech and the Masters program in Interior Design at George Washington University. I was accepted to both. I turned both offers down. I’ve regretted it ever since.

I’ve spent the four years since college graduation immersing myself in interior design and DIY blogs every day. I find myself feeling alternating surges of jealousy of those bloggers who jumped on the bandwagon circa 2009, before the DIY-blog train took off, and anger at myself for not doing the same thing (even though, to be fair, in 2009 I was a senior in college with no money and living in an apartment with three strangers – not the best material for a design blog). I can’t help but think that there are so many DIY/design bloggers out there who don’t have any actual design skill, but who instead have gotten by on a lot of luck and good timing.

Anyway, this hateful venting isn’t where I set out to go with this.

Interior design, architecture, houses, and real estate have been my passions for my entire life. I know this. But I haven’t acted on it. More recently, I’ve become interested in event design, wedding planning, and even print and graphic design. I have no idea if I have what it takes to turn these passions into a paying career, but I’ve been paralyzed by fear of trying for far too long.

So that brings me to my next goal for my 20’s: Design something. Be it a fantastic room for a client, the blueprints for my next home, or even just a logo in PhotoShop – I have to start somewhere. I’ve been itching to see my design vision accomplished for well over a decade. I owe it to myself to produce something real. (And maybe to share photos with the internet.)

Is there anyone else out there who’s ever denied a life-long dream? What happened when you acted on it? 


5 thoughts on “Design

  1. Eli says:

    Happy to see you on my blog. Thank you for sharing this Katie – very interesting and well-told:-) I have always tried to follow my dreams.. even though people have said “you should do this. you should do that” … The most important is to do something that brings you happiness in daily life, I think?It seems you are on the right path there! 🙂 Wish you all the best:-) You can do it:-)

  2. somberscribbler says:

    I wanted to be an optometrist since I was in middle school. I wanted to work with people who had macular degeneration…in memory of my Gran. I didn’t get into optometry school after getting my B.Sc., my grades weren’t good enough. So I went in a different direction. Today, I am working with those who have macular degeneration, but in a different way. I’m doing research, working on my Ph.D. I’d like to think I didn’t get in to optometry school because life was redirecting me to something better. Maybe you didn’t act on your dream originally because something was telling you there was a better way to go about it, you just weren’t ready for it yet.

  3. My Tropical Home says:

    I had many “Dreams” and “wishes” growing up. I still do. Most are on the “slow-cook” burner waiting for the right time to turn off the fire. Some I’ve learned to let go for something better.

    God gives us dreams – sometimes to warn us, other times to encourage us and give us hope. Take baby steps towards them. Or look around you. Sometimes you’re already living your dream or are on the path to it, without realising it. It can be hard to see how far we’ve gone if we don’t look back from time to time at where we’ve been 😉

    Stopping by from the A to Z Challenge,

  4. dragontailsandscales says:

    It’s harder when the dreams we have don’t have an adequate source of income. I have gone the long way around to do one of the things I grew up doing (well) – that’s writing and drawing. I know what you are talking about when you breathe this stuff as a child. I put my big toe in the door of the Art academy then retreated. But I can’t complain as life has been so full of interesting nooks and crannies. Enjoy the treasure hunt of life!!!
    Raising a Dragon

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