The Redecorated Life
What is it with women and decorating? Throughout human history, females have been in charge of the domestic realm, so is it any wonder that we're a little obsessed with setting up our homes to suit our fancies?
"I love my home, and it's very important that my surroundings be pleasing," said interior design consultant, Elizabeth Scott. "It gives me a feeling of peace and contentment to have my nest in order."
Add the prefix "re" to the word decorate, and you have what every woman knows is a recipe for freshening up your life. As Liz Scott puts it, "When I start a project, it really does rejuvenate me. It gives me a lift."
She describes her style as "modern vintage with a touch of glam," but looking around her eclectic home, a jumble of other adjectives may come to mind. Among Liz's many unusual pieces are animal print rugs, checkered teapot and magnifying glass, modern Italian cuckoo clock, vintage Ralph Lauren leather chair, an old English stove-turned-vanity, a compass rose hand-painted on the ceiling of her office, plenty of framed original art, and her mother's old birdcage hanging in the laundry room.
The disparate elements are tied together by a central theme, Liz's hallmark black & white. She attributes her love of this high-contrast combo to her mother, who was also a designer and decorator. She used to take little Liz with her to galleries and shows, ultimately passing on her passion for black & white, which now dominates Liz's furniture, wardrobe and accessories.
Perhaps Liz was never more thankful for her beautiful home as she has been during the last year and a half-she spent more time there than usual after putting her life on hold when her son was deployed to Iraq. Twenty-six-year-old Jordan, a captain in the Army and Black Hawk helicopter medivac pilot, is scheduled to return this Christmas after 16 months overseas.
"There was nothing that could really prepare me for sending my son off to war," said Liz. "I went through the motions of putting up the yellow ribbons, sending the care packages and writing the endless e-mails, but my skills as a mom could not help me deal with the fear and anxiousness that have been with me this whole time."
Despite the uncertainty that has weighed so heavily upon her, Liz is still able to find a touch of humor in the situation. She recalls the first picture Jordan sent her, and how mortified she was to see him standing in his new living quarters: a bare plywood box.
"As a designer, I always had his room perfectly done and decorated, and here he was living in a plywood box!" laughs Liz, who's so proud that her son never once complained about anything in his correspondence. "The next care package I sent, it was all I could do not to throw in a couple rolls of wallpaper."
Jordan's safe return is something the whole family has been looking forward to. It's sure to give his mother the kind of fresh start that no redecorating project ever could.
"I don't mean to sound maudlin about Iraq," she said, "but I think it's important to remember that our children are being sent over there and we need to be supportive. I feel very blessed and fortunate that he's been looked after."
Hometown: Hamburg, NY Came to Hilton Head: four years ago from northern Virginia Career: has been an interior designer for 30 years Family includes: three grown children; two grandbaby twins, Isabella and Tristan; and miniature dachshund, Brandy Guilty pleasure: chocolate (especially in cake and martinis) Prize possession: vintage Chanel jacket from her mother