How to Create Beauty

Posted by Joanna Van Vleck on


Over the years I’ve learned that beauty is a felt sense seen with the eye. It is something I feel. It has a mystical quality to it, it draws me in. It isn’t a “look” or a page in a catalogue brought to life in my home. When I see beauty it is as though it is shining back at me. 

I was traveling this week and I remembered the power of beauty. For me, there doesn’t need to be a lot in a place to be beautiful. Most often, I prefer less. The simple beauty of a real, green plant against a white wall can keep my gaze for hours. I drove down the highway in Northern California and there were layers of green. Green piled upon green. Some a deeper shade. Some the bright pop of green amidst the dark. All of it. 

I was reminded that I used to be the person who had to have all things “match”. The woods had to be the same grain all throughout my house. The curtains had to match the throw pillows and I gave myself extra credit if the dishes had the same hue as the walls. As I studied the Eros Sutras, layers came off of me. I began to see the beauty in each item, not the collective surface look of the room. Instead, I saw the depth of the beauty of each piece and in its entirety, the room shined. Same as these green trees. I would never have put these shades together and yet as I drove by, the beauty on display was this wet, rich, lush nature. It was undeniable. The kind of beauty that had me exhale. 

This is the beauty that OE focuses on; each piece having its own felt sense and inside of that, a beauty. The best way to prepare for this type of beauty is to empty. Empty the piece that no longer feel good to you, the ones without life. Then, slowly, we begin to fill piece by piece. May our homes be a place where the beauty shines back at us. 


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