Note: I gave this post a good edit on June 10, 2011.
I've moved away from the home that provided much of the fodder for my 2004 book, The Wabi-Sabi House, although many of its lessons found its way into the new version. I lived in that home for 13 years and learned to love it wholeheartedly, once wabi-sabi taught me to stop focusing on its flaws. The home as documented in these photos no longer exists, but many of its pieces live on in my townhouse.
I found these funky French doors at Boulder’s ReSource, a recycled building materials center. They were shorter than current code, so I had a carpenter refit the door jamb for them. When I lived there, I looked through the doors every day, at my kids playing in the back yard. I could look up from cooking and see the reflection of a swing moving or, later, a body bouncing on a trampoline. After I moved out, my ex-husband had the doors removed. I have them now in my entry hall. I don’t have a doorway to fill, so I pasted old photographs over the glass panes and turned them into an ancestor altar. Photo by Joe Coca
Because the French doors were smaller than the doorway, our carpenter built these little shelves to fill the gap. They were a great place for tucking family photos and seasonal items. Photo by Joe Coca
The kitchen island had shelves for displaying ancestral photos and my old bottle collection. Photo by Joe Coca
We had a bed made from old doors. Photo by Joe Coca
It took nearly a year, on and off, to complete the mosaic tiling on our sunroom floor. When it was done, I vowed never to leave that house because we’d poured so many hours into the project. Photo by Joe Coca
Just before I left, our friend Robin Tanner installed a tranquil Japanese garden in the front yard. I watch the garden mature when I pick up and drop off my kids from my old house. It's a gift to the neighborhood.