20 April, 2011


Does liking and wanting good design make you spend more than you should? Should you always spend less, invest your money, travel or give to those more in need?

Let's use the bathroom faucet as a test subject. Should I get cheapest bathroom faucet out there? The same one that I lived with for the last 7 years in my little brick house? The one that worked just fine? The one that grew a lovely green sludge I couldn't clean underneath the plastic diamond? The one that costs $49.99?

Or keep the $380.88 faucet I got for $100?

Because truly, the function is the same.

How much is too much? I can't tell you how often I question my wants in life lately. Do you really need more than a warm dry house, clean clothes, good food and friends and family?

As Mike and I are remodeling his family house on the farm, I am amazed at the cost and all the purchases required. And that brings up the question a lot. Do we need it? Should we get it? Are we being extravagant? This is partly brought on by Mike not really caring what we get, just as long as I am happy, and will I stop asking him if he thinks it's pretty.

I've been trying to cut costs to lessen my guilt, like going with Ikea for the kitchen (still not cheap!), finding fixtures on Ebay, and generally spending all my spare time online trying to get deals. But it is still expensive and it shocks me. But here is my confession...I don't get the cheapest faucets out there, (see above). Nope, I want the prettier ones and I work like crazy to find it cheaper than retail.

But why am I spending so much time finding and buying this stuff. To paraphrase Tom Shadyac, "Does taking care of stuff make you happy? We don't need to take more than we need." (Well, we do need a faucet, but is my life better because I got the prettier one?)

But what can I say, I do love a well thought out design. Here is a very beautiful kitchen I have in my inspiration folder, found over at for the love of a house.

I think this will be an eternal struggle, but would love to know your thoughts.