Dean Sharp Joins Us To Discuss The 7 Steps to "Whisper" Your Own House

The holidays, a.k.a. the ultimate test of your home, are right around the corner.

Every aspect of your home will be tested and judged by your guests and, more importantly, by yourself.

So, if this season shows you that you aren't quite happy with your home and you would like to do a remodel without having to pay big bucks for a designer, Dean Sharp "The House Whisperer" has 7 steps to help you "whisper" your own home. 

1. Ask questions — lots and lots and lots of questions.

The key to building a beautiful home (and life) is not learning all the answers but learning to ask the best questions. Most people are "house blind” and too close to really see it anymore. The best designer is the person in the room with the most questions.

2. What style is my home?

Every homeowner should become a little bit of an architectural historian. Buying a house is like adopting an orphan. Learning where it came from can tell you a lot about where it can go.

3. Don't ask "design questions" (materials) too soon.

Everybody has a notion of the kinds of questions that lead to good design. Most of the time those notions are wrong, because most of the time those questions are all about materials.

Resist the temptation to start thinking about materials too soon. Those are not questions, they are attempts at answers. And if they come too soon they will not be the best answers.

4. Ask the most human question: How does it make me feel?

Architecture is two things: shelter and story. The point of architecture is to shelter us and, in doing so, have an experience. Everything we do to our house is an attempt to make our house a home, and to gain from it some experience. We want the places that we dwell in to make us feel a certain way and make us think about certain things.

“We seek two things of our buildings. We want them to shelter us, and to speak to us – to speak to us of whatever we find most important and need to be reminded of.” – John Ruskin

5. Run through your senses.

This is much harder than it first appears. Much of how architecture effects us is subtle, even subconscious. It takes time to bring it to the surface.

6. Don't judge even the weirdest of ideas.

Learn to treat the creative process with reverence. Every idea begins as a fragile, barely formed thought—so easy to crush before it has time to develop. Most are not the "right" idea, but they very likely will have something to contribute.

7. The hardest questions of all: What do I want? How do I want to live?

At its very best, your home's story is an extension of your story. Most people haven't figured that one out yet.

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