Monday, June 29, 2009

What's Your Cyber Curb Appeal?

Immediately after my first child was born I developed a little ritual. My husband would walk in the door at 5:34PM and I would cheerfully hand him our son and say "I need to get out of here". I would then drive up and down my favorite Kansas City streets for about an hour in search of one thing: Checking out beautiful entrances to homes.

I appreciate all the thought and inspiration that go into a beautiful entrance. I wanted to see what color doors are painted. Are the doors full length glass paneled so I can sneak a quick peek inside to help me better fantasize about the lives happening inside? Or are they solid doors and very private leaving me guessing even more? God forbid, are there metal bars keeping people out... or in? What flowers or other plants were in the containers flanking the entrance to the home? Were they in urns or something else? Was it reflecting a season, a holiday, the person(s) inside effectively? Was it symetrical or not? Are they using unusual materials to create this entrance-scape? I couldn't help but wonder if some entrances were done by someone other than the home owner. If so... that makes me sad. It seems like false advertising... not-so-very authentic. As I type this, my Rosemary topiaries are half dead from the insane heat we've endured the last two weeks... meh!

This summer my dear designer friend, Susann, created a bold splash of color with some whimsy and a little French country chic flair, to her homes entrance. She used two old kitchen chairs she had thought she would throw out some day... painted them robins egg blue and took out the seating. She plopped in plastic flower pots painted to match the dark grey stained concrete sidewalk and stairs leading to her red front doors. She then filled them with lime green Creeping Jenny, variagated vincas, blue Lobelia and red begonias, etc... to make them pop with color! (see pic) Every time I come to her house, I smile at this beautiful arrangement. In fact, drivers turn their heads to look at this entrance as they whiz down her street, slowing down momentarily to enjoy the view to her front doors. Each season she puts out something unique and different from the same seasons of years past. I appreciate the effort so much. It doesn't even have to be anything fancy... just a reflection of who we are. Knowing Susann and her family, I feel her entrances are a true depiction of the people inside.

This made me think about other ways we present ourselves to those who pass by our cyber domains, much like our homes, each day. With profile photos we say a lot about who we are, at a glance. With that split second of someone seeing our profile photo (whatever it may be) they will decide if they want to come in and get to know us better or if they will drive on by. It's our "curb appeal". Our invitation to the world ... some are private, some are public, some bold, others funny, some fake, some making political statements, some rejoicing in the celebrations of the successes of those inside... they are all different and that's the beauty of it. Remember to think about your own Universal Identity... it's already happening.

What does your curb appeal say about you?

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