By Keri Foy

The chair Lyn is sitting in is one from a pair of chairs that belonged to her mother who was also an interior designer.
Photos by Melissa Donald 

Take the things you adore and arrange them in a way that fosters harmony in your home.

Art fills the walls of Lyn Mabry’s home in the Highlands. One long hallway stretches from one end of the house to the other, but instead of feeling expansive and empty, it functions as a canvas to display the watercolors, photography, and art Lyn has picked up around the world.

Located at the entrance of her condo, Lyn displays a group of artwork. The painting is of her dog is a commissioned piece.

She founded her residential design, staging, and renovation business, Living Spaces by Lyn, in 2012. She has the gift of charm and that’s reflected in her own home. “I need a space that nourishes me,” says Lyn, who looks to nature and design magazines for inspiration. “Colors need to be right. The balance of objects needs to be right. Shapes, textures, and colors have to harmonize.”

Lyn believes an abode can either feed you or fluster you. “Your home either feels comfortable, and you like to sink down in a chair and relax, or you feel agitated,” Lyn says. Living in a peaceful space isn’t necessarily about wanting everything beautiful in the eyes of a designer, but more about constructing a version of accord for the objects and artwork that speak to you. “There’s karma in the things you love,” Lyn says.

Even people who are more right-brain when it comes to their personalities and creativity are still drawn to spaces that feel good. She’s often heard clients from doctors to scientists remark they want their homes to feel the way Lyn’s home feels. “It’s about putting together the things they love — mementos, family things that matter to them — in a way that is soothing and comfortable,” Lyn says.

Lyn says she prefers to use round items when creating a grouping, because it adds a nice balance. 

What can you do to adopt Lyn’s restful vibes?
Unclutter your home. Put objects you love and that have meaning to you in your space, but avoid overdoing it. “People find the not-overdoing-it part hard,” says Lyn, who shares an anecdote about teapots. “If you love your collection of teapots, you don’t have to display all of them. It overwhelms the space, and it’s out of balance.” She suggests editing your collection to five pieces to exhibit. She also advises getting rid of stuff lurking in corners and move things off the floor. “Spaciousness feels good,” she says.

She has a special word of advice to baby boomers. “I’m older so I can say this. As we get older and our life changes — our kids are gone away and our spouses are gone — we hold on to the things that remind us of them,” says Lyn, “but we do it to a fault. It’s tough to let go, but it feels so much better every time.”

Is your home filled with clutter? What is the one thing you know you should get rid of but can’t?