well...love & decorate ; )

hello everyone! happy Monday & a lovely new week ahead :)

thank you once more for joining this place...
welcome to all new lovely people, many of whom, you are blog writers yourselves.
I have quite a lot of new blog searching and reading to do, especially after the {meet the blogger event} this Saturday in Amsterdam....and...are you guessing how it was? ...a pure delight and a totaly positively energising experience!

as this post here today will be centering on my personal litle story, inspired by {Holly Becker}'s story, her fabulous book {decorate} and my meeting with her,
if you wish to have a taste of how much fun the whole weekend in the Netherlands has been, then please do jump over {Ilaria's lovely post} , as she did such an excellent job putting it together. You can  find all about our little adventures, since we spent quite a lot of time with each other...lucky me ; )

so as you see in the picture above, my love for decoration has finally had its most delightful encounter ever:
with {decorate} and the author herself, Holly Becker

what follows is a little real life story so that the context is set for you to understand the importance of this happy encounter for me.

About 20 years ago, being 16, I invested my then pocket money in buying my first Encyclopedia of Architecture & Interior design. I must have skipped going to a couple of concerts, cause all I wanted was to be keeping in my hands books with pages of beautifully designed spaces,
spaces we could call "HOME".

Still in school, obviously rotating towards positive sciences, as I was a little nerd in algebra & geometry, becoming an architect would have normally seemed like a very well favoured option.

Life brought it this way and my family wished that I became a follower of their business, a little private language institute they had begun themselves back in 1969...I was weak & undetermined...so I simply put my dreams away and went on with me English studies, aquired my Proficiency in English language as early as being 17 and by 18 I had already started doing private pessons for pocket money. To officially be teaching at the institute, I had to be trained as a teacher at the {British Council} and be minimum of 20 years.

In the meantime of course, I was not allowed to simply be sitting around and be "playing" with my dreams and creativity. So I enrolled myself in the {American collage of Greece/ Deree}, which was also the wish of my parents.
My father chose what I would study. It was  Management & Marketing, as his thoughts were that I'd take over the business one day not only as a teacher but also as an owner.

Need I say that I became the worst student ever for a year? I was missing classes and was really feeling that I was on the wrong movie, me being the protagonist. Often under my college books, there were some of the Interior books I was continuing to buy sep by step...I was diving in to their pages with pure enthusiasm, analysing how the spaces were put together...and feeling so unbelievably tranquil, inspired and happy...

I was escaping and soon I would have to face that...
As the college had a minimun of 70% performance in order to be studying there,
I soon fell into probation. I had to have meetings with the dean and the college councelor / psychologist.

I wanted to quit and enroll myself in Interior design and decoration courses. At that point, Deree was not offering that. I took the courage and spoke to my father. There was clearly no chance that I could go on being part of the family, unless I went on with my studies at this precise University, which was btw by all means a wonderful one.

So, I had an idea. I would change my major and try to find something of meanigful interest to me, in order to study and be a decent student again. I decided that being part of my family was more important than my Interior design studies at that moment. After all, I knew I loved it with my whole heart, so sooner or later I was going to have the chance to do what I wished.

I went on studying on my own the books and magazines I was buing, while at the same time after a year I recoverd as a student in the college and was successfully studying Psychology.
It was my chance to gain some understanding in human behaviour, to understand my own feelings and self and hopefully manage to put into a positive flow, my feelings of anger, despair & disappointment.
I graduated majoring in Psychology & minoring in Philosophy in 1999 with fairly good grades.

I did start seeing the light at the very, very end of the tunnel, but I knew that working as a psychologist would not be what I wished to do. Studies on perception and colour psychology, as much as Industrial psychology, which actually deal with the effect spaces have on people, whether these are domestic or working environments, was showing me the way to find a point where psychology and interiors meet.

I soon begun realising that living beautifully and leading a happy life goes much beyond simply having the assets to do it. It goes much beyond simply hiring a decorator to put your space together.

Living a beautiful, fullfilling life is an art, put together every minute of the day by each and every one of our actions...
and yes the spaces we inhabit can have a quite impressive effect on our mood and our lives eventually as a  whole.

To start making the long story short, through my psychology studies, I found the most appropriate and healthy way out of something that was totally not meant for me, while at the same time learning the hard way to be super patient, have faith and believe that dreams do indeed come true, so long as we do something about them.

There is more to the story to tell of how I have reached to the point where I now am, but will be waiting for the next chance to go on with it. After all I would really like to avoid tiring you, unless that has already happened.

So going back to dreams, my dream has not yet come true, as working as a freelance interior consultant cannot yet pay my bills. Neither writing articles and posting them on my blog or keeping an etsy shop.
But, I know I'm closer to it than ever before and in this frame of mind and feelings I can absolutely reasonate with Holly and her current happiness,
 whose childhood dream has come true.
Her book is published, with her name on it and it is so fabulous, as any other decorating book I've ever held in my hands...and they might not be thousands but a few dozins they do are...

So among the lovely magazines included in the goodie bag we received as presents from the
organisers of the meet the blogger event mentioned earlier, I returned with my very own copy of Decorate,
bright, shiny and signed by the author herself personally for me...
with wonderful words full of meaning, which I actually would like to cherish privetely and not share here,
 at least not at the moment...

I haven't ever had a book signed before, cause as a process it had not a really significant meaning to me, being aware that there are usually typical words written...well, I was so positevely surprised by that, too!

Holly was taking time to actually connect to each one of us she was referring to and I was personally thrilled to hear from her say that she does read these lines here and she actually likes being around here a lot.

You know, had it not been for me totally accidentally having discovered blogging about two years ago,
I would have never actually found out that I can also write & express myself publicly....
 and to imagine that back in college my worst fear was essay writing and public speaking!

I don't know if I have conquered my fear of public speaking yet, but can certainly tell you that I am much more comfortalbe in my own skin and enjoy my meetings with people much more than I did before.

I think that asides from being healthy, having my parents & having met my current life companion, psychotherapy & blogging have been the best things ever to have happened to  me...or actually that I made the decision that they happen to me.

And to go back to Holly, she is one charismatic person I can tell you, full of inner glow and healthy satisfation for who she is and her achievements, after having struggled very, very hard to raise her voice, stand up for her dreams and go and make it out there!

dear Holly, you are an amazingly inspiring person, a great writer, able to move mountains, a really fun & energising public speaker and have a lovely very distinct sense of aesthetics & style, all marked by Holly, decor8 and you!

It's an honour to be having your book & a real pleasure to have met you :)

As for the book itself, I can say that I loved looking through its pages for the first time...I remember being so eager to see it all, but then wanting to take my time, making sure that this first look was gonna last as long as possible, enjoying the appearance of every new page before my eyes, as if not wanting a favorite ice cream to finish...

Good news is: I can always start all over again! ; )
 for the time being I'm enjoying spending some time with it daily, observing carefully, reading paragraph by paragraph, page by page....line by line...

here is a glimpse of just a few of my favorite pages:

 I think that I could be living with my family in this space of page 25 below:

while I also adore Amy Butler's house and this of fabulous and ever favorite to me textile designer Virginia 
Armstrong seen below

are you all holding in your hands your own copy? am almost certain you are so!

...my dear friends & everyone who has stumpled upon this page, thank you all for reading this post, if you have been so brave as to read through it all and once more, thank you Holly, cause it is through you I found the courage to share a little bit more of my personal story here

wishes for all things best in every possible way!

will be coming here soon with more ispiration, photography and everyday stories from this weekend and of course not only!

{photo credit:  Iro Ivy Nassopoulos}


  1. Congrats on being THAT much closer to fullfilling your dream!

    I can really relate in so many ways (I went to school for Behavioural Sciences) but my passions lay in art, photography and writing. My blog has also become a catalyst for creative oppourtunities.. and I'm slowly going in the direction (on the side, mind you) that I am leaning torwards.

    It's so important to keep your passions close, they hold the keys to happiness! I'm sure with your determination.. you will get to where you want!


  2. Keep dreaming, keep believing, it will happen when you least expect it. We will be following you on the way.
    ps I did not get the chance to speak to you in Amsterdam, but I hope there will be a next time.

  3. I love this post Iro, I don't want to spend to much words, I can't explain all my feelings very well in english, but this little heart is for you ♥.

  4. Iro,

    While it sounds like you had a wonderful time on your trip to the meeting, what I really liked was getting to know more of your personal story! All my best in everything!
    ps - I know your parents are proud of you & all the hard work you did finding your own way, even if it wasn't their first choice. It ended up doing a great job preparing you for paths not yet discovered even if you might not have know it at the time - it all worked out :)

  5. I can't wait to get my own copy of Holly's book ! :)
    I wish I was in Amsterdam with you last weekend. Your post and Ilaria's pictures made me want to create my own blog to attend events like this. ;)
    Thanks for sharing your story with us Ivy. I wish you a lot of success in your new career :)
    Take care,

  6. Dear Anne, Heather, Ilaria, Iris & Melly,

    you are such supportive friends & readers! Thank you all for your encouragement, wishes, lovely comments and most of all for taking the time to read through this one fraction of my story. You are all brave ladies ;)

    As for meeting each other lovely Iris, I so wish we had done so! Another time, hopefully :)
    Anne, I'd love to see you posting. And if it's anything closer to your shop's success it will be huge!...most of all though, I think that if you write just the way you photograph & see the world, you 'll have lots of interesting & lovely views to bring to us, this time through your words, too. I'll be looking forward! :) xo

  7. wow. I can't believe I haven't read this post until now.

    very personal, very open, very appreciated by those who read it, I'm sure.

    You are talented, strong and inspirational - I would like to say I wish you luck in your future endeavors but I know in my heart you won't need it ;)


  8. Just look at your flickr photostream Ivy, your dream is becoming a reality! Love to you xx

  9. Thank you my friends...trully from the heart for all you say, believe and wish me!
    Wishing all things wonderful to both of you, too :) xo xo