I Dream of Tali

Beach houses make us happy!

My all-time favorite dream is to live near the sea, in a beach house bathed in white: white walls, white hammock, white curtains, white bed. Absolutely everything must be white. I'm sort of living a small version of that dream right this very minute as my bedroom is all white: white walls, white bed, white desk, white curtains. My life is already full of wonderful colors, so when I call it a day, I prefer the serenity that the absence of color brings.

And so it was with much excitement that I found myself walking through my veritable house of dreams.

It was January, and I was to spend a day at a beach house in Tali for Elle Decoration Philippines. I always welcome going on assignments for Elle because I get to spend a day in a house that's clean, neat, beautiful, organized, perfect! Long ago, I've accepted the fact that our house can never be quite as orderly. I live with three boys. You know how it goes! 

As you can see from the photographs above, the house is beautiful. But what's even more inspiring is the story behind it. Practically everything in this house was once a part of something else. The owner, a property developer, is a sentimental hoarder. It's his thing. He can never quite let go of things. And so the house is the collective result of the "flotsam and jetsam of his collector's impulse." He is the master of upcycling: the roof once belonged to a building that was his grandmother's, a kitchen wall came from his great grandfather's house, the kitchen cabinets are from their family's house in California, and so on and so forth. Each and every item has a history, and the way he recalls the tale of their ancestry is fascinating.

I've never been a hoarder but seeing how he has magically transformed a bunch of little nothings into a great big something has me absolutely enthralled.  



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Erika & Jing

Erika is a budding entrepreneur, who dreams of having her own fashion label one day. She's the mommy of Sophie and the daughter of Jing, a fortysomething single mom of four, who's a writer, editor, and craft enthusiast. Click here to read more.