Kay on Non-Conformity. Architecture. German Village

When Cheryl assigned the task to blog about what inspires us, I thought it was going to be a daunting task. Most of us are inspired by so many things on a daily basis – how do you pick just one? For me, it is nature, my children, a particularly well-thought-out line of prose or verse, a multitude of colors, art in all of its forms, and even Cheryl herself, who leads by example. But then, I went past one of my favorite houses while walking to work – the white painted brick one. It stands out proudly amidst a sea of red brick in German Village. I love the non-conformity of it, and that’s when the little rebel inside of me clapped and said, “That’s what you’re going to write about”! Non-conformity. Architecture. German Village.

I lived in New Albany for over 2 decades, so I witnessed its transformation from quirky little 2-stoplight town with the grain mill and Dairy Creme, to an upscale city with cookie-cutter homes and brick Georgian architectural conformity. No I.M. Pei or Frank Lloyd Wright welcomed there! Then I moved to German Village. There’s lots of brick here, too, but individuality reigns.

not your usual lawn ornament – love it!

reminds me so much of Europe

love this bright orange porch swing!

The diversity of the people who inhabit this unique part of Columbus is allowed to shine through in their homes. How much more personal than that can you get? I’m always inspired by those living an authentic life and not one that mirrors their neighbors. Non-conformity allows you to live without restrictions while simultaneously respecting the uniqueness of those who dwell and work around you. What actually gives German Village its sense of community is the fact that so many of its residents dare to live creatively.

For me, the companion to non-conformity is imperfection, a concept lovingly embraced by the ancient Japanese art of wabi-sabi. It shows us that authentic living is found in seeing the beauty of imperfection while acknowledging the value of worn, yet timeless pieces – of truly seeing just how exquisite ordinary items can be. I think this concept also translates well into architecture and German Village is a shining example. With its well worn brick streets and historical homes of every architectural style, German Village embraces its imperfections.

Non-conformity and wabi-sabi inspire me to live true to myself and

German Village is a great place in which to do it.

Further Reading