Kennesha & Her Home
Kennesha Buycks—founder of the blog Restoration House—is no stranger to hard work. Guided by her faith and fueled by an electric passion, Kennesha has truly mastered the art of the balancing act. Juggling multiple restoration projects, four young children, a husband and a blog, we can't help but wonder when Kennesha has time to sleep! But, she manages to do it all with an invigorating passion that can only be indicative of someone living out their dream.
Her Southern upbringing and knack for telling 'visual stories' adds undeniable depth, personality and creative flair to her work. It has also enabled her to create a digital community for others to connect and find a sense of purpose and meaning in life. Not surprisingly, Kennesha's own home boasts cozy rustic touches and colorful statement pieces that all combine to encourage lingering and luxuriating in time spent with loved ones.
We invite you to read on to learn more about Kennesha and the inspiration that went into the curation and design of her bountiful bohemian abode.
Restoration is a common theme in not only your work, but your life as well. Can you explain more about what the word “restoration” really means to you?
I started my business almost 10 years ago as a furniture refurbisher under the name Me & My House. After a few years, I changed the name to Restoration House. I started the painting and DIY of furniture as a hobby and it quickly turned into something that God used to heal so many areas, to restore so many places of brokenness in my heart. It was beyond just therapeutic. Painting and restoring furniture was a vehicle of restoration. Restoration, to me, is all about God exceeding my expectations, and the ability that we all have, with each day, to expect more and live a life more fulfilled and purposeful. His ability to bring us back to a place of wholeness. That's what it means to me.
From where do you pull your inspiration?
If you follow me or have read my blog, then you know that my faith is huge for me. It's really what allows me to enjoy what I do and to be inspired by the things around me. Creation itself begs us to notice. I love pulling from nature for inspiration. I am also closely connected with many local creatives, as well as connected to a few communities where we spur one another on in our creative passions and dreams. Community plays a major role in my process of creating and being inspired.
What type of furniture was your favorite to work on when it was part of your main focus, and why?
I loved pieces with more European style and design. You could give me anything with a bit of character or that needed more attention, and I would begin to salivate. I lived for it.
I've focused a lot the past year on gathering and styling intimate events that allow me to create an atmosphere where people love and feel comfortable connecting. I absolutely love it.
Do you plan your projects out or make them up as you go along?
This season of my life is kinda crazy. I've got four young kiddos, an amazing hubby, great friends and still run the biz on the side. As for projects, I'd love to say that I'm 'that' girl. You know, the one who's super-organized and has everything planned out...but I'm not. I'd like to think that makes me a true artist (right?). Many days I'm flying by the seat of my pants. No joke. If I'm inspired by something, my brain can go way left and then I'm off and running with it—emailing about collaborations, thinking of ways to make it happen. That's when the planning kicks in. It's like if I don't get it done (whatever creative idea my mind is set on), well, maybe this is a little dramatic, but it feels like a part of me dies. Creating is life for me outside of the obviously more important things.
It is clear that you take pride in your Southern roots. How do you bring the idea of “Southern hospitality” into your life and your work?
I've focused a lot the past year on gathering and styling intimate events that allow me to create an atmosphere where people love and feel comfortable connecting. I absolutely love it. There's no doubt that my experiences growing up—with my grandmother having a strong presence in my life and the community around us—have a large part to play in the reason that I enjoy these gatherings, and I would love to focus more on them in the future.
"Southern hospitality" is really about establishing a sense or idea that everyone belongs. Everyone has a purpose and place and, at the end of the day, needs to be needed. It's a human thing. Southern hospitality to me, is connecting human to human and starting there. It's another reason I love facilitating and styling these gatherings—it's home base for human connection with the backdrop of an amazingly beautiful atmosphere. There's really nothing like it.
You say that everything you do traces back to your past and your upbringing. What is your favorite, most vivid childhood memory?
Playing with friends in the summer—my favorite thing to do, hands down. I'm really not that old, but back in the day we could romp all around town and ride our bikes everywhere. We'd stay out all day long. Literally. From 10 a.m. to dinner time. It was the best. And laughing. I loved laughing with friends. It's actually still one of my favorite things to do.
How do you manage running a business while being a mother of four?
I could do nothing without the support of my husband and the strong community of friends we have who believe in and love me and what I do!
I loved [furniture] pieces with more European style and design. You could give me anything with a bit of character or that needed more attention, and I would begin to salivate. I lived for it.
What is the biggest lesson you have learned from being a mother?
- That what I thought I knew is wrong.
- That there's really no such thing as the perfect mama or the perfect kid—thank goodness.
- That nothing else allows you to realize just how good a snuggle and hug can feel. Just hug a 2-year-old. I really do think it's the cure for many diseases.
Why do you have such a strong passion for writing?
I've written since I was very small. I used to write poetry and read a ton when I was young. I was an only child, so it's what I did whenever I could and so enjoyed it. As I've gotten older, I realize it's really the way that I best express myself and my heart. I love words and the power they carry to heal and restore and encourage and inspire. I could obviously go on, but writing for me allows me to 'speak' to the depths of a soul, many times my own.
What are your tips for new, aspiring bloggers?
Be authentic. It's not always easy, but find your voice and message and stay there. Don't compare yourself to others. You have something special and powerful to bring to the table that no one else can. Believe that, always, and you've won half the battle.
What are your suggestions for dealing with low self-esteem?
Similar to my last answer. I believe that (especially as girls and maybe guys, too) we sometimes struggle so much with lack of confidence or low self-esteem because we are comparing what we do or our lives to that of others. If we can break away from that way of thinking and embrace our unique purposes in life, then we set ourselves up for success.
What is your favorite occasion to entertain for and why?
I don't think I have one. Is that weird? Life in general calls for celebration to me and I live to celebrate it! I never really need a reason to entertain.
I love words and the power they carry to heal and restore and encourage and inspire. I could obviously go on, but writing for me allows me to 'speak' to the depths of a soul, many times my own.
What is your favorite recipe or thing to cook?
I love a good salad. You can put kale, beets, pepitas and sweet potatoes on just about anything, in any combination, and I'm all in. There's one that I make (but not nearly often enough) with a honey and lemon vinaigrette that is to die for. If I'm really feeling good that day, I'll add some chicken and pomegranate. Game over.
What are your goals for this year?
I'd like to write a lot more than I did last year. Maybe publish something. Whatever I do, at the top of my list is to have fun with it and never do anything just because I feel obligated to do so. Life is way too short for that kind of living.
- Patio set
- Indigo & African Mudcloth Pillows and Vintage Kantha
- Wooden bowl and lanterns
- Naturals End Table
- Handpainted signs
- Bar stools
- Manny Console Table
- Framed Shibori handkerchief and napkins
- Brass floor lamp
- Leather and brass side table
- Mongolian Lamb Fur Lumbar Pillow
- Roux Railwood Entryway Bench
- Media console
- Straw planter