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Meet Caroline Scheeler: Home Decor Expert, Equestrian Extraordinaire

The creative director of Jayson Homes in Lincoln Park is always on the move — sometimes by steed.

Caroline Scheeler
Photo: Lisa Predko

As creative director of the decor hot spot Jayson Home, Scheeler is often traveling the world, hunting down just the right elephant-grass pendant light from Ghana or tangerine daybed from France. Even when she’s in town, she’s on the road, commuting 100 miles round-trip daily from her home in rural Wayne to the Lincoln Park showroom. Here’s how the 54-year-old survives and thrives anywhere across the globe.

Equine therapy

“I’ve been riding other people’s horses my whole life. But last year, I found Scout, who’s half Friesian, quarter Morgan, and quarter Dales pony. She’s stunning. On weekends, I groom her for an hour while we listen to music — she loves Billie Holiday — and then we ride and graze in the pasture. Everything from the smell of the barn to being that connected with an animal is lovely, like I’m a kid again. It’s sweaty, it’s earthy, it’s in the moment.”

Galloping gym

“My riding is anywhere from 30 to 60 minutes. We start with a few minutes of walking. I can tell where her energy level is, and she’s perceptive of my mood too. Then we work on dressage-like exercises, where you’re fine-tuning your communication using your legs, hands, and different cues. We trot over poles, sometimes over a small jump. We canter in serpentines and circles. It’s an incredible workout, especially for your legs and core. The stronger you get, the more elegant your riding is.”

Core values

“My husband, Joe Vajarsky, is a yoga teacher at Bent Dog in St. Charles. When I’m in town, I practice two or three times a week. We do vinyasa and hot Pilates and yin yoga, which is 60 minutes of super-deep stretching. It strengthens my core and gets me out of my head. And every morning, I take about five minutes to do some quick, efficient poses.”

Eating plan

“I’ll have just water and coffee with a little oat milk for breakfast; for lunch, a salad. If I get hungry during the day, I’ll eat Trader Joe’s Five Seed Almond Bars or fruit. Cooking is one of my great joys, but I get home late, so I keep dinner simple. My 18-year-old daughter and sous chef, Stella, and I might make roasted veggies and salmon with different seasonings.”

Global wellness

“In the summer, we go to Paris, the South of France, and Spain for two weeks. I always bring my coffeepot with my own coffee and some healthy snacks like dried apricots, granola, or seed bars. One of the first things we do is look for a local market and buy a local bottle of wine, a ton of water, and fresh juices and fruit. I don’t travel with the yoga mat, but two nice big hotel bath towels work just fine.”

Mood lighting

“Especially in the dark months, I’ll light a candle while I’m having my morning coffee. When I’m getting ready, I like to burn sage or incense. Treating yourself to a little special atmosphere sets the tone for your day.”

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