I’m astonished when people tell me they don’t know how to make their home look great and they haven’t done these five basic things. It drives me crazy. So here they are. Take a look around your home and make sure you’ve got them covered.
- Cut The Crap
Get rid of your clutter, the things you hate but haven’t gotten around to throwing out, and the nostalgic but tacky trinkets. Your home should be restful and filled with joy. That’s not possible if you are surrounded by things that you dislike, are no longer ‘you’ or pieces that were once on-trend but have lost their time in the sun (I’m an advocate of buying timeless pieces that will never date. Buying on-trend is always dangerous).
2. Near Enough Is Not Good Enough
We’ve all lived in homes that bear the scars of previous decades. Maybe it’s terrible 1980s wall sconces, or a 1990s peach and grey bathroom, or even 2000s rag-rolling or ‘sponging’ paint jobs. A few low-cost cosmetic changes will immediately update your home. Replace outdated light fittings and door handles, remove that peeling veneer or lino (or other ghastly artificial materials), and paint over (in a neutral colour) ‘creative’ paint jobs.
3. Let In The Light
Some homes are blessed with great windows and loads of natural lights. Others are less fortunate. But unless you live in a cave, you likely have some natural light in your home. So make the most of it! Open your curtains and blinds during the day and move furniture that could be obstructing the light. Don’t bother with privacy or sheer curtains unless you have neighbours staring directly into your home. All they do is block the light and make your home closed in (and dated). Paint your walls in white or a very pale colour to reflect the light. And cleverly use mirrors to double the amount of light in your home. Voila! You now have a light-filled home!
4. Alive Makes You Smile
Indoor plants will save even the dowdiest home. Even if your furniture and decor is a bit tired and worn, a lush bamboo palm or glossy rubber plant will add texture, colour, and freshness that only a living thing can provide. I really don’t think you can ever have too many plants in your home. Just check out the lush, green ‘Jungalow’ of stylist and blogger Justina Blakeney if you don’t believe me!
5. Warm It Up
Naked floors are cold and uninviting. Couches without cushions are uncomfortable. Your home will look unfinished and unhappy unless you have rugs, carpets, throw blankets and cushions. These soft furnishings are relatively inexpensive and can be updated regularly, so don’t get crippled by “I don’t know what colours to use in my home” and just buy what you like, when you see it. Believe me, soft furnishing will turn your house into a home.