Fresh year, a fresh start. Many consider the new year as the ideal time to make certain changes in their lives, usually for the better. So what better time to make improvements in your home, your own personal sanctuary, than at this time of the year?
By changes, we don’t mean spending a lot overhauling your entire abode. Just some much-needed tweaks here and there are enough to make it more beautiful and more liveable. Here are several ways you can do that.
Discard old, unusable stuff. Oh, we get it: the sentimental hoarder in you wants to hold on to that old giant teddy bear your boyfriend in the 7th grade gave you. What about the dried bouquet of roses your most recent ex-gave you last Valentine’s Day? Those people are out of your life, so be kind to yourself and remove all traces of them from your surroundings. In a final bid to exorcize the ghost of her failed marriage with Brad Pitt, Jennifer Aniston reportedly burned her very expensive wedding dress during some sort of a cleansing ceremony with her buddies.
Even if it’s not ex-related, if it clutters up your life (literally and metaphorically) it should be banished. By streamlining your home, you will also be streamlining your life and it will be easier for good vibes to flow.
Repurposing materials for your home add a touch of character and quirkiness to it and give your old stuff a new lease on life. Just a few ideas from repurposing enthusiasts: a chandelier made from wine bottles, mason jars used for backyard mood lighting, old bulletin boards or cupcake trays as a jewelry organizer, or old toolboxes, tires and wheelbarrows as planters. You can get plenty of ideas from magazines and DIY websites.
Nothing quite does a good and inexpensive job of breathing new life into your home and transforming it inside and out than a new paint job. The fact that a fresh coat of quality paint can cover unsightly marks and stains is one practical reason; another is that, with your colour choice, you can create your own personal space that is as warm, cozy and inviting as you want it to be.
Repainting your home may be one those home improvement projects that you need to hire professionals for unless you are adept at doing it yourself. A messy and bungled paint job is not only heart-breaking and time-wasting but also more expensive in the long run. Also, leaving the job to the experts gives you that much-needed time to focus on more important tasks.
Ask any interior designer and she’ll tell you that arrangement is almost, if not as, important as the actual furniture pieces in the room. Proper arrangement of its contents can make the space look more pleasing, organized and comfy.
Moving your furniture around doesn’t have to cost anything, but it does take some creativity and planning. The first thing to do is to plan your layout. Use a tape measure to get the room’s dimensions.
Visualize how the furniture would look like if placed in a particular spot. Ask yourself: What is the main function of the room and how many people will be in it? Function and foot traffic will help you decide the position and distance between furniture pieces.
Lighting up your home is an art form in itself. Clever lighting can increase the feeling of space and set the mood. A well-designed room incorporates different lighting techniques: ambient, task and accent. Incorporating these various lighting techniques can provide that much-needed spark to make you appreciate your home in a way that you had not previously.
Ambient lighting provides the room with even light, something that chandeliers and recessed lighting accomplish very well. Task lighting is used for specific activities such as reading or cooking. Floor lamps, table lamps, and pendant light fixtures are ideal for task lighting. With accent lighting, the attention is drawn to a particular spot in the room that you want to make the focal point, such as using a picture light to highlight an artwork, for instance.
By tweaking the lighting in your home and layering these lighting effects, you will add elegance and drama, as well as enhance the function of the room. Another clever way to enhance illumination in the room is to add mirrors. A mirror placed opposite a window, for example, can make the light bounce around the room and brighten up a poorly-lit space.