Your home doesn't have to be perfect, just meaningful. I believe a home should be your personal sanctuary and enable meaningful living. By this I mean simplifying life to be able to enjoy the experiences and people that make it wonderful, and become so fulfilled that you overflow and give that joy to others around you as well.
These 10 tips to help you get a good start on achieving beautifully simple and meaningful home.
1. Make it calm.
Colours that are soothing to you may not necessarily be on trend with everything you see in magazines and blogs. My free workbook is available for download that will help you choose paint colours for your home that you love and that will also cohesively tie together existing finishings like flooring and counters. It will help you determine the colours that make you happy and elicit a serene and peaceful feel throughout your home. Download it here.
2. Purge, purge and purge some more.
Donate anything that you do not use regularly or that is not absolutely beautiful and/or meaningful in your eyes. Then put simple systems in place to keep the things you keep organized and functional so that your life at home is never frustrating. Everything should have its place!
3. Bring in natural elements.
Every home should have something natural in it like living plants, flowers, natural wood or stone, or even branches or driftwood. When these things delight our senses on a daily basis it helps to ground us and renew our energy.
4. Bring special items out in the open.
Hang your favourite piece of art, whether it's the kids' drawings, a family heirloom or a crazy abstract piece sculpture that makes you smile. Have photos out of those you love. Use items bought on trips or special occasions as functional items - ex. a bowl in the entryway for keys. Stack up your favourite books at the couch, or display some on the coffee table. Bring your pretty antique chest or bench out from the storage room. If it elicits warm memories of Grandpa you should have it out to remind you of him often! Don't make your space a slave to design rules - a room should work with these personal things that make you happy (hint- it's one of the reasons I usually choose white or off-white paint for the walls - so that the interesting items in it can stand out!).
5. Let the light in.
Open up your windows, and give them a good cleaning as well. Make sure that any drapes or curtains are hung outside of the window frames so that they can be opened up fully during the day. Open them up and receive the uplifting energy that comes from the sun. Consider painting your walls white so that your spaces feel lighter and the sun bounces around more. And make sure to layer in enough ambient and task lighting for dark days and evenings.
6. Carve out your special spot.
Whether it's an art studio or a chair for reading, each person in your household should have a spot in the home that's their own feel-good place to unwind. It should be comfortable and restorative. That means if everyone is fighting over the one comfy chair in the family room, sell the uncomfortable couch and bring in more comfy chairs!
7. Make it welcoming.
The entryway that you use daily should be a welcoming area that is clean, clutter-free and organized. Check out how to create these 5 essentials for any entryway.
8. Make it warm and cozy.
Layer textiles and textures to warm up rooms and make them feel lived in. Rugs that are soft underfoot, pillows to sink into, throws to wrap around you, bed linens that are soft and luxurious - these are details that are worth investing in for a happy home.
9. Group collections together.
Grouping things together makes a more memorable impact and also keeps them from cluttering many spots all over the house. Dedicate a shelf for your antique bottle collection. Display your vacation shells or sea glass in vintage jars. Put your antique postcards or spoons into frames and hang them as a gallery. Take the door off of an upper kitchen cabinet and display all of your pretty plates and bowls. Lean all of your beautiful cutting boards together against the backsplash. Your collections say a lot about you. Show them off proudly.
10. Treat your home well.
How well you treat your living space determines how it will treat you. Keep it clean with non-toxic, natural cleaners (see my favourite formulas here). Make a habit of tidying up clutter before it gets out of control. Fix small things like scuffed trim or peeling wallpaper. Make your bed every day. Don't leave walls in a spare room bare and sad. Give your home some love, and it will love you back.
One final note:
For all of these meaningful and beautiful things to stand out in your home, the backdrop should be calm and light. For me, that almost always means white or off-white walls. Download my FREE Guide to Choosing the Right White Paint.