Who does not want to step over the threshold and really feel at home? With simple tricks for just a few tenners, you can add personality and put your unique stamp on the bare walls and empty shelves. Here are 14 examples that will hopefully make you want to visit the nearest flea market, or have a look in the deepest corners of your shed, to find those special things that will get a place of honour in your home.
1. Personal picture wall
Nothing puts more of an individual and familiar touch to a home than photographs and personally chosen art. If it isn't possible to hammer holes in the wall or put up picture rails, you can hang up thin wires used in galleries, or simply lean the paintings against the wall.
“A home without books is like a body without a soul,” they say. There’s certainly a point to that, possibly even more so today when physical books compete with tablets and digital products. And it's not just the inside that counts: a high pile of paperback books can create a beautiful, natural-coloured staple if they are placed with the pages outwards.
3. Open shelf storage
If you do not mind doing a few extra rounds with the duster every now then, then open storage is an amazing way to create small still lives and showcase your most precious possessions.
If after a while you get tired of the current look, just rearrange a few things and the room will immediately get a different character. Why not paint a classic Ikea bookcase in the same colour as the wall behind it? Considerably less expensive than built-in storage.
4. Sloppy bed making
Do you often flick through interior magazines and find that the unmade bed looks more welcoming? It takes more work and precision than you might think to create a perfect nonchalantly welcoming bed in wrinkled sheets. Although materials such as French linen and percale get most of the attention, winkled cotton bed sheets work equally well to create a perfectly sloppy look.
5. Mismatched chairs
Do you find it difficult to decide which collection of dining table chairs is the one to bring home with you? Or have you not had enough time to save up the money for a whole set of expensive design classics? How lucky! Because actually, there is almost nothing that creates such a great feeling in a kitchen or dining room as a set of odd but well loved chairs. Choose one type of wood and use that as the common theme, or a specific form as a common denominator to still create a somewhat cohesive impression.
6. Fire and candles
In our modern age, gathering around the campfire has almost died out completely as a type of social get together. Maybe that's why more than ever we look for apartments with well-preserved tile stoves and fireplaces. Because the burning fire actually has a particular impact on us with its natural light that sparkles and flickers. It obviously doesn’t have to be an entire fireplace for us to get the benefits of the fire, a set of candlesticks or a group of black candles work just as well and are cheaper.
7. Flowers and green plants
Who doesn’t feel happy when they have a bunch of fresh flowers at home? If you buy the ones that are in season, you can usually get away with quite a good price. Choose a sort that is beautiful even in its dried state, like the hydrangea seen in the picture below.
Photo: Amy Bartlam Photography
8. Use what you already have
It costs no money to think – therefore it may be worth having a think about what you have got hidden away in the shed and other storage spaces around the home, or just think if there is anything you can move around that looks better in a new place. A little patina only shows that something has been loved enough to have been worn and used over a long period of time, and gives character to any home. Do not be afraid to mix old and new, expensive and cheap – variety is the key to a homely home.