MOST PEOPLE WANT a beautiful, inviting space in which to work or relax. Here are a few simple ideas to help turn your office or home into a comfortable, stylish retreat.
Accessorizing makes a huge impact. Begin by removing all accessories from the space. Choose the items that you want to use by paying attention to variety of color, texture, pattern and size. Remember, it is better to have a few larger items than too many smaller ones. Also, grouping items is important to successful accessorizing. A good rule is to use an odd number of items and place taller items in back. Use stands or books to create levels. This will make your collections more pleasing to the eye.
Adding books to the décor is both functional and aesthetically pleasing. Books can be beautiful on their own, and the books we love evoke a sense of calm in our spaces. Grouping books is essential in adding appeal. Avoid paperback books, and remove book jackets from hardback books. Books can be used in several ways: Group by spine color for a striking display; cover with paper (scrapbook paper, brown craft paper or white paper); turn books backward for a different look; or place on a coffee table to elevate smaller items.
Another way to add character is to incorporate plants or flowers. If you have a green thumb, use small houseplants. The plants you choose also can impact indoor air quality. Almost every supermarket has an area where you can purchase fresh flowers. Why not add flowers to your permanent shopping list? I know many people dislike artificial plants, but there are some very nice ones available. Just remember to select natural colors and use them sparsely.
Updating wall art can make any space look fabulous. This can be quite expensive, but there are affordable ways to achieve it. Purchase posters that can be cut down to fit frames you already have. It is simple to change a picture inside a frame yourself. If you have two small frames the same size, find a poster that has two areas that can be cut out to create a pair of pictures. These can be hung on top of each other, side-by-side or staggered. Refrain from using single pictures everywhere. It is important to vary the look.
Using rugs under furniture helps to ground the furniture and create conversation areas. Rugs also add acoustical qualities to rooms with hard-surface flooring as well as adding warmth, pattern and color. It is important that the rug’s scale is appropriate for the space and items that will be positioned on it. If you already have busy patterns in your space, consider a rug without a pattern. If you only have solid fabrics in the space, then a patterned rug would add variety. You also could add patterned pillows to help break up solids.
Painting a room or one accent wall is an inexpensive approach that adds a dramatic effect to any space. When selecting the color, look at fabric patterns and/or art in the room to pull out an accent color that appeals to you. Most people want to select a paint color before planning how the space will look. Even when using neutrals, since some are cool and some are warm, it is best to select fabric choices before choosing paint.
The best piece of advice I can offer is to surround yourself with things you value and love. Keep your space decluttered so your mind and body can rest and recharge.