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Styling tips: the home edition

As I write this I find a discarded piece of baby marrow on my desk (not mine – my two-year old’s) and I have a baby in a chair behind me and a car seat next to me. My house is far from perfect and very much a work in process. Over the years I have however gathered a couple of top tips for decorating a space in a timeless, elegant way that will reflect your personality.

A few of my tips when buying items for your home or decorating your space:

  1. Stick to what you love

Find a style, colour or inspirational pictures that you have always loved and use that as a guide when making décor decisions for your home. If you are a minimalist, don’t buy too many accessories. If you love yellow, don’t be afraid to embrace it in your space. Surround yourself with items that you love, and that you have always loved, instead of the trends of the season. It’s hard to know which is which, just purely because of the consumer chain, but if you focus on a specific ideal you will at least have something concrete to work towards. Pinterest can be your friend if you stick to a plan.

  1. Don’t fall for trends

Big retailers are very good at finding products and trends and creating an in-store look that will make you feel like you have to redecorate your living room in the latest “it” colour and style. It is fine to buy one or two items that suit your space, but don’t buy products that inspire you to change the whole look and feel of your house. You will grow tired of trends, but never of the items that you are naturally drawn to.

  1. Buy what you need

As mentioned above, we as consumers are constantly manipulated into buying things. It’s great that it keeps an economy going, but this consumer driven lifestyle does get tiresome if you end up in an ongoing cycle of buying without ever feeling satisfied. Remember – we also need items that are purely there because you enjoy looking at it.

  1. Be careful at sales

This point is an extension of number three, but I feel so strong about this that I mention it alone. My husband is an auctioneer and his motto is that a bargain is only a bargain if you need it. Keep these words in mind when entering a big warehouse sale or buying old summer stock, it really does work and keeps you focused. Even though something is beautiful and marked much cheaper, it does not mean that you have the space for it or that you will ever use it.

  1. Don’t wait forever

I am extremely specific about what I love and what I want in my space. I will rather wait for the perfect find at the perfect price instead of buying something half decent because I need it. Originally it felt like the right way to approach decorating, but the flip side is that you never truly feel happy with your home because the perfect item is still waiting somewhere. Sometimes it’s the odd or quirky or the hand-me-downs that make a place homey and welcoming. Let your décor tell a story, nothing is ever perfect, and you shouldn’t live in a showroom but a beautiful space that tells the story of the people that live there.

 

My husband and I chose these art works together. We had an idea of what we wanted for the bedroom, but it took a while to find it. We eventually bought all three already framed at a gallery close to our house. They were all part of a show with a “golden” theme. While he is a minimalist, I am much more of a collector (in his words hoarder ;). But even minimalists love to collect art. We enjoy the process of choosing and finding something special that works well with the art that we already own, and our space.