I recently wrote a post for a lifestyle blog about how to decorate a minimal interior without chucking your keepsakes. One paragraph was about creating a sense of peace and flow in your home to improve your wellbeing. Writing this post evoked memories of a podcast I recorded with interior designer Babette Hayes over a year ago. We spoke about love in the home and how to achieve it.
No matter if you are moving to a big house or downsizing to an apartment, the essential question is: how can you create the feeling of your home as your haven and make it a special place different to other homes?
For some people, moving is a chore associated with work and stress; for others, however, the act of moving house has a sense of adventure, something exciting, to it. What will this opportunity bring? How can I make my home a place of love?
No matter to which group you belong, there are five questions you should ask yourself before packing your bags.
Am I ready to change my habits?
Moving to a new location will most probably mean changing habits. Analyse your daily habits from getting up in the morning, the way you have breakfast, how you get to work, what you love doing when coming home, how you spend your evenings and so forth.
Then, imagine yourself in your new home. If it is considerably smaller than your current dwelling, visualise yourself in your new environment and try to work out what you will need to change. And, we all know that changing habits is challenging. But it can be done. All you need is commitment and determination and the ability to let go of things that don't serve you anymore.
If you are moving as a couple, ask yourself if you and your partner have the same ideas about how you want to live? If you can't find a common denominator, sit down and work out a solution together. That's what makes life interesting.
Let go of things that don't serve you anymore.
What are my essentials?
Writing a list of your absolute essential pieces is super important to achieving a happy home in a new environment. Especially if you are downsizing to an apartment or retirement resort, identify the furniture pieces and accessories that you need to make your place a home.
In the next step, focus on space planning and work out if your essentials are going to fit into your new home. Download your free checklists and worksheets from the Downsize with Style website to get started.
Write a list of your essentials.
How can I create a sense of peace and order?
Familiarise yourself with the art of Zen and placing things consciously throughout your home. To create a sense of order, it is vital to allocate your things to dedicated places, which can be cupboards, drawers or shelves.
Work out what you would like each room to do for you – my worksheet Room Assessment might be helpful – and where you will keep your things in your new home. Placing things orderly in cupboards and drawers will make it more enjoyable to use them.
The same applies for decorating and displaying your keepsakes or mementoes. Avoid cluttering every surface, table or console. Place items deliberately and leave empty spaces for the eyes to rest. By embracing the negative space, you will automatically emphasize the things you put on display.
Place things consciously.
How can I optimise storage space?
I said it many times before; storage optimisation is a major topic for most people no matter how large or small their home is. Assessing each room will help you find out more about your storage needs.
Browse interior design magazines or showrooms to draw inspiration from other people's ideas. Think outside the box and repurpose beloved furniture pieces or add functional pull out drawers to existing cupboards. Browse my library of apartment interior design resources for free advice and case studies.
Draw inspiration from other people's ideas.
What is it that will make our home different to others?
To create a loving home where you can lift your spirits and nurture your soul, the personal touches will make all the difference. After all, it is your personality that differentiates you from other people. So whatever it is that takes your fancy, show it off, put it on display and you will enjoy a daily boost of happiness.
Learn about the Elements & Principles of Design to acquire a better understanding of what is pleasing to the human eye and therefore creates comfort and wellbeing. The mere change of the colour on your walls can totally transform a room.
Nurture your soul by displaying your personal things.