Between winter and the events of the past year being faced with a global pandemic and more — are you dying to get out of the house? I know I am. Collectively as a world we probably have spent more time at home than any other time in history. Pandemics can do that to you. But in order to remain as safe as possible, we need to stay in our homes now more than ever.
So, what are some of the things you can do to and for your home to allow you to feel better about being there. Here are 7 ways I see people investing their time and resources to make their living space more homey than ever.
- Simple Things as Big Things
Making your home more comfortable doesn’t have to cost a fortune. If picking up flowers at your local grocery store brightens your day and week please do it! I have a favorite liquid dish soap that I love the scent of and for me, it’s a pleasure to use because of the smell. The other upside of this is that I use it more often than I might otherwise. A clean home is a healthy home. A candle creates ambiance and can also enhance the smell of your home. A home cooked meal on the stove or crock pot is really comforting and reminds us of what’s most important. If you’re lucky enough to have a fireplace, light it up.
- Merging & Purging
There’s something about the New Year particularly this year, that has inspired so many to begin going through their closets and realizing we haven’t worn one eight of our wardrobe in about a year. Chances are we won’t dig into some of those numbers for several months now so why are they taking so much space in our closet. Do you really need 7 pairs of black leggings (sorry, you might — it’s what I’m wearing every day now that I think about it), or 15 suits when you haven’t put one on in ages? It’s a great time to merge like items with like items and purge what you no longer need and so many other people could benefit from.
- Winter Clean Up & Out
If you’re organizing, you probably are cleaning as you go as well. The first step to organizing a room, closet or cabinet is to empty absolutely everything out of it. Clear the area that items will be returned to and bring in only what you know you want to keep. Toss things that have expiration dates that have long passed, no longer suit your style or aren’t the right fit and donate what you can. Now more than ever there are other people in need of what you may no longer have use for. It also makes you feel great to help someone else and you’ll be happier when you go to get dressed, open a pantry closet, or start a new work project.
- Function Over Form
Having been living in close quarters most likely with more people in your home than you might have expected, the need for function is critical. It’s wonderful to have pretty things to look at, but setting up zones in your home for people to work, eat, sleep and live is crucial. My oldest daughter came to live with me and escape a lousy apartment in the city last March. She stayed until mid-August. I have friends whose young adult children are still residing with them. Creating these functional zones for members of the family and utilizing rooms so they do double duty (guest room and home office) make a huge difference in how you feel about your home . . . and family members.
- Upleveling Your Decor
Sometimes sitting around your house can cause inspired action and wanting to improve things is a great way to put that energy to use. Why not fix that leaky faucet — or even replace it for the one you really wished you had? If the sofa you’ve had for 15 years plus has seen better days, it might be time to uplevel the furniture we sit on . . . a lot. Painting a room can breathe new life into a space and wallpaper is making a comeback too. Small improvements can make us happier in our home and many of us have more time to tackle these projects than ever before.
- Demo & Reno
The home improvement business is thriving and for good reason. Because we’ve spent all this time at home — the pieces of our home have been brought to our greater attention. Whether it’s a simple upleveling or a larger project of demo and renovating (something I wouldn’t recommend you do if you have to live through it all), people are going crazy improving their homes. Simple upgrades are relatively easy to live with and through. Undergoing a huge demo reno project is an entirely different story. Unless you can rent a place while the work is being done, I’d begin planning what you want to do. Take a look at Pinterest and start an idea board of what you’d like to do. When the dust literally settles, you’ll be ready to move forward and have taken the time to determine exactly what you want to do.
- Re-evaluating Where You Live
Home is Where the Heart Is and maybe you’ve had a change of heart. You’ve realized you need or want more room — or less room, and have made the move or are seriously contemplating it. Life changes and as it does, our needs change as well. Many of us don’t have to go to work and working remotely is what we most likely can continue to do. A home office would be a great thing to have in that case. Younger couples need more room in their homes and want more outdoor space as well. Older people want to simplify and realize they simply don’t need all the space and things they’ve accumulated.
Regardless of your situation this past year has given us all a different perspective on what our home needs to do for us to help us function at our best. From little to big changes, we can feel better and grateful for the home we have . . . if we’re lucky enough to have a home.
Written by Nancy Michaels. Sign up to receive her Free Decorating Resource at www.nancymichaelsinteriors.com