Update your home by swapping out area rugs, lighting, and other simple items.
Here we are in a brand new year. As you begin to settle in, make new plans, and hopefully stay healthy, maybe it’s time to also update your home. After all, the last couple of years have been challenging, so go ahead and treat yourself.
- I’ll share 5 insanely simple ways to update your home
- Provide amazing resources for you to shop
- Professional tips along the way of how to implement these ideas
As an interior designer, I often find myself analyzing my own home thinking about the changes I need to make and ways to update my home. My story is one of transition, 3 years post divorce, and working on creating a new life for my son and myself. Not to mention the full time commitment of running my design business, life certainly gets very hectic at times. The reason I do what I do goes well beyond the creative high I experience, but a large part of it is the joy and satisfaction my clients experience when a project is completed. Are you ready? Time for a change in your home? Let’s get started with ideas to update your home!
#1 Rearrange the Furniture
One of the easiest ways to make a big difference is rearranging the furniture in your living room, dining room, home office, or bedroom. As you consider traffic patterns, door swings, and the overall function of the space, think of some possible ways to rearrange the room. But before you start to move things around, grab your tape measure first to make sure items fit properly and allow adequate clearance. Something I suggest in a large family room is to not push furniture up against the walls. Don’t be afraid to pull items away from walls and create more intimate arrangements and groupings. You don’t want a cocktail table too far from the sofa, or for a side table to be in the traffic pattern and cause people to stub their toe!
#2 Select a Statement Piece of Furniture
What do I mean? Something that might spark a conversation, or create a wow factor in a room, or something that is unique to the overall design of the space, something that stands out and says “look at me!” This can be furniture, decor, or lighting. This might also come into play if you are rearranging the room, and decide to get rid of an item. It’s a simple way to totally transform the vibe of a room. When it comes to choosing a statement piece, consider something with bright colors, bold patterns, or unique shapes in order to provide the visual interest needed to draw the focus of the room. Do something daring, outside your comfort zone, you’ll be amazed how this is a fun way to update your home.
#3 Paint and Wallpaper
Forget everything you’ve ever heard or experienced with wallpaper! This stuff is not what it used to be. Wallpaper is one of my favorite things to incorporate into a project. It can add that perfect wow factor to a room, or provide the right amount of subtle texture needed to complete a space.
Wallpaper is also available in a variety of formats for application. Rolls (priced as single rolls, but always sold as double roll), as well as peel and stick or even a custom mural! I do suggest having an experienced wallpaper hanger provide you with required yardage so that pattern repeats are accounted for. The installer will also know what sort of wall prep may be needed before hanging, and the proper adhesive to use as well. This is always an added expense, but well worth it so that you avoid costly mistakes. Check out (and get lost in) the designer papers here.
But if you are 100% against wallcovering, then paint it is!
Updating a room with a fresh coat of paint can do wonders. It’s also one of most cost effective ways to make a big change. If paint is the only thing you’re going to change, take a good look at the other existing elements of the room. From other hard surface materials such as tile and cabinetry, to the fabrics on your furniture.
Find something in the room as your source of color inspiration. Whether you’re looking to make the room light and bright, or bold and moody, consider what else is happening in the space as well as how the natural daylighting plays a role.
I always test color first, on a large piece of foam core board by applying 2 coats. I then move the board around the room and analyze it at different times of day to see how the color is affected, and how it interacts with other elements in the room. You’ll likely know when you’re onto the right color. But remember, just because a friend uses a particular color in their home does NOT mean that color will work in yours. Same thing with trying to select color from looking at a computer monitor or magazine. You must test with a real painted sample.
Also think about your doors and trim. It can be an amazing look to paint the doors a bold, or contrasting color other than white.
#4 Drastic Ways Lighting Can Update Your Home
The right lighting can bring a room to life. A poorly lit room looks small, dark and cramped, while a brightly lit room appears open, airy and welcoming. Lighting options have come a long way over the years and we now have so many options available.
One of the easiest ways is buying table lamps and floor lamps for your home. Layering your lighting with lamps on tables, floor lamps, and any fixed can lighting in your ceiling will make the room feel welcoming. Bonus if you swap out electrical switching to new dimmer switches for the fixed lighting. Having the flexibility to control the light output is a nice feature.
Also, areas like dining rooms, or even a bedroom or office are great locations to use a chandelier. Don’t be afraid to go with something dramatic and bold! Swapping out the builder grade fixtures with unique, statement making ones makes a huge difference.
Upgrading the lighting has a huge impact and many benefits as a way to update your home. Of course, this may require you to hire an electrician for installation, but if you’re handy, replacing a ceiling fixture is something that is not too complicated. Below are some amazing fixtures to consider.
#5 New Accessories and Decor
Swap out the old, dated, and items of non sentimental value with items of a new vibe. Eliminating trends of yesterday is a quick way to update your home. Obviously they need to still coordinate with the rooms overall design, otherwise this can be the starting point for an overall room redesign. There are so many options as to how you can update your decor, and really create a whole new energy in a space.
Area rugs are super easy.
Whether it’s introducing a new texture, pattern, or color scheme, rugs make a big impact. Other great benefits is that they help to anchor a furniture grouping in a space, aid in acoustics, and create an element of softness and comfort. Just make sure you’re selecting an appropriate size. Often times I see rugs that are too small, so going bigger is the best option.
Pillows are another great way to update a room.
Again, make sure the new look works with the overall plan. Don’t be afraid to mix patterns such as floral, geometrics, stripes, abstract, as well as textures. You can have a lot of fun by adding tassels or fringe as embellishment on pillows. It’s an instant designer look!
Another great update is new bedding.
Whether you’re looking for a plush, layered look, or a streamlined, contemporary feel, there are many options available. From duvet covers with down inserts, paired with a luxurious contrasting coverlet underneath, and crisp white sheets, to an eclectic ensemble of quilts, knitted throws, and colorful sheets, there are endless possibilities.
And it’s that easy! Simple ways to breathe new life into any space without spending a fortune. You’ll be amazed what a few quick changes do not only to a room, but to how you feel when you walk into the room as well. You can search the internet to find your own inspiration on style, color, and pattern. Remember, it’s not about what everyone else is doing, it’s about what speaks to you and brings you joy! Take a look at Color Trends 2022 to see a whole new outlook on color and interiors.