Reader’s Digest – Love Me, Love My Home

December 15, 2008

Many of my clients tell me they are embarrassed by the way their homes look, when I meet them for the first time. As a result, most of these people don’t entertain their friends or family because they don’t feel comfortable in their houses or apartments. It usually means their places do not accurately reflect who they are.

The good news is that by the time I leave, and after their rooms have been rearranged, many of these people have an immediate change of heart. As they walk me to the door, quite a few will say, “We can’t believe this is our house! We’re going to call a couple of our friends and invite them over here for a glass of wine.”

If you feel your home does not reflect who you are, and that it is preventing you from inviting people in during the holidays, here are a few things you can do to make your space look better and more up-to-date, without buying new things:

1) If you are over 25, remove all posters and inexpensive artwork from your walls. Anything that might look good in a dorm room is, of course, an automatic “no-no.” Keep only your best pieces: oil paintings, framed watercolors and pen and ink drawings.

2) Put away your stuffed animals and doll collection. Yes, that means you! If your living room resembles your childhood bedroom, in any way, you know it’s time to store a few things away in the attic. Display only your most sophisticated pieces.

3) Make your bed, beautifully, using fresh linen with taut sheets, upright pillows, and a fluffed up duvet that is folded back at the top (as pictured below).

decorative pillows for your bed

4) Unless you have a Victorian or country-style home, limit the use of stenciled or wallpaper decorative borders to bedrooms or children’s rooms. If possible, just paint your living room, dining room and entrance walls, from top to bottom.

5) Get rid of all unnecessary bric-a-brac throughout your home including fridge magnets. Fridge magnets make every kitchen look messy! And take down any knick-knacks from your windowsills. The “less is more” rule applies here.

6) Polish your furniture, put out fresh flowers, light a candle, play CDs with soft music and invite some friends to drop by. They’ll be very happy to spend time with you – at your place – especially during the holidays.

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