There is something that hits you the moment you walk into your childhood home. It may be the years of memories made there, or it may be the familiar smell of your Mother’s delicious cooking. Perhaps it’s the comforting way very little changes year on year, and the feeling of ‘coming home.’
My parent’s house which is situated in a small town in South Wales, is a rambling Victorian terrace, with a long narrow garden, which myself and my two sisters loved playing in as children. A huge apple tree sits in the middle of the lawn, which used to house a ramshackle tree house high up, built by my lovely Grandpa, where I spent many a spring afternoon ‘spider spotting’ with friends. Each year, as summer turns to autumn, the fruit ripens and falls, showering the lawn with hundreds of apples.
I love visiting every few months, and last time I was there, I was struck by how, although their interior décor is very different to mine in style and colour, I always feel a sense of calm and comfort as soon as I walk through the door into their long, high-ceilinged entrance hall which is very similar to the one below in Stacey Dyer’s home.
Their home interior has no particular style, although it errs towards classic design with modern touches. An eclectic mix of furniture adds personality and warmth, and a lamp sits on every console and side table.
The lighting within their home works really well, and is one of the main sources of the comforting ambiance. Antique table lamps and up-lighters cast a warm glow, where angle-poise lamps aid in areas where my mum may read or sew. My mum is an avid seamstress, often making one of a kind presents for my children and niece, such as book bags, jungle themed wall hangings and most recently, a Pippy Longstocking doll!
Lighting is one of the most important elements of interior design. What is the point in creating a beautiful interior if you cannot appreciate it to its fullest potential? Natural light is the most important source, as it’s proven to increase endorphins, serotonin, productivity and happiness. But alongside natural light, there are three types of artificial lighting – ambiant, accent, and task. Candles, lamps and coloured bulbs create a mood within a space, this is especially useful in areas where you like to entertain guests or want to create a relaxing vibe, such as a bedroom or bathroom.
Accent lights such as picture lights or spot lights can draw the eye to special features, and angle-poise lamps, or under-cupboard kitchen lighting help us complete tasks without straining our eyes.
The other thing which I love about my childhood home, is its personality. It is unmistakably the home of my Mum and Dad – accessorised with items collected over the years from travels abroad, luxurious soft furnishings, beautiful artwork and memorabilia. I feel it is so important for your home to reflect who you are, and your interests, but you should avoid it becoming cluttered.
To accessorise effectively, choose an appropriate number of items for each room. Small items may be lost in a big space, so you may like to group a few things together. When doing this, choose items which have a common design theme, for example, a display of ceramics, or black and white photos. Ornaments of differing heights can look great together too. For a formal look, go for a symmetrical display; grouping objects asymmetrically creates a more relaxed feel.
If you’re home is feeling a little cluttered and you don’t know where to start or how to choose things to group together, a good tip is to bring everything you want to display together on a large surface such as the kitchen table. Remove items that don’t bring you instant joy when looking at them, and then sort the remaining things into groups which look pleasing together according to style or colour. Then decide which room to put them into, using shelves, console tables, sideboards or mantle’s as perfect places to display them.
Accessorising is key to making your home your own, and meaning you avoid living in a bland, energy sapping space. Even if you prefer a more minimalist home, its important to layer textures, and add a few accessories to personalise and add interest to your paired-back décor. I have a few favourite spots in my home (which is more minimalist than maximalist) where I display my favourite objects, and I have pictured them below.
Until next time,