A customer invited me into her home the other week to measure for some blinds. I was struck by how homely, tasteful and interesting it was. I literally haven’t stopped thinking about it. It wasn’t palatial by any stretch of the imagination, it was a little two-up, two-down terraced house. But the owner had made it into a truly welcoming and beautiful space that oozed personality and charm in the most low-key and genuine way. I imagined the intimate suppers she would host here and the cosy nights in front of the fire, leafing through a well-loved novel.
As the house had implanted itself firmly inside my head, I tried to define what it is that makes a house a beautiful and welcoming home, where you and your visitors feel utterly compelled to throw your shoes off and curl up on the sofa.
Investing in your home is crucial. By invest, I don’t mean financially but more with time and love. Your home is the place where you sleep, wash and nourish yourself. It deserves to have time and love devoted to it.
Your home should reflect who you are. There is nothing more interesting than visiting a house and literally not knowing where to look first, with glimpses into the owner’s life tantalizing you. This does not mean that you need clutter everywhere, but rather a carefully curated selection of ‘things’ that you love or find interesting or beautiful. Group these together to create interesting vignettes, or stories. I am a big fan of trays. Bunch things on a tray and they look deliberate – that a decision was made rather than things just lying about.
Have a beautiful postcard or photograph you love? Then stick it on the wall with a bit of colourful washi tape. Don’t be scared to layer patterns, you don’t want everything to match. Stacks of books are great and give you levels on which to place some of your objects.