Our house’s are our havens, the places where we can make as much of a mess as we want (and so can the kids!), where we can kick the shoes off no matter how smelly they are, and nap whenever we need to without being nervous that we’re going to miss our stop on the bus.
But there’s a lot of decorating mistakes we can make, and a lot of aesthetic opportunities we can miss. Whether it was some sadly grey tiles in the bathroom, or a swirled ceiling you just hate to look up at, or windows that are flaking at the edges, there’s always a bit of DIY to be done around your house. So why not start with the walls, and make yourself happier with your environment whilst you’re at it?
So if you’re sick of blank walls, or the paintings you’ve got up are getting a little stale, now’s the time to shake things up a bit; a bit of negative space here and there is fine, especially when it’s a bit humid and hot indoors, but it’s not something we want to stare at forever. Here are a few ideas and tricks you can use to dress up your surroundings and make sure those four walls you paid so much money for are always pulling their weight!
Find Some Pictures (and properly dress them!)
Have so many pictures around you could very well turn your home into a mini art gallery! If you’ve got an eye for the artistic wonder, and you want to be able to transform your home into one that looks like it stepped out of a Van Gogh or Rembrandt exhibition, this is the idea for you. You’ve got all that wall space on offer, half a curator’s degree in your head, and a bit of money put aside for a rainy day. Let’s put it all to good use; use local artists near you and commission them to paint something in a certain style, get prints of your favourite famous paintings, and even try it out yourself. You’ve got the eye after all.
We all have photos on our walls – it’s just something we tend to do: we take a photo of the people we love or a view that took our breath away, and we print it out and slot it into the right picture frame to hang up for all to see. It reminds us of the people we love and times we never want to forget, and we can all agree that these pictures are an integral part of our homes.
So why not make a collage on your wall of all the moments that matter most to you? Dress them up with thin and thick frames, sprinkle some small wall decals in between, and even create a timeline of your life with all the photos in order of when they were taken. And if you’re a big traveller, or you’ve got family all around the world, add the photos to a world map base. There’s so much creativity you can put into dressing up framed pictures!
Have a Feature Wall in the Living Room
Feature walls are incredibly popular decor pieces these days, and you could easily fit one into your home with little effort. Just make sure it’s in the living room, where everyone will see it, and go on to appreciate how much it brings the room together. Even when you’ve got your sofa pushed up against it (check the windows for condensation!), a feature wall is powerful for drawing the eye – especially if the kids have left their crayons and doll clothes all over the place again!.
Have you got a colour picked out yet? Is it bold and beautiful, and helps to lit up your neutral walls on the other side of the room? People like to have dark blues and burgundies as the base for the feature walls, but you can opt for any kind of impactful hue here; even a pebble colour looks amazing when you’ve got white or pale walls to accompany it. Don’t worry, you’re going to add more elements in later, so it’s never going to look out-of-place or out of balance.
Make sure you know your living room’s focal point and then paste-up the new colour behind that. It might be the door, it might be the wall the TV’s against, it might be behind where the bookshelves are hiding the skirting board. Just assess what naturally draws your eye, and then apply all of your creative focus to it. Make sure it’s the right space, as you don’t want to overboard on what is an already crowded wall.
Then feel free to add a bit of texture to the wall, on top of the paint. You can add in some more papery materials like wallpaper, or you can add in wood highlights and blocks of stone to really round off how special that part of the wall is. Or add some tiles; we all love the backsplash in the kitchen, and the same principle can apply here.
Make Sure You’ve Got Storage Solutions
Storage solutions are incredibly important when you’ve got a young and large family to take care of, and you’re always going to be running out of room in the boxes you push under the sofa. Not to mention how overflowing the bookshelves are; who knew you owned that many Disney DVDs? So now’s the time to put up some shelves or hanging baskets, which can be both practical and pretty for your space. Hey, you’ve got the wall space, and they weren’t doing anything better anyway!
You can simply knock a couple of planks of wood together, in whatever shape or distance you want, and then hook that up to the wall. A wonky shelf can be a great addition to an already crazy living room or bedroom, and adding a bit of paint to the top and underside of the wood is going to really highlight the inside of the shelf. That’ll help to light up your room as well!
Or you can drive some nails into the walls and get some bookends to rest on them, with a bracket to hold everything up (you want the piece to be secure – you don’t want a four-volume book falling on someone’s head!). Then you’ve got some mini bookshelves dotted all over the place, whenever and wherever you need them. Put one near the front door to rest your keys on, and make it a designated area for something you desperately need to remember to take with you the next day.
Get Your Kids Involved
Kids love to express themselves, whether that be through imaginary worlds and friends or via singing and screaming and throwing a bit of paint around. And because of this, we can use these expressions to our advantage to decorate our walls! Your children will love seeing the artwork of their own upon the walls; every kid out there loves to see their pieces on the fridge, why not go the extra step to show your little ones how much you really love them?
You might be a little hesitant about allowing your kids to draw all over the walls – they might just end up using their crayons everywhere afterwards. But if you give them the time and place, and all the materials they need to make a good mess, you’re going to have the upper hand of their creative tendencies…
So give them a piece of A3 or A4 paper, give them paints, pencils, pens, sponges, pipe cleaners, and everything else you can think of that would make up a great craft project, and let them go to town. They should be done within an hour or so, and you’ve got some homemade and absolutely wonderful family art to go up on the wall!
Or you could buy an easel for them to take turns on, creating the best paintings they can think of for you to use in the office and your bedroom, to remind yourself of how creative your family can be and who they must get that from… It couldn’t be much easier or simple!
Ready to Spruce Up Your Home?
It’s your house, you can do what you want with it, but these tips can help. If you’ve got some plans to change your walls into living and breathing institutions inside your house, now’s the time to get a head start on the plans. You don’t want to stay plain and block-coloured forever, and seeing as you’ve got plenty of ammunition on your side now, you don’t have to!
Sprucing up your walls can be a nice project to round off the end of the summer season, and if you clear some space for the upcoming celebrations right around the corner, the more’s the better!