Make your new home feel like home

When you move into a new house, all you have is four walls and lots of boxes. If this is your first home, you may not even have that many boxes; When I moved into mine, all I had was some clothes, books, and some old prints that I had collected over the years. It really felt empty and not like home at all, but over the past few months it has become a place I want to return to after a long day at work. I found that the only thing that makes a home feel like your own home is filling it with your own stuff. It is not just about using accessories for decoration; it’s about what objects mean to you.

With all the television design shows, you probably know all about accent walls, creating mirrored spaces and lighting, and keeping everything neutral. The problem is that if you manage to make the image of your house perfect and follow all these rules, it may look good, but it may also make you feel soulless. A tidy home has a pleasant atmosphere but can appear clinical and cold.

A house is only a home if you put your own stamp on it. That means putting your books on the shelves, putting your pictures on the walls, and painting them whatever color you want. If you rent a home, there will be restrictions on what you can do. Painting, for example, is probably out of the question, and adding more shelves could also be against the rules. In this case, it’s harder to make the house feel like yours (because ultimately it isn’t), but there are a few things you can do.

Focus on things like furniture and soft furnishings. If you can’t make any changes to the structure of the building, focus on what fills the rooms. Framed paintings and prints are great for making walls appear less bare, old furniture fills a room and adds character, and candles and incense make the room smell good and cozy.

You don’t have to spend a fortune on your new mess. Avoid furniture stores and look for older pieces instead. Auctions can be great for picking up things that need a bit of work, so if you don’t mind a bit of effort, you can find a bargain. Alternatively, antiques fairs and trunk sales are the best place to go. There will be many more options and you can haggle over the price.

Mirrors, for example, can cost hundreds of pounds at a store, but you can buy one for a small fraction of that secondhand. Furniture that doesn’t match doesn’t have to look bad; it can look quirky and add some character to a home. Wall panels, wall hangings, and quirky statues can also add a lot of interest to a boring space.

Soft furnishings add the perfect finishing touch. Invest in blankets and rugs to muffle noise and create warmth. With so many modern homes that have hardwood floors, carpets and blankets are essential to balance this out and give a homey feel. They can also add color to a neutral space, and if you go ahead, they’re the easiest thing to keep.