I’m a mum. Which means my home will never realistically look like anything out of Architectural Digest, not until my child/children have fully flown the nest.
However, I do have a few dedicated corners of my home to what some might call ‘interior design’, that make ME feel like there’s a little bit of serenity and elegance in my life.
Like many people I too dream of having concrete kitchen countertops, giant organic ceramics, rose-gold utensils and oversized minimalist paintings. But I’m not a millionaire, not even close.
And since trends change so fast, by the time I actually HAVE the pocket change to seriously invest in my imagined home decor, all the above will be outdated and silicone will be all the trend.
In saying that, I’ve managed to cheat my way into having a nicely decorated, child-friendly apartment without any of the usual costs!
It may not be the most philanthropic article I’ve ever written, but here are my ultimate cheats for decorating your home without the attached price tag WHILST staying mindful and relatively low waste.
1. RENT YOUR LIBRARY
It’s the feature of all celebrity’s coffee tables and the most direct identification of a person’s character in a home. Always sophisticated, perfectly eye-catching and about $50-$100 a pop!
So unless you plan on spending a good few $500 on books that will primarily serve as decor, hit the library and get your loan on!
Coffee table books are beautiful page turners, but let’s be honest after a few weeks/months you’re ready for something fresh. Mix it up and let your choices reflect a part of who you are.
Having your decor on loan won’t just be mentally stimulating and cost effective but environmentally conscious (without damaging the literary market).
2. BECOME THE ARTIST
I recently went to the Gallery of NSW with Acacia (my three year old) and saw a blank canvas on the wall called ‘Unknowing’, where the plaque explained it as, ‘providing a moral parable for the viewer’.
Now, I don’t want to take anything away from the artist, but my three year old can deliver more interest to the eye on a canvas than that. And if Acacia can create ‘modern art’, us adults can too.
Sketching a shape of the female body and pressing flowers (then gluing them onto framed perspex) are a few of my more successful ones.
Not only are you actively being your own artist, but if it all goes belly up, you’ve literally lost nothing.
Find whatever materials you can inside Op Shops or throw outs. And above all, have fun with it!
3. PROPOGATE IT, DON’T SOIL IT
Plants are gorgeous around the home. They add life, calm, elegance, and for some, company.
But they don’t come cheap. And can become an un-calculated investment if you don’t have a plant babysitter on the weeks you decide to leave the home.
So instead, just plant propagate!
All this means is simply off-cutting certain plants (from larger plants that your friends or family might have) and immersing those cuttings into a glass vase filled with water.
Done properly they can last for months, look luscious and without any of the care or fuss you might have to give potted home plants.
4. PUT A CANDLE ON IT
It’s just one of those things isn’t it.
Get a stack of books and put a candle on it. Set up your home plant alongside your new artwork, then place a candle next to it.
Whatever you might choose to do with your home decor, no one can deny that a beautiful looking, delicious smelling candle can and will upgrade your home’s feel.
But the good ones can set you back $20 (if not more) and for the 20 hours or so of burning time you get, you may end up going through a few candles a month.
So instead, treat them as part of the decor and only choose to burn them when it really calls for it. And when you do burn them, burn them for a good few hours (this actually saves on wax in the long-run).
Once you’re finished with the jar, clean it out with hot water and re-use it as a container in the kitchen, pencil/paintbrush holder for the kids or even a plant pot for outside!
5. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE ORNAMENTS
Metal hexagons, concrete cubes, ceramic monkeys. It’s all relevant and it’s all Vogue Decor approved. As long as it’s paired with other equally expensive looking items on a glass top coffee table right?
If that’s the case, why go out and spend $200 on a gold painted prism made of plastic, when you can get yourself a gorgeous shell FOR FREE from the beach? Or a piece of polished rock from a throw out (read about how we find treasures on throw out here).
A piece of driftwood, a coconut shell, gold painted pine cones the list goes on. Utilize the natural treasures God’s given us and decorate your home with them, whilst staying stylish and on trend!
So reflect yourself, introduce joyful things into your home and have fun with it all.
And let’s be honest, when you don’t INVEST in ‘things’ too much, life and home are always a bit brighter and lighter.
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