Making a House a Home

It’s as easy as A-B-C-D-E.

Nestled in the perfect little neighborhood, your house is the essence of cute. But something’s missing. Despite living in it for a few months, it doesn’t quite feel like home. With a few adjustments, you can turn your house into a real-life home.

Here’s how.

Appreciate Art. Don’t have the cash to pick up a Picasso? No problem. All you have to do to add some art to your house is grab your camera and start shooting. Get close-ups of pets, flowers, or a favorite architectural element of your home. After reviewing your photos, pick a photo that you’re pleased with and get a large print of the photo. Then, frame the picture and enjoy! If you don’t have a camera but do have kids, go through their art and choose some good pieces to frame. These not only liven up your walls, but act as wonderful conversation starters and tangible reasons for your child to be proud.

Break Bread. A house will never be a home if no one is there to enjoy it. In order to give your house a homey feel, invite friends and family over on a regular basis for dinner and a movie. Every time guests come over, pay attention to what elements of your house they seem to enjoy the most and work to make every nook and cranny as enjoyable and welcoming as possible – from the kitchen to the living room to the spare bedroom. Have a late night with friends and family? Nothing says comfort and home to visitors like the ability to stay the night in a well-kept guest room.

Choose Colors. Sure, the idea of a move-in-ready home is exciting. But after a few weeks, the wall colors chosen by the previous owners have to go. After all, if it’s going to be your place, it should look like your space! Consider the mood you would like to set in each room and pick paint colors accordingly. Or if you want, go with a consistent color palette throughout the house to give your home a cohesive look. Just try not to paint too many rooms the same color, as this can cause even the most brilliant color to become bland and overdone.

Design Different. You may have seen the perfect home in a magazine, but making your house look identical won’t make your house the home you want. Instead, determine what design elements you like in various homes and figure out ways to make these elements work with your own personal style. There is only one you, so there should only be one house that looks like yours. Keeping your home personal will give it a unique homey feeling that can’t be replicated.

Eliminate Excess. Nothing turns a cozy home into an unwanted dump faster than too much stuff. You may think every room needs at least seven decorative items that feature pineapples, but if they’re keeping you from seeing the wall, you may be wrong. Even more important is floor space. If you have so much furniture it is difficult to walk, or if you have stuff scattered all over the floor because there is no other place to put it, it’s time for a change. Determine what is essential to make your house homey and put the rest in storage or get rid of it.

Picking the Paint

Want to set a certain atmosphere in your home? Plan to do it with the colors of your walls? Here is a quick list of what feelings are evoked by various colors and where the colors are often used.

Red = warmth, energy; ideal for kitchens and other non-resting spaces
Yellow = happiness, warmth; ideal for dark rooms that need lightening up
Blue = peace, calm; ideal for bedrooms
Green = calm, refreshing, safe; ideal for living rooms, bedrooms

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