Bring up the topic of redecorating and you'll probably be hit by a barrage of advice suggesting you completely de-clutter before you even start. But a life completely free from clutter just won't work for everyone. This is particularly true if you're the kind of person who has built up a lifetime of treasured possessions, or one who simply finds a home void of stuff to be a little bit lackluster.
The trick in this case is to take control of clutter and organize it in a way that is both functional and stylish. Group items according to their color or purpose, and place them in spaces where they will be easy to reach whenever you need them. Keep the chaos to a minimum by favoring plain containers, placing similar items on trays or in boxes, and being selective about the items you display and the items you hide away.
Here are eight ways to decorate with simple, everyday objects that will ensure your home is your ultimate happy place.
1. Keep Close the Items You Reach for Most
Up the style and functionality stakes in your bathroom by keeping your scrubbing brushes and cleaning cloths on hand. Placed next to a freestanding bathtub, for example, a timber stool will encourage you to give the bathroom a quick cleaning blitz every time you shower.
2. Make a DIY Suspended Wardrobe
This is particularly useful for smaller homes or older homes that lack built-in storage. Take a sturdy tree branch and tie it up to the ceiling. This will keep your clothing off the floor and free from creases. Try making it into a pulley design so you can hoist it up and out of sight when required.
3. Go Vertical
If you've got a pedestal sink and a bathroom mirror that isn't equipped with a cabinet, it can pay to get creative and go vertical with your storage. A wicker basket can be nailed to the wall for a handy place to drape a hand towel while also providing ample storage to help keep the sink top free from clutter.
4. Keep Curated Vignettes Combined
One way to prevent everyday objects from looking chaotic is to group them together by color and purpose and style them in a box or on a tray. For example, you can keep a stylish box with shopping bags by the front door on the hallway table for any last-minute grocery trips.
5. Steer Towards Stylish Vessels
In kitchens with open shelving, one of the best ways to keep your everyday essentials looking aesthetically pleasing is to place them in plain containers. De-cluttering extraordinaire Marie Kondo refers to this as removing "excess visual information." For any items with particularly glaring labels, pop them into a stylish plain box. Rustic crates do just the trick.
6. Reuse, Repurpose, And Recycle
In our throw-away age, it can be tempting to buy all-new storage solutions for every corner of the house. But sometimes it's good to just stop and think: Is there anything I already own that can be made to fit a new purpose? For example, a piece of timber can be fitted with a pair of vintage glass jars to hold knickknacks and utensils.
7. Modular Shelving
Custom timber shelving can cost a fortune, but that doesn't mean you should go without. Timber crates are a dime a dozen and offer endless possibilities for stacking and styling. For a clean, minimalist look, decorate them with everyday items in similar shades. Try neutral tones with pops of white.
8. Don't See a Problem, See Potential
Older homes are coveted for their character and quirks. Rather than working against them, use them to your advantage. Missing a place to store your towels? Pop in a pretty chair. Sash window keeps falling down? Keep the air flowing with a stack of books propping it open. These may not be the most practical or most long-term solution, but it will help you make peace with an old home's idiosyncrasies until a more permanent fix comes along.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, Homes to Love.
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