California designer Shiree Hanson Segerstrom's weekly tips for decorating, gardening, and stylish living
Personalizing Your New Home
into a newly purchased home would seem to be an ideal situation. There’s fresh
paint, clean carpets or flooring, and all that empty wall space waiting like a
blank canvas for your first decorations. But trust me when I say it’s not that easy
to make a new home feel warm and inviting. It can take years before a home
represents your tastes and lifestyle.
Above via Witford
home is an evolving, work in progress. Styles change and we eventually crave
updates, even with the best chosen furnishings.
think what holds us back from creating a warm new home environment is uncertainty,
but there is also this misconception that a home looks better when sparsely
furnished. Unless you happen to prefer the look of a museum or a mass-mailed
furniture catalog, nothing could be further from the truth. A home looks and
feels better when it has a more personal appearance, one that has evolved over
Above Janie Molster
how do you personalize your home right from the beginning? I’ve put together some
ways to help you identify the usual culprits of decorating whether the home is
brand new or simply new to you.
you’re going to enlist professionals to remodel, repair and paint now is the
obvious time. I’m biased, but employing a designer at this time will help pull
all your ideas together and help you prioritize projects.
Above designer unknown
the temptation to discard any furniture or accessories until well after the big
move. You may “think” you don’t like an old chair or desk or lamp but in
reality with fresh paint or new fabric those old pieces may have just the touch
of character your new home needs.
the biggest pieces first: the bed, area rugs, the sofa, the China hutch, the
dining table, and the entertainment center. Place these correctly before
proceeding. Don’t place anything on angles. That idea is passé and never worked
well to begin with.
of big pieces of furniture as anchors. When placed correctly, these anchors
will “feel” like they’ve been there “forever”. Like matured landscaping, they
give a space a sense of “permanence”.
Above Designer Unknown
a little trick I came up with many years ago. Use your existing pieces as
markers for helping you with future purchases. For instance, if you know you’ll
be ordering a new sofa, use your current sofa in the place where the new one
will go for a short time. How does it fit? Should it be a sectional? Should it
have a skirt? Would a different fabric pattern go better in the new
surroundings? The same goes with other items. Use them as measuring sticks or
barometers for planning new purchases.
Above via Simple Details
the biggest pieces are properly placed, you can place the smaller items such as
the sideboard, armchairs, accent chairs, cocktail and end tables, lamps and
the living room, if the space is large you’ll need two to three seating
arrangements: one dominant and one to two subordinate. For small spaces one to
two seating areas is plenty. Accentuate each area with at least one accent
table and/or lamp.
Above Grant Gibson
second most common mistake is to overlook window treatments. Unless your
architecture and views are outstanding and the windows themselves are to die
for, you probably need a little fabric on them by way of lined or sheer
draperies. Clean looking wooden shutters and blinds are wonderful for modern
Above Designer Unknown
Five and Six
time to gild the lily. You have your big anchor pieces and small accent pieces
placed. Now you get to place accessories and hang pictures.
like to start at the beginning, the entry. From there I like to move on to the
formal living room, then the dining room, then the master bedroom, then the
family room or den if there is one, then the kitchen, then spare bedrooms and
Above Hamish Bowles
I like working in a circular fashion viewing my rooms as I go, from the point of
entrance. Try and mix up styles and eras as you furnish and accessorize each
room and aim for a balanced “coverage” throughout, yet leaving little areas of
undecorated space as a place to rest the eyes.
Above Via Domino
Above Jeffrey Allen Marks
Here are some common upgrades, some of which are required for building to code: