BY TABATHA RENEGAR
I woke up on New Year’s Day and thought to myself, we need to rename this month. January should really be Drabuary! The bright, festive holiday decorations are all wrapped up and put away for another 11 months, it’s cold outside, and the sky is about 50 shades of…. well, you know.
There isn’t even another really big holiday to look forward to for months!
As I was moping around the house with these thoughts in my head, I looked around and decided to take action! Rather than settle for drab, why not take advantage of this time to perk things up around my house? I don’t mean major renovations – just the opposite! What are some small, inexpensive, or free things that we can do in our own homes to bring some freshness and good energy to where we live?
Move your art around. Sometimes just swapping out a landscape watercolor in your living room with an abstract in your den can make a room feel refreshed!
Get some new faces! Do you have framed photos of family and friends on shelves, mantles, and tables? Empty them and start over! Maybe with updated photos of those beloved folks or, have some fun and stick a picture of Brad Pitt or Lady Gaga into a frame and see if anyone notices!
Rearrange the furniture. This is one of my all-time favorite things to do! A switcheroo can truly change the entire vibe of a room! A great book about this is: Use What You Have Decorating by Lori Ward. The fun before and after photos are sure to inspire you!
Propagate plants. If you’ve got the winter blues, how do you think your houseplants feel? It will only take a few minutes on Google or Pinterest to find step-by-step instructions on how to turn your favorite plant into several that you can spread throughout the house.
Adopt a fish. For well under $50.00, you can add a cute little aquarium to any room in your house. Not only is a colorful fish a great stress-reliever, but the tank light will give off a soothing hue.
Candles, candles, and more candles! For maximum glow, place candles next to mirrors, either above a fireplace or in a container next to a mirror resting against a wall. Windows work well, too. A candle in a glass holder will also be brighter as the light inside will be refracted. Similarly, candles will offer more light against a white wall.
Paint. And speaking of walls…. Paint one! Or the whole room. When it comes to making a dramatic change without a dramatic cost, you can’t do much better than painting. Accent walls behind a headboard are very trendy right now and make a big impact with minimal work! (Check back and I’ll have my own before and after photos of this to share!)
Change out your shower curtain. You spend a lot of time in this room; why not add a bright pop of color or a funky pattern to add some pizazz to the loo? Do you have a glass door to your shower? Then find some bright new towels in fun patterns for the same effect.
Light it up! Adding a few small lamps to a room can make it feel cozier and brighter at the same time. There are countless inexpensive options in local thrift stores and at Goodwill. Use as is or with a fresh coat of spray paint in a bold color.
Fresh flowers! When all else fails, run out to Trader Joe’s and bring home a few bunches of colorful flowers and fresh greenery, and then spread them throughout your home. And think outside the vase! Put them in wine glasses, bowls, pitchers, jars… any vessel that holds water is fair game!
For more fun ideas on freshening up your home in the New Year, put ‘use what you have decorating’ or ‘freshen your home’ in the search field on Pinterest.