at home should be a positive experience especially for those of us with chronic
pain like arthritis. But if you find yourself looking for ways to get out of
the house rather than ways to enjoy yourself while there, you might want to
consider buffing up your domestic act with one or more of the following
improvements. Look at it this way: if your home is a drain on your energy, it’s
time for a change and that time is now.
is one of my favorite ways to update and refresh a tired space. Reupholstering
the sofa, dressing the windows, slipcovering the chairs, and having some
coordinating throw pillows done up will revive a tired room into something wonderful.
fabric is tricky. If you’re a person who shies away from pattern, using high
quality, beautifully textured fabrics will be your best bet. You can start with
a beautiful, softly prewashed linen and add subtle luxury fabrics like velvet
and silk ticking. When choosing floral fabrics choose a pattern with a limited
number of colors (2 to 3) in it. I love using Midi or awning style stripe
fabrics as an accent. ’m not a big fan of checks mainly because I feel they
wore out their welcome in the 80’s but I do like wool or cotton plaids if they’re
ten years or so, have one or two fresh coats of paint. Whites are generally
cooler now, with more gray undertones than before. Benjamin Moore, Sherwin Williams
and Dunn Edwards offer designer colors with a less expensive cost per gallon while
Pratt and Lambert, Fine Paints of Europe, and Farrow and Ball have beautiful, timeless
colors, high pigment content and long lasting quality.
use a flat finish in the public rooms and master bedroom; satin or eggshell in
bathrooms, kitchen and children’s areas; and satin, gloss or semi-gloss on
cabinetry, doors, windows and casing. If “white paint” isn’t your idea of
redecorating, choose your colors carefully. Today’s homes have open floor plans
and they usually don’t look right with multiple changes in color without the
visual dividers of doorway frames.
colors like pale yellow, pale gray-blue, and light celadon green are good
options for colors that “travel” well from room to room.
in mind warm colors advance, making the room appear smaller while light, cool
colors recede, making the room appear larger.
great way to improve and beautify your home is to give it a makeover using the
things you already have. A makeover is economical because it saves you from
unnecessary purchases. It helps you make the most of what you already have. Big
bonus: once your makeover is complete, you’ll really be able to see what
purchases are truly needed.
for the living room usually take one day while the other rooms take half days.
Experiment with furniture placement, placing the sofa and other large
furnishings first. Anchor conversation areas with furniture then create focal
points with accessories. Move things around till you get it right. Fireplaces
are built-in focal points and are nicely balanced with an opposing sofa. Don’t place
furnishings on an angle. You want your furniture to provide an anchoring,
stabilizing effect and angled layouts are discombobulating.
accessories like pillows, baskets, throws, books, vases, pots, plants (faux and real), and lamps are
comparatively inexpensive next to buying new furniture and window coverings,
when put together they are not a small expense. As an example, to prepare for a
home tour several years ago, I purchased new accessories to add to my existing
ones in the living room, dining room, and master bedroom and spent close to
$2,000 on accessories alone.
purchased ten framed prints, five large pots, two table cloths (for permanent
use, not for dining), silver picture frames, and a small area rug. This
supplemented the things I already had. The tour was a success and the changes
provided me with so much joy, satisfaction and even healing. Your home has a
huge effect on your psyche.
shopping for accessories choose things that work around your architecture and
existing furnishings, not just your personal taste. Don’t strive for
perfection. Often it’s the quirky piece or item that’s a little off that
provides visual interest and tells a story.
your personal belongings are collecting dust that never seems to get cleaned,
if your spouse or children are embarrassed to have guests over, or if “Hoarders”
has contacted you recently to guest appear in an upcoming episode (teasing)
it’s time to reduce or repurpose.
take your unwanted stuff to the thrift store yet, however. Do your makeover
starting with the living room first, dining room second, master bedroom third,
and so on. You’ll be amazed by the things you can repurpose in other areas of
your home. Change is harder for some of us, but your quality of life at home
relies on healthy, sustainable changes. A home isn’t static. It needs regular
attention to keep it functioning and attractive. Just like you!
of the things I’ve noticed being a home maker and using a professional coach in
years past is that the cleaner and tidier the home, the more motivated I feel
in general at work, in my relationship, in my self-care and in my personal
development. When you eliminate or change things that are a nuisance to you, you
get a tremendous energy boost. This is true of many things in life such as excess
weight or a job you have outgrown. As someone smart once said, nature abhors a
rid of the things that drain your energy to make room for better things to
beautifully. Eat beautifully, Shiree
Click “Pain Free Design and Wellness” for a free chapter of my powerful new book that helps women with arthritis create beautiful, functional homes and take better care of themselves every day because home is where it all begins.