Holistic Design Approach Freshen Rooms with a Few New Classics

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Holistic Design Approach: How to Freshen Your Rooms with a Few New Classics

Giving your home a new look doesn’t require a complete overhaul. In fact, some of the most beautiful rooms I do use a holistic design approach where you freshen your rooms with cherished pieces you already have and a few new, carefully chosen classics.


a living space with lots of pictures and a mix of modern and traditional elements

Let’s dive into how you can freshen your home holistically, to reflect your personality, create meaning and mix old and new pieces for a fresh new look in your home.

And score, rooms that mix old and new actually date much better than furnishing a room all in one place and time.

What to Keep

Take a cursory look at your existing furniture and accessories.

Identify the pieces that have sentiment and bring you joy. Consider whether it will go with a new look in your room. Unless it’s a really unusual piece, or very ornate it likely will work in a new scheme. Just keep in mind it will affect the direction you’ll go in.  

Perhaps it’s a well-worn leather sofa, an antique mirror, or a retro bar cart. These things will serve as the design ‘launch pad’ of your room.

How to Repurpose Things to Other Rooms

When giving your home a holistic makeover, consider the art of repurposing through strategic relocation of furniture and decor. This process involves two key steps:

Moving Items Out

Evaluate each room and identify pieces that may be underutilized or overshadowed. These items can find new life and purpose in different spaces where their size, style, or function may be better suited.

Bringing Items In

Look for pieces in your home that are currently in low-traffic areas or hidden away. By moving them into more prominent spaces, you can refresh the look of a room without the need for new purchases.

This approach not only rejuvenates your space but also allows you to rediscover and appreciate the items you already own, creating a fresh ambiance with a sense of familiarity.

What to Discard

I admit to keeping all but the most hideous things in order to enlarge my decorating arsenal. You can do really beautiful rooms for your home when you have a lot to choose from. And that’s not to say you should use them all.

Don’t do that. But having the ability to find the just right thing right in your own basement or attic creates the most stunning spaces.

Define Your Style

Next, define your style. Are you drawn to minimal, bohemian, or classic styles? Knowing your style preferences will guide your choices as you introduce new pieces.

I hate following popular design trends to a tee. It’s worn-out and uncreative. I see these homes on Pinterest and think they look like a furniture store that’s going out of business. However, I always pay attention to what’s truly new and exciting. I want things that last.

Before Moving onto the Next Steps

Have the things you really love dialed in and identify the things that need repair.

I hate it when clients want to buy new, cheap pieces when they have something that’s from the past and well made. Don’t do that. Keep quality pieces. Repair. Refinish. Repurpose.

Think about where you could use a well-made piece before you get rid of it. One exception is if a piece is something I absolutely hate and happens to be very valuable. I love the idea (I’ve never actually done it) of selling it and funding a design project.

Again, never buy cheap stuff to replace old, good quality stuff.

Another exception here. I love a cheap accent chair! Quality sofa, quality wood pieces, quality pillows and lamps. Cheap accent chair.

Moving on to the next steps.

A Few Classic Pieces to Give You a Lot of Bang for Your Buck

Let’s explore some hardworking classics—the pieces that tie everything together and blend well with your existing pieces.


If you are buying any new pieces for your room makeover, invest in a quality neutral sofa or armchair. Neutral tones provide a versatile canvas for layering textures and colors.

To save money, see if you can find ways to salvage your existing sofa. Having it recovered can’t be considered an economical choice but having it cleaned; tossing a nice throw blanket over it; and investing in some really good quality pillows will go a long way to freshening up its appearance. And yes, I’ve definitely had sofas cleaned. I used Coit the last time I did this.

Accent Chairs

I love a little accent chair to give a space a lift. Accent chairs, like the ones you see at TJ Maxx and Home Goods add a lot of punch to a space.

The only thing to watch for is scale. They can’t be used in big rooms as a main armchair. But they can be used as a main chair in small spaces or as an accent in larger spaces.


A well-designed table light instantly elevates any room. Opt for classic shapes and materials that stand the test of time. The simpler the better. They will likely be more expensive than you expect.

Look for metal, clear class and ceramic bases with quality fabric shades in linen, cotton and silk.

Timeless Rugs

A beautiful rug anchors the space. I love Oriental rugs when you can afford them. But my absolute favorites are sisal, seagrass and cotton. I love how the natural fibers act as backdrops to my high-quality fabrics and woods.

I’m also loving darker jute type rugs right now, with simple graphic designs.

Throw Pillows

Throw pillows are great little matchmakers. They tie your old and new things together so beautifully.

Using a holistic design approach to freshen up your existing furnishings and, if needed, adding in a few new classics will give your home a whole new look and you’ll love being there again, or maybe for the first time ever.

A holistic home design approach always feels so unique. It respects the fact that you’ve lived and traveled. It celebrates a life well lived.

Get Started with a Free Download


The Wellness Home


To get started on a home where you feel healthy, happy and connected grab my complimentary design and wellness download, The Wellness Home, 5 Steps to a Beautiful, Restful Home for Women Who Value their Health and Wellness!

It’s the prettiest little book. It’s a quick read with super easy design solutions that help you lead a beautiful, healthier lifestyle at home, plus my 3-to-5 Things Framework that gives you step by step actions to get started and stay on track. 

That’s it for today. Thank you for stopping by!


PS – this year marks my 25th year in business this year and that’s something to celebrate! We’re cooking up some great gifts for you and some special discounts on my signature courses and virtual services!

And if you’d like to dive deeper into this topic, check out my blog post, “Hiring an Interior Designer”.

May 8, 2024

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Holistic Design Approach Freshen Rooms with a Few New Classics

a living space with lots of pictures and a mix of modern and traditional elements

Holistic Design Approach Freshen Rooms with a Few New Classics

a living space with lots of pictures and a mix of modern and traditional elements

Holistic Design Approach Freshen Rooms with a Few New Classics

a living space with lots of pictures and a mix of modern and traditional elements