When it comes to interior updates within your home, you don´t necessarily have to spend a fortune, or be overly creative in order to make some real magic happen. All you need is a bit of imagination and willingness, and you´re already on your way. With Spring in the air – here are some of my ultimate quick and easy interior hacks, that won´t break the bank, or take up all your precious time. Don´t forget; it´s always the little touches, the small updates and details, that can make all the difference.
1. A TOUCH OF BRASS
I am a big fan of minimal Scandinavian style, with an edge. And with that edge, I often seek out metallics, such as brass, to really make a difference to a room. The amount of furniture pieces I have updated, by replacing it with brass knobs, legs and handles – is endless (and with gold, as long as you keep it simple and on smaller pieces, I think you can continue, and continue). Funnily enough, everyone seems so shocked and surprised, when I tell them that our dresser, bedside tables, or simple hall cabinet, is actually ´just from IKEA`. With the simple change of some fresh new knobs, they look like real designer pieces.
I sometimes spray paint handles, but more often than not, I like to invest in good quality styles which can really elevate the whole piece of furniture. So far, I have done it in the kitchen, bedrooms, my study and in the lounge. As well as updating my home with fittings, I have also added other simple artefacts and accessories in brass, such as trays, pot holders, candles…
…and the results has totally transformed the rooms. I love the combination of gold metal – with the more muted, and natural colours. Brass, can of course at times be a bit OTT – but that´s if it´s in an more indulgent and opulent setting. If you bring metals into a neutral, simple an elegant space, it can really work wonders. Mixing metals is also a ´thing` for 2017, and although I always tend to only opt for brass where possible, the bathroom is always a bit more tricker to source fittings for, so chrome and dark steel looks just as good here as well. Then if you´re really having a daring moment, add some copper in there too; like I did, with my new copper rail. I was so unsure when I first received it (I thought it was going to be brass), but it´s slowly grown on me, and I now have it in my study, alongside various brass fittings.
IKEA Chest of Drawers
Etsy Round Brass Knobs (sold out, but you can still find similar styles on Etsy)
Ironmongery Direct Round Knobs (spray painted brass)
More Handles Brass Kitchen Handles
Hammam & Home Grey & White Hand Towels
Urban Outfitters Copper Rail (sold out – available in black)
2. BRING IN THE NATURE
One of the quickest ways of adding some real life and style into your home – is investing in lots of indoor plants for the house. I started off with a few cactuses and some mini succulents, which has now evolved into lots of different types and colours in near enough every room (I´m obsessed).
Not only does it bring a smile to my face and sometimes make me feel like I´m in the tropics (in my dreams), but it really adds personality, warmth and edge to your home. With the rising popularity of indoor plants, the options are becoming much more widespread (if you´re not already lucky enough to live near a garden centre) – more DIY shops, and even some larger supermarkets can also have a great selection of foliage.
Another tip to really add style to your home, is choosing your plant pots (and baskets) wisely. I personally love either simple and neutral white styles (letting the plant be the focal point), as well as rustic wicker baskets, to add an element of texture and boho to your house. If you´re not as daring, or don´t have lots of space for plants, fill your home with stems of eucalyptus instead (my favourite).
Urban Outfitters Cactuses (available in their Oxford Street store only)
Other plants from Palm Centre in Ham (Richmond) and Homebase
Avery Row Grey Woven Striped Basket
Wayfair Basket w/ Grey Stripe & White Stripe
Homebase White Pots
Zara Oversized Frosted Vase
Tiger Small Pots
3. UPDATE YOUR CUSHION COVERS
The easiest way to update your home, especially now with Spring just around the corner – is changing your cushion covers. It´s the quickest and cheapest way to make some change to freshen up the overall look. I have far too many cushion covers than I would like to admit, none of which has broken the bank, and which I will no doubt keep in my piles of rotation for years to come. I might be a bit extreme, and actually tend to change up my cushion covers every month or so; not always anything drastic, but just subtle changes to make a difference if I´m suddenly bored with the prints or colours.
I get a lot of my cushion covers from the high street, as they have a great selection at an affordable price. Just remember, don´t take it too seriously. Have fun! Play around with colours, prints and textures. Go out of your comfort zone (you might surprise yourself), and if you regret it, it´s just a cushion cover change away to get you back to what you prefer.
That´s the beauty of simple and cheap interior hacks; you know you haven´t made a huge investment that you have to stick with for years – you can chop and change, update and style however much you want.
Happy + Co Large Grey & White Cushions
Wood/Grey Small Striped Rectangular Cushion w/Pom Poms
Urban Outfitters Pink Shaggy Cushion
Elizabeth Scarlett Pineapple Printed Grey Cushion & Pink Cushions
M&S Initial Cushion
Wood/Grey Striped Pom Pom Cushions
The rest of the cushions are from Anthropologie and H&M Home
4. GET THE LIGHTING RIGHT
Good lighting is everything. I mean, if you have dingy, dark and limited light, it´s never going to show off the real potential of your home. That´s not to say you have to have spotlights everywhere and you can never enjoy ambience lighting – but you need the options ready; be it for a super bright and light space, the spotlights dimmed, or just a few corner lamps to create that homely feel.
When we first moved into our home, I struggled with the lighting in our front lounge. We decided on no spotlights here (as we didn´t want to lower the ceiling), so we got a ceiling lamp and a side light. The ceiling lamp, although stunning in it´s own right, didn´t really give off a cozy feel. I even changed the light bulb, but due to the cover, it just never really worked. The side lamp, also didn´t give off enough light in that one corner; resulting in it being my least favourite and cozy room in the house. It was only until a few months back, when I added another floor light on the other side of the room, the light balance suddenly worked – and it instantly made the room feel brighter and so much more appealing to sit in.
So when and if in doubt, you don´t need to invest in spotlights – but just get lots of nice table and floor lights to add that extra warmth, light and coziness to the room – it can really work wonders. Same goes for all your rooms.
5. DARE TO BE BOLD
Being from Scandinavia, I have always favoured a more minimal and muted overall style. When that said, I grew up in a very colourful home, where my mum in particular, preferred the more boho chic style – with lots of Moroccan and Indian style furniture, textured rugs and colourful walls. I guess that´s why I have always opted for a fusion of the two; however always steering more towards Scandinavian minimalism on the overall – especially when it comes to the bigger and more core investments, such as the kitchen, bathroom, walls, flooring, sofa, dining table etc. But then rather adding some more softer boho pieces in between, with textured rugs, baskets, cushion covers, throws, etc.
I went trough a phase of wanting everything in our house in the same tonal colours, with stricter and more minimal accessories, but luckily, this phase didn’t last very long (and never really felt like me anyways). My minimal/boho style could not be suppressed for any longer, and after living in our newly renovated house for 6 months or so, I finally started to play around with textures, colours and prints.
So don´t be afraid, and have fun! On paper, a pink shaggy cushion might sound a bit too much alongside more streamlined grey velvet – but that´s the charm of it. As long as you keep the overall style neutral, and use natural colours and material, such as greys, whites, hemp, wood – you can more easily add in clashes of colour and contrasting materials, such as velvet, brass, metals… The list goes on.
Leave me a comment below if you want to know where anything else specifically is from, and I will answer in the comments below. And please let me know if YOU have any other good interior hacks to share? As always, I love to hear from you.