How to stamp your personality on your home


When you move into a new place, you want to do all that you can to make it feel like yours, and express your character through the way you decorate and furnish it. 

A great starting point for inspiration is to look through different home and decor magazines to get your creative juices flowing. Although these magazines often feature people who have limitless budgets or employ interior designers to do all the thinking for them, it’s still a fantastic way to gather different ideas and get a feel of what kind of look appeals to you. You can then find ways to recreate a similar look that fits your own budget.

Of course, you don’t need to move home to do this – it’s perfectly possible to refresh the place you already have, and decorate it in a new style. The impetus isn’t always the same, though, when you’re staying put because often it feels like too much upheaval to change everything around. It’s always easier when you move in somewhere new as it feels like you have a blank canvas to work from.

If you find that you can’t decide on which direction to take your decorating theme along, then try these tips to define your own particular style.

Choose some inspirational words to refine your theme

Think about the things that you like to do in your free time and the places you love to visit (or would like to). Also think about where you’ve chosen to live. For instance, it’s likely that if you live in a town like Brighton, that you’re fond of the sea. Take some of the words that encapsulate your interests as a starting point for a home decorating style. Examples could be adventure (maps, travel mementos, books), drama (theatrical masks and event posters and programmes), focusing in on another country –  the warmth of Mediterranean colours of Spain or Italy or the exotic textures of Turkey or Indian furniture, or on a particular decade like the seventies.

Choose furniture to complement your theme

Once you’ve settled on a theme, go back to those décor magazines and find photos of rooms that give you a warm feeling – the kind of feeling you want in your own home. Look for photos that showcase room layouts that have similarities to yours – for example, the style of windows, the type of architecture. Then assess the furniture and décor that you have and decide what you need to change.

While you might not have the budget available to buy a whole new set of furniture every time you want to restyle your home, when you need to replace certain items, make sure they are aligned with your new theme. For instance, if you’ve chosen to go down the Mediterranean route, choosing bright colours to give your home a warm and sunny motif, then some of the great furniture at Vivendo could work perfectly. The company was started by three Italian friends who wanted to bring a taste of home to their new homes in London. All of the pieces on the website are sourced directly from Italian artisan manufacturers, and have a contemporary yet classic feel to them.

Make a wish list of decorative pieces to bring it all together

Once you’ve decided on a decorating theme and put the basics in place, you can gradually find ornaments and pictures to finish the look. Instead of buying a whole range of different trinkets at random that catch your eye when you’re out, write a list of what you’re looking for and buy them when you find them. Otherwise, there’s a danger of ending up with an eclectic mix of objects in your home. This is fine if you’re going for the ‘thrift store look’ with a jumble of different styles, but it’s usually better to remain focused.

Decorating your home to a particular theme or motif doesn’t have to cost the earth, or involve a total makeover. If you’re limited on budget, then focus in on a few details that are easy to reproduce – displays of shelving or choosing a bold colour theme and accessorising with curtains, rugs and throws, and paint rather than changing all of your furniture. Deciding on a particular design theme will allow to you make a start and then hone it to reflect the things that you love in life.

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