When going through my recent Q+A on our house / whether or not we want to stay in it, I realized one of my favorite parts of our house is how lived-in it feels. You can have the most stunning home but if it doesn’t feel homey, it’s basically a pretty box.
Paul and I are very conscious about what we bring into our home and agree that it needs to feel like us and make sense for how we live. That doesn’t mean I don’t buy what I want aesthetically (hello, white linen couch with a toddler!) but things like comfort and functionality are non-negotiables. I don’t want our house to feel like some modern cement box; I want it to look beautiful while feeling like home.
I always get questions surrounding how I make my house feel vibey which goes hand-in-hand with feeling lived in. Here are my tips…
+ Bring in energy
I think it’s feng shui principles that say you should bring in earthy elements to your house and that’s something I believe in. It’s why you’ll always find a candle or incense burning or fresh branches / flowers on display. I also love burning sage or palo santo, whether to actually cleanse the house or just create a vibe, and then leaving them half-burned on our coffee table.
+ Know how to clean your sh*t
I follow several bloggers and interior designers who have kids and gorgeous interiors – including white couches, fabric chairs, etc. And while I won’t lie and say that it’s somewhat high maintenance, if that look is important to you, like it is to us, just learn how to clean it. You can actually buy a lot of family-friendly fabrics that clean well and don’t look plastically or vinyl these days. Here’s how I clean my white linen couch and it works like a charm.
+ Repurpose ugly stuff you use daily
One of the best design hacks I know is to switch out ugly packaging for something chic…or buy something nicer looking. Things like a nice hand soap bottle go a long way in your bathroom and you can always refill it so you’re just buying it once. Or use these affordable soap dispensers. Same thing goes for your kitchen soap situation and using a nicer dish brush.
I’m in the process of wanting to replace a lot of our cooking oils, etc. with nicer bottles or finding a way to hide them because it’s definitely an eyesore in our kitchen. But the point is, you don’t want to completely hide things you use every day because that’s not efficient; just find prettier ways to display them!
+ Have comfy textures
There’s nothing worse than going to someone’s house and freezing on their couch because they don’t have blankets in reach. And I’M ALWAYS F*CKING COLD!!!
I probably have too many blankets at this point but I’m sticking to the fact that they add warmth, literally, and make people feel at home. When draped or layered correctly, they can also add a design element to your room. Especially by layering a thin blanket over a chair or the back of your couch if the back is something people see when they walk into your space. Again, lived-in and vibey in one!
+ Books and photos
Paul would tell you that I hoard coffee table books (favorites linked here) and he’s not lying. I think they not only add a nice touch of design and are one of the easiest ways to fill a space, but they’re also inviting. I die for curling up on the couch with a good coffee table book and a coffee!
Similar to books, photos from traveling, of family and friends, etc. can make your home feel personal. Just keep things minimal – we don’t need a hallway lined with a million pictures here. I like to blend them into my decor, especially on shelves as I do in our living room. Places like guest rooms and bathrooms make more sense for experiences or travel photos, and I like more personal photos for our bedroom, living room, etc.
For more on my living room, read this post.
What tips would you add??