One of the most rewarding parts of moving into a home is making the space your own. Whether you rent or you own, there’s something innately comforting about exercising your creative muscles through arranging a space with intention.
Lately, we’ve found that pausing to practice something tactile brings positivity and some much-needed joy and lightness. As a celebration of creative expression, we asked illustrator, interior expert (and the designer behind our charming Alphabet Print), Amanda Jane Jones, to share some styling tips. Below, she outlines out a few ABC's for creating a thoughtful and well-balanced home.
Add personal touches. Our home is minimal in style, but it's full to the brim of tactile memories. We used to travel quite a bit pre-covid, and for our souvenir, we always looked in the local toy or antique store—the goal was to find something made locally that we'd actually use. Our bookshelves are full of little games, books, toys, & wooden tchotchkes from our travels that are beautiful to look at, but also serve a purpose and remind us of a specific time and place.
Be you — it's your home. So, design it for you. Pick what you like—not what others say you should pick. Your home is where you will spend most of your time, so make it a place you want to be.
"As a general rule of thumb, I like to sway timeless over trendy."
Color pops are key. I like to keep my basics—walls, beds, couches, floors—neutral, then as my style and preferences change, I can add or subtract pops of color as desired. To me, this is so much easier and financially attainable to do in the form of a throw pillow or a new piece of art, than it is to repaint a whole wall or reupholster a couch. The colors, I like to decorate with today are certainly not the colors I would have chosen three years ago, so I like to keep that in mind when designing my spaces.
Don't Buy It If You Don't Love It. After 12 years of marriage, my husband and I have learned that if we don't' LOVE it, we shouldn't buy it. We always regret those "tide me over" purchases.
"Our home has slowly filled up with pieces we've been patiently looking for."
We are pretty picky, so this helps immensely with budget, but it also means our home has slowly filled up with pieces we've been patiently looking for. We keep a wish list on our phones, so every time we go thrifting, we know exactly what we're looking for. I find that I'd rather save my pennies and own less, if that means the pieces we purchase will be made well enough to last a lifetime.
Even Is Boring. In my opinion anyway! I like things off center and always prefer an odd number grouping over even. You can create interesting design without sticking to symmetry. In a space, this can look like: using three pillows instead of two or four, positioning a lamp slightly off center, or experimenting with asymmetrical art.
Final thoughts. When all is said and done, just remember, there isn't a one-size-fits-all template because the decor of the room, how the space is used, and personal preference play a major role in how a room should be styled. At the end of the day your space is your own to play and making a house a home is a process, so take your time, and (at the risk of sounding cliché) have fun.
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Photography by Amanda Jane Jones