6 Easy & Best Home Renovation Ideas
While there are homeowners who never seem to stop upgrading and renovating their homes, there are those of us who could barely tell a belt sander from a table saw. However, there are inexpensive and fairly simple ways you can use to give your home a new face. While some of the tips listed here include decorating and re-styling, there are some of them that still require the help of hired professionals.
Create an open plan space
When it comes to desirable features in home buying and home ownership, open floor plans are at the very top of the list. While some homeowners want an open floor plans that make the kitchen, dining room, and living room one vast open space, others are looking to diminish the boundary between the indoor and outdoor living. One way or another, formal dining rooms are becoming a thing of the past. However, the biggest news perhaps is that open plans are possible without modifying the structure, i.e. tearing out walls. Sometimes, simply by getting rid of bulky pieces of furniture, or rearranging the layout around a room, you can get additional space that lets the room breathe. If you feel attached to a bulky cabinet or chest of drawers, paint it warm off-white colours and let it meld into the room, tricking the eye. Another way to trick the eye is about using mirrors. When placed opposite the windows, they reflect light into the room, making it airier and more spacious. A formal dining room that you don’t use can be easily converted into a cosy den with a reading nook or a home office.
Upgrade the flooring
Redoing your flooring scheme doesn’t have to be an expensive renovation project. If you’re stuck with an outdated carpet or damaged tiles, a new floor can reinvent the room from the bottom up. If you choose hardwood floor or wooden laminate, you should continue the sustainable theme with a modern jute rug. The popularity of these rugs has grown thanks to their natural appeal and pleasant feel. Dried jute is also a fully sustainable material that is grown organically on rainwater only, yet its sturdiness can be matched to the toughest synthetic weaves.
Update window treatments
When it comes to renovating for space and flow, windows are often left out of the project, while they should have a pivotal role. In struggling what style would suit each room the best, homeowners often leave the windows bare or just install simple blinds for privacy sake. However, by leaving the windows bare, you’re missing on a whole new layer of decorating. Surely, if you’re lucky to enjoy an ocean or mountainous view, you may argue this fact, but even then you can’t say anything against stylish window panels. The options are almost endless – you can go with curtain panels in bold graphics or geometric shapes, gauzy white sheers, or minimalist bamboo shades. If you feel overwhelmed by all the possibilities, the safest course is to take a cue from the colour schemes you already have set in place – match the window treatments to the colours of your walls, for example.
Cast a new light
A room that is poorly lit looks smaller than it is, while a brightly lit space appears open, welcoming, and refreshing. There are many ways you can use artificial lighting to your advantage. Let’s start with an array of table and floor lamps. Place a tall floor lamp in a dark corner, and see how the room automatically gets a new character. You can then layer this lighting with lamps on the side tables, and if you feel like experimenting, remove the outdated ceiling fixtures and replace them with modern pendant clusters that are trending today. Although this last part would require you to hire an electrician who specializes in lighting, replacing a ceiling fixture is a pretty straightforward procedure. Whether you stop at the floor lamps or decide to replace the ceiling fixtures as well, rest assured that plenty of light sources will instantly modernise your home.
Rethink the furniture choice
A bulky sofa or heavy ‘grandfather’ armchairs can easily squeeze out everything else from the family room. If you’re dealing with constricted space, ask yourself if equally comfortable but less space-demanding pieces would be more appropriate. Also known as a 1.5-seater, a snuggle is a small sofa that can easily accommodate a parent and child watching TV together, or even a cuddly couple. The furniture choice is also reflected on the feeling of energy flow in the room So, for example, King Living furniture is produced using biodegradable and recyclable materials whenever possible, while the modular flexibility of many of their sofas allows you to achieve a new look by simply changing the configuration. Apart from buying from manufacturers who apply sustainable processes, another environmentally-friendly option is to revamp the existing furniture. If you’re not sure how new upholstering will resonate with the rest of the room, for starters use loose covers or printed throws to cover damaged and stained furniture and give it a new look.
Expand into outdoors
In looking for ways to make our home breathe, we often forget to look outside, pardon the pun. Even if you aren’t blessed with a large front porch or a great backyard deck, there are still inventive ways to use the outdoor space. Start with placing an outdoor rug to define the ‘room’, and add a couple of comfortable outdoor chairs and some throw cushions. A small fire pit can become the hearth of the new outdoor room, with some string lights illuminating the area. If you feel like breaking a sweat, you could arrange the area with brick pavers and flagstones, or even erect a large pergola or trellis with climbing vines to provide the shade. Such an open-air room extends your living space into the outdoors, making a great and comfy escape in those situations when you just need a bit of sunlight and fresh air.
Just like a series of evolution and special moments, through renovations and re-decorations like these, your home can become a space that is truly yours. Much of these projects you can tackle yourself, while for some you may need professional help.
About the author: Lilly Miller is a Sydney-based graphic designer and a passionate writer. Loves everything about home decor, art history and baking. Shares home with two loving dogs and a gecko named Rodney. You can find her on Twitter.
“Poetry creates the myth, the prose writer draws his own portrait.”
- Jean – Paul Sartre