“Find one room and make it yours. Go slowly through the house. Be polite, introduce yourself so it can introduce itself to you.” -Frances Mayes, Under the Tuscan Sun
I’ve always liked that quote from Under the Tuscan Sun. Frances Mayes is obviously talking about her completely amazing centuries-old Tuscan villa, but I find that this sentiment is true for any home…from a modest rental to the biggest mansion. And, being a military wife, I’ve had to make so numerous homes “my own” in a short period of time (we haven’t lived anywhere longer than 3 years since college). And, this “homemaking” truly goes a long way in making us comfortable and happy in our new locale, wherever it might be.
In our current rental, I immediately knew I wanted to make the master bedroom “my own”. Here’s my thinking that could be applied to any room…
Invest in furniture you truly love. Time for your big girl (or big boy bed)!…In this room, the statement piece is obviously the upholstered bed that is neutral and timeless. But the curved lines and French design make such a STATEMENT in the room. And, I love that it was made in North Carolina (I try to buy U.S.-made furniture when I can.) But you might be thinking,”If you’re moving all of the time, why would you invest in an expensive piece of furniture?” Yes, definitely a consideration, and I’ve heard all the horror stories about furniture being ruined during moves. But, I just take special care to make sure the movers pack our furniture well and hope for the best. The alternative is buying only inexpensive furniture, which I’m not sure saves you any money. My thinking is…invest early and it will save you more money in the long run because the pieces will last a lifetime.
Make it homey. Do this by adding inviting textures like this pom-pom blanket or plaid pillows. Nothing is more welcoming than a blanket draped over an overstuffed chair or on the edge of a bed. Candles and plants are also a nice way to give warmth to a room. If you missed my recent post on my love of plants, check it out here.
Choose a color scheme. This one isn’t easy, but if you can do it then it will make your life so much easier in the long run. For me, I subconsciously gravitate toward blues and greens. For example, the rug and curtains in this room are old but I was able put them together because the blues and greens and work well together. You can never go wrong with neutrals either, which brings me to my next point…
Use black and white photography. I love black and white photography. It gives an instant element of cool to a room, and it’s a super inexpensive way to decorate. AND, it goes with everything. Hello gallery wall! In this room, I already had the black and white photo of Cece’s baby feet, so I found a photo of little man as a baby, cropped it, made it black and white and ouila!…two beautiful images with a common theme. I paired the black and white photos with black and white plaid pillows from Serena and Lily, and an old black wicker chair, and it adds a bold punch to the cool tones in the room. I plan to add a bit of color to this black and white palette periodically, depending on the season.
I’ve also sprinkled in some brass pieces, like this mirror from West Elm, and this lamp from Target, to lend some warmth to the room. I’m not sure if this brass trend is here to stay so I didn’t want to go overboard with buying too many pieces…but I do love the trend. So here’s my final piece of advice…don’t overthink decorating. If you buy pieces you truly love, it will all work together. It may not be perfectly curated, but it will be your own…even in a rental home!
What’s your favorite piece of furniture? How have you made your home your own? I’d love to hear from you!
P.S. Stay tuned for a post reviewing the all-natural latex mattress we purchased! I want to give it a full month or so of sleeping before I tell y’all about it.
Photos by Tara Liebeck Photography