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Creating a calm living space

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Author: Gill Greenwell, Posted: Monday, 17th December 2018, 09:00

The New Year is all about looking forward and new beginnings, and where better to start than by taking a fresh look at your home. The current ‘mindful’ approach to dealing with our fast-paced lives can be applied to our homes too. Follow my quick and easy tips for your New Year spruce up and create a calm, clear and relaxing space to live.

Top tips for tidying

The post-Christmas period is always a good time to de-clutter. I love Marie Kondo’s book ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying’ – she takes you through the whole process with the mantra “only keep the things that spark joy”. Time to ask yourself – do I need it? Will I use it? Do I love it?

Get started

Start with a wardrobe edit – you will find clothes you never knew you had – and you can always enlist help from a professional. Sort out your books – are you really going to re-read that book club paperback from two years ago? Delve into your kitchen cupboards – do you really need to keep that fish kettle you used once to bake a whole salmon?
I found a boxful of party glasses and gave them to a friend for her barbeque, she was thrilled.

A place for everything

Make sure you store things so you can easily find them. Storage doesn’t have to be unattractive – a friend of mine with a tiny flat in Paris always re-uses her nicest packaging boxes to store scarves, etc. The trend for all things natural means that you can find beautiful wicker, seagrass and natural-fibre baskets that really don’t cost too much, and are great for storing shoes, toys or bathroom essentials. Do try and avoid using plastic if you can.

Curate your clutter

Now’s the time to be creative. Aim for your home to be a thoughtful collection of all the things you love. Invest in some open shelving for displaying your most prized possessions and embrace your inner stylist. Think about levels and layers – display tall vases next to smaller ornaments, add a pile of books with attractive covers and mix up textures and colours.

Something to make you smile

At this time of the year, it’s good to have things around you that make you happy. Why don’t you look out for something new to add that fun element? The Scandinavians are good at this – their home accessories come in lots of lovely bright colours which are so on trend this season. I have my eye on a storage basket in the shape of a pear, complete with a bright green stalk! It was meant for storing children’s toys but it will make a great addition to my laundry.

Now it’s time to settle down with that interesting book you found at the back of your book-shelf, make yourself a soothing cup of green tea and chill out.

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