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Stay Home - Make the most of your space.

There's no place like home.

Home is where the heart it.

Home sweet home.

I think we can all agree that things are a little strange at the moment. Human beings are social creatures who thrive on company and making connections with others and right now this is a very dangerous thing to do. We have all been told to stay home and we need to, but for a lot of us that idea of being "trapped" is unsettling, so let's work out why. I'm sure we've all felt that little sigh of relief run through us when we arrive home from a tough day at work or even after a wonderful holiday that at the time you never wanted to come back from. As with a lot of things, you learn to appreciate coming home more when you take that time away and have the opportunity to come back and see a place again through fresh eyes. With many of us not leaving their homes at the moment and with many of us now working there too, that is going to be a little more difficult.

On the flip side, we have all been given a huge opportunity - to come home and appreciate what we have. When I start working with clients, it is so important for me to find out more about them as it is their home I am helping to design, not mine. Most importantly, the design needs to be in line with their taste and personality and work for their lives, things which their home might not have been doing for them already. Often the questions I ask are about things that they may not have even considered before which is why it is incredibly important to get the input of the client. Right now we need to be kind to ourselves and find comfort in our space, so now is the time to look a little deeper, start asking questions and find out what we need.

Do you like the colours you are living with?

Do the pictures you have on your walls mean something to you?

Did you choose your accessories because you like them, or because they were "on trend" at the time?

Ask yourself, are you happy with your environment? Just like the people we choose to share our life with, the things we surround ourselves with can impact hugely on how we feel. In his famous quote William Morris says,"Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful" which is a great quote to remember when you start to take time to evaluate your surroundings. But in another quote, one which I feel is particularly perfect for right now he says, "The true secret of happiness lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life." At the start of the lock-down, the first thing my husband and I did was to start a list of all those jobs that have kept being put aside, the little (or big) things you've been meaning to do but can never seem to find the time. Being out at work most of the day might mean that those things that you aren't happy with just haven't been a priority because you aren't looking at them all day, every day. Perhaps you simply haven't noticed some of these jobs that need doing. We now have time to start noticing.

Your house needs to work for you now more than ever and you need to use all your rooms and spaces to their full potential, this can help fight the cabin fever. It's not just the place you come home to, it's your workplace, your child's school, playground, your gym, cinema, library, restaurant, pub, cafe. Every time you finish one task and start another try to move rooms. If you are working from home, try to work in separate room, so you can close the door when you have finished and start fresh the next day. Could you eat different meals in different rooms, such as breakfast in the kitchen and dinner in the dining room? What if your house is more open plan or a smaller space like a flat? No problem, just scale it down and aim to move your position within that room.

Start taking in interest in your daily life, even though it is a little out of the ordinary right now. Take notice of all aspects of your space and begin that list of the things you feel your home is lacking, the things that aren't working, the things that are, the colours you don't like anymore, the furniture that needs replacing, where you need more storage, which rooms need a refresh. As you establish your new 'Stay Home' routine, take control of your own little world and get to know your tastes, your likes and your home so you can really love your surroundings and feel happier, calmer and safer at home until normality returns.

R x


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