Simple ways to brighten your home this New Year

When you look at your current home situation, do you feel stuck or optimistic?

When the weather breaks and we see temperatures above zero it is almost like a gift from Mother Nature.

You naturally gravitate outside and soak up some sun while you can and even though you don’t believe that this will last, it can still feel like a bit of a reprieve in the dark month of January.

Call it a false promise or look at it as better days ahead.

When you look at your current home situation, do you feel stuck or do you feel optimism? Is your space working for you as far as function and layout or are you wishing for more square footage?

The current state of home space can either encourage or discourage and it all depends on your perspective of the moment. There are always quick things you can do to improve your space and it can feel like soaking up those few, warm days which come as a surprise in the middle of January.

I can’t count the number of homes I visit where I hear the residents complaining about this or that and it always raises a challenge in me to improve their space.

Often, by the time the consultation is over we are dragging furniture about and the client has a list of improvements in their hand which are usually quick and satisfying projects for them to work on.

When a client complains that a room is too small or feels crowded, it can usually be solved by better furniture placement and some organizational tips and like those rare sunny days, I see light on their faces as they wonder at their new-found space.

One client told me that her house made her feel angry which surprised me as I have never heard that complaint before! As we got to chatting, I figured out that the paint colour did something to her and set her off emotionally from some childhood memory of a home she used to live in which was fraught with dysfunction and pain.

When we pinpointed this issue, a simple paint colour was all that was required and the happy phone call I got a few weeks later was one of those moments where my career really fed my soul.

This woman couldn’t say enough about how much she loved her home and how it wasn’t the house at all but the memory connected to the wall colour – better living through interior design should be my motto!

It may feel like the dead of winter in your home, but you can always insert some bright sunny elements into any interior. Take a critical look at your space and write down a list of the things that really bug you instead of trying to look at it all at once.

Sometimes it is one element, one colour, one ugly ceiling fan that you fixate on and use to write the entire room off as a disaster and that element can be eliminated or changed.

If I could show you the before and after of our dirty, brass ceiling fan that my sweetie transformed into this sleek bronze modernized light fixture you would ask me why it took so long to paint the darn thing!

I have no good answer, but I know that I looked at it for months and thought my whole living room needed a makeover.

Kim Wyse is a Central Alberta designer. Find her on facebook at ‘Ask a Realtor/Ask a Designer’.

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