You don't have to do a major renovation to really enliven your senses at home. With a few simple, inexpensive changes, you'll feel you have a new room and a fresh outlook on life!
Focus on enlivening the senses of sight, hearing, and smell with new color, sound, and fragrance. You'll be amazed how simple additions can transform a space. Here are our favorite ways. What are yours?
1. Unclutter Your SpaceGet rid of anything extra in your room and leave open, clean space. This includes old magazines, an extra chair, newspapers, trash, books, and other stuff. If you feel you need a new piece of furniture, commit to getting rid of one you already have. Unless you're just moving into a new home or setting up housekeeping, there must be something you can get rid of! You'll love the open, cleared space and feel as if you've discovered "neat"!
2. Add a Touch of Mother NatureFresh, healthy plants really perk up a space and an attitude. Whether you hang a leafy fern from a hook or place it on a plant stand, the color and texture will add a lot to the room. Or place a potted plant on a side table or feature one on a coffee table. A small plant looks wonderful on a dressing table or on the side of the bathroom sink. Even if green is not part of your color scheme, the fresh leaves will refresh the space and you!
3. Move the Furniture AroundWe all get into ruts--doing things the same way day after day, month after month. The same goes for the way we place furniture in our room. Look at things with a fresh eye and commit to moving one major piece of furniture in your room. You might end up having to change everything else around too, but you'll end up with a whole new room. Instead of placing the sofa along the longest wall, place it at a diagonal and create a new conversation area. Voila! New space! Well, almost.
4. Get Out the PaintChange the look of a piece of furniture with a can of paint. Whether it's a piece you've had for a long time or is a recent flea market find, you'll give the piece a whole new identity just by changing the color. Choose a color that blends subtly with the color scheme or a shocking black or red or gold to make it really pop out in your space. You'll perk up every time you look at it.
5. Freshen Up With FlowersNothing brings a sense of well-being into a room like fresh flowers. It doesn't matter what the season is, the color and fragrance of flowers can transform a space. Flowers on the dining room table seem like a natural, but how about on your telephone table, in front of you at your desk, on the side of your bathroom sink, or on your bedside table. If fresh flowers are hard to get, settle with good-quality artificial blossoms and spritz them occasionally with your favorite cologne.
6. A Pot of PotpourriAppeal to your sense of smell with potpourri. Choose a pretty bowl, interesting serving piece, or interesting basket. Select a dried potpourri that has pretty elements, like dried fruit or flower buds. Arrange the potpourri with the whole pieces near the top, broken pieces in the bottom of the container. Keep some refreshing oil handy to add when the fragrance weakens. If you like incense, you can burn sticks for atmosphere.
7. Light a FlameScented candles add a wonderful aroma to a room and provide atmosphere and an intimacy to a space when lit. You can gather different height pillars on a platter or tray, arrange tea lights on small dishes, or place tall tapers on the dining table. Candles can change a traditional space into a private retreat.
8. A Gurgling FountainA bubbling fountain provides the soothing atmosphere of running water. If you have room for a large fountain, add it. But if not, choose a small electric tabletop variety. Or purchase a sound machine that offers different water sounds. You'll almost feel like you're outside near a river or lake.