Depending on your personality, design savvy and budget, decorating your first home can either feel like a dream or a nightmare.
While choosing colours, buying furniture and sticking to a budget can all seem intimidating, the reality is that decorating your home isn’t particularly tough when you approach the process with a clear plan in mind.
Below, we’ve shared five simple but helpful tips to help make decorating your first home simpler, covering everything from the financial side of decorating to the aesthetic one.
Before you start, set a budget and stick to it
Before you write a wishlist of must-have sofas, armchairs and other items, it’s important to work out how much you can afford to spend to decorate your home.
Decorating budgets can vary hugely depending on the amount of space you’re decorating, your personal tastes and other factors. As such, there’s no one-size-fits-all budget template that you can use to work out how much you’ll need to spend.
In general, it’s best to err on the side of spending too much rather than too little, especially when it comes to essential items. This is because with furniture, price and quality are often associated closely, meaning a cheap choice might not be the cheapest in the long term.
To get started, try this budgeting guide from The Spruce. After you’ve worked out a rough figure, give yourself a 10 percent range to cover any unexpected costs or new items you discover while you’re shopping.
Start by choosing colours and painting
Colour can have a major impact on your home, especially when it comes to paint, furniture and decor. Start your decorating process by picking your key colours, then turn them into a recurring theme throughout your home.
Once you’ve chosen your main colours, put them into action by painting. Remember to paint all of your living spaces, bedrooms and other areas before you move in any furniture, as painting is always easier in an empty home.
Choose a bed, sofa and other furniture that’s built to last
When it comes to furniture, it’s important to prioritize quality. View your sofa, dining table, chairs, beds and other furniture as an investment instead of a simple purchase. In short, be prepared to spend a reasonable amount on this part of the decorating process.
The reason for this is simple — when it comes to furniture, cheap in the short term often ends up being expensive in the long term. Invest in quality furniture from the beginning and you’ll create a space that’s comfortable, stylish and — most importantly of all — built to last.
Pay attention to curtains and blinds
Curtains and blinds can have a huge impact not just on the appearance of your home, but also on how pleasant it is to live in.
When it comes to curtains, think of them as both an aesthetic and functional item. Pick colours that match and complement the rest of your decorating. Choose fabrics that provide the function you need, whether it’s keeping out light or simply offering privacy.
For certain spaces, blinds may be a better option than curtains. Cut to size blinds can be a great choice for spaces that require light and privacy, such as home offices and bathrooms.
Use rugs, lighting and art to make a statement
Finally, rugs, lighting and art can add the finishing touches to your home, creating a living space with real personality.
This is the point where you can let your tastes take priority. Pick living room and bedroom rugs that match your personal style, then complement them with paintings, prints and other types of art that bring new life into each room.
When it comes to lighting, make sure to treat it with the importance it requires. Consider making a lighting plan for your home to make the most of both your natural and artificial light for a warm, comfortable and welcoming environment.