With people throwing swapping parties for clothes, books, music, and even food, why not throw one to spice up your home? Inviting guests over to swap out lamps, artwork, planters, and other (preferably portable) pieces can help you refresh your home without going on an all-out hunt through thrift stores. Read on for tips on how to throw a successful decor mix-up!Here are some tips for getting your home decor swap in working order:
1. Make a Guest List: Dream up who would be open and interested to this idea. Inviting not only eco-minded friends, but also style mavens and people who have commented on your home can help get an eclectic mix of interested parties and tastes to come. Keep in mind the next tip when deciding how many people you can fit.
2. Set the Boundaries: For starters, think about what types and sizes of pieces will fit in your hosting space. Can you fit couches, recliners, and dining room tables in your space? If not, you may want to either limit the items to portable and small decor items or invite people to bring pictures of their larger pieces. Next, consider if there will be any monetary exchanges involved in the trades. What happens if someone wants your living room lamps, but you don't have room for any of their pieces? Make sure you think through the guidelines for the trading to avoid uncomfortable situations.
3. Host(ess) with the Most(ess): Give yourself ample time to prepare your own space to host everyone because you never know what might show up! If you've left the guidelines for items pretty loose, request that anyone with larger items notify you ahead of time so you can clear out space (and agree to whether they will be taking it home if no one chooses their item). Of course a few locally sourced snacks and wine never hurt...except for white furniture, so think through what types of snacks might leave residue on hands or stains on furniture.
4. Take Back Policy: Unlike those jeans from 10 years ago that you can't fit into anymore, parting ways with home decorations can be difficult for some people. It may be helpful to set-up a "Take Back Policy" ahead of time or agree to one once everyone has arrived. If seeing your favorite painting stuck in someone's mud room is going to upset you, you may want to hold on to it or consider other donation options like Goodwill.
Just remind everyone that it is important to be able to truly let go of the items they have brought with them and not to be hurt if their pieces don't have a new home by the end of the evening. And of course we don't need to remind you to have fun! Redecorating your home with new-to-you pieces can and should be inspiring.
So have at it, and let us know how it goes!
(Image: Jeanne Winters)