Get Your Best Home Ever: 5 Slow-Down Decorating Strategies

published Feb 24, 2015
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(Image credit: Kim Lucian)

When faced with an empty room, it’s so tempting to rush out and just grab what you need right away—but resist! The best, most satisfying spaces grow with you over time. They look layered and purposeful, not like they came from a catalogue. Here’s how to condition yourself to operate from that mindset.

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Get comfortable with emptiness

In order to successfully slow down, you are going to have to be okay with a blank canvas. Get comfortable (or even embrace) an empty room; it’s a sign that when you do fill it up, it will be with things that are really perfect for you. After essentials (no one is suggesting you do without a bed!), it’s time to take a breath and live in your room for a while so you can discover how you’ll actually use it and what you really need.

Let your home guide you

Slowing down does one very important thing: it gives your home time to tell you what it needs. The more you see your space in all times of day, all seasons the more you can find unique ways to us it. Who knows, maybe the beautiful summer light will inspire a particular color on the walls or finding the perfect spot to tuck your Christmas tree will lead you to buy a beautiful piece of art to show off in that place of honor during the rest of the year.

Buy mindfully

If you feel like you’re buying something because you “should” have it rather than because you love it, then you need to take a step back. We all have voices in our heads that come from other people or society that don’t necessarily reflect how you truly want to live. Just because you mother had a formal dining room, doesn’t mean you can’t turn yours into a library or a movie room if you’d rather spend time reading alone than entertaining guests.

Repurpose what you already own

Using what you have in unique ways is a great way to temporarily fill holes in your decor until you find the perfect item; OR you may just discover that it was exactly what you needed there after all, hiding in plain sight.

Accept you’ll never be “done”

And that’s a good thing! Slow decorating is a process that you get to do all the time forever. That’s what’s so great about it. You can always be hunting for a cool accessory while on vacation abroad. You can take a family heirloom and incorporate it into your eclectic living room mix. There’s always the chance to redo your layout and, if you don’t like it, redo it again the next week. Have fun with it.