The textbook definition of ‘home’ is simply, ‘the place where one lives permanently’. However, it takes more than just living there for a place to truly feel like home.
For instance, many of us consider the house where we grew up our home because of the memories we have that make those places belong to us.
However, as we grow older and move into new apartments and houses, how do we transform these living spaces into homes?
Home décor can help.
Yes, there are certain furniture and decorative items that will quickly turn your new house or apartment into a place you love and where you want to make new memories.
1. Art you love
Have empty white walls? Hang up some art and your place will instantly gain some character. But rather than simply buying cheap art pieces, take some time to find artwork that says something about you (it could be your interests, colors or styles you like etc).
For instance, instead of putting up the typical tinga tinga painting of zebras, elephants, and other wildlife, find a painting done by a local artist that shows something that’s important to you, like women and men at a market – this illustrated the vibrancy of everyday life in Tanzania.
Moreover, don’t just stick to painting and drawings – photography, sculptures, and even fabrics can be framed and hung on your walls.
2. Paint the walls
If you own a house or are renting and your landlord allows it, paint the walls in an inviting and warm color like dark red, orange-brown or whatever else that makes you feel good.
However, just because purple is your favorite color doesn’t mean it’s the right color for your walls. Always test a color out in a small area first and ask for a second opinion from friends or family – this will help you avoid making your house/home look cheap or too overwhelming because of a bad paint job.
Also remember that they may come to a point when you will want to move and will have to convince another person to rent or buy your home. Having light green walls may chase away some potential buyers.
Even though most people use bookshelves to store books, it can also be used as a place to put items that give insight into who you are.
So, even if you don’t read much or have any books, you can decorate your bookshelf with photos and little souvenirs and memorabilia you’ve collected over the years.
However, do try and have a couple of books you find interesting on display. Luckily, you can find affordable books to read and decorate with, here.
Luckily, in Tanzania, there are plenty of roadside plant stores where you can find a wide range of house plants and flowers that will add energy and vibrancy to your house. However, you should also check out the wide variety of plants and flowers for sale available through ZoomTanzania.
5. Matching utensils
One of the most exciting things about having a home is the ability to have guests over. Having a quality set of silverware, dishes (plates and bowls) and other kitchen equipment and utensils that you can rely on when you have visitors, will give you confidence when entertaining in your house. This confidence will help you enjoy your time with your guests, and make some great memories.
6. Mattress and headboard
We spend about 1/3 of our lives in bed, so investing in a quality mattress is just as important as the house or apartment you’re living in. In fact, if your mattress is really good, you may never want to leave your bed and spend even more time there.
To add some character, also invest in a bed frame and headboard that suits your style. And make sure you have good quality cotton, linen or silk bed sheets, and pillows that will make you smile in your sleep.
7. A comfy couch
Often, people feel like they have to invest in a bunch of furniture that makes a big statement. What happens is you spend a lot of money on things you don’t need and in a year won’t want to use. But a comfy yet stylish couch is one item that you will use over and over again.
A place where you can watch TV or rest your head after a long day will make you never want to leave your apartment or house! So, you don’t have to have much furniture but a couch is absolutely necessary.
8. Good lighting
For some reason, people don’t pay too much attention to their lighting, which is unfortunate because the way you light your house has a big impact on the vibe of your home.
Just think about it, when you pull back the curtains on a sunny day, doesn’t your living room or bedroom feel more energetic and vibrant, then when you shut the curtains or have really dim lighting?
While Tanzania is generally sunny, you can’t completely rely on natural lighting by having big windows. So make sure you also get good quality (preferably LED) light bulbs and lamps. Also, consider having light dimmers that can help you control how light or dark your home is (this is especially helpful when you want to create a romantic atmosphere for that special someone).
Make your home personable, and give guests something to look at with nicely framed photos of family, friends and special moments.
Where do you put your clothes, books, cleaning stuff? Having storage solutions like draws, ottoman chairs, and stylish woven baskets will help you have a messy-free home, where you can concentrate on the things that matter rather than all the clutter.
For instance, it doesn’t matter how beautiful the painting on the wall of your room is if you have to go through piles of clothing and boxes to get a closer look at it.
So, while decorating your house or apartment is very important. Also thinking about the functionality of your home will make it a much more comfortable space to live in.
Home Sweet Home.
So it’s clear that the furniture and decorations we buy and how we set them up serve more than just aesthetic purposes. They also turn our apartments and houses into environments we love and that represent who we are.
Whether it’s unique furniture pieces, interesting fabric or paint–the key thing you have to remember is that this is your space, and should make you happy to live there. So feel free to experiment and transform the space to fit your needs and who you are.