Feb 15, 2019 By Thomasville
Everybody loves new stuff, right? But what happens to the old stuff? If you want a fresh, new look in your living room, new furniture by itself might not be enough. Surround new furniture with all your old accessories, in your old arrangement, and it doesn’t feel so new. But replacing everything is too much—you’d lose the things you love, the things that make a room yours alone. So how do you reset your living room, but keep it personal and welcoming? Here are three tips:
1. Wipe the slate clean.
No, you don’t have to replace everything, but you do need to empty the room and start replacing things strategically. Whether new furniture is going to join existing pieces or have the room to itself, everything but the furniture needs to leave for a while. Clutter has a way of creeping into our homes—not just the physical clutter of extra magazines and remote controls, but the visual clutter of things we love and just keep accumulating. Getting it all out of the room is the only way to make fresh, conscious decisions about what goes in.
2. Evaluate your relationships.
As you pick up each item, ask yourself whether you really, really, really love it. There will be some easy decisions—things you can definitely donate or give away, and things you must definitely keep. Others will be harder, such as what to do with accessories that are useful or have filled a niche for a long time. Create a “maybe” collection elsewhere. Perhaps you’ll find other places in your home for the things in it. Or you may discover when they’ve been out of circulation for a while that you miss them less than you thought you did. Whatever joins your new furniture should be nothing short of exactly right.
3. Let the room tell you what it wants.
Hint: the room probably doesn’t want very much. Or at the very least, the room is willing to let you take your time. With your new furniture in the room (as well as existing pieces that are part of the design plan), look for obvious holes. There will be places you know you need a lamp or a table, or a large wall that needs artwork. Address these needs one by one, by priority, and then step back and re-evaluate at each addition. Identify forms or colors that need to enter the conversation and then find things that fill those needs. Style bookshelves or other displays, taking care to curate your collections to display only those things that you truly love. Give yourself a chance to see those things afresh by arranging them in new ways and places.
Your same room, with new furniture and new displays, will re-energize your vision for your entire home and make you glad to be there every day.