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Easy Ways To Refresh Your Home Decor (Without Buying Furniture)

A shopping list of what I got for our home to make it feel brand new again.

Needless to say, we’ve all been spending a lot of time at home recently. I’m sure you know the feeling, but I got tired of looking at the same old things. As a result, the past few weeks have been dedicated to a “home edit” of our decor. 

How To Upgrade Your Home Decor Without Buying Actual Furniture

We have limited options with the layout of our main space which is our large +50m2 open-space kitchen / living / dining room (not to forget the Peloton bike in the corner – it’s also a gym! … Sigh) and the bigger pieces are pretty much in place. 

It is our first shared home, and we consider it a longer journey to invest in the furniture. For now, we have a few “investment” pieces that are picked out, and a few IKEA leftovers that we don’t want to replace right now – buying furniture for an unusually large room just seems risky in case we can’t fit 2 full sized sofas into a new potential home. So for now, I wanted to upgrade our home decor without actually buying any furniture.

I’m always amazed how easy it is to refresh your living space, and I love doing periodical home edits. Besides the obvious fact – that you should be comfortable and at peak happiness in your home (it is, afterall, our refuge from the craziness of the world)  – refreshing your decor items makes you fall in love anew. Falling in love means more efforts will be made. Isn’t it great?

Whenever I start noticing myself slacking with the household it usually means I’ve grown bored and need to change things up. So that’s what I’ve been doing lately. 

My Favorite Home Decor Accessories To Buy

As I was in the middle of shopping for this home edit (because I guess that’s just what I’m calling it now to rationalize all that online ka-ching) I quickly saw a pattern. 

There are certain things that just make every dull, barren corner look perfectly styled without being overdone. 

And these were the things I started buying and searching for systematically! 

Sure, it’s nice to find a cool statement decor piece, but I personally like buying things with functionality as well. Besides bespoke pieces and art that suits your taste can be hard to find and are usually expensive purchases. 

Home Decor Vases in neutral colors

Neutral vases for home decor are a big hit for me and something I love shopping for. Regardless of their size or shape, a neutral vase is a great center- or layering piece, either as is or with some greenery in it. 

I love fresh flowers, but can’t always keep up with their short lifespan. I recently bit the bullet and got a few stems of faux eucalyptus as this is an easy way of adding some life to a vase.

When I saw this large neutral vase on H&M Home I knew I had to have it. Let’s be real, it’s an oversized vase at this size. It stands nicely on its own on the floor, but could also look amazing as a tall center piece on a table in an entry way or similar.

There’s something about buying classic pieces that have a larger size. Too many small items can easily make a space look cluttered whereas large decor items really pull together an interior look. I would always pick one, larger piece over several small ones. I can’t wait to style this vase with different things.

Mo’s paw prints are all over the tiles! The lanterns and twisted block candles are from Zara Home. Twisted candles are such a 2020-2021 moment, aren’t they? 

Easy Styling of Our fireplace for spring with candles (and candles in general)

I love our fireplace, but it creates so much dirt and mess to light it, not to mention the (staggering) speed at which firewood is consumed. I currently love this new decor for our fireplace. A central pile of wood adds texture and warmth through the presence of the organic material. 

On each side simple candles are easily placed and require no special care in case of spilling. And when lit, they provide so much light across the entire fireplace that I don’t miss the classic fire at all. All candles are purchased at IKEA.

Pablo is a big art photography lover, and any coffee table book we have in this genre is his. I love the color scheme and design of the cover of this particular book. 

Oversized wooden Decorative trays for easy table top Styling

The giant tray on our coffee table is from Zara Home and newly purchased as well – I love the scale of it as it really allows a full decor setup on top. It makes it conveniently easy to clean the table, and the smoked glass surface of the B&B Italia Alanda table is protected from scratches. We added this table to our home last year and are absolutely in love with it.

Decorative trays and wooden decorative trays are high on my list of easy decor items for upgrading your interior. I have one other wooden table tray, also from Zara Home, which is in our entryway.

Lene Bjerre is a Danish decor brand which I have known for decades. I recently came across this little, black glass container on Westwing and couldn’t resist it. I use it to keep lighters and the wired Apple headphones. And random keys, it seems.

Who doesn’t love a Diptyque candle? The Baies candle is a bestseller, and while I normally steer clear of sweet scents, this one is on the fresh, mellow end of the scale. Both the vase and the planter are from H&M Home. 

Upgrading your at-home lockdown experience with scented candles

I don’t even know how to feel about this headline myself, it just happened, ok? But listen, if there is such a thing as an at-home lockdown experience, you need scented candles to make it better.

Scented candles add multiple dimensions – scent, light, decor – which is why I love them and literally can’t get enough. I like buying different scents – I love florals that aren’t too sweet as well as earthy, musky scents and fresh ones too (so that’s just about everything except overly sweet scents?!) 

A tip for extending the lifetime of your scented candle is to burn it until the entire wax surface is melted the first time you light it. This way the candle will burn evenly and most efficiently. I normally re-appropriate the candle jars once they’re done.

In the background a dog bed for Mo to lounge in when we are in the living area. This one in a cream color (opposed to the coffee-colored one in the bedroom).

Coffee table books

Something that I feel instantly breathes new life into our home decor is a simple rearrangement of our coffee table books – you don’t necessarily need to go buy more! 

These two were on a shelf for quite some time, but they’ve now been moved to a more front and center position. Topped off with yet another scented candle.

I like to keep these on rotation as it is such an easy way of giving your decor details a new feel without having to necessarily buy anything new. 

Refreshing our entry way decor

I moved this bench to our entry way and it solves the very real issue of needing a “landing zone”. I used to put my handbag on the kitchen island whenever I’d come home, but I like being able to put down whatever bags are currently in heavy rotation right when come in the door. A small leather tray on the larger wooden tray holds sunglasses, keys and AirPods – my dog walking essentials. The verticality of the faux flowers add interest and elevates the line of sight. 

Keeping it simple. I love how this IKEA vase looks like a dupe for the more expensive Lyngby vase, which is a design classic in its own right. Again it’s a simple setup of a few stacked items that have been out of sight for a while. The book is Pablo’s, and the brass bull is a market souvenir from a trip to Bali. 

The same dog bed as in the living room, only this is the color coffee. Mo loves these and sleeps in his every night. 

Decorative glass shrines for display items and storage

Right after scented candles, glass shrines or boxes has been high on my list of decor items. This one is currently sitting on my nightstand, keeping my amethyst clear of dust. 

I love that glass shrines allow you to display items while saving you some of the dusting efforts. It’s definitely a low maintenance way of displaying decorative items or just items you want to keep organized. 

I adore the scents as well as the container of these large Zara Home candles. I currently have two versions of this series. Zara Home is my favorite place for affordable scented candles with good scents and burning times. 

More glass boxes. I tried to solve genuine storage needs with these. I this one I keep scrunchies and other hair accessories in a location that I come by frequently throughout the day. Purchased at Zara Home.

More glass containers. These hold perfumes I currently am slow to use and which otherwise gather dust. Glass boxes are a great way of displaying these effortlessly at the foot of my bathtub.

Bedroom textiles and neutral bed spread

Besides lighting, anything with a large surface will have a disproportionate impact on how you perceive the space. Bed spreads – if you’re into that – is one of those things.

I religiously make our bed every single morning, so I spend a lot of time looking at whatever bed spread we have on. After years with my Hay Dots bed spread I felt it was time to try something new. The only must: that is was soft, in a light, neutral color, and in a quilt-like quality. (A thicker material is more forgiving when it comes to wrinkles, and can add extra warmth.) 

I love, love, love this H&M Home bed spread. It has a wonderful organic, natural look without being too boho. I also adore how mixing different fabric textures creates personality and expression, so for now I kept the velour and faux fur pillows. 

It’s really just incredible how an entire room feels different with a bed spread, plus I love how put-together it makes the sleeping area feel. 

A minimalist open shelf is like the canvas you need for your home decor reset. I like to display favorite items and keep a bit of functional storage as well. The wicker basket adds warmth and holds whatever pyjamas + sweater combo I’m currently wearing during evening hours.

Did I mention the fact that Mo makes our home more homey than it has ever been? He is now 5 months old, and is able to jump on the bed. He likes to sleep on whatever he comes by – whether its a folded blanket or a tossed hoodie. During the night he sleeps in his own bed.

Another glimpse of the simplistic pattern of the bed spread. Mo is looking up from his nap to check if all is in order.

xxx Annie

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