Detox And Declutter Your Home

staircase

Studies have shown that people who accumulate clutter in their homes share certain traits, ways of thinking, and behaviours. For example, they are perfectionists, lack time management skills, struggle to focus on the present, and need to be needed. By understanding why you hoard possessions, it will be easier to make a positive change. But do not despair as we look at strategies for decluttering the home. Secondly, we discuss why it is necessary to detox after you declutter, and how to do so.

Why Declutter?

Our homes are an expression of ourselves. As such, we want them to reflect harmony and beauty and a state of calm. Clutter detracts from the ambience we want to experience when we return home after a long day at work. Our homes are our castles.

Another reason to declutter is that we want to express our style through our décor. Having chosen beautiful pieces with which to furnish our homes, we want to showcase the aesthetics of that style at its best.

Additionally, we want to surround our furniture with space so that we can move with ease as we enjoy our homes.

A Minimalist Approach

living room with blue pouffe

The minimalist approach relies on having few pieces of furniture but making those stand out. To avoid clutter, one should not purchase too many items as they will get lost in the whole rather than being individually visible and able to make a potent statement of sophistication and elegance. Then our really special pieces of furniture that were so carefully chosen can shine forth and be truly appreciated.

If you find that your home has become cluttered by too much furniture, it is time to go back to the drawing board and carefully consider what your chosen style is. Ask yourself, which pieces of furniture are true to that vision? How can they be positioned for maximum impact, style, and comfort? Which items of furniture have strayed from the original concept? Has your vision changed at all and how best can the newer one be realised? Have you purchased something that you truly love but that does not fit in with the rest? Is there another place where it is better suited? For example, you can repurpose heavier coffee tables for the bedroom as bedside tables and replace them in the living room with minimalist tables with sleek lines.

A minimalist design will always allow your furniture to be seen at its best provided you have not crowded too many items into a space too small to contain them. You may have to make a few hard decisions but in the end, it will be worth it. It will free your mind from stress and provide a harmonious living space where you enjoy spending time and can invite your friends to.

Colours, Shades, And Tones

Avoid saturating the indoor rooms with an overwhelming mix of colours. Furniture pieces in neutral colours are more versatile and enhance the aesthetics of a room. The right colour palette integrates all the elements of walls, furniture, and accessories. This has a positive influence on mood and provides a restful space.

Bedrooms benefit from wooden beds and bedside trays that place everything close by and make them accessible. Wood can be functional or elegant and a combination of the two lends itself well to the minimalist look you want to achieve. It is a restful medium that will not jar with soft blue walls and the greenery of pot plants. Then, when you enter the room, immediately your spirit is soothed, and you start to unwind and are restored.

Look For Add-ons

If you have the option, select furniture that can be self-assembled without tools and employ basic Do It Yourself (DIY). These pieces allow you to remake the living space with minimal fuss and you can attach or detach parts to reassemble them in new ways. This is great if you are moving homes where the sizes of the old and new rooms are different, but you are keen to keep your existing furniture. Thus, you can optimise the layout and ensure that the space and the objects within it are perfectly balanced and soothing.

Reduce Items That Need To Be Stored

You can declutter your home further by finding solutions for different scenarios. For example, a trans-seasonal comforter is suitable all year round. This beats having to change your bedroom décor from one season to the next. It also eliminates the need to store bedding for seasonal changes in the weather. A bonus is that your comforter will be irresistible when it is time to let go of the day and its stresses and have a night of restorative sleep.

Decluttering Your Home

freestanding bathtub

The first step to decluttering your home is determining your style of décor and restoring your home to that vision as already outlined.  Next is ensuring that you maintain the oasis of peace and harmony that you have created. This means making sure that no junk accumulates and that you retain the space that is so vital to a minimalist style. And the final step is to make sure that your home is always sparkling clean and fresh and free from health and safety hazards.

Detox Your Home

Your physical and mental health can be affected negatively by clutter. Common problems you may experience are hay fever, asthma, and allergies from dust mites, mould, and pet dander. Cortisol, the stress hormone, will place you in a fight or flight mode. This hormone increases in your blood circulation when you become stressed. Disorganisation reduces the ability to focus and also to relax and make the most of your beautiful home. Avoid clutter and you will avoid insomnia.

Once an area has been decluttered, clean it thoroughly. Make a green cleaner by combining one part vinegar with one part water. Add lemon peel and sprigs of rosemary. Allow it a week to infuse properly then place it in a spray bottle and use it to wipe down all surfaces.

Declutter and detox your home for a healthier, stress-free, and peaceful environment.


How To Style Your Room With Rattan

rattan dining chairsThe Bohemian or Boho style of interior design is currently enjoying a lot of attention. It seeks to recreate the outer beauty of nature inside a room or home by using natural colours, patterns, and textures in the interior. Boho is an organic mix of designs that is an expression of free-spiritedness. At the same time, it is an eclectic blend that sees a rattan chair paired with a tribal rug and colourful blanket or two. It is a style where elements are layered and different finishes come together, and echoes biophilic design rather than a hodgepodge of ‘anything goes’.

Following Boho principles when styling a room with rattan is the ideal approach to knowing how much and where to include it. Rattan doesn’t shout its presence, nor does it hide in the shadows. With the right touches, it harmonises with other facets of the underlying design, enhances the organic whole, and adds a note of individuality.

Before exploring ways to incorporate rattan into your overall style, we look at what it is and isn’t.

What Is Rattan?

rattanNatural and woven textures continue to make their mark in home décor. However, most people fail to make the necessary distinctions between cane, rattan, and wicker, believing them to apply to the same material.

It should be understood at the outset that wicker is not a material, but a weaving process using diverse materials. Once the item is complete, it is known as a wicker basket, for example. At the same time, it could also be a rattan basket. Wicker weaves many substances, such as synthetic fibres, palm, raffia, rush, straw, and willow. The method of weaving combines sturdy vertical pieces to form the structure. Narrow, lengthy pieces are interwoven into this for support. The end result can be painted or stained.

Rattan fibres are solid timber vines that are indigenous to the Malay Archipelago and tropical forests in Indonesia. More than 600 species exist. Common uses of rattan are to make baskets, chairs, and tables. However, it is also frequently used in items like shelving units, pendant lamps, and French bistro chairs.

Fibres for rattan nowadays come from a palm called abaca in Southeast Asia. As a natural fibre, rattan is not suitable for outdoor use and exposure to the elements. Rattan’s shape lends itself best to small accessories and certain furniture. It can be combined with a lacquer coffee table and Oriental rug, or Asian screens and chests of drawers, lighting, sisal rugs, and black accents. Rattan is often found in homes at the seaside but goes equally well in formal designs.

Organic Settings

Rattan can be used with multiple styles of design but teams best with organic environments. These styles comprise tropical, organic modern, coastal, and Bohemian. Rattan should be used to complement and support a design, and to add a textural layer, but neither to lead nor dominate it.

The popularity of rattan has not waned in recent years. It adds a muted note to its surroundings and is easily incorporated into most designs, specifically to add texture.

Rattan and a Variety of Finishes

Rattan’s light colouring pairs well with the right finishes. You can team it with dark or light floors and rugs. The rattan can be stained or painted, making it very versatile.

A rattan chair made with flax linen has a simple elegance and the textures contrast nicely. All you need to complete the look is a throw pillow in pinks or blues.

Rattan Layered into the Overall Design

living room rattan sofasLittle touches of rattan can be scattered throughout the home. Done correctly, it requires very little to layer rattan perfectly into your overall design. It is actually very simple to look at the whole environment and find where rattan can be included. Then consider what will highlight or accent it. It could be as small as a toy basket with a navy blue ribbon wound around the handle. Rattan should not overpower the chosen design.

In the dining room, rattan placemats with a complementary turquoise table cloth will add vibrancy without overwhelming the décor. Food trays made from rattan can have matching cloths. These can also be used in the living room on the main table to place keys and remotes. The colour of the cloth will vary accordingly. Display boxes on shelves in the living room, study, or bedroom is a small step toward bringing the rattan component into a room.

Kitchenware encased in rattan and a rattan pot plant holder with a bright green plant is uplifting. In terms of adding bits of colour to rattan items, botanical or floral materials will complement the feel of nature indoors. Earthy colours teamed with rattan provide a balanced note. Opt for greens, greys, sage, and beige. Navy blue will provide a stronger but more serious contrast.

Different Styles Paired with Rattan

It has already been mentioned that a Bohemian style is a perfect style into which rattan can be introduced. Another great style is shabby-chic. Traditional and formal areas will benefit from the whimsy rattan brings. Include an abundance of indoor plants, floral prints, and natural wood items that will soften a sterner room. Also, consider metallic colours in small amounts and silky mid-century furniture.

Using Caned Rattan Furniture to Enhance Style

rattan rocking chairCane furniture is predominantly made from the outer bark of rattan fibre. This material has an open weave in multiple directions. Cane furniture recalls an atmosphere of the wind gently blowing and softly lifting the curtains, a feeling of freshness and light. Boost this style with caned headboards, chairs, and storage containers (e.g., an ottoman).

Rattan Storage Containers

There is a size and shape rattan basket to fit any space. From a wash basket to a toy holder, there is no shortage of options. Use bigger containers to store linen and blankets. There is no reason these baskets should not be useful as well as beautiful.

Paint Or Stain Rattan

Rattan can be painted or stained in any colour that is complementary to the overall design. This can make items of rattan furniture look brand new. Rattan is often painted white for an elegant appearance.

Start with one room at a time. Consider your style of décor and determine the role rattan can play.


Johnny Depp and Amber Heard LA Home Review

johnny depp's living room kitchen area
Photo Credit: Stan Speth

After getting a glimpse into Johnny Depp's world we decided to review his former home he shared with Amber Heard, a penthouse loft in one LA’s most prominent historic landmarks the Eastern Columbia Building. Read on to see our interior design thoughts.

Entrance to the Home

Upon entering the inviting interior of the house, it is made clear that this house has been designed to accommodate even the most contrasting of guests - it is the epitome of comfort. The excellently selected furniture echoes somewhat of a country, yet contemporary feel, due to the sheepskin pillows and the rich mahogany floor. To our surprise, the designer chooses to take a leap of faith as they bravely decide to pair the warm aspects of the house with cool, industrial components, which range from stainless steel kitchen tops, red-brick walls and a large staircase.

Despite this being such an unusual pairing, these different aspects all work together to complement one another and ultimately build an enticing appearance.

Tall Modern Windows

tall modern windows johnny depp la home
Photo Credit: Stan Speth

Look to your right and you are greeted with the tall, modern windows which are cleverly lined with an eye-catching black frame, allowing them to stand out from the blank canvas that the walls create. The bright rays of light invade the room, revealing the details that hide in every corner of the room as they fight to make us aware of the futuristic side tables and lamps.

Colourful Sun Loungers

sun loungers outside johnny depps la home
Photo Credit: Redfin

Upon walking outside, the decorative use of the natural environment quickly lures you towards the delightfully coloured sun-loungers which form a playful atmosphere. It is evident that the designer has found the perfect balance between comforting and thought provoking as the variety of different patterns form a sensory experience which is tamed by the neutral colours we see in the furniture.

Overall, we like the height of the space but find the industrial steel finishes a bit too much. We would change the kitchen cabinet doors to a painted finish and paint the air vent tube near the ceiling white so it doesn't stand out so much, or integrate it into the wall if possible. We would change the blinds to a linen to soften the windows a bit. A feature wallpaper or different paint colour could be added to the high wall by the sofas to add interest. Overall, some more art and plants could be included in the space.


Modern Vastu Interior Design Trends

bedroom furnitureThe Principles of Vastu Shastra

Vastu Shastra did not only apply to Hindu architecture but was valid for any form of construction including a town, city, road, temple, and house as well as for plots to build on. Factors that guided decisions were based on how to maximise the potential of a piece of land and the placement of a structure on it, wind direction, the position of the moon, the heat and light from the sun, and the planet’s magnetic field.

The five key elements needed to be in harmony. These are air, fire, water, earth, and space. Photos of modern-day interior design using Vastu principles demonstrate this with plenty of space between furniture and other objects, wide internal walking areas, and space between the house and the plot boundaries. The five senses, seeing, hearing, smelling, tasting, and touch should also interact harmoniously.

The energy field, which surrounds every home and is specific to it, affects those that live there. Vastu design principles ensure the attraction of positive energy and abundance. There are some similarities between Vastu and feng shui, which seek to align the home with its natural surroundings.

We cannot apply all of the Vastu Shastra principles to contemporary homes. For example, one of the requirements is to have a courtyard in the exact centre of the house. Front doors must face a certain direction. We cannot break down our houses and recreate them correctly. However, it is possible to incorporate certain elements into how we carry out interior design. Let us see what we can do to improve the energies in our homes and hopefully increase our wealth, balance, and happiness.

The Front Door

hallway & front doorThe front door plays an especially important role in Vastu Shastra. It is through the front door that energies enter the home, along with all else we allow to come in. When you exit the front door, you should ideally be facing the north, the east, or the northeast. Many properties today are north facing.

The front door should open clockwise. It must be much taller than any of the other doors in the house. No bathroom must be positioned close to this door.

If your home doesn’t comply, don’t worry; there are other things that can be done.

Your front door should be made of the best quality wood available and be more attractive than your other doors. It must not be painted black. There should be no water elements, such as fountains, in the direction of the door. Other items that must not be placed outside the front door are shoe racks, figurines, animal statues, and dustbins.

The entrance must have bright lighting; this applies to all lighting inside too. You can use stunning nameplates to decorate the door. A toran, which is similar to a wall hanging and is decorated with auspicious symbols, can be hung outside the front door.

Furniture

living room & furnitureThe living room where you receive guests should face in the same direction as the front door. If you have heavy furniture in the living room, this must be placed in the west or southwest. Mirrors should be situated on the northern wall of this room. Position appliances and electronic items in the southeast in any room. Don’t situate big pot plants in the northeast.

If your bedroom faces southwest, then it is perfectly placed for wealth and good health. The bed must be situated in the southwest, and when you sleep, your head must face west. No mirror or television must be situated in front of the bed while you are sleeping as it will capture your reflection. If you fail to comply, you can expect marital disharmony and discord in the family. Don’t use rooms in the northeast or southeast as bedrooms to avoid problems with your health. Wardrobes must face southwest.

Once again, you may have no control over the direction a room faces. But what you can do is use earthy colours to paint the walls to create positive energy. Never use black paint. If you want to avoid high, unstable emotions, avoid anything in the bedroom that is watery, for example, a fountain or a painting of nature that contains water elements. Make use of fragrant oils and mood lighting for a calm state.

All walls should be painted cream, blue, pink, or green, or in earthy colours.

Items That Will Attract Good Fortune to the Home

A crystal or wooden tortoise symbolises protection with its hard shell. Wooden tortoises should be placed either in the east or southeast. For crystal tortoises, the northwest or southwest provide the best placement. They will bring you fame and fortune.

An Arowana fish is used for attracting good luck and money. Place it in the east or northeast.

A Shree Chakra in the east is more than a decoration. It entices wealth. The Shree Chakra is a yantra, a mystical diagram, with nine triangles. It is possible to get it in a 2D form for hanging, or a 3D model, which is more powerful.

Apply Vastu to your home by applying these guidelines and use matching textures and colours in your décor.