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Small Steps... to a home you love (part one)

Tell me if this has ever happened to you. You look around and you see all the things you need/want to do. Total room refreshes, painting projects that will take days,  new furniture that you don’t even know if it will ever arrive… these are just examples but I’m guessing if you know what I’m talking about, you might be feeling a little anxious just reading this. You’re probably looking through your mental list of projects (and adding the $$$ if you’re like me) and it really all feels like too much.

And sometimes it can be. I stand by my statement that I made years ago that HGTV has ruined us. Sure, it’s given us tons of inspiration, encouragement and information to DIY, not to mention hours of entertainment. But it’s also made us  focus on the big, dramatic changes and lose a lot of  the joy of the small ones. I love power tools, dramatic transformations and all the paint colors as much as anyone else, but I just can’t do all the things I aspire to in my home. I don’t have time, budget, energy or even a ladder tall enough. It can be discouraging and frustrating but I don’t want it to be.

I want to take back the joy of the small project. The little things we can hammer out quickly and see immediate results. Some of which we can even do without a trip to Lowe’s. Small projects can be a beautiful thing and they can even add up to help us complete those big projects.

So we’re going to spend this month tackling little projects that really bring us instant joy and gratification. If you're not sure where to start, here are a few ideas…

  1. Art updates: This one is easy and can have a big impact. Don’t be afraid of nail holes! Here’s some art ideas..
    1. Move it around: Swap it our in different rooms for a fresh look. I have pictures that completely change different light or against different paint. Move it all around and see what happens.
    2. Update a frame: changing out a frame takes 5 minutes or less and can completely change the look of art. Does it need simplifying or something more ornate?
    3. Update pictures: have you not updated pictures in years? Take a few minutes to order a few new prints and change out some frames.
  2. Paint a piece of furniture: this one sounds big, but it’s really not. It can require some prep work and time but you can transform a piece of furniture in a day or less. Sure, not all furniture should be painted but if you have a piece that’s not working for you a fresh coat of paint can transform it!
  3. Change a lampshade: Lamps are absolutely vital to making any space come alive but they can also make it feel dated. Does the shade cast a bad glow on the room? There are also trends to consider. Yes, there are trends in lamp shades and that is really an easy way to add something current to your space without too much commitment and investment. Cone shapes are a great update and also black shades. They’ll change any old lamp into somehow special!
  4. Curtains: There are a few things you can do to upgrade your curtain game in a few minutes
    1. Add rings: I don’t think this is an overall rule. Some curtains are much better without rings BUT if yours are a little short (think high water pants) add some rings for extra length or just a touch of style.
    2. Swap rooms: Moving things around is always a great way to try something new for $0
    3. Change out finials: I may sound picky, buy finials are serious business. They can date your space. Go for something streamlined and simple. Round or even just endcaps will do so much more for your space that big distracting squares on the end. 
  5. What have you been procrastinating? : this is the big one. What have you been putting off? Most of us have that mental list of things we hope to get to one day (or the things we’re in denial we must do). Today is the day. Maybe you can’t clean out your entire garage or attic, but I bet you could focus on one shelf or area and make some major progress. Does your whole house need to be painted? Start with one room. Progress is addictive and will fuel you forward for more good things. 

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