One of my favorite fellow minimalists, The Nester, posed the question – does your house look good naked? If you took out all the furniture and decor, how would your home look? Would it still look good or does the decor fill it up? It took me years to figure out what our home was “missing”. Adding character and custom details has really changed the look of our house. And it was then that I figured out how to decorate your home without stuff.
I used to think that a room was complete when I finally added all the decor and hung stuff on the walls. In fact, it was one of my biggest mistakes when we moved into our home. I was anxious to just fill every room up. And of course, that is when I started to dislike our home and got rid of everything in it and started over again.
Do you ever walk into a builder’s model home or see a video on social media and are instantly amazed by it? Even though it’s not fully furnished the house is amazing right? It doesn’t even have furniture but it feels done. It already feels decorated. It already feels like a home. Because that is how a house looks good naked.
CUSTOM WALL TREATMENTS
The paneled wall in our entry and great room is one of my favorite features in our home. The reason I created this custom wall treatment was that I couldn’t figure out how to decorate the three sides of the wall without making it look cluttered. Hanging photos or art on each side was just too much from certain angles of our great room. But then without something on the walls, it appeared unfinished and boring. Custom wall treatments are a great way to decorate your home without stuff.
I used the same idea in our dining room. Because our house is so open and almost every room is open to another, it’s very hard to add large artwork or photos without it being the focus of the entire great room. I prefer to let each space breathe and develop on its own while complementing other spaces in the house.
LIGHTING & HARDWARE
Updating the builder-grade lighting in our home was one of the first things on my to-do list. Custom lighting and beautiful fixtures will add a lot of interest to a home. Accent lighting in niches, library lights above shelves, and additional vanity lights can really add to the space. Also, beautiful hardware on cabinets and doors is another simple way to elevate a home.
In our living room, I wanted a focal point. So, I DIYed custom built-ins and a fireplace. With our floorplan there is only one wall to place the tv, so creating a permanent focal wall was a great solution. Even when the shelves are empty, they are beautiful additions to the house and stand out on their own.
MATERIALS & FINISHES
One of the tasks I’m still working on in our home is updating the materials and finishes. Mixing custom flooring and tiles throughout the house can add character and elevates the home. The best way to do this would be in the kitchen with stunning countertops, backsplashes, and appliances. A great kitchen can stand alone without any decor or items cluttering it up. This trick also works in bathrooms. Beautiful marble, high-end plumbing fixtures, and tile details can really change the space without adding any decor.
Since creating a more simplistic and minimalist design for our home, I’ve really learned how to decorate without stuff. Making our house custom and beautiful all on its own is one of my biggest goals.