Part of the HOME, HEALTH & YOU Series
One person’s luxury is another person’s austerity. One person’s elegance is another person’s unease.
Fine china on display, candles blazing in silver plated sticks and a dining set glistening in rich mahogany are all well and good, but for some to live this way would be to live in a museum rather than a home. Many of us are more comfortable in a relaxed, casual environment.
A fine line needs to be walked in creating a casual look for your home while still ensuring that it is a cohesive look rather than a thrown together jumble. You know…when a friend says “oh, what an interesting eclectic look!” to describe your home filled with 10 different styles 🙂
So, how do you go about keeping it casual around the home but still achieve a pulled together, uncluttered look? Let’s consider some simple things to do, and things to avoid, when creating this ever popular style.
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Keeping It Casual Around the Home
simple and inviting
Your rooms don’t have to look sparse, and in fact a comfortable amount of furniture is a good thing. But keep in mind a space can quickly become cluttered and confusing if there is too much stuff in it. (‘stuff’ is one of my favorite catch-all words, by the way) If you are not sure whether to add one more chair, or one more accent table, or that extra piece of wall art, you probably shouldn’t.
We all have our own definition of comfortable furniture, and it is also influenced by how casual we want to take our style.
For some, a sofa with clean, straight lines will fill the bill. For others, a sectional that you can sink into is perfection. And there are folks who want nothing more than to plop down into large bean bag style seating. Check out Fombag for a range of cool sofa sized bean bags which are perfect for relaxed lounging.
Neutral colors and organic fabrics are a good way to go when keeping it casual around the home. Use texture as an organic element in accent pieces and pillows. It could be fabrics, or elements such as iron, wood, rattan, wicker, stone or tile.
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Natural light is your friend in maintaining a casual look. It makes the space look airy, spacious and inviting while subtly enhancing the colors you use.
Do you need window treatments? For many of us it’s a matter of privacy, so we look for simple coverings that can allow the light and view to be accessible when desired, but blocked out when needed. I always like the look of a simple wood blind or roman shade at a window, particularly in casually styled homes.
Ambient and task lighting is also part of the plan, and can add to the comfortable and inviting style you’re creating. Whether it’s industrial, coastal, mid century modern or farmhouse, your choice of lighting will make a impact on the overall theme.
character without clutter
A more casual aesthetic has simply defined character, and doesn’t need an overabundance of excess and clutter.
A framed print of your favorite movie poster, wall art, photos of your son or daughter’s graduation, autographed sports memorabilia, however you choose to add character to your space, feel free to do so in ways that are used sparingly for optimum effect.
Give statement pieces room to breathe. Use lighting to accent them when appropriate, but be wary that taking this too far can make them look like museum exhibits, which is definitely not the goal in a casually styled home.
Some casual styles look more cohesive with a variety of decorative accents, or chachkies, to complete the theme. Others become quickly cluttered if there is too much going on.
Remember this: leave enough clear wall space for the eye to rest. It is not necessary to fill every single area on the walls with your art and decor.
Your casual home should represent you, your lifestyle and what makes you happy. And, it doesn’t take a lot of money to create your stylish interior. My suggestions are intended to help you create the most pleasing environment to enjoy, and to call your HOME!
HOME, HEALTH & YOU is a series of short posts that cover a variety of personal improvement, health and home decor topics. They include helpful resources, tips and advice. I hope you enjoy them!
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