Lately, several of our family and friends have relocated to new homes.
And I was called upon to give my thoughts, on the essentials needed to settle into their new nests.
Inspired by our recent conversations, here are the essentials that make for a great foundation in warming up your happy new home…
The Living Room.
Sofa and Chairs. They should be comfortable, durable and neutral. You can dress them up and personalized them with pillows and throws.
Rugs. They warm up your room, while adding lots of interest and texture. They are great for defining separate areas in large rooms too.
Coffee table. If you have the space, it should be large, and multi-task. Like an ottoman that doubles as extra seating, or a table with storage. And keep it casual enough that you aren’t afraid to kick your feet up on it.
Side Tables. Just like your coffee table choice, they should be beautiful, functional, durable and if possible, provide storage too.
Lamps. This is where you can add interest with function. Have fun with your lamps, find some with personality, even try a little bling if you’d like. And know that they do not need to match.
The Dining Room.
Dining Table & Chairs. Start with comfortable seating, and again, the table and chairs do not have to match, they should just look good together and function well.
As a side note. Make your dining room fit your lifestyle. If you do not do formal dinners, give it the function that works for how you really live. Like a breakfast room, sitting room (think Starbucks), lounge area, reading nook, craft studio, office, or…
See my post, DIY…Building Banquette Comfort.
Dinnerware. Just the basics, in all white, and they not have to be a matching set. Dinner plates, salad plates, bowls, saucers or mugs. Food looks more appetizing on white, that’s why fine restaurants use white dinnerware.
Servingware. Here again, just the basics. Choose a nice quality set for durability. Simple stainless steel designs are as timeless as a little black dress.
Glassware. Choose simple glassware based on your lifestyle. Start with basic tumblers, then add glasses for drinks you drink or entertain with. Like wine glasses, rock glasses, martini glasses, or shot glasses.
Table Linens. They should be durable, washable, and made of cloth. White, colors, or prints, and/or mix and match. They feel and look great when you use them, and are good for the enviroment too.
Cookware & Utensils. For your cookware, choose the best quality you can afford, and start out with the basics. A 9″ or 10″ skillet or sauté pan; a 4 to 5 quart sauce pan; and a baking or roasting pan.
You can cook most recipes with these three items, and add more to your cooking arsenal as your nesting budget grows.
For your utensils. A sharp, good quality, 8″ chef’s knife; a spatula; tongs; and wooden spoons.
Dish towels. I am extremely fond of bar mop towels. Those bartenders know what to use to dry glasses and clean up spills. And they are inexpensive too.
Beds. Start with a comfortable mattress, then find a way to get it off the floor. If your bed frame does not have a headboard, then get creative with salvaged items, art, fabric or paint. Imagination can turn a bed into the focal point of any bedroom.
Bedding. Most important here is to make your bed as comfortable as possible. Our beds are our safe nests, our places of refuge. I love clean white sheets, they are easy to clean, don’t fade, and give you the feeling of a luxe hotel stay. Top it off with a fluffy duvet and your favorite pillows, and you have one heavenly bed.
Nightstands & Dressers. Here again, be creative. They just have to serve function and look great. They may range from the traditional pieces to wherever your imagination leads you.
A nightstand can be had in stacks of books, boxes, or almost anything that stacks. Or anything else that is the right height with a flat surface on top.
If you have a small bedroom, consider using pull-out storage under your bed in place of a dresser.
All that’s needed here are bath towels, hand towels, wash cloths, and a bath mat (or two). All in white is my personal preference. See why in my post, Secret to a Spa-like Bathroom.
Storage Baskets. I love them. You can use them to store (and hide away) anything and everything. Clothes, toys, toiletries, office supplies, food, etc.
They keep things so beautifully organized and tidy, with the added benefit of adding texture and interest to any room.
I hope you have found inspiration for your new nest, or fresh ideas for your old nest.
For more home comfort inspiration see my posts…
All photos in this post courtesy of Pottery Barn at http://www.potterybarn.com/