three {free} steps to a magazine home
Monday, January 12, 2015 by {darlene}

Three Free Steps to a Magazine Home

three free steps to a magazine home via interior designer @fieldstonehill

Do you ever look at images from magazines and immediately feel defeated, thinking, “My home could never look like that!” ??

Fear not. Magazine level decor can truly be yours.

It is not a matter of having a home that makes the Jones’s happy {unless YOU are the Jones’s} – it is a matter of having a home that reflects peace, order, and beauty.  So, forget about keeping up with others, and set the bar high for your family and your joy.

This is not for the feign-of-heart. I am here to tell you that your home can feel like a photo-worthy space. You will need a large trash bag, some creative shuffling, and some elbow grease. And GUTS. Did I mention guts?

Are you willing?

1. Edit, Edit, Edit

Step one is the hardest one, but the most essential. THE. MOST. ESSENTIAL.

In fact, may I share one of my favorite sayings that is SO true {albeit a tad blunt}?:  BEAUTIFUL SPACES ARE NOT FILLED WITH JUNK.

Remind yourself: this is a VERY FREE way to create beauty in your home!!

So, once you are convinced that you need to Edit, now you must roll up your sleeves and put in the work. Editing requires that you 1. Take the time 2. Set the standards High and then 3. Just do it! My mantra when I am editing is: Do I LOVE it or Do I USE it? No? Hmm. It probably does not make the cut!

The blessing? You are not owned by STUFF, and you can pass your unused things on to those that actually need them.

And be forewarned, Editing is not a once and done process in the home, but an ever evolving task that is best when done regularly.


2.Add symmetry

Once you have pared your room down to the essentials and the things you love, you are ready to start the rearranging process.

Take a look at what you have in your room, and look for pairs. Pairs of end tables. Pairs of pillows. Pairs of art. Pairs of lamps. {These pairs do not need to match identically, but they should be equivalent in size and form}.

Next, take your pairs, and place them symmetrically throughout the space. If folded in half, parts of the room should match up similarly {not necessarily identically}. This is easiest to understand if you look at a photo. Let’s take this living room from one of my favorite designers, Katie Ridder.

Whether or not you would want your room to have a look or feel like this, you can still use this photo to study the FREE design tool of symmetry.  Upon studying this picture, I immediately see several symmetrical elements:

1. The windows and curtains flanking the sofa on either side.
2. The pair of pillows on the loveseat.
3. The pair of library floor lamps.
4. The symmetrical sets of art that flank the gold mirror {notice how these art pieces do not match, but they are similar in size and shape}.
5. The elephant plant stands that flank the loveseat.

Get the general idea? You can use these ideas to add symmetry to your space at home. Again, creative thinking and elbow grease may be required. You may even have to shop around your house, and steal things from another room, but there should be no cost involved.

3. Add art and beauty

I am here to tell you that this does not have to cost you  a thing. Below is a list of artful items that, when displayed in a lovely manner, can give your home that gorgeous magazine feel.

1. FREE branches from your yard, or the yard of a friend. Even more glorious if you can find a branch that is in bloom.

2. FREE Printables to add art to your space {try these free maps, or these free botanical prints}

3. Hang groupings of plates on the wall. Use the pretty ones you own, but just sit in a drawer. FREE!

4. Do you have other groupings of things, just sitting in a drawer, that would look beautiful if hung on the wall? Antique baskets? old silver platters? straw hats? Select unique and artful collections, and hang them with symmetry. FREE!

5. And don’t forget the age old practice of keeping a flower garden, and then filling your home with the flowers. for free!

And these are just a few ideas for ways to add beauty and art into your home. The fun part is that you can do these now. Today!


So, now you have some very free tools, and hopefully the inspiration and motivation. Free yourself of things you don’t need, and add in other {free} decorative touches, and you will breathe more easily in your beautiful, peaceful and orderly space – a space that is pretty enough to be in pictures!

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{images via: 1., 2. Katie Ridder, 3. Sarah Richardson}










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