It’s January! The first month of the new year and like most people we’ve laid down plans, lined up our personal aspirations and set our sights on several target dates. From fitness schedules to financial prep, we’ve outlined the details of how to keep on track and to put our ready-made plans into action. But, between the balance of new hobbies and extending business with networking socials, it’s easy to let the household honey-do list fall right back into the second tier.
But, this is YOUR year. So let’s make it happen. We’ve outlined three designer tips to help you conquer that infamous list while remaining loyal to all your best-made plans.
1. Keep It Simple
When it comes to goals, its common to go big or go home; to shoot for the moon and accept when we land amongst the stars. You’re in good company though, if when following these philosophies you ultimately end up facing a reality check and never-ending to-do list.
While you’re fired up for a newly-landscaped yard, a kitchen remodel and a guest-room upgrade, time and money don’t seem to appreciate your can-do attitude nor your concept of divine alignment.
Instead of focusing on the master-task list, develop the process and attack the details.
Whenever starting a big project, it’s critical to outline the scope. For example, a guest-room makeover can involve new flooring, wallpaper installation, custom soft-goods, and new furniture. Trying to get this all accomplished within the year, in addition to several other simultaneous projects is not only daunting but as anomalies pop into the picture, it can hinder progress.
So keep it simple, develop the process. Outline your scope and then start on it incrementally. Whether you choose to go big or just cross off one master-task — providing simplicity to the process is key to achievement. For your guest-room remodel, start by selling your old furniture and picking out the foundational pieces of the room, like the bed. This will not only help your budget, but it will keep you from feeling overwhelmed, especially if you’re tackling several projects.
Here’s an example of our simplified, process-developed honey-do list for a guest bedroom makeover and kitchen remodel.
Jan. Sell Bedroom Set & Put Proceeds Toward New Furniture
Select New Kitchen Appliances & Install
Feb. Have Custom Cabinetry Built
Select Kitchen Countertops
March Have Custom Cabinetry Installed
Have Countertops Installed
April Replace Guest Room Flooring
Pick-out & Install Kitchen Backsplash
May Have Bedroom Wallpaper Installed
(We purposely left out June & July because we figured vacations usually take precedence at this time and we also estimated a two- month allotment of funds to go toward an unexpected cost because we know life happens.)
Aug. Purchase & Install Light Fixtures and Major Accessories (ex. Artwork, Accessory Chairs, Side Tables, Rugs etc.)
Sept. Purchase New Kitchen Counter Stools / Kitchenette Set
Nov. Purchase & Install Minor Accessories (ex. Houseplants, Bedspread, Decorative Pillows etc.) to complete the rooms!
Dec. Host a Christmas Eve dinner to show off the kitchen in action. Have your in-laws stay overnight to enjoy the new upgrade.
2. Keep It Neat
With cultural fads like Feng Shui or Kondo-izing one’s space, organization is an endless pursuit and objective, especially as life continuously brings about change and evolution. There is a limitless supply of how-to books and blogs on cleaning-up, tidying, decluttering, and simplifying the household.
However, the key to organization lies in your lifestyle habits; successful implementation stems from consistency.
This is where interior design comes into play. A well-organized space is a well-utilized space because it functions for you. A well-designed space helps you keep organized by purposely catering to your lifestyle where those habits of storing shoes in the entryway or keeping media wires from being visible are easily accommodated.
That’s not to say a good spring cleaning, fall rummage sale, or monthly inventory check are not impactful. By all means your household should spark joy! Just consider your habits and implement organization tactics based on how you function in your household. Seek to make your space work for you.
3. Keep It Real
We live in one of the most technologically advanced countries in the world, where resources are plentiful and our options are never-ending. Our commerce functions off of an influx of media where companies are vying for your attention and business with the greatest products on the market.
The reality is though, every single company isn’t carrying the “greatest” product and with the temptation to buy cheaply and conveniently, knock-off and subpar products rule commerce.
As designers in a niche market of luxury interiors, we know the importance of sifting for quality and conducting proper research to ensure we are working with manufacturers that follow through on their marketing and branding representation.
Our clients are investors and we take this to heart, ensuring every purchase encompasses quality of craftsmanship, sustainable/local resourcing, and supporting companies with a regularly demonstrated pursuit of excellence.
Again, there are thousands of options available today and on demand. The world is literally at our fingertips, so consider spending a bit more time on product research.
Instead of making purchases, make investments.
Demand authenticity by evaluating an investment’s intrinsic value against its market value. For example, buying a sofa from a manufacturer that uses high-quality, responsibly-sourced leather and does not skimp on those internal construction details you can’t see, will likely result in a more meaningful and better-valued investment over the life of the piece.
Knowing that your money went to a company that values you as a customer and takes pride in their product, will make you happier because the intrinsic value outweighs the cost. Additionally, the guarantee of a reputable company is typically backed-up by a warranty that aims to ensure that you’re happy with your purchase in the long run.
While it’s easy to relay the age-old saying “you get what you pay for,” technology today has drastically changed our landscape and opportunity for quality. Our advice is to make sure that your household purchases this year qualify as investments aimed to better serve you over time.