Going green – part 6 – shake up, not move out!

Quick Room Refreshers

Is your décor looking dingy? Are you bored with the same-old, same old every time you open your eyes in the morning? Feel like packing up and moving on out to somewhere fresh? If you answered yes to the first two questions then most likely you don't really need to move out. You need to shake-up! Any living space gets monotonous if it does not receive a little shake-up now and then. It doesn't need to cost the earth or even take up much time. All you need is a critical eye and a determination to make a few changes.

When a room has been newly decorated it is finished off with a careful sprinkling of knick- knacks and ornaments which have been chosen because they lend themselves beautifully to the room and pick out highlights of the colour scheme. A few months down the road and those select pieces have multiplied a hundredfold and the room is now decorated with a second skin of family life: children's artwork, magazines, memorabilia and all the various flotsam and jetsam of daily life that seem to wash up unbidden on mantelpieces, bookcases, sideboards and end tables.

Kick Out the Clutter

Every once in a while you really need to get ruthless and sweep through your house like a summer storm throwing out the things that you really, really don't need. Involve the children by getting them to pack up old toys in cardboard boxes to take to the charity shop. Same with clothes, books, unloved paintings and those boxes and boxes of assorted bric-a-brac you have in the attic. If you really have not got the heart to throw them out then pack them up and have a boot sale. This works just as well on a single room and is a quick and free way to make the room feel fresher.

Light Exercise

The quality of light entering a room makes a great difference to its ambience. A northern facing window lets in a thinner light while a southern exposure suffuses the room with a soft, golden glow. In either case a subtle rearranging of mirrors, glass vases, silver ornaments and glossy green plants can let the light bounce round the room and lift the spirits of anyone who spends time in it.

To maximise the light entering the room look at the window treatments. Fussy curtains can look stuffy and out-of-date. Go for simple styles or consider voile curtains for windows or blinds for their clean lines and excellent light control. By following these few tips your room will feel more vibrant and you didn't even have to move out!

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