Sunday, February 6, 2011

Creating A Welcoming Home

Welcoming touches throughout a home tell family and friends "I am so glad you are here".  I  think  decorating is a process of layering.  Decorating  starts with the structure of walls, windows, and flooring, and then moves to  necessary elements like lighting and window coverings.  The next layer is the things that fill your home.  This becomes the canvas for the things that make your home uniquely you --- the  touches that create welcome and personalize each space.   Start at the front door. What story does the area around your front door tell?  Is it clean and welcoming?  Do you have plants, flowers or wreaths to welcome a guest?  It doesn't have to be elaborate or fancy; a simple  arrangement will do.   
When a guest or family member enters your home what is the first thing they see?  Is it an empty space with no welcoming touch?  Is there a place for their coat, shoes or bag? Is it a cluttered array of backpacks, laptop cases, shoes, coats etc?  
A chalk board in a kitchen center, a gathering of objects by theme  Look around the space where you live.  Is there a touch of something natural in each room?  A bowl of shells or pot-porri, a bud vase with a couple of fresh rose buds, a basket of pine cones can all give a touch of nature to the room.  A grouping of candles on a silver or glass tray is beautiful and adds a soft touch.
Textiles are important.  Is there a cozy quilt or afghan nearby that someone can curl up with to read a book? Are there comfy pillows on the sofa and chairs?  Even an ottoman can signal to guests that you would like them to stay awhile as they put up their feet and read from the interesting magazines set in a basket nearby.  Tiny touches make huge statements.  It tells your family and guests that you are glad they are here.  It says that you've thought of them and what would make them feel comfortable in your home.  It says, "Welcome!  Come and sit awhile, rest, relax, enjoy. I'm so glad you came!"

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