As we settle into 2021 and look ahead to greener pastures, the pandemic has made one thing more evident than ever before: Our home environments matter, and in fact, they play a major role in the general productivity and satisfaction levels of our everyday lives.
In fact, according to a survey of 2,000 homeowners by online interior design company Modsy, the pandemic made 60% of respondents realize their homes were disorganized, and 77% were so stressed by their at-home surroundings that they undertook their own DIY home redesign projects.
“There’s no better time than the dawn of a new year to make positive changes, so let the arrival of 2021 spur you to get organized and create a space you love to live in,” says Karina Lameraner, Creative Stylist.
Here are just a few of her tips to refresh your home for a brighter, fresher start to the new year.
1. Add a Fresh Coat of Paint
We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: a fresh coat of paint can completely transform a room. It’s one of those simple bedroom design upgrades that makes a huge difference. So, whether you want to jump on the bold colors trend or decorate with neutrals, simply giving your walls some fresh color can refresh your room and give you a new perspective on the space.
2. Do A Desk Refresh
Like most of us, the ‘office’ corner of your home has probably gotten a lot of use this year, and frankly, it’s overdue for a refresh if you no longer look forward to sitting there. So, take everything off of your desk and go through every drawer to make your workspace feel like it’s getting a fresh start too. “I also hung some new wall art above my computer. It’s nothing fancy, but a few eclectic yet sophisticated wall hangings in the space give me a new view and spark of creativity,” says Lameraner.
3. Get Houseplants—Even If You’re Afraid Of Killing Them!
Houseplants make any home feel alive, especially during these colorless winter months, and they help clean the indoor air. “For those who don’t have much of a green thumb, I recommend starting small with a jade (hard to kill!) and a fern, and setting a goal to have at least one plant in every room,” says Lameraner.
4. Assess Clutter Hotspots
In addition to a mess of craft project supplies and copious amounts of kids’ toys, there are a few other types of clutter that quickly build-up (for example, hats, gloves, and masks in your entryway and toiletries on bathroom counters), and it’s likely there are similar spots in your home. “I recommend going one by one and finding a solution for each, like a wall-mounted basket for masks, a new shelf in your bathroom, or storage baskets that are stylish yet functional and can be elegantly hidden,” says Lameraner. “Make a list of the clutter magnets in your home. I know from experience that fine-tuning these small pain points will make everyday cleaning so much easier.”
5. Cook Down The Pantry & Detox Your Cleaning Supplies
Earlier this year when cleaning supplies were a hot commodity, many people found themselves stuck buying products that they wouldn’t normally choose. Clean out your cleaning supplies to make finding what you need easier in the new year, recommends Lameraner. And when it comes to the kitchen pantry, there are all sorts of stuff lurking in the dark corners of most people’s cabinets, like a random gluten-free bread mix, dried white corn, and canned mussels. Make it a point to cook through some of it, and also strive to better organize the staples your family regularly uses. One thing Lameraner recommends is decanting the things that come in plastic bags into upcycled glass jars, so you can actually see everything you have and there are no clumsy bags taking up space.
6. Embrace New Year’s Cleaning
“I’d like to propose that you add house cleaning to your list of January to-dos. I always feel like what I do at the start of the year sets the tone for the months ahead, and I find that if I set a time for a deep cleaning and think about it as a positive action instead of a dreaded chore, the work is more satisfying. And there is truly nothing like the feeling of a clean house,” says Lameraner.