How to be more UMAGE
1 Take your lead from another Scandinavian design tip and have different textiles for different seasons. Cushion covers, throws, bed linen can be easily stored when not in use. Changing your textiles in autumn and spring will instantly refresh a room without you having to do — or spend — too much. Some Scandinavians change their curtains seasonally, but that might seem a bit too umage.
2 Make a list of any small jobs that need to be done in each room of your house. For example, redoing damaged paintwork, or clearing and organising a kitchen drawer. Then set aside a day each month to do one or two chores on the list.
3 A sure-fire way to make a difference to a room is by adding greenery. A tall, floor-standing plant will add height to a seating area, while a smaller, trailing plant adds interest to a shelf. Most plants will need a bit of looking after, but the aesthetic and aircleaning benefits are worth it.
4 Create a shelfie. Writer and stylist Martha Roberts has written a book on the subject called Shelfie: Clutter-clearing Ideas for Stylish Shelf Art, and maintains that clearing and then reorganising a mantelpiece, bookcase or kitchen shelf is a calming, relaxing experience. Plus, once you’ve done it, you’ll be looking at a thoughtfully arranged collection of objects, rather than a stress-inducing jumble.
5 You don’t have to buy something new to change your interior.
Think about moving your furniture around from time to time; rearranging it can completely transform the look of a room.
6 Put things up on the walls. Pictures can instantly add character to a space. Frame a collection of inexpensive prints, family photos, even children’s drawings. Lay them out on the floor to come up with an arrangement you like, then use masking tape to delineate where on the wall to hang them.
Reorganising a mantelpiece, bookcase or kitchen shelf is a calming, relaxing experience