If you could . . . Change Five Things About Your House

A client recently asked me this question, "If you could make only five changes to freshen up a home, what would they be?  Your top five?" It was a bit like car ride questions with my kids to pass the time - "If you had to pick your absolute favorite holiday what would it be?" or "If you could only eat one type of dessert for the rest of your life, what would it be?"  So, after some thought, I came up with what I think are the five "biggest bang for your buck" things you can do to dramatically change the feel of your home.     

1. Paint
If you have a tight budget, but still want to make a major change to your home, I always recommend painting.

 If your walls are a dated color or even a dated wallpaper, paint is the fastest way to neutralize this and give the room fresh life.

2. Cabinet Hardware
A current style of cabinet hardware like these long pulls in a kitchen instantly makes a kitchen or bathroom feel more current.  
Notice they used the same pull on both the drawers and cabinet doors.  I love this look.  Even though I've recommended it many times, I'm always blown away by how dramatically it changes the feel of a space.  

3. Faucets
If your budget is limited and you can't change out countertops or retile surrounds, just changing the faucets in your kitchen and bathrooms will give the space an entirely new feel.
Since your eye tends to be drawn to the faucets in these spaces (sort of like the jewelry of a room), it sets the tone for the entire room.

4. Bed Linens
I have done a couple of designs for clients where the only thing we have changed are the bed linens.  This alone has transformed their bedrooms.

If you create a focal point of fresh beautiful bed linens, it will take center stage and things in the room you are not crazy about (like dated furniture) will fade away.  

5. Editing
Sometimes less is more, and the best thing you can do for a space is take away the most dated element.   I find clients will say things like, "I really hate the rug, but we have to have a rug, and I'm not ready to replace it.  So, we are just going to live with it."  Why?  You can live without a rug, especially if it is so worn or dated that it's the first thing you notice when you enter the room.  Knowing what to take away is just as important as knowing what to add.

 The trick is to think about your home as a whole and create a wish list of sorts of things you would like to do - then you can prioritize and make it happen!  Get your list ready - who knows you may have a generous relative who willing to help get you started by offering to gift you something on your list.  M.  


  1. Agree the power of paint can be tremendous! I also think and have seen how great hardware can take a ho hum kitchen to something spectacular..all good points!

  2. Great tips! All of them will definitely make an impact.

  3. So smart - any and all of it!

  4. Thanks so much for sharing this great information! I have been really interested in finding good custom interior design in Wilson, NC... Where is the best place to go for this?


Thank you for thoughts on my post! M.