As we enter the second week of Lockdown 2.0 with no honest end in sight (you don’t actually believe this thing’s finished on December 2nd, do you?), we don’t mind saying that we’re already sick of the sight of home’s four walls.

Indeed, 2020 has seen our relationship with our domestic spaces change irrevocably and infinitely. Things will never be the same again, it seems, and with the majority of the population housebound for the foreseeable future, and working from home now the norm, Brits are looking for simple, cost effective ways to make their homes feel fresh and clean.

Because if we’re going to be spending this much time in each other’s company, we might as well all make an effort, right? If you’re looking to do just that, then here are 5 IDEAL steps to making your home feel brand new on a budget.

SPRING (OR WINTER) CLEAN

Perhaps it’s called a Spring clean because chilly Winter months rack more clutter than any other time of year. With work and a certain amount of schooling being brought home for lockdown, the domestic space’s propensity for chaos and clutter has only increased.

In some ways, Winter is the worst time of year for bringing mess into the home. Coats slung over the backs of chairs, shoes piled chaotically by the door, scarves haphazardly thrown in just about every direction – these adornments may look charming and festive in Pinterest photos, but in reality, they’re just an added mess (and distraction) that no one needs.

You owe it to yourself and your sanity, then, to invest in some decent storage for your winterwear – coat stands and shoe racks can be found fairly cheaply, and Facebook marketplace pros can sometimes even find items like these free of charge! 

LET THE LIGHT IN

If you live in a climate affected by low-winter light-levels, then you’ll know that the darker months can affect your mood negatively. Letting the light in, and finding smart solutions to maximise the natural light that your home receives, can go a long way to making your place feel fresh and new. And that’s why you’re here, right?

Firstly, make sure that any sources of natural light (ie. windows) are fully exposed, with nothing blocking them. The sun’s rays are such a precious resource at this time of year; don’t waste them with stacked books or a poorly positioned lamp obscuring things. Some interior design experts also recommend hanging a mirror opposite your biggest window to bounce light around the room and give the illusion of more space. We’ve certainly found that helps.

Even your doors can play a major role in letting the light in and making your room look smaller or larger. Dark wood contributes to a traditional, cosy ambiance whilst lighter shades lend a more modern appearance. 

Or, if you want to push things further, then the experts at Oakwood Doors advise ‘’trying to let as much light into your living space as you can often gives the illusion of more space. A lack of light can make even the largest areas appear to be smaller and tighter…external sliding doors allow light to flood into your living space. Without installing new windows or light fittings, purchasing a sliding door is a fantastic way to light up your home’’. 

WALLPAPER OVER THE CRACKS

Sometimes, the most simple solutions are also the most effective. If you’re looking to breathe fresh life into your interiors, then a fresh lick of paint or new wallpaper can totally reinvigorate a room. Suddenly, those walls you’ve been staring at, looking for answers whilst working from home, will feel vibrant and inspiring, hiding any old chipped paintwork or out-of-date styles in the process.

If this sounds like your sort of thing, then rather than waffle on, we’ll redirect you to our tips on 5 stylish wallpapers IDEAL for giving your home a fresh look for more!

UPCYCLE

Speaking of breathing new life into your home, let’s talk about upcycling. Maybe it’s the hipster in us. Is a possible environmental sustainability at its heart? Or perhaps the current economic climate and state of confusion over our country’s collective capital makes it a necessity. But whatever the reason, ‘upcycling’ has taken the design world by storm in recent years.

Upcycling – repurposing old bits from around the house and casting them in new, exciting roles – not only provides an opportunity for homeowners to show off their creativity but is an easy way to spruce up our home on a budget. Got some old pallets in the garden – turn them into a coffee table. Indeed, with a little creativity and ingenuity, you can revamp your homes furnishing with minimal expense.

Soon, you’ll be hearing “Out with the old, in with the upcycled ” when it comes to revamping your interiors. Your heard it here first.

ACCESSORISE

Just as the secret to a great outfit lies in the accessories, so the perfect ‘Insta-ready’ room is all in the finishing touches, too. Ornaments, pictures, house plants – these are just a few great ways to squeeze in a little extra décor and add character to a room. 

Online marketplaces like Etsy are a great place to find unusual adornments for your home that are one-of-a-kind and out of the ordinary and ideal for that visual intrigue you’re seeking. From bookends to cushion covers, wall prints to hanging baskets, these unique additions can introduce a fabulous twist to your tired décor. 

And if those finishing touches are going to take the form of some tastefully chosen art, then do check out our tips on how to choose the best art for your home. Good luck and we’ll see you at yours when lockdown is over?