5-Minute Fixes for Each Room in Your House
Add some sparkle to your space without making it an all-day affair.
The Bathroom: Ditch the Plastic
Decanting isn't just for wine. New York interior designer Steven Gambrel says transferring bath salts, cotton balls and mouthwash into decorative containers and glass vessels can elevate the appearance of any bathroom. Without labels or bottle colors that may clash with the room's décor, everyday items can look refined and polished.
The Kitchen: Clear and Group
This two-step suggestion from Atlanta designer Suzanne Kasler will not only give your kitchen counters more space; it'll also give them a focal point. First, corral mail, rubber bands and other small items into a container; and move any appliances you don't use daily into cabinets or closets. Second, use the cleared space to create a cluster of three objects. "I love a cake plate, a vase of flowers and a glass bowl," Kasler says. Whatever you choose, the number is what's important. "Odd-numbered groupings look more appealing," she says.
Dining Room: Use All the Candlesticks
When it comes to candlesticks, Sherry Petersik of the home blog Young House Love suggests taking a "more is more" approach. Instead of decorating your dining room table with just two or three candlesticks, put six, eight or even 10 down the center of a table for a dramatic effect. Place the candlesticks (they can be matching or all different) equidistantly along the length of the table for a balanced look.
Living Room: Rethink Your Shelves
You might already know that bookshelves can take on a whole new feel when you consider stacking the books in different directions. But design guru Nate Berkus also turns some striking-looking ones so that their covers face out (they're like mini works of art). For books that are stacked horizontally, you can layer on texture and personality by displaying framed photos or interesting objects on top. Creating mini displays within a large bookcase will make the space appear more thought-out.
Bedroom: Raid the Dining Room
Odds and ends overflowing or jumbled into a teetering pile on your nightstand—from creams and lip balm to loose change and earrings—can make your space feel unorganized. Place the items on a serving tray, though, and somehow the arrangement seems way more pulled together, even intentional. You can make one out of leather (it's easier than you think) or use a lacquered one you already own. And a good rule of thumb for when an object doesn't fit on the tray? It probably belongs somewhere else.