THE ART OF THE REFRESHBehind The Bend
There is nothing like a good spring cleaning. With spring starting to sprout all over this city of angels, we can't help but get excited about the pre-summer season. Here at Bend, we take the ritual cleaning for spring very seriously. As much as it's a cleanse for your home, a good spring refresh can impact your mental state too. Luckily Vogue.com came to the rescue. We found this article "The 8 Steps to Refreshing Every Room in Your Home", and we have to say, it's right on the money. Get ready for a whole new you!
Our wardrobes are constantly evolving, yet the places we call home can remain unchanged for years at a time, leaving them feeling a bit stale, uninspired, and overlooked. From chipped paint to droopy furniture, and that bare wall you’ve been meaning to find some art for since you moved in, this eight-step plan will help you fine-tune your space and achieve a more pulled-together, thoughtfully edited space for you—and anyone you invite through your doors—to enjoy.
See your space through fresh eyes. Start with the big picture. When you live in a space every day, each element becomes so overly familiar that you stop seeing it clearly and forget what kind of impression it gives guests. So try walking in your front door and experiencing your home as a visitor would. Note where your eye lands first when you enter a room, if the lighting is too dim, what looks shabby or needs repair, and the elements that you like best and least in each space. Or invite a friend whose taste you love to come over to give you their honest assessment of what’s working and what’s not in exchange for dinner or drinks.
Fix your foundation. From the broken towel racks, wonky drawers, and tricky bathroom doors that annoy you daily to chipped paint and scratched furniture you find during your once-over, chances are some spots in your home could use a little TLC. Call your super, hire a handyman, or set aside some time over the weekend to knock out your list. It may not be the most leisurely way to spend a Saturday, but it’s a lot better than continuing the Groundhog Day–like hell of confronting home dysfunction every morning as you try to get ready for work, or the embarrassment of a guest getting locked in your bathroom.
Do a clean sweep. It’s impossible to pull off a polished look when things are bursting out of overstuffed drawers and piled on every surface. So before you spend time and money redecorating, clear any clutter, and if you still have overflow, pare down or find additional storage solutions.
Swap out shabby furniture and decor. Most of us decorate our first homes with the help of cheap big-box store finds that aren’t built to go the distance. But those frayed rugs and sagging particleboard bookcases that somehow remain long after your style has evolved can detract from your nicer furniture and decor. Trade them in for higher-quality investments you’ll love for years. Prioritize the essentials you use every day (like your mattress or dining table), those that will inform the rest of your decorating plan and other purchases (like an upholstered headboard), and important pieces that qualify as both, like a couch. Accent pieces like side tables, nightstands, and media shelving can be part of your phase-two plan.
Curate a collection. Your place should showcase your personality, not look like a staged home or generic rental. So now that you have your big pieces in place, make sure you’ve got an artful layer of unique artifacts. From books and photos to interesting textiles, souvenirs from trips, and other collectibles, bring out your good stuff. And if you haven’t already, start investing in art and vintage or antique pieces that you’ll love forever and that may even increase in value over the years.
Bring the outside in. Plants add interest and texture like nothing else can, plus a visual and literal freshness, since they’re natural air purifiers. Go for large, architectural options like a snake plant or fiddlehead fig tree in planters; add small and intricate potted plants like succulents or string of pearls to a coffee table, bookshelf, or windowsill; or lend some life to your walls with a dramatic wall-mounted stag horn fern.
Make material upgrades. Swap any worn or cheap textiles for more sumptuous fabrics. Relocate all the beauty products you’ve been hoarding in your linen closet and start using it to store better bedding, fabric tablecloths, placemats, and napkins. Toss out that pilled acrylic throw blanket and pony up for a cashmere version (expensive, but worth it since it will make every time you curl up on the couch feel luxe, and will last for years). And swap thin, chintzy curtains for heavier silk or linen options that look richer and do a better job of blocking out the cold.
Get guest-ready. Make yourself ready for visitors: Check that you have extra bed linens on hand for overnight guests. Get rid of chipped or mismatched plates and silverware in exchange for a full set. Stock up on essential barware—red and white wine glasses, champagne coupes or flutes, and old-fashioned and/or highball glasses will cover you for most drinks—and keep a bottle of your go-to liquor on hand so you can always offer drop-by guests a cocktail.
Lastly: Sit back and toast your newly refreshed haven.