7 Ideas for Home Accessories
Home accessories add that personal touch to any house. To help you get started, here are some great ideas on how to make your house a comfortable home – room dividers, window treatments, coffee and end tables, ottomans, wall mirrors, indoor plants, and bar stools.
So you’ve finished designing your home, you followed your design books to the letter, and you’re ready to move in. But something seems to be off. You can’t put your finger on it, but it doesn’t feel much like a home. Chances are you don’t have enough home accessories—a common mistake among first-time home designers. You’ve spent a small fortune building that house, so why not spend a few more to turn it into a home?
Home accessories add charm and character to any room. Your layout and color scheme make the place look good, but it’s the little things you add that make it feel good to be in. You don’t need a large budget—it’s all a matter of suiting your own personality. Here are some ideas to get you started.
1. Room dividers. Room dividers are great for breaking up large rooms or simply adding interest to your home. They don’t have to cut across the entire room; the trend is to use several small dividers throughout the house so that they form a theme. If you’re going for a Zen or Asian look, look for shoji-style room dividers made from stiff, translucent paper and a light wooden frame. Be sure to place one near a large window or opening, so that they’ll filter the incoming light and cast a nice diffused glow around the room.
2. Window treatments. Modern window treatments do more than protect your window—they turn it into an aesthetic focus and a major conversational piece. Dress up your window with colorful blinds, frosted panes, or a lush silk curtain. The trend currently favors rich fabrics and bold prints, but it’s best to go with whatever suits your motif. There are several styles to choose from, so there’s sure to be a treatment that will fit right in.
3. Coffee and end tables. These tables make great accessories because they’re decorative as well as functional. Coffee tables are long and low, usually placed in front of the couch for holding drinks while you talk or lounge around. End tables are high and narrow, designed to fit into corners or any small space. They are great for holding phones, vases, or other small accessories. Coffee and end tables are great for accenting your main furniture or simply adding a bit of convenience to your room.
4. Ottomans. Ottomans are small cube-shaped pieces that go with your couch, chair, or chaise lounge. They were initially designed as footstools, but eventually evolved into accessory pieces. They now come in all sorts of colors, patterns, and upholstery. Their simple structure and sleek straight lines make them a great fit for minimalist-themed homes. For a little variety, get a pair of colorful ottomans and arrange them at random angles in your living room.
5. Wall mirrors. A large wall mirror creates an illusion of space, making a small room appear larger and airier than it actually is. It also reflects natural light, so you can light an entire room in the daytime without using up any power. Mirrors are especially useful in bathrooms, as they supplement the lighting and eliminate the need for a vanity area. Get a straight, unframed mirror to match a postmodern theme, or choose a round or irregular shape with corner accents if you’re going for a more whimsical look.
6. Indoor plants. Mixing indoor and outdoor elements is a major feature of Asian homes and a popular trend in modern home design. Indoor plants are one of the easiest ways to achieve this style. They bring some of the outdoors into your home, giving it a warmer and cozier feel. In the winter, it also adds some life to your otherwise barren surroundings. Ferns, jade plants, bromeliads, and African violets are some of the most popular indoor plants.
7. Bar stools. Bar stools or counter stools make great additions to any kitchen. They turn your counter into a hangout place for your friends and family, and make a great focal point for both the kitchen and the dining room. When choosing bar stools, make sure they rise at a comfortable height to your counter. The standard height is 29 to 31 inches. If you’re not sure about the height, get one with an adjustable stand.