On New Years Eve I did a poll on Instagram asking all of you about posts you would like to see on Harlowe James. I got an overwhelming number of responses with everything from more interior design tips to growing a side business. I will be doing posts on everything that was requested, but one that stood out a lot to me was a question I still struggle with myself. I have condensed it down a bit from the original, but it is essentially “How do some bloggers change their interiors up so frequently and how can I do the same without spending a ton of money or being wasteful”
To be honest, this is something that I think about all the time. I work as an interior designer so I am naturally prone to wanting new things for our apartment often, but with the rise of social media we are all inundated with the latest and greatest of things we should have. It gets overwhelming and we can spend too much money on items we end up throwing away in order to keep up with trends. I am SO guilty of this. I see something on Pinterest or Instagram and think I have to have it and then get bored a few weeks later because I have already photographed it and shared with all of you.
There is no simple answer to this question, but I can tell you that there are some easy fixes to making your home or small apartment look different without changing out your furniture every two weeks.
Move pieces around: I get bored with my surroundings really easily so I am the queen of moving furniture around to make things feel different. It is amazing what this will do for your space and in turn makes it feel like some things are new. I moved my desk from the bay window in the living room to our bedroom and it completely changed the look of the bedroom and made me excited to work more on that space. This goes for art and accessories too, not just furniture. I always “shop” with my own decor and find that changing up my shelves, relocating art and swapping out coffee table decor makes me less inclined to buy more items.
Invest in large pieces of furniture and save on smaller: I know that I am not the type of person that will have a side table or coffee table for ten years, so I would never spend an obscene amount of money on smaller pieces. A nice couch or beautiful rug are things that can last for a really long time, but I like to be practical about how I actually use furniture and don’t mind swapping out smaller pieces when I get bored.
Sell/Donate! One of the main reasons why I have new things in our apartment often is because I sell A LOT. With websites like Craigslist and Chairish or even just using Instagram stories, it has never been easier to sell furniture or decor. Whenever I want to buy something new in terms of furniture I have to sell something beforehand. I put that money towards whatever I am buying and feel less wasteful as it is going to a new home. If you can’t find any takers donating furniture and decor is a great option too.
Get to a flea market: Some of my favorite possessions are from flea markets. The vintage rug in our living room, the antique wood bench at the end of our bed, my collection of shelf accessories all came from the Alameda or Treasure Island flea. Flea markets are filled with a lot of junk, but if you are lucky enough to live close to a good one they have some serious gems. Flea markets are great because things can be really CHEAP.. like that rug I have was $300 cheap. Vintage pieces also bring such a layered and unique look to your space as opposed to buying everything new. This saves money and ultimately those are the pieces I end up holding on to.
Ultimately it comes down to what you like to spend your money on. Some people invest in their wardrobe, or vacations, but my home means everything to me and at the end of the day I like to be surrounded by things I love and that bring me comfort. I get excited about a new candle or a soft throw blanket, so I don’t purchase things to blog about it, I generally get joy out of finding beautiful pieces for our apartment. I will say I am working on being less wasteful this year and trying to fight the urge to change out pieces so frequently, but I look at a home as an always evolving space.
Thank you all for your wonderful questions, always feel free to email me or message me on Instagram if you have more!
photos by Torrey Fox