5 Tips to Create Your Own “Loving Room”

So I moved to Australia!

It has finally hit me that I live here permanently now – that I won’t be traveling back to Toronto in the near future to unlock my front door or sweep the front steps or tend to the garden. No snow shoveling this year, either. I must say – I’m absolutely elated!!!

I’ve been here a year next month and I live in my own ground floor apartment, right on the beach! This is literally the life I have always asked for.

I call my new apartment The Loving Room. Why? Because home is where we cultivate love each day. Love of self, love of life, love of nature and our planet.

My intention is to fill my new home with items and artwork that reflect the essences of peace, compassion, love, and nurture. I’m intending to bring nature in with homegrown food and live plants, and to respect nature outside by utilizing toxin-free products and eco-friendly items where possible. The Loving Room is the outward expression of our inward intentions for ourselves and our magical environment, and since I’m no decorator, I wanted to share with you some simple tips on how I plan on going about this the easy way.

1. LEARN FROM THE PROS

Hang photos, lay rugs, and stage art like a pro. You can skip the struggle by checking out websites likeApartment Therapy to see how interior decorators make magic with measurements and techniques that will take your pre-existing space and turn it magazine-worthy. I used the 57″ measurement to hang a brand new drool-worthy watercolour painting and I think it looks delish!

2. HAVE ONLY THE THINGS YOU LOVE

Authenticity is the key to your happiness. If you don’t absolutely love something (like a piece of art, for example), then edit it right out of your space. Matter of fact, don’t buy it to begin with. When I first lived on my own I spent countless hours (and dollars) cluelessly flipping through magazines and furniture websites trying to nail down the perfect look for my space, only to find that months later I was uninspired by my home and felt like a guest in my own kitchen! Take it from me – following the trends is tempting but a truly unique and personal space should be full of you and not a duplicate of a store window. I now focus on only having pieces in my home that are true to me or have come into my life organically, (like my grandmother’s vintage hand mixer that I couldn’t bear to leave behind, or the display of scarves I drape around my bedroom. Bonus: I’ve found that guests love the unique conversation pieces and stories that they hold, and the space becomes inspiring and integrative rather than trendy and untouchably perfect. Be you and let your home reflect your personality!

3. NEUTRAL BIGS & FUNKY LITTLES

If you’re anything like me, you love changing it up every now and again. Because of my ever-changing ways I’ve learned to style the big stuff – like sofas, wall paint, and flooring – in neutral colours, while getting the easier-to-swap stuff – like cushions, art work, and chairs – in funkified colours and patterns. So this week I can have an ocean-themed Loving Room and next week I may go coral! 😉

4. PLANT LOVE

This one isn’t new but I find that most homes that I go into lack plants, and often for all the wrong reasons. Many of my friends think you need a green thumb to keep a potted plant alive, but they’re forgetting that many of our flora friends require little from us to stay happy. Check out a cactus, who won’t get too offended if you forget to water now and again, or a soilless air plant if you’ve got little kids who like to knock over your containers. Ivy is great for people (like me) who tend to kill anything that flowers, and moss adds a beautiful accent to any shelf or table without the need for fertilizer or frequent watering.

5. CHEMICAL FREE IS THE PLACE TO BE

Respect your home, your health, and your ‘hood by utilizing cleaning and body products that contain no known toxic chemicals. The environment isn’t our dumping ground, and all the pesticides in conventional cleaning products go right down the drain and into our lakes and oceans. Let’s reduce the impact by choosing products that keep our planet healthy. Check out Nature Clean if you’re in Canada, or Eco Store if in Aus. Both are approved by this holistic nutritionist!

Those are my tips for creating your very own Loving Room. Feel free to share some tips of your own, or drop me a line in the comments below and let me know what your space is like! Happy nesting!

Lifestyle & TravelMarisa