What makes a “savvy home”? The word “savvy” originates from the Latin “sapere” which means to be wise. A savvy person is someone who is practical and well informed. In the same sense, a savvy home should embody practicality and design knowledge.
Savvy can also relate to being financially savvy. Although high-quality and experienced furniture designers are often the most expensive, there are ways around a design budget to maximise impact and minimize cost.
My name is Gabrielle and I write the blog Savvy Home. I am thrilled that Vanessa asked me to collaborate on Damask & Dentelle.
Each week I will share with you my top 5 on a variety of interior design related topics. Expect tips on colors, textures, layouts, styles and everything else that makes up a room. I hope you enjoy it!
Because I am probably new to most of you, I thought it would be fun to start this series by introducing the Savvy Home style and giving you some hindsight on what I believe makes a home a savvy one.
1. Gone are the days of “sets”
Learn to mix styles, periods and price tags! You’d be surprised by how much you can reduce your overall budget by shopping at flea markets, lower-end antique shops, garage sales and auction houses (not to mention websites like eBay and Craigslist).
Don’t be too concerned with matching, but make sure you absolutely love each piece you buy, and that it will work in your house. By saving money on some items, you can even treat yourself to a more expensive item you’d been coveting for a while. Like with any great outfit, mixing high and low is the perfect trick to give your house a more sophisticated look, without the price tag.
2. The devil is in the architectural details
A built-in bookcase or a custom walk-in robe really goes a long way. If you’re lucky enough to own your house, don’t be afraid to add those architectural details that will add value to your home. Add moldings and skirting boards if they’re absent.
On a smaller budget, even smaller details like changing doorknobs or kitchen hardware will give your house a fresh look. Remember, hardware is the jewelry of a room!
3. Lo and be bold!
Never go for bland. If color makes you nervous, experiment with smaller accents. Paint a less utilized room, like a guest room, powder room or even a closet in a bright color. Paint a ceiling or doors, but make an impact. You can really maximize the impact of a room with color or unusual items. Dare to be different.
4. Add a touch of humor
A room is only ever memorable if it contains an element of surprise. Without wanting your house to look like the Just For Laughs museum, adding something unexpected makes for great impact. Whether it’s a work of art, a quirky lamp or a crazy wallpaper, you will be sure to be remembered. Some of my favorite quirky items are Fornasetti plates and sheep stools like the one below.
5. Comfort above all
What’s the point of having a beautiful room if it’s not inviting? Pay attention to the layout. Make sure it’s easy to navigate and that it corresponds to your needs. For instance, a living room should always encourage conversation.
Make sure your rooms are comfortable by adding soft furnishings such as curtains, rugs and pillows. Make sure the fabrics are soft and a pleasure to touch. Invest in long lasting good quality sofas, chairs, beds and pillows! Soft furnishings is the one thing you should never skimp on.
I hope you enjoyed this first post. See you next week!
Sources: 1. Scott Campbell’s apartment via The NY Home Observer 2. Robert Passal design via Trad Home 3. A New York apartment by Robert Couturier via Elle Decor 4. Joel Grey’s Apartment by Madderlake Designs 5. Nuevo Estilo 6. Darryl Carter’s Kitchen via Elle Decor 7. Ruthie Sommer’s Home via Lonny Magazine 8. Philip Gorrivan via Canadian House and Home 9. Kate Spade’s Home via The Selby