10 Ways To Give Your Home More Character

10 Ways To Give Your Home More Character

Like people, homes can possess a certain personality or ‘character’. This is determined by how unique they are. If a home lacks character, it’s usually because there’s very little unique about it. It may look identical to other homes on the street or it may use very generic decor that results in a sterile show home quality. There are many ways you can give your home more character.

New builds are more likely to lack character than older buildings. Older buildings tend to have a lot of history, which may have led to various unique features being added over the years. New builds can contrastingly feel like empty shells that are yet to be filled.

By making certain improvements to your home, you may be able to add character to it. This could be useful if you’ve recently moved into a modern home. 

10 Ways To Give Your Home More Character: Think beyond neutral colours

Neutral colours like black, white, cream, brown and grey are very popular in modern homes. They tend to be seen as safe colours that can be easily mixed and matched and that won’t affect the value of a home. However, using these colours exclusively can also make a home feel slightly bland. 

Bolder colours can be more difficult to mix and match, but they can make a room much more unique and exciting. These could be small pops of colours such as baby blue cushions and baby blue curtains or they could be large explosions of colours such as lime green walls or a red sofa. You can read more about using colours in the home here.

Add some natural textures

Synthetic materials such as metal and plastic tend to have a very uniform appearance. This is also the case with synthetic coatings such as gloss paints.

With natural materials, no two surfaces are the same. Timber has its own distinct grain and knots, while stone materials like granite have their own veins. This itself can help to add a uniqueness and character. Consider whether you could add more exposed wood or stone to your interior. 

10 Ways To Give Your Home More Character: Consider bespoke items

Mass-produced items are popular in homes because they tend to be cheaper to buy. However, they can also contribute to a home’s lack of character – your neighbour may have the exact same Ikea table or Wilkinsons kitchenware set.

Consider splashing out on a couple bespoke items. This could be a custom sofa, a fitted wardrobe or even hand-built dining table, which leads onto the next ‘character-building’ trick…

Embrace art and crafts

Arts and crafts items often contain elements that are made by hand. This can mean that each one is individual. Such objects are a great way to bring character to a home. 

You can buy such items directly from an artist or a craftsman or you can make your own. The last option is the most sure to ensure that something is unique, but it does require more time, patience and skill. 

10 Ways To Give Your Home More Character: Add some history 

If your home is full of brand new items, this too could affect the character. Such items tend to have no history and therefore can fail to tell a story. This is often why older homes have more character – certain structural features could be a window into the past.

Adding an antique or two to your home could instantly add some character. This could be anything from a 60s table lamp to a Victorian mirror. Try to match these to the style of your home so that they don’t look too out of place. There may even be family heirlooms that you can display around your home to add some personal history. 

Opt for quirky accessories

Sometimes you can add character simply by playing around with the small details. In many homes, these are the features that are often overlooked.

Examples could include accessories like overhead light fittings, rugs, curtains, door handles and radiators. By choosing quirky stylings, you can make a statement with these small features. 

Display photographs and souvenirs

Photographs and souvenirs can be another way of adding character to your home. These items can tell a personal story about who you are.

There are lots of ways to display photos. You could get a photograph blown up on canvas or you could simply use cheap photo prints in frames or in a collage. As for souvenirs, these could be items from your travels or items from special moments in your life. You may be able to display these as ornaments on a shelf or hang them on a wall.


Show off your hobbies and interests

Showing off your hobbies and interests can also be a way of personalising your home and giving it more character. This could be anything from a love of music to a love of cats.

You may be able to show off certificates or trophies of achievements related to hobbies in your life. Alternatively, you may be able to show off collectibles and valuable items such as books, musical instruments or sports equipment. You may even be able to simply show your passions through ornaments and decorative items such as movie posters or cat statues. 

Grow some houseplants

Houseplants can literally be a way of bringing life into your home. Because not two plants look the same, they can be another way of bringing a unique touch to your home.

To really add character with houseplants try to consider unconventional a few plants. You can also play with colours and shapes and try to use these to match the decor.

Give your home a décor theme

What if your home could have a theme? This is a great way to give your home a unique identity throughout, although it can take a lot of commitment. 

You could choose to incorporate a certain colour scheme throughout your home or you could go for a certain decor style such as industrial or farmhouse. Whatever the case, try to put your own personal stamp on it.


Interior Design Disagreements Solved

Roy and I are pretty much on the same page about pretty much everything. After nearly fourteen years of marriage, we tend to share many of the same likes and dislikes. Right now, we are planning a new dining room and living room and there have been a few things we’ve disagreed on.

When I say a new living room and dining room I mean our two (good sized) rooms run together and while they are separate they share a carpet etc. We are having our utility room rebuilt at the end of April and after that is done and the mess is finished with we plan to re-carpet through the lounge/dining room, install vertical blinds in the bay window (for privacy and to manage sunlight) and buy a new (or new to us) suite. We are agreed on a three seater and a one seat/armchair.

What we disagreed on is how to revamp the room. I prefer to keep our neutral walls and insert colour and style by searching for pieces that work via example, a one stop shop for every room such as LionsHome. Roy wanted to think about a feature wall. Now, the problem was that we are looking at using grey, dark grey and light. I think grey on the walls or even just a feature wall will be too dark. Don’t you?

My idea, which Roy did come around to once we had a good browse online was to stay neutral, ditch any ideas of painting and papering and perhaps add a grey-striped carpet, grey curtains and then jazz the room up with some colourful cushions.

I’m thinking of something like this, maybe.  Photo credit

The last time we undertook a living room makeover it was significantly smaller (a different house) and we had a baby and a small boy. Now the small boy is heading for secondary school shortly and the baby is six (and a half) and so we feel we can be a bit more grown up with our choices. How their rooms look under the pile of toys and clothes is up to them.

The corner of my living room. As you can see I have high ceilings and a large room. The neutral wall colour has to stay.

While I’m not exactly fickle about my interior design choices, I do like to be able to switch things around and inject a new colour or theme without breaking the bank or having to repaint (I hate painting with a passion). For example, at the moment I have a gold, silver, wood and blue thing going on (warmer than you’d think) but like the idea of a mixture of greys, neutrals and a pop of colour. In eight or nine months I might be ready to ditch the grey altogether and so will be looking for home decorations in a new colour or set of colours.

So, while we originally disagreed on how to address the paint/don’t paint dilemma/disagreement I think being able to browse so many looks and home accessories online made it easier to visualise what we both wanted and how it would work.

Now, where to buy a two-room carpet without needing to sell a (Roy’s) kidney. I just need to convince him that striped over plain is the way to go…….