Make yourself at home

[su_dropcap style=”simple” size=”5″]I[/su_dropcap] don’t know about you, but I have a definite need to make myself at home where ever I stay for a period of time. In hotel rooms or holiday cottages, that involves very little – just a few personal items on the bed stand, a bed or sofa throw, and perhaps fresh flowers (depending on how long I’m staying). This is quite easy if you are into fairly minimalist flower arrangements… like these very simple miniature milk jugs with just a couple of small flower stems each (which are currently gracing the side board in our living room).

I worked for an international charity for the first 7 years of my professional/vocational life, staying in many places all over the world – but never longer than a few months at a time. Perhaps the need to feel at home has stayed with me from that period of my life…


It’s therefore not really surprising that DIY plays quite a part at our home. What is challenging about it, is that as a tenant in the UK you have nearly no rights to improve your home… For every nail you plan to put into the wall, you have to get permission from your landlord before proceeding. Knowing that we’d like to make our new flat a real home, M and I insisted on including a clause in our tenancy agreement that allows us to re-decorate (paint)! There are some things we don’t do ourselves as safety of course has to come first… and one such area is electrics. We live in an old Georgian building, and the wiring is.. well.. not as straight forward as you would think. While it might be a bit more expensive to call the qualified electrician, we’re very happy that we did. Here is our new guest room lamp, installed by our lovely local electrician (and bought in that special Swedish furniture store that currently feels like a second home…)

Here some of my current favourites:

Removable wallpaper ideas (and all other things removable). If you’re in the UK, you can also find them at Etsy.

Countertop improvement ideas. DC-Fix has a huge range of adhesive films in all kinds of designs. If you’re in UK, you can also get some of the DC-Fix range at B&Q.

Bicycle storage ideas: Pro Idee sells a bicycle rack that stores two bikes and holds up to 45kg (99lbs). It safely leans against the wall and has a rubber bumper that prevents scratching. It currently holds M’s bike and resides in our little laundry room.

We’ll share some of our before and after pictures soon – in the meantime, how do you make yourself feel at home in a new place? Do you have any DIY tips for renters/tenants? We’d love to hear from you (all 3 of our readers!).