When moving into a new home you are more or less handed a blank slate – A lot of empty space that is just yearning for color, texture, shapes, personality. This new place gives you the opportunity to convey who you are through design. You may not see it this way, but I feel that decorating your personal space is an outward expression of your inner self through lines, colors, furniture, and art work. Think of it this way, home decor is like your wardrobe but much larger in scale, more expensive and for most, if you don’t like what your home is “wearing,” tough, you can’t simply change the outfit in a snap.
A few weeks ago, I moved into a new apartment, my first and I’m all on my own. I have free range to decorate how I want. So now, I’ve got this blank slate in front of me and I really do not want to screw it up – I want my place to scream who I am! I have all the furniture but the walls…well, they are still bare as a bone with no art displayed upon them.
The problem is, I do not want to, nor can I, spend a hefty chunk of change on artwork. I have concert posters (Lollapalooza, Pitchfork, Flatstock) that I plan to frame and hang but that’s not exactly doing it for me. I keep coming back to what I preach every day of the week – SHARPIE. I’m sure you’ve all seen the pictures of the “Sharpie basement” and all sorts of Sharpie wall art. YES! I do love these but also YES, my landlord would have fit if I attempted them. So what else can I do to bring in that unique, urban, DIY, Sharpie-esq element?
I think I’ve found it…
Several stores I’ve bought furniture from have a similar theme going on that I can only describe as a “paper-recession motif.” In other words, using paper, card stock, cardboard, etc… to build make inexpensive, yet tasteful art. While none of these stores necessarily have incorporated Sharpie, I do see an appropriate place for the markers & pens. Using Sharpie to add details and personalize the following examples would be a fun, easy and inexpensive way to make it your own. If these don’t necessarily fit your style, try taking the ideas and interpret them to fit your personality.
Here, pictures from magazines and books and pieces of card stock were cut out and hung with clothes pins on a long piece of twine to add some color to a pretty neutral corner . Another idea would be to hang actual post cards and greeting cards that you’ve either collected or bought for this purpose. On new cards use a Sharpie to write inspirational quotes, music lyrics, anything you’d like. Or keep a Sharpie and Polaroid camera nearby, next to bowl of clothes pins for when you have company. Take pictures with friends and family, write a little note and hang the pictures up.
Using corrugated strips of cardboard, this store built HUGE murals shaped into daisies. These pictures do not even do justice, this honestly was amazing and I stood in awe for a good five minutes. Imagine building these to fit your wall(s) and adding little touches with Sharpie markers - rain drops, lady bugs, veins on leaves, details on petals… Oh the possibilities.
Use patterned paper or gift wrap to cover old books and bring new light to a book shelf. Use the same paper in similar patterns and colors to make flowers (or in any shape for that matter) and hang in place of a framed picture.
Tear out pictures from magazines, books, newspapers, or trace new drawings with a Sharpie onto paper to make your own wallpaper collage. Don’t be afraid to overlap, we’re going for a sloppy, yet put-together feel here. Hanging plates as shown here, is a great way to pull everything together.
This wall was really interesting… Sheets upon sheets upon sheets of white paper were stacked to cover the entire wall. To add a pop of color, flowers were made using wired twine and rolled up colored pieces of paper. Add any details you want with Sharpie to achieve your unique vision.
It just goes to show how creative you can get using inexpensive materials, a creative eye and your own individual style to make unique pieces that will easily brighten up any room. I’ll send an update once my apartment is all set up to show you what I’ve done with the place.
What unique ways have you decorated your home, bedroom, locker, or office?
Try some of these things out and let me know how it goes!