What I Plan to do Different in Our New Home

LAST UPDATED: Jan 03, 2021 | PUBLISHED: Jan 16, 2015 | By:


I loved our old home – it was simple & quaint, calm & cozy, but I never had the opportunity to completely decorate it. When we started discussing our move, I didn’t want to invest any additional time & money on decor that may or may not work for our new home & I’m thankful I didn’t. However, that left a little to be desired in some areas that hasn’t gone unnoticed. Today I’m sharing a few of my design tips – aka what I plan to do differently in our new home since I shared our full home tour earlier this week.


Layering takes time & money, but adds a lot of interest to a room. Just adding 2 additional pillows to Adalyn’s bed makes it feel more significant.

Layer your pillows to add interest

The same applies to blankets, sheets & an extra blanket – fold them back to reveal the layers so that they’re slightly staggered.

Design tip - layer pillows & blankets


Smaller frames & art naturally cost less, but in our new home I plan to keep art to scale – smaller frames will be repurposed by grouping them together in a way that makes them feel more proportionate & larger pieces will be added. I have great examples of this coming! I love groupings like this from A Country Farmhouse.

How to arrange art
A Country Farmhouse


It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle & bustle, but oh how I regret little things like not putting a fitted sheet on box springs – a $5 fix.

Design tip photo

Add More Plants

Adding something organic to a room brings it to life. While we lived in our Colonial, I had a 3 year old, 1 year old & newborn – the last thing I needed to do was to try to keep a plant alive, but soon I’ll be sharing some of my favorite easy-to-maintain houseplants – like water once every few weeks easy!

More Architectural Details

The neighborhood supports a little added investment & I plan to make it – with architectural details! It makes a home feel rich. Image via Phoebe Howard.

Phoebe Howard design - dresser
Phoebe Howard


I used brushed nickel lights in our kitchen because very few brass were available at the time, though I desperately wanted them. I wish I had shown a little patience {though difficult with dim, blue stained glass fixtures} & saved for what I really wanted! “If you make a compromise — selecting something cheaper than what you really like — it compromises you, because you are never really happy with the result.” —Rose Cumming

This pretty fixture has been on my wish list for over 3 years & I plan to add it to my office this spring!

basil flushmount

Now, what I’m proud of – some of my favorite design tips:

Invest in Lighting

Floors, ceiling, walls & lighting – that’s all that there is in a living room or bedroom when you remove furniture. For that reason, I’m willing to invest in beautiful, timeless fixtures. The chandelier in our dining room was original to the home. It was likely not a builder standard, but a thoughtful piece hand selected for the space.

the best neutral paint color

Best home investment

This brass & crystal chandelier was an incredible Craigslist find, proving you can get a high quality investment piece at an affordable price!

Blend Old & New

This is another simple concept to make your room feel interesting. Incorporate family heirlooms & things you love with store-bought pieces.

Midwest Living bedroom by Nine and Sixteen
Nine and Sixteen

A beautiful dresser takes the place of a traditional nightstand & is paired with a new upholstered headboard in Tessa of Nine and Sixteen‘s bedroom.

Never Purchase a Set

I mentioned this in my master bedroom post – I look forward to updating our master piece by piece. It’s too matchy-matchy. Select a few amazing pieces & blend old with new.

Choose a Paint Palette that Flows

Ensuring your paint colors transition well from one room to another gives your home a flow. See the neutral paint palette we used in the Colonial & our our Tudor paint colors.

Add Light

There are plenty of ways to add light beyond adding mirrors & fixtures – read a few of my favorite ideas!

Designing a room to fit your lifestyle | a sunroom breakfast area & office

Make an Old Home Feel Like New

I love the character of an old home, but that doesn’t mean that you don’t want to make it feel fresh! Get my tips to make an old home feel new.

A white light switch

Other design tips I love:

Find your Little Black Dress

How to Arrange Furniture

Martha’s Design Principles

*lead image via Decor Pad

What would you do different in your next home?