Food & Home

Mood boards for the family home

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Moving house last year was possibly the most stressful thing I have ever done. With two children – one only 2 months old at the time – trying to pack, work and also plan for the new house was a hectic time to say the least!

We moved so that we had a little more living space for our girls and us, and as soon as we placed an offer on our forever home, I wanted to start planning how we would decorate the space to make it ours.

Moving house is expensive, so my budget was small and shopping around was essential. But to start collecting my ideas together I began mood boards for each room in the house. In basic terms this is collaborating your ideas into one space; be it online, writing and sticking pictures on a piece of paper or corkboard.

It’s a great way of remembering items that you have seen, and bookmarking them so you can return to view them. I scoured magazines and social media, followed small businesses, got plenty of paint testers and colour strips in… I even ordered fabric swatches for a new settee, even though I knew that would be one of the last things to buy due to it being a huge expense.

After ordering it at the beginning of the year (cancelling it and then reordering as my Mr ordered a sofa that would have blocked our window!), our sofa arrived almost a year to the day of us getting the keys. Because I had planned the colour scheme, it fitted in perfectly – which was a relief!

It’s also meant that I have saved money. I found my perfect paint in Farrow & Ball Ammonite, a gorgeous neutral/pale grey matt colour. But on our budget I struggled to part with £80 for a 5-litre tin, especially with two toddlers whose dinner sometimes ends up decorating the walls! For the shorter term, I needed something cheaper and hardwearing. After gathering many a paint chart for my physical mood board and purchasing numerous tester pots, I found what I wanted in the Dulux Heritage range in Chiltern White. Although it took a little time, it was half the price and contrasts with spaghetti hoops particularly well!

It has also inspired me to upcycle pieces. We were fortunate that the previous owners left us a large pine wardrobe for our toddler’s bedroom. It had been painted purple with a white wash but after seeing pictures of rooms accessorised with greys, pinks and peaches, I wanted something a little brighter. So I grabbed the sandpaper and painted it in chalk pink, which looks amazing against the grey star wallpaper of her room.

We are now one year into living in our space and I am still adding to these boards because I think decorating and personalising your home is an ever-evolving beast. I mainly use Pinterest as it’s a quick and easy way to save links, pictures and also to gain inspiration as they have so many boards that you can follow. I feel with this house I will never be fully done because I’m always finding new ideas and inspiration and that’s part of the fun!

Danielle Starkie
Mama to 2 girls, B and Liv. Figure skating and fitness coach with a love for baking, clothes and updating and designing our new home. Balancing mum-life with work-life and life-life!

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