Friday, May 31, 2013

Creating a Relaxed and Welcoming Ambience in Our Homes

Hello sweet friend! Welcome to Natasha in Oz. I'm so glad you stopped by to visit me in my little corner of the world Down Under!

Today I am sharing some of my ideas on creating a relaxing and welcoming ambience in our homes.

According to thefreedictionary.com:

ambience, ambiance [ˈæmbɪəns (French) ɑ̃bjɑ̃s] n
the atmosphere of a place; the mood, special quality, or atmosphere of a place


relaxed [ri-lakst] adj.
Not rigorous or strict, free from strain or tension, easy and informal in manner.

Decorating, Home Decor

At the end of a busy day all I want to do is to relax in my home. I want to be able to easily find somewhere to put my feet up, sip a glass of wine or a cup of tea, ignore the world outside and just be free from any kinds of stress or tension. 

I want to come home to my ambient sanctuary!

Creating a Relaxed and Welcoming Ambience in Our Homes

I truly believe, as I know you do too, that our houses are not just bricks and mortar or timber and nails; our houses are our homes, places of refuge and places that are close to our hearts.

Decorating, Home Decor

The more love we put into our homes the more welcoming, relaxed and ambient they will feel. They can also positively influence behaviour, emotions, and overall mental health.

Decorating, Home Decor

So, here are some the ways that I put my stamp on our surroundings to not only showcase our collective taste but also create a relaxed and welcoming environment in every room of our home.

Decorating, Home Decor

First, I am not an expert so I definitely don't take decorating too seriously! For example, whenever I feel like changing a room around, I 'shop' the house, looking in cupboards and drawers for trinkets or tsotchkes that I put away years ago to then find new 'homes' for them.

Vintage Trios are all through our home!
Decorating, Home Decor

I have knickknacks all through our home that I have found in antique stores mixed with pieces inherited from parents, Great-Grandparents and friends. We also have new furniture, TVs, modern appliances and the usual assortment of iPods, iPod docks, computers and so on all through our house. This mixture allows me to blend styles from differing eras and make our home unique.

Mementos and tsotchkes from our holidays and travels on our coffee table
Decorating, Home Decor, Vignette, Coffee Table

Grey Modern French Provincial Kitchen, Decorating, Home Decor

Modern high back dining chairs together with an antique silky oak sideboard in the dining area;
mixing the old with the new!
Decorating, Home Decor

Decorating, Home Decor

The second way I decorate for relaxation and ambiance is by always 'softening' modern elements by adding color, interesting textural effects and decorative fabrics which in turn injects our unique personalities into our home.

Decorating, Home Decor, cushions

Decorating, Home Decor, cushion, French armchair

Decorating, Home Decor, Cushions

Masculine Vignette 
Masculine Vignette, Decorating, Home Decor

As a result of having so many pre-loved pieces in our home, nothing is too precious for little fingers so my next way of creating a relaxed and welcoming home is to make sure that Children feel welcome! Our homes should not only reflect the personalities of the owners but they should also reflect the personalities of everyone who lives there. Our families should feel welcome to put their feet on the sofa, help themselves to a book to flick through or even add some little details to the decorating themselves.

Kids and Teen magazines on the coffee table in the teen retreat
Decorating, Home Decor, Coffee Table

I always let my kids help me choose fabrics, cushions, paint colours and furniture. they have even been known to email me pictures of homes they think I might like or cut clippings from magazines if they think something might look good in our house.  So yes, our TV is on our antique Chinese sideboard but I wouldn't have it any other way!

Creating a Relaxed and Welcoming Ambience in Our Homes

The final thing that I always do to create a relaxed and welcoming home is light candles. I love candles and they are everywhere around our home. There is nothing more ambient than flickering candles at night.

Decorating, Home Decor, tealight candle

Creating a Relaxed and Welcoming Ambience in Our Homes

Not only are candles beautiful but research from the Smell & Taste Research Foundation in Chicago has showed that different scents can have all kinds of unexpected bonus effects. Aromatherapy may work by sending chemical messages to the part of the brain that affects moods and emotions. For example, if you feel a headache coming on, apple scented candles can apparently help reduce headache painsSusan Rosenthal, director of marketing at International Flavors and Fragrances, says that vanilla "evokes memories of home and hearth, warmth and cuddling."

Decorating, Home Decor, Jo Malone Candle

Decorating, Home Decor, Roses, Vignette

Re-purposing vintage Demitasse cups as tealight candle holders
Decorating, Home Decor, Tealights in Teacups

Decorating, Home Decor, Christmas, candles

There are obviously so many other ways to create a welcoming and relaxed home.  How do you make your home warm, relaxing and welcoming? Do you light candles? Perhaps you like to decorate with passed-down treasures as well! I would love to know what you do to create a welcoming home!

If you have shared any decorating ideas recently why not share them at this week's Say G'day Saturday Linky Party!

Say G'Day Saturday Linky Party

Before I go I just want to thank Sherry at The Charm of Home for having me at her Home Sweet Home linky party each week and for always joining me at my Linky Party! Thanks also to all the other lovely bloggers who host their linky parties each week!

Best wishes until next time,
Natasha In Oz 
Please join me each weekend for the Say G'day Saturday Linky Party!
You can also visit me at PINTEREST, TWITTER


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