The word 'Art' is most commonly associated with pieces of work in a gallery or museum, whether it’s a painting from the Renaissance or a modern sculpture. However, there is so much more to art than what you see displayed in galleries.

The truth is, without being aware of it, we are surrounded by art and use it on a continual basis. Most people don’t realize how much of a role art plays in our lives and just how much we rely on art in all of its forms in our everyday lives.

The Joy of Art

You may be wondering why all of these things are so important to our daily lives and that you could probably survive just fine with essential items that were non-artistic. That is just the reason why art is so valuable! While art may not be vital to fulfill our basic needs, it does make life joyful. When you look at a painting or poster you’ve chosen to hang on your living room wall, you feel happy. The sculpture or figurines on the kitchen windowsill create a sense of joy. These varieties of art forms that we are surrounded by all come together to create the atmosphere that we want to live in.

Art and Music

The importance of art in our daily lives is very similar to that of music. Just like art, music can make life extremely joyful and can have a huge effect on our mood. In the workplace in particular, music is something that can help people set the mood for what they are about to do. If you have something hard or difficult to work on or are feeling tired, an energetic song will likely wake you up and add some enthusiasm to the situation. Similarly, when stress is high, many people find that relaxing to calming music is something that eases the mind.

Inspirational Art

Inspirational art, such as posters are often found in work spaces to encourage employees to continue being productive. There is now an increasing amount of companies using art in their offices, as well as playing background music, as it is proven to actually work in making end results far better quality. There may be a piece of art that you own that you personally find motivational. Perhaps a print with a positive affirmation or quote beautifully scrolled on it or a painting of a picturesque scene of where you aim to travel to one day.

SOME REASONS WHY ORIGINAL ART IN THE HOME IS AS IMPORTANT AS A BED

1. Creates Mood
2. Adds Personal Character to the Home
3. Makes Memories
4. Provides a Colour Palette
5. Makes a Room Feel Finished
6. Inspires and Fosters Creativity
7. Conversation Starter
8. Supports Artists
9. It is an Investment
10. Creates a Livable Environment
11. Keeps the Brain Active
12. Relaxation
13. Curating Your Own Gallery is Fun!

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Declutter Your Living Room in 4 Steps

"Hoarding is a pattern of behaviour that is characterised by excessive acquisition and an inability or unwillingness to discard large quantities of objects that cover the living areas of the home and cause significant distress or impairment". | Wikipedia

In many residences the living room is the most widely used room in the home, and unlike the kitchen or dining area, offers more surface area to treat as dumping ground by all members of the family. Overtime, our collection of items residing in the lounge tend to build up.

Causes of Clutter

One of the biggest, most unsightly contributors of mess are electrical wires, cables and extension cords. They are always there lurking in the background and for some reason we just seem to live with them!

Another one of the main culprits are reading materials. Books and magazines tend to get taken from their place on the bookshelf only to get thrown back haphazardly on a shelf.

Then there’s the paperwork, shoes, bags, games, toys, even CD’s and DVD’s that have somehow slowly multiplied to the point of no return. Until one day, with fresh eyes you realise you just can’t live with all this the ‘stuff’ anymore. This is a great turning...


Declutter Your Living Room in 4 Steps

"Hoarding is a pattern of behaviour that is characterised by excessive acquisition and an inability or unwillingness to discard large quantities of objects that cover the living areas of the home and cause significant distress or impairment". | Wikipedia

In many residences the living room is the most widely used room in the home, and unlike the kitchen or dining area, offers more surface area to treat as dumping ground by all members of the family. Overtime, our collection of items residing in the lounge tend to build up.

Causes of Clutter

One of the biggest, most unsightly contributors of mess are electrical wires, cables and extension cords. They are always there lurking in the background and for some reason we just seem to live with them!

Another one of the main culprits are reading materials. Books and magazines tend to get taken from their place on the bookshelf only to get thrown back haphazardly on a shelf.

Then there’s the paperwork, shoes, bags, games, toys, even CD’s and DVD’s that have somehow slowly multiplied to the point of no return. Until one day, with fresh eyes you realise you just can’t live with all this the ‘stuff’ anymore. This is a great turning point!

It happens all households; busy schedules take over and the promise to ‘keep tidy as you go’ isn’t always possible. However, keeping things neat doesn’t have to be so impossible.

This article looks at 4 simple ways to spruce up your lounge and clear the clutter – for good.

  • Step 1: Clear the Cables & Tame the Technology

  • Step 2 : Free the Floor (and Surfaces) of Clutter

  • Step 3: Address the Bookcase

  • Step 4: Delve into Drawers & Cupboards

Declutter Your Living Room  4

Step 1: Clear the Cables & Tame the Technology

Tackling spaghetti junction should be the top priority on the list. Having all those wires laying around can actually be dangerous for families with small children. Not to mention unsightly.

Now is the time to clear up the ugly mess of wires, cables, power adapters. It’s actually one of the easiest areas to combat and once done will provide the motivation and satisfaction to move onto the next step with ease. Combining your home entertainment set up and opting for a wifi based system is the answer.

One of the cleanest looking home theatre systems on the market today is available from Sonos. They have just launched a new product called the PLAYBASE which has a slim tabletop design that practically disappears underneath your TV. The PLAYBASE delivers awesome sound for whatever you are watching on TV, or movies, or you can use it as an audio only speaker. The Playbase gives you the opportunity to get rid of the two front speakers, and centre channel speaker, plus the box to drive it, and all of the wires and connecting mess that comes with it. With no more cables to worry about, you are already almost half way to combating the clutter!

Step 2: Free the Floor (and Surfaces) of Clutter

If it’s not a rug, item of furniture or decorative basket, it shouldn’t be on the ground. Scour the floor for bags, shoes, toys and banish them to the bedroom. If there are certain objects that do need to live in the lounge such as toys and games, the good news is there are clever ways to conceal these items.

Selecting smart items of furniture that can double as storage is the best way to maximise available space. Any of the following items make great storage solutions for the lounge:

  • Toy Box

  • Blanket Box

  • Storage Ottoman

  • Storage Coffee Table

  • Storage Baskets

  • Trays

Declutter Your Living Room  1

Is there a build-up of trinkets, remotes, papers floating across the coffee table? Put them in a pile and sort through what needs to be kept, what can be re-located and what can go. A tray or a trinket box can be used to contain remote controls and coasters anything else that requires easy access.

Declutter Your Living Room  8

Step 3: Address the Bookcase

Look at what’s currently displayed on it. Do you love it? Is it a pleasure to look at? If the answer is 'no' – read on.

Do you have knick knacks and miss matched souvenirs from the early 2000's still lurking around? Do you have a hundred books from uni / travel guides / novels you have already read – twice stashed on the shelves? If you answered ‘yes’ – read on.

At this stage, the most important question to ask is yourself: why have I kept these things? Do they really hold sentimental value? Can I live without them?

The key thing to remember is that those items you do hold dear don’t have to be displayed all at one, next to each other, all the time. Instead just a few can be selected and rotated every few months to keep things looking fresh and will allow you to take various trips down memory lane.

The others can be kept in storage baskets on your shelves. Trays, decorative boxes, baskets, and magazine holders all are perfect for housing the things you just can’t bare to part with.

Declutter Your Living Room  3

Step 4: Delve into Drawers & Cupboards

Take the time to review the contents of your T.V unit or side board or console drawers and cupboards as these are usually areas where random junk goes to die. A veritable mine field of bits and pieces such as papers, cables and chords, pens and gear and equipment. Once important or relevant but now forgotten. If it’s important file it, if it’s not toss it.

Below is a selection of our most popular and favourite living room storage solutions:

At the end of the day the main objective is to adapt your living room to suit your needs. This isn’t an area that needs be kept like a showroom that’s minimal and flawlessly clean. However, keeping tidy helps to clear the mind and improve well-being. Being organised and making small changes will help to break old habits. When you have space to be proud it motivates and creates feelings of happiness.

Follow these simple steps and you will have a relaxing, welcoming and clutter-free lounge in no time!

We hope you found this article helpful. If you are ready to start building your wishlist of products, then be sure and check out our Bookshelves and Wall Units range for a place to store everything.

For more ideas on home to declutter the rest of your home, visit our article Declutter Your Home - the Easy Way.


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Image Credits: Designmilk.com | countryliving.com | pinterest.com | Dominic Blackmore Ideal Home


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How to Arrange Art

  • "People have a tendency to hang art too high," says Linda Crisolo, Art.com director of merchandising. "The center of the image should be at eye level." In living rooms, people are usually sitting, so artwork should be lower. A good way to ensure you're placing artwork at the right height is to hang it one hand width above the sofa.
  • A common problem when hanging artwork above a sofa or sideboard is that it's not in scale. Having pieces that are too small or too large will make the whole arrangement look strange. "Make sure artwork is at least two-thirds the size of the sofa or sideboard," Crisolo says. "For example, a 9-foot-long sofa should have a 6-foot-wide expanse of art above it."
  • In the bedroom, choose personal art, such as family photographs or your own photography. If you're arranging the pieces in groupings, Crisolo recommends sticking with one color theme, either all black-and-white or all color photographs.
  • "Above a mantel or fireplace is the perfect place to layer pieces," Crisolo says. "A house looks like a home when you can see layers of artwork and accessories."
  • In the kitchen, hang art in a place where it won't get damaged by water or heat. Consider placing art above an office space, near the dining table, or above open counter space. Crisolo also recommends avoiding kitchen art in the kitchen. "I tend to shy away from pictures of asparagus in the kitchen," she says. "Vintage art with traditional frames works in a traditional kitchen. In a modern kitchen, try bright colors with stainless-steel frames."
  • A symmetrical arrangement creates a striking and simple focal point. All-white frames and mats unify this grouping. "I like to use the same frames to create homogeny," says Crisolo.
  • When deciding where to hang images in your home, consider the wall space available and the arrangement of the room. "Use small pieces between windows and doors," Crisolo says. "If small items are in a space too large, the pieces look lost. With larger pieces, allow room for people to step back and admire the work."
  • Artwork collaborates with other accessories and decor to create a visual story. Make sure images, moldings, and shelves all work together. "Hang artwork in front of a bookcase, on the face of the shelf," Crisolo says. "The shelves and ledges become part of a decorating story."
  • Make sure your arrangement matches your decorating style. "Symmetrical arrangements are more traditional or formal. Asymmetrical is modern," Crisolo says. "Also look at the image and style of the frame. For cottage-style rooms, stick with vintage images or botanicals. In modern rooms, choose large and abstract pieces."