More and more Brits are deciding to take a staycation this year rather than the traditional holiday overseas.
According to Green Flag, some 70% of us have opted to stay in the UK this summer, whether travelling around our island or actually holidaying at home. Not only is it a great way to save money – it also means you might uncover nearby attractions you've never been to before.
But if you're thinking of keeping things local this summer, why not improve the environment you'll be staying in? It might not be a five-star hotel yet, but by applying these 11 tricks to improve the look and feel of your home, you'll be well on your way to luxurious living. And all without breaking the bank…
1. Give your sofa serious style points
Switch up any tired-looking cushions on your sofa with more colourful or patterned alternatives.
Try adding texture for extra cool factor.
2. Remove net curtains
Avoid net curtains at all costs. While they do afford you a little privacy, they also look dated and reduce the amount of light in a room. Blinds can work as a more modern alternative where privacy is a must.
3. De-clutter and decorate windowsills
Windowsills and mantelpieces become cluttered very easily. Don't allow birthday cards to stay up for more than a week and create a system for post that doesn't involve dumping it on your windowsills. Instead, adorn these surfaces simply with one or two tasteful ornaments, to give a much classier feel to your home.
4. Create jam-jar candle holders
Reusing old objects is great – but do you really need the plethora of washed-up, empty jam jars most of us horde? Clear out all but the nicest of them and place a tea light in each of your favourite jars for a hipster-chic candle holder.
5. Use a memo holder spike for receipts
Receipts often clutter up surfaces and bags in the home. Throw out those that have gone out of date and use a memo holder spike to keep the rest in one place – just be careful not to stab the spike through the bar code on the receipt – if you take anything back the shop assistant will need to scan that.
6. Make your own terrarium
Terrariums are majorly in fashion at the moment, and you can get in on the trend without spending too much time or money. Fill an old gold fish bowl or a large rounded vase with soil and pretty rocks, then choose a few succulent plants or a cactus and plant them in the soil. Just remember – even cacti need watering sometimes!
7. Light up your life
It’s a well-known fact that good lighting can improve your mood. Lighten up dark corners of your home with lamps or invest in a ceiling light with multiple bulbs.
8. Create the illusion of space
Let’s be honest – most modern homes are a little cramped. Create the illusion of having more space by adding mirrors to any blank expanses of wall.
9. Experiment with scent
Tidy unnecessary books and papers off your coffee table and replace with a bowl of potpourri or a jar of fragrant oil with diffuser sticks. Engaging more of your senses in the here and now can create a feeling of contentment.
10. Try out whimsical fairy lights
Add a bit of magic to the bedroom by stringing fairy lights from the ceiling. They come in all sorts of designs, including sophisticated flower-lights and are available relatively cheaply on the high street.
11. De-stress with houseplants
Studies have shown that having plants indoors can help decrease stress levels, increase productivity and improve air quality. Place a basil plant in your kitchen and enjoy the benefits. You'll always have a fresh garnish for pasta dishes handy.
Do you have any tips for giving your home an instant makeover? Tell us in the comments box below