Titivate Your Home For Less Than £20
We are currently laying down plans to replace our horrid kitchen (it’s ugly, all the shelves have fallen out of the cupboards and we inexplicably have a huge fridge in the middle of the room). Sadly and inevitably this means cutting down on any house spending whilst we save for the building works, something I find depressing.
If you are anything like me you will have a never-ending list of things you want to buy for your home and it’s miserably frustrating to not be allowed to buy any of them. I think that the only way to keep your sanity during the dark, lean times is to spend small amounts of money here and there to give you both the satisfaction that comes with buying something, and the feeling of having made your home a little nicer. I find £20 is a good amount to spend as it’s more or less the same ‘treat’ money as you might spend on a posh lipstick, a decent bunch of hydrangea or a cab home after a tiring day.
Pretty packaging and herbs are a cheap way to make your kitchen nicer
The kitchen is perhaps the easiest place to show a bit of love for little money. Food in pretty packaging is both useful and impermanent and can add some much needed pattern and zing to these often clinical rooms. A colourful tin of Núñez de Prado Olive Oil from Brindisa in Borough Market (also at Whole Foods) costs £14.50 and will add a splice of Mediterranean cheer to your Corian. It's also refillable and so is comparable in value to buying one of those olive oil pouring bottles. Wild at Heart at Liberty sell wonderfully rustic terracotta herb pots which cost £10 and look fabulous lined up on your kitchen windowsill filled with £1 basil or mint plants from the Co-op.
My absolute favourite cheap treat is Daylesford's Rosemary Washing up Liquid. The packing is great, it's £2.95, smells divine and, unlike most ecological brands, is actually a really good washing up liquid. You can buy a year's worth for your £20. Their washing up brushes are rather lovely too.
Collecting slowly makes expensive items affordable
An ironed pile of our linen tea towels from Linen Works (£14 each) look abundant and chic on the kitchen surface. To buy a whole pile at once would be rather decadent so buy them one at a time, and before you know it you will have a decent stash and you can use a fresh one every day which definitely makes your kitchen feel like a nicer place to be.
Some of the best ways to titivate your home come from nature
Flowers have this way of making any room feel a more pleasurable place to be and are one of the best ways to bring a new season home. If you live in London, head to Columbia Road where you can buy an armful of flowers, a sausage bap and a cup of tea for your twenty pounds. Plus you have the satisfaction of having got up early on a Sunday morning and visited one of London's best attractions whilst everyone else is still in bed. They will also make your home smell delicious, as will a bag of pot pourri from Santa Maria Novella in Piccadilly Arcade, one of the most beautiful shops in London. I know, it's pot pourri, but it's a secret olfactory weapon used by many interior designers. It smells incredible, lasts for ages and at £18.95 a bag is much better value for money than an expensive scented candle.
Small accessories are great for cheap treats
A box of our Rifle Paper Co. drinks coasters (£14.95) will add some impermanent fun to a table. For less than £20 you can buy our salt dish and salt spoon and one of those tiny boxes of Maldon sea salt which together will make every meal feel a little more chic. At £3 each, True Grace candles (Heals or John Lewis) are an incredibly cheap way to add colour to your dining table and change the look of your room. Light your lovely new candles with our French matches which cost £1.90 a box. These matches look great on your mantelpiece and as silly as it may sound, they are a joy to use and make an everyday task feel a little more satisfying.