There are plenty of blogs and books out there on homemaking: the management, decoration and use of a home. But most of these are geared toward wives and mothers. What about the single girls living in apartments, or even those who buy a house of their own? Homemaking is just as possible when you’re single! And as you cultivate the habits that make a home both welcoming and useful, you’ll be better prepared for a family down the road.
Here are some practical tips to get you started, whether you’re in a dorm room, apartment or your own house.
Start With What You Have
Don’t wait to have the “perfect” house to make it feel homey! If you do, you’ll not only miss out on the joys of a haven-like abode, but you won’t have the habits you’ll need once you get to your dream house. Simply start with what you have—no matter how humble!
Secondhand furniture, thrift-store decorations and dollar-store storage bins might not seem like much, but when arranged with care (and a decorator’s eye), they look far better than you might think. Even though I’m personally at a point where I could buy newer things, I still use my thrift-store furniture—it’s high quality and low cost!
For pieces you just can’t stand, consider repainting, buying a slipcover, recovering pillows, or selling a few things and using the proceeds to buy what you really want. Don’t be fooled that a pretty house must be expensive, because that’s simply not true.
Find Your Style
Pinterest makes this easy. For years, I pinned images of my dream kitchen and living room. I loved cottage-style décor with nautical themes, bright white kitchens and tones of blue. Though some of the places I lived in made this style impossible, I collected pieces I’d someday use once I had the chance. When my husband and I bought our house last year, I was able to use all those pieces in our new-to-us, 1940s cottage!
Finding your style saves you time and money. When you’re shopping for décor or furniture, you can turn down “deals” that you know don’t fit with your color palette and style. If you like a rustic, woodsy environment, a contemporary couch won’t fit with your vision. Consider reading more about home décor, interior decorating, colors and staging. These will all help you create a home that looks gorgeous without breaking the bank.
Create a Welcoming Atmosphere
A home is far more than décor, however. We’ve all been in beautiful houses that were devoid of spirit. That’s why a welcoming atmosphere is so important! My favorite ways to cultivate “welcome,” whether in my apartment or current home, are as follows:
- Burn candles or light a fire
- Supply a nice coat rack or hangers
- Brew coffee or tea
- Play soft music
- Arrange furniture for conversation more than TV
- Bake scones or muffins
When your friends walk into a home that smells like fresh scones and coffee, they know they’ve come to a place where they can relax! But being welcoming goes deeper yet—our attitudes speak loudest about our hospitality. Hospitality is more than entertaining; it’s selflessly letting our home be used to bless others. Sometimes this means they get messy or dirty in the process. But that’s the nature of love!
Fill Your Home With Love
Love is the foundational motive of good homemaking. No matter how well we cook, clean, decorate or entertain, if we don’t do it out of love—it’s useless! It took me a while to understand that hospitality is less about what’s on the table and more about who’s seated there. Rather than getting distracted by “Pinterest perfect,” invite your friends into the home you have. Make it beautiful within your means. Be creative with your skills and talents. Then let your home be the blessing that God has designed it to be!