Diwali is practically here, and if you haven’t started working on your home yet, start now! Cleaning your home requires a lot of effort, and after that comes the tougher part – making your home pretty for Diwali. Most of us live in rental apartments where it is impossible to do anything to the walls and more often than not, it is outside our budget to get new furniture. So how do you glam up your small space on a budget before Diwali?
1. Get some plants
Source: House Design and Plants
Nothing adds glamour to a small space like plants. Interior experts call it ‘living colour’. Leafy plants like ferns add interesting textures to your room as well as clean the air. You can also get plants that bloom perennially to add a spot of colour. If you think you are not much of a plant person, add some succulents. Some of them also Flower, and in general, they are extremely low maintenance. If your living room does not get a lot of sunlight, pick out indoor plants that only need to be put out in the sun once or twice a week.
2. Don’t get artificial plants or flowers
Most design experts will tell you that artificial plants and flowers can look very tacky. The good ones are very expensive, and the cheaper ones have a very plastic-like feel to them that does nothing to add glamour to your rooms. Skip artificial flowers entirely, even if they are made of fabric and look real to you. Your guests will know instantly that they are fake.
3. Get some interesting fabrics
Everyone has a Diwali budget. Use yours to get some interesting furnishing. Scour the local markets in your city to look for unusual cushion covers and area rugs. You could invest in a pretty lace, jute or silk fabric and ask your tailor to turn it into a cushion cover. Buy area rugs that can lift how your sitting area looks. Buy curtains in rich fabrics and hang them high above the window frame to add a touch of class to your window treatment. You could also get a good table runner to instantly glam up your centre table. If you buy contrasting colours, use them sparingly to liven up the Decor.
4. Make a rangoli
A rangoli is beautiful all year! If you can manage some space on the floor, prettify it with a rangoli design. It doesn’t even have to be a traditional round design. You can buy stencils for rangoli online in different shapes, and the rectangular ones are quite interesting. These rangoli kits also come with colour and pens to fill in the stencils. Compliment your Diwali diyas with a pretty rangoli design for a very upscale look. Don’t buy stick-on rangoli though – like artificial flowers, they do nothing to add any glamour to your decor.
5. Use fairy lights
Source: About House Design
Everyone uses fairy lights on Diwali. Instead of just stringing them around your balcony, bring the lights indoor for some drama. Put them in pretty jars or hang them around windows and decor items in the room. An interesting idea is to have them hang behind slightly sheer curtains or in abstract patterns on the walls. You can hang them in place with mounting tape so you don’t even need to put nails on the landlord’s walls.
6. Decorate in groups
Put decor items in groups – three clear glass vases, three candles or even three votive candle holders in different sizes. Unless you have a signature decor item that is exclusive enough to be put out on its own, take inspiration from decor you see in magazines and put everything out in threes and fives.
7. Use traditional decor ideas
Source: Muse India
Traditional decor ideas from around the country can add an interesting look to your home. One of the most common things people do is adopt the Kerala style of putting water and floating flowers in a large metal pot. You can also use paint to create the floor designs that Bengalis use at the time of their Laxmi pujas, where they draw feet of the goddess. Or you can get interesting dolls and put them up like the Tamil golu. These ideas may be very traditional, but they can definitely be eye-catching details in your Diwali decor.
8. Use books
Source: Huffington Post
A lot of us have bookshelves near the sitting area. If you do too, pick and choose which ones you will have on display. Put away any dull, drab-looking jackets for this period. If you have a book that has a colourful blue and red jacket on the outside but a beautiful maroon or navy cover inside, remove the jacket for the span of Diwali. You can also use some fabric in jewel tones to cover books that are older and have covers that have seen some wear and tear. Don’t put a lot of books together. Group a few, break the monotony with a pretty candle and then group the rest. And please make sure to thoroughly clean the books and the shelves to get rid of all dust.
9. Use lots of fresh flowers
Source: My Amazing Things
In addition to using fresh plants around your house, you can also use fresh flowers to decorate your home this Diwali. Get strings of marigolds and use them on the walls vertically to add a statement background for all your Diwali photos. Use them around the entrance to your home for a luxurious feel. Bring out the brass utensils your mom used to keep for rituals and put a single marigold flower in the smaller ones. Group them with interesting candle holders and you have a very interesting little corner. Put fresh flowers in vases and keep them fresh for longer with DIY methods. You can also use flower petals instead of colour for your rangolis.
10. Keep it clean
Source: Public Storage
If there’s anything in your living room that you don’t need, put it away for Diwali. Your guests don’t need to see all the family photos you normally keep there. No one will probably watch any TV on Diwali so put away the remote. If there is a charger that you keep perpetually plugged in, remove it. Keep your Diwali interiors minimalistic and fuss-free. If you think the room can do without one accent chair, remove it and put it away in the bedroom. That way you will add more space and give the illusion of a bigger room. Don’t keep any clutter lying around.
11. Use different textures
Use metal decor items along with fresh flowers and interesting fabrics to add multiple layers of texture to your Diwali decor. Whether it is a vase or a pot that you can use in your decor, a brass or bronze item adds some instant glamour to your decor. Plus, when you add fresh flowers to these, you have a very traditional, yet, contemporary look and feel to your place. You can also use torans with metal pieces.
12. Paper lanterns
Source: My Decorative
Paper lanterns form traditional decor in many homes and if you have to use them too, use them around the house in clusters or as standalone pieces. A string of small lanterns across the ceiling can look prettier than one huge piece that distracts from the rest of your decor. Look for interesting shapes for these lanterns and string them up. If you are using a standalone piece, choose something that looks different from the traditional lanterns everyone would be hanging. If you can’t find any like that, hanging a traditional paper lantern on the balcony works too.
Feature image source: Aalayam