I think it takes a little more than organizing all your stuff in an apartment to make it feel like home. So if it’s not just your stuff, what’s the secret? What exactly is it that we define as the feeling of home?
I’m sure a lot of it comes down to nostalgia and our childhood, but certainly not all of it. However, I do think you can break down the feeling into sense-based categories:
Sight – What colors calm you? Is there a certain style you really identify with? Embrace that style and use colors that make you feel comfortable. Lighting is an integral part of mood and comfort too. I use a lot of ambient lighting which calms me when I walk into a room. Plants also make a room feel homey and they come with the added bonus of cleaning the air for you, too.
Sound – Does the gentle sound of a fan sound like home? What about music? My ideal room (and often my real room) has an old record playing, preferably something soft and romantic like Billie Holiday. To me, that’s comfort. Sound can have quite an impact on our feelings of stress or comfort and white noise and music both can help you feel at home.
Smell – What does your apartment smell like? Is it a smell that makes you happy or is it something that needs to be addressed? When you walk into your apartment, do you recognize an old familiar smell? I like opening the door and smelling coffee or even spices from a meal I’ve cooked. Some scents are not as identifiable- a combination of how we smell as people and the things we use every day. Try and identify what it is you like to smell when you walk in the door and accentuate it.
Touch – There’s nothing like walking barefoot on a soft rug. Texture plays an important role in comfort, too so don’t skip this aspect. Find some throw pillows that are cozy to lounge on or a blanket that’s extra soft to the touch.