Five tips to make your (temporary) house feel more like homePersonal Updates 4 May 2021
In my own little house, I feel safe and at ease. It is cosy and comfortable and that makes it possible to relax, to recharge and to do the things that make me happy. But even though the feeling of ‘home’ is very important to me, I have lived in quite a few different houses over the past few years. It is not in line with my need for stability, but it is what it is. About two years ago, I found the homely feeling I was longing for, in my own little house from the 1930s. In which I also hoped to find stability.
The feeling of home and stability
On the one hand, that stability is there. I have a nice house, which doesn’t bring many worries, and I feel completely at ease there. The only problem is that I am not there as often as I would like to be. And sometimes I find that quite difficult. Because I love my house, the feeling of home and I miss it a lot when I’m not there.
At the beginning of February, I made the decision to stay in Ibiza for a longer period of time, to make having a long-distance relationship in times of corona a little easier. And in two months time, I did my best to make a number of temporary homes feel a bit more like home. This went with ups and downs. I had a few mental breakdowns because I missed my own home so much. But luckily I also managed to create a feeling of home here, just with a few little things. These are the five things I did that brought me the most.
5 things you can do to make a house feel more like home
If you want to make a house feel more like your own, it helps a lot to make it more personal. It will feel much more familiar if you look at pictures of your family and friends, rather than pictures or artwork that you don’t feel connected to. Before I left for Spain, I printed out pictures of fun moments with my family and friends and put them in my suitcase together with some magnets. When I arrived in my temporary studio, these pictures were soon hanging on the fridge. This way I could see the people I care about every day.
Display items from (your previous) home
What you can achieve with pictures, you can also achieve with personal items. If certain things have a story, I like to give them a nice spot. In my small house in Rotterdam, I have quite a few souvenirs that I have collected over the years. When I see them, I often think back to my travels and the memories that are connected with them. A while ago, my parents gave me a symbolic guardian angel, which they had bought for me during one of their holidays. And when you then suddenly start living 2,000 kilometres away, it is, despite the fact that it is all symbolic, a nice feeling to have these kinds of items with you.
Buy (well-known) products that make you happy
In my ideal world, supermarkets in Spain would have the same product range as the Dutch supermarkets Albert Heijn and Picnic, and vice versa. It is very annoying for me that I cannot buy the same products in Spain as in the Netherlands. Mainly because it affects the management of my blood glucose, but also because I can’t find many low-carb and animal-free products in the Spanish supermarket. The moment I see one of ‘my products’ in a supermarket, it makes me very happy. For example, I was delighted to find an aisle with a large selection of ‘my pasta’ in a Spanish supermarket. It can sometimes be a bit tricky to find ‘your products’, but when you do, it brings you a lot of joy.
Light some candles
What makes me feel most at home is warmth. And I am not talking about warmth in the form of temperature, although that also plays a role, but warmth in the broader sense of the word. The kind of warmth that gives you a sense of safety. Since last year, I have developed a slight addiction to candles. Every night I light about 10-12 of them. Most of them in the living room, and a few in my bedroom. It’s a pretty simple way to make a room feel warm, cosy and homely.
Have a bouquet of flowers
What is true for candles is also true for flowers. They are colourful, brighten up the place a bit and contribute to the feeling of home. For example, during one of my walks at the weekend, I made a beautiful bouquet from the flowers I found along the way. Afterwards, I could enjoy the flowers for weeks and think back to that nice weekend. These things, however small they may be, have helped me enormously to feel more and more at home.