I hope you all had a great Easter and didn’t indulge in too much chocolate! Over the weekend I spent some valuable time with family. My parents were dying to get their hands on Matylda, which gave me a little free time to kick back and relax with a book that has been on my reading list for a while. Home for Now, published by Cico Books, is the delightful new book by London-based interior stylist and writer Joanna Thornhill. As soon as I heard about this book I couldn’t wait to read it and I really started to ask myself why nobody had written this much-needed book before.
It is aimed at the generations of renters who cannot afford the colossal deposits required to secure their first step on the property ladder as well as the lucky souls who have been able to scrape together the deposit but then find themselves lacking the necessary funds to turn their property in the home they have always dreamed of. For those who find themselves in either of these situations it can be most disappointing not having free rein to put your own stamp on a home and inject some of your personality into it. With this in mind, and based on her own experience of having lived in 12 rental properties before embarking on a project to renovate her own home for now, Jo has put together this extensive volume aiming to illustrate how, with just a little imagination and creativity, it really is possible to overcome the limitations imposed by landlords or the lack of financial means and transform your dwelling into a home you are proud to live in.
The book is divided into five chapters, covering all areas of the home from living spaces, kitchens and dining, bedrooms and bathrooms, to creative work spaces and outside space. In each chapter, you will find a whole host of practical decorating, DIY and styling ideas that you can use and adapt for your own home for now. It is beautifully illustrated with photographs of the homes of numerous renters and first-time buyers who have had the courage and conviction to really transform their own homes through creativity and ingenuity. Through these examples, Jo tries to encourage those of us on the lower rungs of the property ladder to be more flexible in our approach to furnishing and embrace more of an eclectic look that can be added to and amended as and when funds become available. For each section of the book, Jo includes a make-your-own project idea that readers can try at home and a DIY project for those of us who are less phobic of picking up the tools. Projects include making a hanging plant pot holder, a decorative pin board, upcycled jewelry hooks, printed book page wallpaper and no sew chair upholstery.
I am so pleased that there is now a book like this out there for the renters and first time buyers amongst us. Having rented more than my fair share of places over the years (nine to be exact), I know all too well the difficulties of trying to make a house a home when faced with the restrictive rules of a tenancy agreement that doesn’t even allow you to hang pictures on the walls or change the curtains, let alone redecorate. Now being in the lucky position of owning my first home, I am really looking forward to the day when I can afford to do all the work that I already have planned out in my head. But having spent every last penny on the deposit, this is but a distant dream currently being filed in the “longterm plan” drawer.
However, reading Jo’s new book has filled me with inspiration and excitement as I realise that actually, there is plenty that you can do to your home to give it a personal touch that neither breaks the bank nor breaks the rules. All that is needed is a little ingenuity and imagination. And if you’re lacking either, you’re sure to find it inside the pages of Home for Now. If you’re currently renting or have bought your first home for now like me, then you seriously need to get your hands on this book. Now that Spring is finally here it’s a great time for planning a revamp and Home for Now is jam packed with great ideas for you to try out.