This morning I read a brilliant blog post from Duck Egg about decorating a rented home. Duck Egg does lots of gorgeous, vintage-inspired pieces for the home, from animal silhouette fabrics and lampshades to herb pots and kitchen tables. The post included ideas such as getting long, bright curtains, propping up framed prints if you can't use nails on the walls, and brightening up the room with flowers or plants. It's well worth a read if you are renting but want to make some changes to feel like your home is really home.
I had a look through some photos from when I was living in a small flat that felt bereft of personality. I love colour so much, I found it truly depressing to live in a place that was all cream and brown. I didn't do that much, really, partly because I had barely any budget for decorating, but the little things I did - displayed flowers I'd grown or bought, kept a pot of seed-grown basil in the kitchen, made a table runner and tablecloth, baked cakes and served them along with tea in pretty cups and saucers, and put up some cotton bunting that my florist friend, Auriol, had made me - made a difference.
This all reminded me of an interview I read with Jonathan Harvey, the writer of the play and film Beautiful Thing. I can't find it, but I'm sure he said that even though the main family, Sandra and her teenage son, Jamie, lived on their own in a council flat in Thamesmead, Sandra would have made it look as nice as she could. If you watch the film (and I recommend you do - it's very nineties...which I like...but it's such a tender love story, it's my third favourite film), you'll see for yourself.