Inspirations | 17 September 2014

Turning your house into a home

by Carlisle Homes

You’re so focussed on a home makeover or planning the styling for your new place that considering the difference between a house and a home hasn’t even occurred to you! You have become obsessed with cramming as much new stuff into your home to make sure you are the envy of all your friends and creating the picture perfect model house…sigh…

Right, let’s take a step back and separate the two to put things in perspective.

Think about it simplistically. A house consists of walls and a roof and ultimately protects you from the elements, it’s a physical entity. Whereas a home is the place you look forward to returning to at the end of a hard day. Your home is where your memories of family milestones and celebrations are made and cherished. It’s your signature and makes you feel like a nice warm hug when you come through the front door.


Indiana at Featherbrook Estate Point Cook

When Danielle Taylor, Carlisle Homes Interior Designer Manager, starts work on developing a new theme for a display home she actually creates a virtual family profile. A mind map begins with the family as the central theme with words, symbols and images describing everything about this family such as occupations, hobbies, favourite foods and movies, sports, pets, extended family, entertaining style, comfort pieces, photos, souvenirs and colours. From this map she plans the theme, bringing together all these characteristics unique to this family, starting with the areas of the home where they will share the majority of their time together. The result is themes that are both sophisticated and stylish but genuine and achievable with a focus on real living for everyday people.

So, why not use this same planning idea for your new home or makeover space? Don’t assume you know all this without taking the time to put it all down on paper, get the family involved – a great way to get everyone included and play an important part in the next phase of your life!

Okay, so, put aside your design magazines, Pinterest boards and celebrity Instagram albums and focus for a moment on ‘you and your family’. Here are 4 clever ideas from Danielle on how to successfully turn your house into a home, a sanctuary where you can feel safe, nurtured, warm and proud.

1. What does a home mean to you?

Ask yourself how do you want to feel when you come through the front door each day? What does a weekend at home involve? When the family says ‘we can’t wait to get home’, what are they dreaming of, what feelings are they visualising? All of these questions can start to set the tone for the theme to uniquely suit your family. Whether it be about colour schemes, furniture pieces, artwork or décor accessories.


The lounge in the Granada at Selandra Rise oozes lazy Sunday afternoons…

2. Favourite pieces

A new style doesn’t always mean ‘out with the old and in with the new’ and a budget to match! Take the time to identify what are the ‘keeper’ items from your current collection whether they are sentimental or just items you love! What works well with this is creating a photoboard of these pieces in a format you can have with you when out and about shopping for new items. Whether that be creating your own pins on a Pinterest board that you can access on your smart device, or via a traditional scrap book – as long as it is accessible. And be prepared that this collection may change as you ask yourself the tough question of keep or throw.


Signature pieces like this gold Romanesque statue in the living area of the Montpellier at Selandra Rise can really set the theme for a room…

3. Photos

Spend a day going through your photo collection. For some this means flicking through albums or computer generated photo books, or perhaps viewing on line. But for most of us it means sorting through your printed shots! Start a stash of photos of special moments and memories, times that felt great and have been important in you and your family’s journey. This activity will help to identify what is unique about your family but also a great opportunity to find some cherished photos to be used throughout your new home in various formats.

4. Family memories

Home really can be where the heart is. Everyone always remembers their family home where they grew up, cherishing small pieces of that life whether it be sitting around the kitchen table to share the family meal or playing under the sprinkler in summer. Okay, so maybe you’ve moved on from those postcard moments but a trip down memory lane can remind you of what made you feel happy and secure in those days and lead to new ideas for your family’s future memories.


Stunning alfresco in the Montpellier 51 at Selandra Rise perfect for creating those memorable family barbecues…

Now that you have taken the time to reflect on what making a home means to you, you will probably start to look at your designer scrapbooks differently and with a different critical eye. Planning a new home is a very exciting time but what will make the difference is being able to return at the end of each day and honestly say ‘there’s no place like home’…

View all of the Carlisle Homes design themes via our extensive image galleries and virtual tours and plan your display home tour of our 67 stunning homes. Register for our next Spectra Sneak Peak Evening and meet our interior designers to start your new home journey.

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