Local Shopping

Published on March 20th, 2016 | by Chris Butts


How to Step Up Your Home Decor this Spring

Whether your living space looks pretty much the same as it did when you first moved in, or if you’re in need of a change of scenery, this article should help guide you in creating a space for yourself that you can be in love with every time you go home. You deserve it. And if you live here in Oxford, there’s really no excuse not to have a well decorated space. Oxford has five antique stores, a Tuesday Morning, an incredible Goodwill, and much more.

If you are starting from scratch, or want to start from scratch, it can be helpful to find one thing to represent how you want a room to feel. It can be a piece of art or furniture, a lamp, IMG_9783a pillow, a rug, a stuffed animal, or really anything. Use it as the basis for what color scheme you want to bring into your home. Look through the things you already have, and see what all could help complement the aesthetic presence of this newfound centerpiece. If you don’t have many things to look through, than it’s time to go shopping. I understand being overwhelmed by the plethora of options that are available in several nearby antique malls and thrift stores. However, this dizziness you may get from all the booths and displays and price tags that come with home shopping can be overcome.IMG_9779

If you have a hard time deciding what to buy, it can be helpful to focus on specific things that you want to find to help give you direction. Visit Bea’s Antiques or the Mustard Seed and start collecting decorative items that fit within a specific genre or motif. This strategy is comparable to how your grandmother only decorates with crosses and s’rat girls only decorate with their sorority’s letters, except you can use things that make you happy, like turtles or things with sparkles.

A specific advantage to choosing one animal or motif to collect is that your friends will always know what to buy you when your birthday is coming up or when they’re souveniIMG_9773r shopping on their extravagant spring break trips. So you hit two birds with one stone. You know exactly what you’re looking for when you’re shopping for yourself, and other people associate you with cute giraffes or old French posters or anything that comes in rose gold, etc. They then buy you more presents because you’ve made yourself easier to shop for. Just make sure you don’t start collecting things that you’ll be tired of in a few months, although Goodwill will happily take your things back.

If you’re like me and already have way too many knickknacks with no where to put them, than you have a few options. Assuming the items themselves can’t be nailed to the wall or ceiling, they will need some raised surface to sit on. Find a shelf that works for your space. Corner shelves, book shelves, coffee tables, and two-tiered side tables are all great if you have the floor space for them. I IMG_9921found at least one or two of each of these shelves at The Depot the other day. If you are lacking in floor space, that’s why floating shelves exist. The Depot and other antique stores nearby have cool desk drawers that have been converted into floating shelves for sale around twenty dollars each. Now your walls are less boring, and you have a new venue to show off all your cool figurines and knickknacks.

On the subject of boring walls, one incredibly easy way to fill up blank wall space is to pick a handful of vinyl records with album covers that look nice together, buy record frames, and hang them up. Your walls immediately become more colorful and interesting. The only nearby place I know that record frames are available to buy are in the frame section of Walmart at the low price of $8 a frame. And if being in Walmart makes you sabutterflycoastersd, this can be balanced by a visit to End of All Music, where your hunt for exciting or pretty album art will certainly end.

Another important part of decorating is finding items that are both functional and that contribute to the vibe you want to maintain in your space. For example, find coasters that both help protect the wood on your coffee table and that make you happy every time you see them. Install a coat rack and hang your favorite scarves and jackets that fit within this IMG_9911room’s color scheme. Buy the perfect sized bowl for dropping your keys every time you walk in the door that has a picture of your favorite animal on it. Hanging mirrors on the wall also goes a long way in making a space feel more complete. Cotton Ball Antique Mall has great prices (around $40) on some really cool mirrors that are definitely worth checking out.

mirrorThe best part about decorating in spring is the ability to fill your house with plants and flowers. Bette’s Flowers in Oxford is the perfect stop to shop for flowers, candles, and three dimensional art pieces like birdhouses and vases. If you are in need of a day trip out of Oxford, Memphis has a few great antique shops as well. I recently visited Antique Warehouse Mall, and I was extremely impressed with both their inventory and prices. There are a couple other thrift shops and antique stores that, like Antique Warehouse Mall, are on Summer Street in Memphis. Beware, most of these shops in Memphis close around 5. Rip it Up! Vintage Junk in Water Valley also belongs at the top of your list of places to check out while growing your collection of knickknacks.

Last but not least, be mindful of the lighting in your space, as it is one of the single most important factors in creating a homey living space. I could personally go the rest of my life without overhead lighting, but if you have bad eyesight, or just happen to enjoy overhead lighting, that’s fine too. Either way, consider lighting up your space with lamps, candles, wax melters, lanterns, lava lamps, christmas lights, colorful light-up decor, etc. This is especially important if you like hosting late nights on Saturdays when the bars kick everyone out twenty minutes before midnight. The bright light fixtures that signify the closing of the aforementioned bars have no place at your after-party.

Winter is over (knock on wood). If you haven’t already, now is the time to put away anything pumpkin scented and transition to a more citrusy aromatic landscape. Sell or donate whatever is keeping your place from looking as good as it could, and pull out your hammer and nails and get creative. The Local Voice Ligature

About the Author

Chris Butts was an assistant at The Local Voice, and a senior at Ole Miss. He studied International Studies and French and studied abroad in Rennes, France. Chris is from Madison, Mississippi, and he is an avid hula hooper. His favorite things about Oxford are its Goodwill, antique shops, and the art crawl.

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