Decorating with Wall Art

Wall Art is an essential part of decorating your house as it makes your space appear more chic and homely. Artwork is a great way to add interest to any room. You can also use the colours of a stunning painting to create a colour palette for your home.

Use landscape artwork for wide spaces, portrait paintings for small and narrow spaces, and square-shaped wall art for large, windowless spaces. 

Types of Wall Art

  • Canvas artwork 
  • Paintings in frames
  • Wallpaper prints
  • Vinyl wall decals
  • Collection of mirrors, sentimental items or plates.
  • Picture frames showcasing your own photos, postcards or prints. 
  • Your own decorative artwork painted on canvas. Just follow one of the easy step-by-step tutorials on Pinterest. 
  • Holiday photos printed onto canvas. This is an affordable way to create artwork for your walls.

Display Options

There are many ways of displaying artwork and frames in your home. 

  • Hang a large painting in the centre of the wall.
  • Group picture frames or artwork in a straight row. 
  • Create a gallery wall by hanging frames or collection items on different heights. 
  • Place a large artwork on the floor and lean it against the wall.
  • Display artwork or picture frames on a shelf or cabinet.
  • Create a focus wall by installing a wallpaper print onto a large, windowless wall.

Essential Tools for hanging Wall Art

  • Level
  • Pencil, Eraser & Ruler
  • Nails / Screws – depending on the weight of the painting
  • Drill machine
  • Hammer

When hanging artwork it should be in the centre of the wall space. I like to keep the height aligned with the top of the door frames. Wall art that gets a lot of direct light will eventually fade, especially canvasses, watercolour paintings and photo frames.

” Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life. ~ Picasso.”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Decorating with Colours

There are many ways to inject colour into your home, from painting walls and furniture to buying colourful home accessories and artwork.

The four main colour groups are:

  1. Warm colours – red, orange and yellow
  2. Cool colours – blue, green and purple
  3. Neutral colours – grey, white, black and beige
  4. Metallic colours – gold, silver and bronze

Use the 60-30-10 decor rule when creating a colour palette for your room. 60% of the room should be a dominant colour (walls, floor and curtains), 30% should be the secondary colour or texture (furniture and décor), and the last 10% should be an accent colour (accent wall, artwork, rug or décor).

Most interior spaces are designed in a neutral colour backdrop, i.e. walls and floors. For smaller spaces it’s best to stick with white walls, which will make a room appear bigger and more modern. Darker palettes make a space feel more cozy, but smaller.

It’s best to choose one colour scheme for your entire house instead of having different colour schemes for each room, which might leave your home looking like a circus. Either use one colour in different shades or a combination of colours that matches the colour palette of a theme, e.g. tropical theme (greens, pinks and gold) or beach theme (blues and red).

You can reduce one of the theme colours in certain rooms to make them appear slightly different, e.g. if you use the tropical theme you can eliminate pink in the bathroom. Or you can bring in additional colours with patterned pillows, e.g. tropical jungle pillows with colourful parrots in red, blue and yellow on a green background.


You can either paint a single focus wall or the entire room in a bright or soft colour. Another option is to cover a wall with patterned wallpaper. I prefer using cooler colours for walls like sage green or teal blue, as bright and warm colours can start to annoy you or other family members. Neutral colours like off-white and grey are a save option, as they form a neutral and calming backdrop which you can match with many different colours.

If you prefer a neutral theme for your walls, then go for large, colourful artwork on your walls. One large painting on the wall will create a wow-effect and is less busy than a collection of different artwork pieces or picture frames. 


Give new life to old furniture by painting them in a colour that matches your overall colour scheme. Painting furniture is especially useful if there isn’t budget for new furniture. You can find great bargains in second-hand shops. The trend is to recycle old things instead of buying new things all the time.

You can also bring in colour by investing in a colourful couch or coloured dining chairs, which will add a pop of colour to the room. Another effective way is to place a large, coloured rug on the floor. 

Home Accessories

An easy and cost-effective method for injecting colour into your home is through changing the colour of a few minor things in each room. You can change the entire appearance of your living room by adding a few colourful pillows, a throw and small decor pieces. Spruce up the kitchen with coloured bowls, tea towels and placemats. Place colourful towels and floor mats in the bathroom and add colour in your bedroom with new curtains, pillows and a bed throw.  

Arranging your items like books, toys and stationery according to colour is a big trend at the moment. Check out “Get Organised” on Netflix. Another alternative is to display colourful flowers, which will make the interior more homely and inviting to guests. 

“Live your life in full colour.”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Household Checklists

In order to be more organised, it’s essential to plan and use checklists, especially if you have a big family. There are various checklists available on Pinterest and in the App store, from meal planners and shopping lists, to chore and decluttering checklists. 

Meal Planner

Planning your meals will help to reduce the stress with thinking of what to cook each day. It also helps with preparing the weekly shopping list. A meal planner is useful when you follow a specific diet.

Shopping List 

You can reduce your food expenses by using a weekly shopping list. Going through the list will ensure that you won’t forget any important food items. Create your own personal digital shopping list.

Chore Checklists 

Assigning kids regular chores helps teach them responsibility. You can encourage them to do their chores by rewarding them at the end of the week. When you create a chore checklist for your family it should include the tasks and dates. Add colour to make it more fun for the kids.

Decluttering Checklists

A checklist will help you to strategically declutter your entire household. Ideally focus on one room or section at a time and finish that specific area before you move on to the next section. You can use the Organised Spaces Checklist below.

” Household tasks are easier and quicker when they are done together.”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Pet Care

Lots of studies have proven that owning a pet contributes to your overall wellbeing, especially when people live on their own. Cats and dogs will always love you unconditionally and stroking them has a very relaxing effect on us. To ensure that you choose the right dog for your personality, research the different breeds carefully.

Here is a good overview on how to take care of your pets.


  • Feeding your pets dry food helps them with their dental health and can help to avoid bad breath. Filling their food bowls with dry kibble saves you time compared to preparing raw food. It also encourages them to chew before they swallow, which improves their digestion.
  • It’s best to feed pets twice a day with 8 -12-hour intervals.
  • Pets who spend a lot of time outdoors need more food in the winter because keeping warm depletes their energy.
  • To ensure that your pet stays healthy for a long time, spend a bit more on quality pet food.
  • As a treat add gravy for pets over the kibbles once or twice a week. 
  • There are different types of kibbles for the various age groups. Senior pets should eat kibbles with fewer calories. 
  • If your pet is overweight, avoid giving any treats and ask your vet for a weight loss programme. He/she can recommend the best low-calorie kibbles. 
  • Mixing kibbles and wet food can cause weight gain.

Washing & Grooming

  • The fortunate thing with cats is that they don’t need to be bathed. Comb them regularly and trim their nails every ten days to two weeks.
  • Dogs should be washed every 4 – 6 weeks with a gentle shampoo. If you wash your dog more often, it might develop skin or coat problems.
    • Some dogs like Scottish Terriers need to go to a professional groomer to cut their hair.
    • Cut the nails every time you wash them.
    • Brush your dog every couple of days, no matter how long the coat is.
  • If your pet tends to get fleas, use a monthly flea treatment. 
  • When you feed your pets wet food, you should brush their teeth three times a week, to avoid tooth decay or gum disease. Tooth decay can also affect the overall health of your pet.
  • Dog dental chews help to keep teeth clean.


  • Invest in a good sleeping basket or pillow for your pet.
  • Ideally buy a pillow with a removable cover that is machine washable.
  • Depending on your cat’s sleeping preference, it might either like to sleep on a bed, large enough for it to stretch out or a pod that is small enough for it to comfortably curl up and feel secure.
  • Your dog’s bed should be slightly larger than the dog to accommodate different sleeping positions. 

Taking care of the poop

  • Depending on the size of your yard, pick up the dog poop daily or every second day.
  • Always take poop bags along when walking your dog.
  • Cat litter boxes should be scooped daily, and the box scrubbed every two weeks with a cleaner that is pet safe. Fill up with clumping clay litter regularly.

Medical Checkup

  • Just like us our pets should have a routine check-up every year to check their general health including diet, exercise, thirst and elimination patterns. 
  • Cats need to see the vet at least once a year for their vaccinations. Indoor cats only need core vaccines.
  • Take your pet to the vet if they show any of the following symptoms:
    • lack of appetite and extreme fatigue
    • repeated vomiting or vomiting blood
    • trouble breathing or unconsciousness
    • open wounds or difficulty in movement
    • abnormal bumps or lumps 
    • eyes that look different or discoloured
  • Dogs should be walked regularly, especially if you don’t have a garden. The amount of walks depends on the the dog’s breed, age, size and health.

“Pets have more love then and compassion in them than most humans. ~ Robert Wagner”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Tidying up your Car

Most of us would probably choose to drive a spotless car. Travelling in a tidy and clean car can easily be achieved if you don’t accumulate trash and wash your car regularly. If you have time and space, washing your own car will save you money, otherwise take it to a good car wash.

This week I want to share some tips for every day use on how to keep your car clean throughout the year.

  • Keep your car trash free. Remove tickets, receipts, old tissues and empty water bottles on a daily basis or at least once a week.
    • Dedicate an area in your car to keep the trash together, e.g. the door panel storage pocket on the driver’s side.
    • Use plastic bags to store trash during a road trip.
  • Only keep a limited amount of personal items stored in your car. 
  • Practical things to keep in your car and store in the centre console between the front seats are:
    • Cell phone charger
    • Pair of sunglasses
    • Tissues 
    • Notebook and pen 
  • Store loose change in a cup and keep it in the centre console.
  • Keep the car service book, a road map, wet wipes and a microfiber cloth in the cubbyhole.
    • It’s always good to keep a road map in your car in case you get lost and don’t have any phone reception. 
    • Wet wipes are handy for when you spill your coffee on the go by accident.
  • Invest in a universal smartphone holder to ensure hands-free driving.
  • Ideally, wash your car every second week and vacuum/clean the interior once a month, unless you travel with pets and dogs.
  • Use an air freshener to keep your car smelling fresh. 
  • Shake out mats regularly and wipe the interior clean with a microfiber cloth when you spot dust.
  • Always knock your shoes clean, especially when you have walked in mud or sand. 
  • Keep a small bag with some essential cleaning items in the trunk of your car. Essential cleaning items include:
    • A hand brush for dirty shoes and crumbs on the seats
    • Car interior cleaning wipes
    • Windshield cleaning tool
    • Ice scraper for car windows during winter
  • Ensure that your car maintenance and survival toolkit has all the important items such as:
    • First aid kit
    • Jack/axle stand
    • Socket wrench
    • Wrench and pliers set
    • Jumper cable
    • Reflective warning triangle 
    • Fire extinguisher

“Tidy car, tidy mind.”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Inside-Out Home Maintenance

Just like us, our property also needs a healthy dose of love and care. I have compiled two checklists with all the important points for the inside and outside upkeep. This will help you to ensure that your house is kept in perfect shape and maintain the value of the property.

The summer season is always the best time to plan any intensive repairs or renovations like repainting exterior walls or extending the patio. 

Checklist for Interior Maintenance

Monthly cleaning and maintenance tasks will help you to keep your place spotless and functioning seamlessly. Repainting is the quickest and cheapest way to update a room, next to decluttering and clever storage.

  • Walls
    • Check walls for cracks, holes and stains. 
    • Fix cracks and holes with a filler and sand it off. Touch up with paint or repaint the entire wall.
    • Is it time to repaint a room or the entire inside of your house? 
    • Do the skirtings, cornices and doorframes require repainting?
  • Doors & Windows
    • Check that all windows and doors close easily and that the locks are working.
    • Power-wash windows, glass doors and frames to get them properly cleaned after winter.
    • Check out my post on Cleaning Windows.
  • Bathroom & Kitchen
    • Ensure all taps are sturdy.
    • Look for leaks around sinks and toilets.
    • Replace old grout and silicone. 
  • Lights 
    • Check that all light bulbs are working and replace bulbs if needed.
    • Wipe off light fixtures with a wet cloth.
    • Use warm LED lights to create a cosy atmosphere.
    • Dimmer switches are ideal for the main bedroom and lounge. 
  • Cords & electrical
    • Replace any cords and outlets that have exposed wiring.
    • Keep your extension and power cords under control by investing in cable organisers to eliminate cord mess.
    • Do not substitute extension cords for permanent wiring, as they will deteriorate over time and can cause an electric shock or a fire hazard.
    • Check that all electrical sockets and switches are working. Call an electrician to fix any problems.
  • Other
    • Test smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
    • Check the gauge on your fire extinguisher to ensure that it’s still correctly pressurized. 
    • Sand and varnish old and worn wooden floors.
    • Clean carpets yourself or professionally.
    • Take curtains to the dry cleaners.

Checklist for Exterior Maintenance

The first two things anyone will notice about the exterior of your home is the condition of the paintwork and garden. Flaky paint on window frames and patchy walls are an eyesore, just as much as an overgrown garden with long grass and weeds everywhere. Is it time for you to repaint the roof or exterior walls? A fresh coat of paint will give your house a whole new look and increase your property value.

  • Paintwork
    • You should paint the exterior every five to ten years, depending on the climate.
    • It’s not wise to go for a bargain when it comes to choosing exterior paint. Get a premium exterior paint which is durable and resistant to cracking.
    • Wooden window frames: For the exterior, choose a gloss exterior paint, either oil or acrylic based. The interior window frames should be painted with a high-quality latex gloss paint.
    • Front door: Choose a gloss or semi-gloss finish for front doors. Not only does it look better but is also easier to clean.
    • Roof: Use a premium roof tile paint or an acrylic roof paint with a waterproofing property for flat roofs.
  • Gutters 
    • Clean gutters twice a year to avoid them getting clogged with leaves and other debris.
    • Ideally use a pressure washer gutter cleaner which will remove all debris out of the gutter through the force of the water pressure.
    • If they are not thoroughly clogged, you can also clean them with a garden hose.
    • Clean clogged gutters with a stiff wire to loosen up the clog and remove debris with a garden trowel.
    • You can clean the outside of the gutters with water and white vinegar, which won’t affect the aluminium.
    • If you have painted gutters check if they require repainting. 
  • Garden
    • Spring is the time to plant new plants and trees, fertilise the lawn and existing plants as well as pruning dead and diseased branches.
    • Regularly remove weeds and dead leaves.
    • Keep an eye on your bugs. 
    • In autumn clean up your garden by removing fallen leaves and weeds, as well as clearing dead plants and shrubs. 
    • Plant spring bulb plants like tulips in autumn. 
    • In winter cover all plants that are not frost resistant, especially if you have a balcony garden. 
  • Other
    • Inspect the roof for leaks and any loose or damaged tiles.
    • Paint wooden mailboxes with durable waterproof paint.
    • Check if electric gates and garage doors are still functioning well.
    • Clean and repair the paving and patio, as well as all outdoor furniture.
    • Fix any problems with the pool.
    • Check that your security alarm fixtures and sensors are still working.

“Your home tells a story of who you are.”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Organising your Garden Tools

Sitting on your patio or balcony and appreciating the plants around you is a very pleasant and relaxing thing to do. But keeping plants healthy and organising your garden tools, can be a hassle. Usually, they just get dumped in a corner of the garage or a bucket without much thought about storing them properly.

I have compiled a list for essential gardening tools which you can use when you are organising your garden items.

Balcony Gardens

They can range from a few railing baskets to multiple pots and vertical gardens covering the wall. When you have a narrow space, hanging pots and baskets are key. Ensure that you buy the right plants for your balcony by checking how much sun your balcony gets. Plants in pots require more care than those in gardens. Feed pot plants weekly from spring until autumn.

Essential tools include:

  • gardening gloves 
  • hand trowel and fork
  • garden scissors
  • watering can
  • twine
  • liquid fertiliser
  • potting soil

Outside Gardens

Depending on the size of your garden you will either tend to your garden yourself or use a professional garden service. Working in the garden gives you a good workout and is also very satisfying, especially if garden tools are in the right place and easy to grab. The basic rules for gardening are to follow the sun, choose the right plants, use quality soil and water wisely. Most trees and shrubs should be fertilised beginning of spring when the growing season starts.

In addition to the above list of items, gardens typically require the following tools:

  • hose pipe and nozzles
  • pruning shears
  • shovel, rake and outdoor broom
  • lawn mower 
  • wheelbarrow
  • mulch to cover the soil and keep moisture in
  • compost for the lawn

Organising your garden tools

  • Check if all your tools are still in good working order and purchase new ones if needed.
  • Separate small items from large ones.
  • Store smaller garden tools in a storage box or a large bucket.
  • Install a wall-mounted tool organiser in your garage for hanging large tools.
  • Wrap your garden hose around a hose hanger ideally with a storage compartment to store hose nozzles. 
  • Backyard sheds are great for storing large tools in one place.
  • Seating benches with storage space underneath are ideal for balconies.
  • Always clean garden tools with water after use to keep them intact.

” He/she who plants a garden, plants happiness .”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Tidying up Hardware Tools and Supplies

Most of us have a toolbox with the basic hardware tools for fixing household repairs. Toolboxes are ideal for storing the essential hardware items and can easily be carried around the house. Those who enjoy DIY projects such as woodwork probably have a proper workspace in the garage or basement. If you are still dreaming about, now is the time to put that dream into action. It doesn’t cost much and is fairly easy to create.

Essential Hardware Items

  • set of screw drivers and pliers in different sizes
  • set of nails and screws
  • claw hammer for removing nails
  • adjustable crescent wrench to tighten a nut or bolt
  • utility knife and blades
  • tape measure
  • level
  • saw to cut through wood or metal
  • electrical and duct tape
  • silicone sealant
  • wood adhesive
  • electric drill and drill bits

Organising your Toolbox

  • Take out all the things and sort them into groups, e.g. nails, screwdrivers and wrenches. 
  • Determine the need for each item and discard all broken and unwanted pieces, e.g. old keys that don’t fit in any door locks.
  • Only keep items which belong in the toolbox and return other items to their proper place, e.g. travel locks should be kept with travelling items.
  • Clean the toolbox before placing everything back in categories.
  • Keep smaller items in the top compartment tray.
  • Place bigger hardware tools at the bottom of the box.
  • Store the toolbox in the garage or the utility cupboard in your house.
Available at Amazon

Creating a Workspace

  • Invest in a tall workbench or countertop for DIY projects. 
  • A large pegboard is ideal for hanging big hand tools. 
  • Use a drawer storage system for smaller tools to protect them from dust.
  • Go through all your items and discard all broken and unwanted pieces. 
  • Arrange items neatly in categories and store them in transparent boxes or glass jars.
  • Good lighting is very important for your workspace.
Available at Ikea

Storing Household Maintenance Items

Includes paint supplies, ropes, bulbs, cables, batteries and felt pads for furniture.

  • Store each group in a clear plastic box with a lid.
  • If you can fit 2 groups in one box, use a cardboard to separate them.
  • Roll up electrical cords neatly and store together with plugs.
  • Stack paint jars on top of each other and store all paint-related items like brushes and paint cleaner together in a box.
    • Paint will separate or gel over time. Extreme temperatures can also spoil paint, even unopened cans.
  • Use a utility storage unit in the garage to store items vertically on shelves. Check out my blog post on decluttering your garage.
Available at Ikea

” Good order is the foundation of all things. – Edmund Burke”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Decluttering your Garage

Items which usually get stored in the garage includes Christmas decor, sports and hobby items, seasonal things (heaters or outdoor umbrellas), gardening items, hardware tools and much more. I will discuss tidying up hardware tools and maintenance items separately next week.

Garages tend to be spaces where we dump things which we find hard to get rid of. From the furniture which we inherited and boxes with books to the old kids’ toys and broken appliances. For a serious attempt to declutter your space, have a zero-tolerance for keeping anything that has no use or benefit. I find it sad to keep valuable things stored away where no one can see them. Rather sell them or give them to a friend or family member who can use it and appreciate it.   


  • Start on one side of the room and remove every item.
  • Create 3 groups in the centre of the room – one for storing, another for donating and the third for throwing away.
  • Only store items which you are using throughout the year. 
  • Get rid of the following items:
    • Old baby décor and kids toys, unless you are planning to have another child.
    • Sports and hobby items which you haven’t used in years. Chances are you never will once you have stopped for several years.
    • Old décor and furniture. As we grow older our style changes. Only keep an item if you can give it a new look with a fresh coat of paint or new upholstery.
    • Used appliances that don’t function well and are kept as a spare item.
    • Limit your Christmas décor collection.
    • Old study books. It’s very unlikely that you will use them again. With the internet, we can search for the most up to date information.
  • Be very tough and don’t create a “maybe group” – maybe I can still use it when I get a beach house or maybe I will go diving again one day.
  • If you keep most of your “useless” things you won’t be able to reduce clutter and free up space. 

Organised storage

  • Invest in wooden or metal utility shelving units so you can store items vertically and make the most of the space you have available.
    • The shelf depth should ideally be 30cm.
    • Place the units along the sidewalls of the garage, so you have enough room to walk alongside your car. 
  • With a shelving system, it’s easy to pull out a box compared to having boxes stacked on top of each other. 
  • Store heavier and larger things at the bottom. Place containers in the middle and top section.
  • Group items per category.
  • Use clear plastic storage boxes to store items so you can see what is inside.
  • Place smaller items in small boxes. 
  • Hook and hang bigger items like bikes.
  • Leave enough space for a pegboard and worktop counter if you are an avid DIYer.
  • Tip: you can also use your old kitchen cabinets for storage if you have enough space. This way you will be able to store items behind closed doors.

” Decluttering is about removing the things we don’t want .”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme

Tidying up your Sentimental Items

This includes all precious items like cards, clippings, journals, childhood memorabilia, kids art and figurines. Organising Photos and Albums are also part of sentimental items, which I have already covered in week 12. 

Some of us are more sentimental and tend to hold on to things from our past. You might sit with boxes of items in the attic or cupboards filled with things, which you haven’t touched in years. Letting go of sentimental items is tough. 

I hope I can inspire you to open up your boxes and clear out any cluttered spaces. You will feel like you have achieved a big accomplishment after this challenging and time-consuming process. And you will have gained more space, which might be the initial reason for the decluttering. 

You shouldn’t ever feel guilty for wanting to keep anything precious, even the most accomplished professional organisers have things that they hang onto. With time it gets easier to declutter. 

Organising sentimental items

  • Collect everything from your storage and cupboards that has a sentimental meaning.
  • Organise items into groups. 
  • There will be the obvious old items which you have forgotten about and no longer find beautiful. Remove them first.
  • Try to reduce items which you still adore by choosing the best 3 or the most recent items of each group, e.g. cards from your parent, diaries, love letters, etc.
  • If you have a collection of items which belong together, try to find a way to display them.
  • When you struggle to discard an item ask yourself if it is something that you want to take into the future with you. 
  • If you can still not throw something away, then keep it with confidence.
  • At any stage when you feel too overwhelmed, take a break. Go easy on yourself.
  • You can sell unwanted ornaments and other old household items in a yard sale.
  • Tip: take photos of all the special items before you discard them, to keep the memories alive.

Various ways of displaying your memories

  • Create a scrapbook with your favourite photos and other memories of your childhood or travels, e.g. cards and ticket stubs. 
  • Create a treasure box: 
    • Store precious items in a beautiful box, which you can either buy or make from scratch. 
    • Keep accessories or trinkets in smaller boxes.
    • Place letters and cards upright.
    • Display the box in a prominent place where you can look at it, like on a shelf in your living room.
  • Create a picture board or a group of picture frames with your favourite memories, which you can hang up.
  • Create a memory wall and hang up your favourite sentimental items.
  • Display figurines and ornaments in a display-cupboard or on shelves where you can enjoy looking at them.

“Our memories are not in our things, our memories are inside of us.”

Follow my 52 Week Organise your Life Programme