This world we live in is so chaotic. We go about our days in a flurry, from one task to the next, rarely stopping to smell the roses.
But when I’m at home, I want to enjoy the respite of my family and my surroundings. I want to step inside and wash the world away, in an environment that’s calm, serene, and well-appointed.
So goes my decorating mantra: My home is my sanctuary, and it should be somewhere that I and my family feel peaceful, comfortable, and inspired.
But in order to get my house to a place where I feel it’s serene and harmonious, I look for inspiration elsewhere. Somewhere I can take in someone else’s style and figure out how to weave pieces of it into my own home.
Lately, that place is Instagram.
This week, I’m introducing you to my friend Ashley Carpenter, an Instagram It-Girl I just adore, who’s sharing some simple and budget-friendly decorating tips on how we can turn our homes into our sanctuaries.
How I Met Ashley, and Her Intriguing Story
Sometimes in life – like between the hours of 8 and 10pm – you open Instagram and just…start…scrolling… In my case, I’m often looking for fashion, beauty, or decorating inspiration.
And sometimes you just randomly come upon an account that takes your breath away.
You want to take the time to look at every picture. You want to read the person’s bio. You want to see if she has a website or a blog, and you just want to find out more about her story. (Now repeat after me: I am not a stalker.) lol!
I was immediately drawn to Ashley’s Instagram account @joyfullygrowingblog the moment I saw it. Her feed is filled with hues of white, accents of wood, pops of greenery and nature, and her insanely adorable puppy.
Ashley and her husband recently moved across the country, and now reside in the mountains of Montana. She’s documenting her real life fixer upper on her Instagram, and her newly-launched website, Joyfully Growing Blog. And I can’t get enough!
There is something at once desirable and yet very authentic in Ashley’s decorating style. You’re automatically drawn to it as a place that feels like home. Her style is comfy. It’s lived in. It’s clean and airy and cozy all at the same time.
She loves mixing Mid-Century with Classic Farmhouse touches. But as Ashley says, “My personal preference will always be some version of rustic and bright whites – those are my favorite looks!”
Her home is a place you’d want to drop by for dinner or a bottle of wine by the fireplace. I think some of you might even want to move right in.
But just how does she make her house so homey? And how can we weave harmonious style into our own homes, for our own families, without breaking the bank?
Ashley’s Tips For Making Your Home Your Sanctuary
At LUXYMOM, I feel very strongly that luxury comes in many forms, and it’s more of a mindset than any monetary value. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to feel like you’re adding some luxury into your life. Ashley seems to have similar values, and I’m sharing five of her budget-friendly decorating tips below:
1. Be Generous With The White Paint:
“I have been in the process of pretty much painting all of our interior walls white. I like the blank back-drop it creates to showcase my decor and make it stand out.”
2. Mix It Up:
“Mixing bright whites and neutrals with warm woods and greenery is one of my favorite ways to make a space cozy without feeling too perfect. I like a space to be pretty but also look like someone actually lives there!”
3. Find Beauty In Classic Pieces:
“Don’t splurge on anything you don’t absolutely love! I have learned that lesson in the past when I thought there was an item I absolutely needed, only to grow tired of it after a month or so. Decor preferences are always changing, but trying to find items that are classic or less trendy that will stand the test of time are always a good choice.”
4. Get Thrifty:
“I make weekly stops at our local thrift stores and check Craigslist almost daily to get good deals on others’ unwanted items. Similarly, I am constantly selling items on Craigslist that I no longer use, to give myself extra spending money for decor items.”
5. Shop Clearance Sales:
“I ALWAYS browse the clearance racks anytime I am at any of my favorite stores like Target, Kohl’s, or World Market. I almost always find something to go home with me, and I love getting it for a discounted price.”
A HUGE thank you to Ashley for sharing her home and her decorating tips!
(Please note, all photos in this article are property of Ashley Carpenter and Joyfully Growing Blog, so please do not use or distribute them without her express permission.)