I’m also trying to better plan our space. Although this PMQ has been a gift from the heavens, looking back on a lot of things, it’s not the most coherent design. The spaces on their own are standout successes, but as a whole conceptually, it leaves something to the imagination. Oddly enough, the mistakes I made are things I have avoided for clients. Phew! Maybe I can’t see the forest for the trees, or more aptly the colour palette for the rainbow.
As I start planning our next house, here are 10 design mistakes I’ve made, and how I plan on fixing them. In our next PMQ I will:
- Be coherent with my use of colour
I’ll be making a colour palette based on the furniture we have, and expanding from there. I love bold colour used simply, but in some cases it has ended-up a bit haphazard. With all that I’ve learned since moving into this PMQ, I know what I’d do differently the next time around.
I’ll be creating a colour wheel from paint chips and fabric swatches, and bringing it around with me while I shop and plan.
2. Be consistent with stylistic choices
The bedroom’s style is different than the kitchen’s, which is different from the TV room, which is different from the siting room. I’d say this is more of a reflection of the fact that we’ve built our house room by room. When we moved into this PMQ I was doing most of the installation during the evenings and without much thought for how it would link with other parts of the house.
If I had been able to build and style our household at the same time things would look more coherent, but because life is life, that’s not the case. Before we move, I’ll be selling some of our existing pieces and buying some new ones in the hopes of streamlining some room designs.
3. Use more carpets
The hardwood floors in most PMQs have seen better days. Between the dog we have and the dogs that have lived here before, there is a fair share of claw marks and dents. Not to mention all the scuffs and scratches that come with life, and the pounds of kit being dragged around the place. I’m pretty sure if you drop a helmet on the hardwood it will dent it.
To fix this, I’ve used area rugs. In our current PMQ I’ve only got one though, not nearly enough in my opinion. In our next place I’ll be adding a couple more. I’m currently eyeing like EVERYTHING on Rugs USA.
4. Be more function-specific with the kitchen
The kitchen is where everything comes together, even if it’s only for a snack. PMQ kitchens are often an after-thought, described as “gross” and “small.” It’s no wonder most people just want to pretend it doesn’t exist.
I find a lot of PMQ kitchens are also misused as spaces. None of them are really big enough to fit a dining room table, so why try? I prefer to move things around and give each room one purpose to simplify.
Our next kitchen won’t have a bar table and an island, rather one big island for utility.
5. Create a pet-only space
We have a dog and two cats. Bruce’s (the dog) stuff is easy to keep organized in a bin (except for when he’s spreading his toys around the house) and the cats have two litter boxes and their food bowls.
Right now we keep the cats’ litter boxes and food bowls in the basement next to our storage shelves. Out of sight, out of mind, right? No.
There’s litter scattered everywhere (despite my best efforts to sweep and vacuum) and the cats are always wreaking havoc with DH’s man cave.
In our next place I’ll be keeping the cats’ space separate from DH’s for everyone’s sanity and privacy. You haven’t lived until you had a staring match with a cat who was peeing in his litter box, while you wait for a document to print. Intense!
6. Rent a storage locker
This is for purely practical reasons. We likely won’t get a garage and it looks like we’ll be stuck in a much smaller PMQ out in Gagetown. DH and I have decided that we don’t want to keep as much storage in our next place, so short of options we’ll be renting a storage locker for seasonal decor, seasonal tires and seasonal military kit. It will help alleviate the strain on our limited storage space, while keeping everything safe and sound.
Most storage lockers can be obtained for under 100$ a month and are usually temperature controlled to help protect valuables. I don’t know why I didn’t think of this before!
7. Edit my wall decor library
I need to learn to edit when it comes to wall decor. I promise there won’t be a gallery room on every wall in our next PMQ. I now have a massive collection of wall decor options and pieces, but not enough space.
I also have a lot of Dollarama frames which are starting to look and be cheap. Part of living on base means we get to experience all the training exercises in a unique way. When the rounds are landing and the walls are shaking, the last thing you need is 3 frames falling off the wall and shattering.
I’m going to be editing my collection and selling some items before we move. I want to start our next home with a more refined collection of wall decor choices and will be looking to Etsy, Rifle Paper co, and Minted.
8. Better dress the windows
The curtains we own have been purchased piecemeal over time – much like our decor – and don’t necessarily correspond to our style or needs anymore. At least I never bought chevron curtains! Chevron is out! out, people! no longer acceptable for every surface in your home.
In the next house I’ll be using a mix of curtains and blinds to achieve a more balanced lighting scheme in each room. Anyone want to buy some curtains?
9. Learn to let go of some pieces
Like most military families we haul our homes from posting to posting, sometimes without much thought given towards editing our home furnishings.
“It may not fit in this house but if might in the next!” I’ve used that line to justify many things in our four years, but as we move onto our next posting (which will take us to seven years), I’m starting to wonder if we might have too much. (yes, we do)
I’ll be editing our household furnishings in line with no 1 and 2, but also in relation to our evolving aesthetic and needs.
10. Invest in quality
I’m all about a bargain and making it fit in the budget, but I think the time has come to start spending more than two digits on some things.
Now I realize this is a luxury not everyone can get on board with, and we can’t really either, but if we set our sights on better quality we’ll eventually get the quality we deserve for the right price.
That being said, thrifting is still my go-to for all big furniture purchases.
What are 10 things you would do differently in your next home if you were moving in 2 months?