10 THINGS EVERY WOMAN NEEDS AT HOME
A PIECE WITH HISTORY
1. A PIECE WITH HISTORY
“It’s great when people have things from their grandparents, or something with a story about how they found it overseas and lugged it home,” says designer John Robshaw. “It adds a narrative, it’s fun, and it often shows a family connection—or a sense of adventure.”
“We’re living out of our bags now!” says interior designer Alessandra Branca. “So the question is how do you take your home with you?” The answer is pieces that fit in as well at home as they do on the road. Her top picks? Beautiful pochette to store cords, jewelry, and notebooks; a beloved candle with your signature scent; and a cashmere (preferably monogrammed) throw that can double as a shawl on a chilly flight.
3. Double Mirrors
“So you can see everything,” explains designer Jen Going. She’s referring to a pair of mirrors positioned so you can see your front and back when you get dressed in the morning. “A mirrored, paneled screen is great for this—it’s a piece of furniture that doesn’t take up a lot of room and also makes your room look bigger.”
4. A Custom, One-Of-A-Kind Piece
…Whether it’s art or furniture. “With art, I like to see that you’re looking all around and curating your world,” says Robshaw. When it comes to a piece of furniture, he thinks it’s a bold piece for the home that speaks volumes about the owner. “It says you’ve picked out the fabrics, the legs, the shape—it’s not easy!” But it shows that you’re decisive; you know what you want and how to make it happen.
5. THE RIGHT STORAGE
The often-overlooked pieces of a cultivated home? The right containers. For Branca that’s a bowl or dish next to the bed for jewelry and antique trays in the bathroom. “It’s a lovely thought to put your make-up away each morning but if you can limit it to just the things you need out, it will look so much better on a tray.”
6. ONE KITCHEN GADGET YOU LOVE AND USE…AND NO OTHERS
“Lose the clutter in the kitchen!” says Going. Instead, she recommends zeroing in on the countertop appliances you do use (for Going, the Cuisinart and toaster) and store the rest behind closed doors. No good will come out of leaving out a slow cooker you use twice a year.
8. A DESK/DRESSING TABLE
“The modern-day dressing table is a place where you can store your ipad as well as your grandmother’s bottle of perfume,” says Branca. “It’s a mix of both worlds—thanks to technology there’s no longer a need for a big old-fashioned desk and a similar dressing table. Now it’s simply a wonderful piece that holds everything.” Branca especially likes this piece placed on one side of the bed so you can sit down, stretch out, and write out thank-you notes (or to-do lists) before heading to sleep.
9. THE RIGHT BED PILLOWS
“Your bed should be a total oasis,” says Going, who is a big proponent of having the right variety of pillows to make sure it’s always at its more comfortable. “I love old-school, fabulous husband, or full-body pillows for when I’m working on my laptop in bed,” she says, “even better if they’re in fun, crazy fabrics.” The bottom line: whether your bed is just for sleeping, or occasionally finds its way into your work schedule, it’s important to have proper support and comfort.
10. FRESH GREENS
It sounds more like a health must-have rather than a decorating one but both Going and Branca agree that a beautiful home is one with plants and vegetables at the ready. “Don’t rely on someone else to bring you flowers—buy them!” says Going. “And they don’t have to be expensive, just pick them up at your local bodega or market and make sure to change the water daily.” Branca also recommends keeping fresh fruits and vegetables in a basket in the kitchen. “They must be real—not contrived and styled. Instead focus on things you love and eat, and put them out in a pleasing way.”