Making Our House A Home

This post is sponsored by Alva

We’ve been busy during our shelter in place orders just loving on our home and creating a safe, cozy space for us to spend endless hours at home together. We’ve been here over a year but a new home never feels quite like “home” until you start making it yours.

Today I’m sharing three things anyone can to do to put their own personal stamp on a new to them home in an effort to bridge the gap between ‘we just moved in’ and ‘welcome to OUR home’! We’ve been doing a ton of these 3 things lately and considering the state the world is in right now, I’m so very grateful for this safe spot we’re creating for our family to hunker down in and finally (!) after a year of living here, this place is starting to feel more and more like home every day.


Nothing says welcome home like the smell of fresh paint in a color that you love. Plus it instantly makes the place feel cleaner too! Even most rentals will allow you to paint so long as you paint it back before you leave.


We recently framed up some handwritten love letters my paternal grandparents wrote back in forth to one another while my grandfather served in the Navy. We hung them in our dining room where we gather as a family each night over a meal and no piece of store-bought art could duplicate the sentiment and meaning these letters hold.


Hanging window treatments really completes a room. They ground a space while also drawing your eye upwards to make the room feel larger plus they provide privacy and temperature control when needed too. I think wherever you can add shades, drapes, or curtains you should because rooms without them often feel unfinished and empty – kinda how a lot of apartments feel a lot of the time.

We worked with Alva earlier this year to replace the roman shade in our living room. The big picture window overlooking our backyard is the main focal point of the room and the first thing you see soon as you enter through the front door. After giving all the walls a fresh coat of white paint earlier this year, the yellowed shade really called attention to itself even more now than it had before and that really wasn’t what I wanted guests to focus on when first entering our home so I kept the shade drawn most of the time to minimize it’s appearance as much as possible.

After living with the discolored shade for nearly a year and feeling like this room was always missing something, we ordered a flat roman shade from Alva in their Optic White Flax Linen fabric (which is delicately soft btw…) and the new shade blends into the surrounding white walls and doesn’t detract from the view outside – just what I was hoping for!

We had our shade lined with a light filtering backing which allows light to stream in but also provides us privacy when the shade is down at night. There’s nothing more uncomfortable than the feeling of living in a fish bowl!

When it came to installation, it was remarkably easy. We drilled 4 brackets into the window header and clicked the shade into place. That’s it!

With kids constantly running around it was important that we didn’t have any cords dangling for them to get wrapped up in or hanging down for them to reach and pull on so I was majorly impressed that Alva had more than one no-cord options: a continuous loop pull or a motorized option too!

We chose the continuous loop option because the motorized option requires an extra deep window depth for the motor hardware which we don’t have but I still love that the continuous loop tucks up close to the window frame and is safely secured in place by a clear clip which keeps it out of reach of grabby hands.

When the shade is drawn during the day it lets in the prettiest filtered light and at night we have the privacy we need.

But most days we keep it up so we can enjoy the backyard view. We paired our custom roman shade from Alva with some off-the-shelf curtains and suddenly the room feels full, lived in, and dare I say…almost complete?! We’re inching towards the finish line in here for sure!

These two are inseparable these days – where one goes, the other follows and I’m so glad they’ve had each other through all this.

I’m glad that the extra time at home has allowed us to make small incremental changes to our spaces and our living room especially has come a long way since we moved in a year ago. Every small step forward helps it feel more and more like home for us.

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