I’m not a photographer. Frankly, my photos are pretty bad. And the stuff in my house is loved on, lived in and imperfect. Sadly, part of my job is taking photos of the stuff in my home and I need all the help I can get.

I have to take a ton of photos of my home so at times it can almost feel like a set, but also, we live here and living takes precedence over photos. Plus throw in the mix that I’m an imperfectionsits who values pretty and quick and over the years I’ve found some ways to live in my house that are a little different than your average person. They aren’t better, actually, they might be ‘worse’ than someone else, but, it makes living in a home that is slightly more photogenic for this non-photographer much more doable.

Get ready for some bad photos of windows, because taking photos of windows is my personal nightmare.

DSC_0259 no blinds no screens

1. I take the screens out of the windows

I love to have the windows open in the spring and fall. So I keep a few screens in the windows in the sides of our house and in the back door and most of our upstairs windows have screens. And in early spring I can open the screen-less windows without a threat of bugs anyway–although we have had a bird or two in the house. A small price to pay for the sparkly light we get when we go screen-less.

Downstairs, in the main rooms, all the screens are removed and stored away neatly in the garage. Do you know how dark screens are? Removing a screen can make a room brighter and also make the outdoors look more vivid from the inside. Plus, if a window in in the picture, not having a screen looks better. As soon as we move in a house I usually remove the screens on the front and back of the house. Even from the street the house looks instantly more crisp and clean. Feel free to send your non-anti-screen hate mail to:

breakfast areano blinds, no screens in my windows

2. I take the blinds completely out in rooms where I don’t use them

Remember, I’m a renter, so I’m not going to dish out a bunch of money to replace a bunch of blinds that aren’t my style. So one way to deal with blinds I neither like nor use is to remove them. Our breakfast area has seven windows and a door–all with blinds on them when we moved. Yes, the door had two inches of blinds sticking out and making noise every time you opened and closed it. I removed the blinds and the hardware, labeled them and wrapped them in trash bags and stored them in the attic. If you look closely, you can still see all the holes for the hardware, no need to fill them, if the next person who moves in want’s the blinds up it will be easy to pop them back in. This room on the back of the house with a pretty view was begging for those pesky blinds to be gone.


Downstairs I only have two windows out of 12 where I left the blinds up. One is my office because I work there at dark-thirty in the morning and I don’t want to be watched by the boogeyman who could be walking down my street while I’m in a lit up office on the front of our house at 5 am in the morning. The second window is one behind our sectional that looks out to our next door neighbor’s driveway. Our homes are really close in this neighborhood so it’s nice to be able to close that one blind down and not submit them to the underbelly of craziness that is us.

blindsblinds down in our room in the evening

We kept the blinds in our room, thankyouverymuch. I’m not telling everyone that removing blinds is the best solution, I’m simply saying that it should be included in a list of possible solutions. It’s worked for me. And really, this is one of those tips that look good for photos but even better in person. Send your non-anti-blind hate mail to:

tufted bed

Because our windows in our bedroom face east, in the morning you don’t even see our blinds in photos.

fireplace with and without woodcontrasting wood makes my firebox say ‘POW, look at me!’

3. I pay attention to our fireplace

I put nice looking wood in the fireplace from last winter burn to first fall burn. It’s sad enough to have a pretend, gas fireplace with tiny pretend looking logs, there’s no reason you can’t put wood in it when you are not using it, as long as you remember to remove it before you turn on the fireplace. I wanted contrasasting branches and I couldn’t find any white looking birch around my town so, I did the embarrassing thing and ordered birch branches on ebay {insert eye roll here}.

reflectionyuck, what’s with the big reflection in our firebox?!

Also, our gas fireplace came complete with a thick sheet of reflective glass put in place to block any heat that might try to transfer from the actual fire into the room. Because who would want that? I really have no idea why that glass is there, I googled it to death a few years ago, *decided it wouldn’t kill us to remove it, and it’s been packed away in the closet for three years. The only time I put it in is if it gets SUPER cold in the winter, I’ll pop it in at night (because it does seem to have a tiny flu and cold air comes out when it’s especially cold.) Send your non-anti-glass hate mail to: *Nesting Place not responsible for deaths if you remove your glass and die, you are on your own.

Your turn, I know you are crazy smart and have fabulous tweaks like this that have worked well for you. Share them in the comments!

This post has two parts, don’t forget to read  the next post: 3 Reasons my house looks worse in real life

house tips