When you're building or renovating, you spend a lot of time thinking about how big your rooms are, how the kitchen is going to work, where the windows and doors will go. You might even become obsessed with choosing tiles, what lounge suite you'll buy for the living room and the right colour white for your walls (how can there be soooo many whites in the world). But something people often forget is what's going to go on the wall.

Don't end up with a beautiful new home with blank, lifeless walls. Consider art from the beginning. Art makes a house a home, adding personality and life to your home.

So, when you're building or renovating, take the time to think about where you might be able to display artworks, the best way to display it and even what type of artwork you like. Just don't make the mistake of choosing art to match that lounge suite (buying quality art, like buying a puppy is a rewarding, but long-term commitment).

Think about art as early as you can, this way you'll know how to integrate it into your home. Beyond making the physical space available with wall or shelf space, you'll need to consider lighting, the location of windows and even heating ducts.

The Thing You Might Forget When Planning Your New Home or Reno

Ways to consider art when building or renovating:

  • Avoid direct sunlight as this can damage your artwork
  • Don't place art directly above or below heating or cooling outlets (or radiators)
  • Do get the lighting right and consider placing spotlights over the areas you'd like to display art
  • For particularly heavy artworks, you might want double studs or additional studs or noggins in the wall to handle the load.

Affordable Art

Of course, a big barrier to buying art is the cost. That's why the Affordable Art Fair is such a boon. And it's coming to Melbourne! The Affordable Art Fair showcases artworks from artists from all over the world, and all the works are priced between $100-12,000 - perfect for the new collectors. The other thing we love about it is all the artworks are clearly labelled with the Artist's name, price and medium, so there's no awkward moments where you fall in love with a piece, then muster up the confidence to ask about the price and then have to act cool when it's waaaaaay out of your price range. They also run under $1000 tours to help you find the perfect piece, even on a tight budget.

The Thing You Might Forget When Planning Your New Home or Reno

Selecting the perfect piece of art

Of course, choosing art can be overwhelming, so we chatted to Stephanie Kelly, director of the Affordable Art Fair to get her tips for choosing the perfect piece of art for your home.

Stephanie's tip?

Start with something you love.

From there you can build a collection. As you start to build your collection you may begin to identify themes, so maybe you'll end up with lots of portraits. Or landscapes. Or mixed media pieces. Or even avant-garde pieces by young artists. This will help you to narrow your criteria to find more pieces to add to your collection and will feel cohesive in your home, even if they aren't all the same colour. You'll create a natural eclecticism which will truly represent your personal style.

So get along and see what you can find! The Affordable Art Fair is running from 5-8 September at the Royal Exhibition Building and if you get in quick, we have a limited number of free tickets for our readers! Click here to register or visit Affordable Art Fair for more information.