MANILA -- An interior decorator has shared tips on how to freshen up one's home during the pandemic, which has led to quarantines across the globe.
Speaking to members of the media during a virtual conference for Casa de Memoria's upcoming "Tercero" online auction, Ram Bucoy said an antique piece can instantly add character to a space.
Acknowledging that it's hard to go out and shop given the COVID-19 crisis, he said there are many fun and interesting home items available online.
"Just place [the antique] on a glass or wooden platform, and it's good to go," Bucoy said.
"Get whatever you can afford," he added, stressing that an antique need not be too expensive. "Work around that piece."
To those who are not into antiques or vintage items, Bucoy suggested giving walls a fresh coat of paint, saying this is an inexpensive way to give the home a new look.
"Wallpaper is very expensive, so never underestimate the power of paint. You don't have to break the bank while decorating. Paint is the easiest way to spruce up a space," he said.
Creating layers -- or using items of different sizes, colors, textures, and materials -- can also add a personal touch to the home, according to Bucoy, who discouraged copying the exact same designs in showrooms and magazines.
"Don't be afraid to layer. Layer is actually the best trick to making a space look cozy and livable," he said.
The interior decorator went on: "Don't make the space as if it's a showroom from a magazine or a department store... We don't want to live in a cold space. We want to live in a space that reflects the personality of the owner of the house."
"Just play with your space, don't be afraid," he said.
Casa de Memoria's "Tercero" auction will kick off at 2 p.m. on Saturday, September 26.
Bucoy, who served as the stylist for the auction, shared his top picks for the home.
These include a painting of Saint Anthony of Padua with Child Jesus (Lot 98), an Isabelino-style mirror (Lot 30), an oil on canvas portrait by Aldo Bahamonde (Lot 87), and a set of upholstered Castilian chairs (Lot 2).
"A lot of people are scared when decorating, that it's expensive... but that piece [you will buy] will last forever, and it's a conversation piece when visitors are around," Bucoy said.
Those on a "tight budget" can start their collection with prints by greats like Pablo Picasso, and these can be mixed with thrift shop or department store finds.
"Prints are not very expensive but are very good collectibles... Make it a base point when decorating," he said.
Part of the proceeds from "Tercero" will be donated to the Santa Ana Hospital in Manila for the construction and maintenance of an enhanced quarantine facility for medical frontliners and COVID-19 patients.
The rest of the items at the auction can be viewed here.