Earlier this year I published six images on Instagram under the theme of “When I grow up”. Unlike a previous blog post of the same title where I reminisced about my childhood/teenage ambitions, these photos represent what I would like to have in my future home, someday.

Being surrounded by nature, particularly green plants, always make me feel happy and calm. Growing up in Singapore, my mum kept many potted palms and cacti in the balcony and along the corridor outside our HDB flat. Right now, we have just one 18-year-old ligustrum sinense, a much-loved bonsai that has travelled with us from Paris to Brussels and Hong Kong. I hope to add more miniature trees – a Japanese maple would be lovely, in the future.

I need to have space, both physical and mental, in my home. Which is why it’s important to have an open view and big windows to let in plenty of natural light. Plus, how will my future plants thrive if they are in the shadows all day long? Also, we have almost no decorative items around our apartment as I prefer to live in an uncluttered space. The only ‘decoration’, if it even counts, would be our walls of books.

These are just some of the basic and essential features of my ideal home. We have a longer checklist of must-haves (such as plain white walls, a spacious terrace, and a separate kitchen) and must-not-haves (chandeliers, patterned wallpaper, and tinted windows are major no-no’s). As we move from one place to another, this list gets more refined. And as I grow up, I get more picky and am less willing to spend good money on less-than-favourable living circumstances.

What are some of the must-haves or what do you value the most in your home?

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