Aka faffing “ is the act of moving furniture around in an almost compulsive way to create new interior room schemes, often and usually at no financial cost”. 

Obviously this is an entirely invented term but I don’t think a condition that’s unique to me. I’ve just given it a word. We “housey” people love having a little move around of our belongings – and Instagram feeds the imagination with all those creative shelfies and time-lapse reorganising videos to inspire us. And for me, this is the stuff of dreams. I love seeing transformations on a big and small scale. And I find it reassuring and amusing that so many people out there have “furnituritis”.

Mine started young. I loved trying different looks in my bedroom, and when I was strong enough, I’d take it a step further and swap bedrooms with siblings when everyone was out, shifting beds and wardrobes around. Not always a popular move with my family (!) but I took real pleasure in the new looks and just enjoyed a change. I didn’t have any money for this style up; l’d just add things that we had around my parents’ home to give the room a new look. 

The aim of  “furnituritis’ – even when you are a grown up with an income – is to achieve a different look on no budget. I still “shop” around my own home to find bits that can be repurposed and restyled to freshen up a space. Invariably I’ll take everything out of a room and fill it with completely different things, and usually I’ll move it all alone, because, importantly, there needs to be a “ta-da” moment, which is why it is often a solitary exercise so to achieve that sense of surprise and wonderment from those around you. 

My sitting room - one room, 5 different looks

My husband and children are becoming increasingly unimpressed by overnight room changes but thankfully there’s Instagram on hand to send clap and high five emojis to support my efforts. Here I’ve found my tribe – a gang of like minded folk showing mutual appreciation for the ‘before and after’ shot. Instagram feeds the disease but I don’t think that’s a bad thing. 

It’s free fun having a play in one’s own home. Admittedly it’s tough on the back and a little inconvenient when the urge strikes at midnight, but it’s a healthy outlet for creative types and perfect entertainment in recent lockdown conditions. Even adults learn through play and I for one have gained so much knowledge because of my furnituritis. I can walk into a room and quickly imagine it configured in a different way. In my mind’s eye, I’m (Roald Dahl’s) Matilda, and I can shift furniture around and find better layouts for problem spaces. Sometimes a new room design works, sometimes it doesn’t, but every attempt teaches me new things and helps me understand so many concepts surrounding interior design. It has helped hone my skills so I am grateful for my affliction. 

Physically, this furnituritis beats me up (sore back) but mentally it is a stimulation I can’t live without. But am I running out of changes available at my own house? I doubt it, but even if I am , I’m lucky to have clients’ houses now to release the urges onto. But if work dries up, perhaps best not leave me alone in your house for too long or you may come back to find your bedroom is now a conservatory. #furnituritis

My kitchen - dining room becomes seating area