19yo Malaysian home decor enthusiast creates warm, rustic abode for him and his family


Thushen styled the sofa in his balcony area by mixing and matching cushions. Adding the flowers really pulled the whole space together and made it into his little oasis, he said. Photos: Thushen Raj

When he was 13, Thushen Raj found a passion for home decor when he started collecting items and rearranging them in the house. He would also find random things to paint whenever possible.

Now at 19, his love for decor continues with DIY projects that truly make his house a home.

Living with his parents in a double-storey house with four bedrooms and three bathrooms in Sungai Bakap, Penang, Thushen not only decorates his room but other shared spaces with his family as well.

When asked about his design style, Thushen shares that he has yet to find his. But as of now, he has explored Scandinavian, vintage and moody design styles, adding that the colour palettes he chooses to complement his recent design styles are mostly jewel tones, beiges and moody colours.The study area features a creamy olive green colour along with lots of white and wood accents to give it a bright and airy setting.The study area features a creamy olive green colour along with lots of white and wood accents to give it a bright and airy setting.

“I believe that cushions are key pieces when it comes to dressing up a sofa. The cushions that I use in my space differ in certain aspects, such as the material, shape and colour. I like to buy them from different stores and mix and match them when I style them.”

Recently, Thushen’s room was selected by @ighometourmalaysia – a local home tour group on Instagram hosted by home decor enthusiasts to inspire one another and share ideas on home design and decor – under the theme #ightmcushions for his work. If you follow Thushen on Instagram (@thushebmadehome), you will know that he often shares about his DIY projects along with other simple cute decor that he does around his room.

“It all started when I was a kid. My grandfather was a very creative person. Naturally, spending most of my childhood with him, I picked up a lot of skills from him when he worked on paper crafts or wooden furniture,” says Thushen, who was inspired to start his own DIY projects from then.

The bathroom exudes a calming and relaxing feel with scented candles.The bathroom exudes a calming and relaxing feel with scented candles.

Thushen also credits interior decorating YouTubers for influencing him.

“Lone Fox and XO MaCenna really inspired me and watching them helped me realise my passion for interior decorating. This also prompted me to start my own YouTube channel and Instagram account to share my journey.

“My favourite DIY project that I’ve done for my room would be the board and batten walls. I was obsessed with board and battens last year so I decided to incorporate it in my bedroom. It just adds so much charm and elegance to my room,” says Thushen.

Board and batten walls are a type of siding where the panel board seams are covered with thin wood moulding strips, called “battens”. The end effect is a sleek yet rustic look, as it provides shadows and textures given by the strong vertical lines.

Currently, Thushen is working on redoing his bedroom as he feels some of the decor is no longer his style at this time. He’s looking into making a paper mache vase using his old SPM notes and exam papers from last year.The board and batten walls that Thushen made himself. He wanted to create a room that reflects his personality and his love for nature.The board and batten walls that Thushen made himself. He wanted to create a room that reflects his personality and his love for nature.

“I hope this DIY project will be thoughtful for me as a remembrance of my SPM era.”

Some other things Thushen wants to do in the future is to integrate smart home technology for convenience and efficiency.

“I’m also looking into using more sustainable materials in my decor and embracing minimalism while incorporating bold patterns and moody colours that still speak to my personality. I also want to try mixing more design styles in order for me to approach design trends in a more mature way. This would really help me learn what I like and dislike in my design style,” shares Thushen.

“I usually use recyclable materials to create a particular decor and I use my own pocket money to buy most of the other materials. I’m really grateful my parents are cool with whatever I do with the home design so I have the opportunity to freely make any decisions on the home’s decorations,” he shares.

Inspired by Harry Potter vibes, Thushen went for a moody yet collected feel for his bedside, adding brass accents and melancholic paintings.Inspired by Harry Potter vibes, Thushen went for a moody yet collected feel for his bedside, adding brass accents and melancholic paintings.

As an anthophile and nature lover, Thushen spends most of his time in his balcony where it is filled with different kinds of indoor plants and flowering plants. If he’s not gardening and tending to his plants, he would spend his time there with a cup of matcha just to unwind after a hectic day at college.

After starting his own interior decorating journey and DIY projects, Thushen learned that they are not as easy as the videos make them out to be.

“That’s when I realised that something like interior decorating takes time, creativity and lots of patience. We have to trust the process and the magic will happen.”


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DIY , Home Decor

   

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