Many people appreciate beautiful homes and thought out décor, but not many people know where to begin. Social media sites can leave optimistic amateurs overwhelmed and feeling slightly hopeless, so we’ve created a guideline to help you tackle any home and create a fabulous interior. Here are ten tips the décor professionals live by:
Consider the bigger picture first. It’s important to think of your home as a whole, and pick an overall theme or style to help streamline the decorating process – as well as to create a degree of consistency or “flow” throughout the home. This could take the form of a colour scheme (such as neutrals or pastels) or a style (such as modern or shabby chic). The easiest way to balance a room out is to evenly distribute “visual weight”. Creating symmetry is a popular way to do this. An example of this would be placing a sofa on either side of a coffee table.
Create balance. The easiest way to balance a room out is to evenly distribute “visual weight”. Creating symmetry is a popular way to do this. An example of this would be placing a sofa on either side of a coffee table.
Give your furniture space. It’s important to know when to stop, and usually, less is more. Make sure you are able to move around your home, especially your living room. Invest in fewer quality pieces and allow them the opportunity to shine without having to compete with loads of other pieces.
Remember the science to place artwork. The “correct” way to hang art (how the galleries do it) is to place it on the wall so that the centre of the piece is at the average eye-level of a person. It can be tempting to hang art higher in a room with large ceilings – but remember that the positioning of the artwork needs to be related to its viewer’s height and not the height of the wall.
Layer your lighting. Different layers of light and light sources help to create ambience and visual interest. Focus on throwing light on to pieces you want to draw attention to, such as a beautiful vase.
Spice up your seating. It’s a good idea to mix up the seating at your dining table. This is an easy way to create some visual interest as well as overt symmetry by matching up the seats on opposing end of the table.
Get unexpectedly creative. Adding one or two bold or unconventional items is a wonderful way to add a creative, designer-like flair to an otherwise ordinary room. These are often referred to by designers and decorators as “statement pieces”. Install an oversized chandelier, turn an old paint-stripped door into a coffee table, wall mount a ladder horizontally to create a book shelf, use shutters to create a headboard for your bed, the possibilities are endless. These are the pieces that will add “wow” factor to your home.
Create a collection. To make an aesthetic impact, group similar items together. This is a good way to solve issues of “what to put in that space” or to create a bold focal point. If you can’t find a painting in the right size, or you want to create a slightly more striking feature, consider grouping a few similar small pieces of art together on a wall. This can also be done with empty frames, mirrors, plates mounted on a wall, or even decorative collections of china strategically placed on a table or shelf.
Pick paint last. Obviously it’s tempting to paint a place before you move in. But it’s often only after having moved in with all your things that you can tell exactly what shade is going to work. The lighting of a room may play a factor in your choice, as well as other items you may add to the room during the moving or decorating process. Often picking up on a less obvious colour in a rug or scatter cushions can be a nice way to bring a room together.
Remember: Functionality. With all that has already been said, it’s important to remember that your home has to be practical. Your décor should make you smile, and your living areas need to be comfortable. Regardless of how lovely a beige, crushed velvet sofa may look in your living room, if you have children and pets it’s probably not the best idea. Your décor ultimately needs to reflect your lifestyle and your personal preferences. (However, if you do have pets and need to have carpets in your home for whatever reason, we recommend investing in a carpet cleaner to help keep your rugs in tip-top shape.)