Have you ever stepped into someone’s home and thought, “Wow! I wish I could decorate this well.” It’s easy to claim you just don’t have the knack for decorating, but the truth is, there’s not a special guide that great designers use. Instead, they rely on a few key ingredients to guide them and let imagination and trial/error do the rest of the work. Below, we’ve laid a foundation of tips that will help you decorate a room–any room–and make your guests say, “Wow!”
Create a Focal Point: The world is full of stars. Brad Pitt is at the center of movies he is in just like Reese Witherspoon sits at the center of hers. Similarly, your room should have a center–a focal point–and the rest of the room should simply revolve around that point, making it look great. Perhaps it’s an old fireplace or maybe it’s a huge gilded mirror inherited from your great grandmother. Whatever the piece, make it the focal point of your room and use other pieces, such as furniture, to draw the eye to the piece.
Give Your Room Space to Breathe: Don’t have a big budget? That’s great news! When you want to make your space feel pulled together and elegant, you let good pieces do the talking over more pieces. What do we mean? You don’t need to fill a space with a lot of things–chairs, a couch, a chaise lounge, a bookshelf, knick knacks, a piano–you get the gist. Instead, purchase fewer, higher quality pieces to place around the room. It will look so much more refined than a mashup of flea market finds.
Pick the Paint Last: This one is difficult. It’s especially hard to grasp this concept when you’re moving into a new home. After all, what is better to put on the walls than a fresh coat of paint? Instead of choosing a paint color and then matching your room to your new walls, stop. Instead, consider what color will best match the unique aspects of your belongings. This includes pillows, upholstery, rugs, and even artwork. Rather than choosing a color and trying to match the room to it, choose the rest of the room, first.
Stop When You’re Ahead: We have a tendency to try to force things to fit where we want them. When it comes to decorating, it’s okay to stick to a theme–and rehome objects that don’t match it. Perhaps it’s a picture of your parents or a hand-me-down knick knack from your dad. If you’re redecorating a room and there’s a piece that just doesn’t fit, rehome it. Chances are there’s another room in your home where the object will fit in just fine.
Add Layers of Light: When you’re in a room that has just one layer of lights, everything comes off looking flat. Instead of just having lights in your ceiling or just having a lamp to the left of your couch, add various layers of lighting. Perhaps you install lighting above or beneath your cabinets, in addition to the lights in your ceiling. Maybe you add a fireplace in addition to the oversized floor lamp that sits behind your chair. Keep the layers interesting and your room will be interesting, too.
Embrace the Details: Often the most beautiful pieces of a room are those that work to unite the room. Often when decorating, we get a little overkill with the theme. The hallmarks of a nautical theme for instance include blue and white walls and anchor decorations plus artwork. It’s so obvious that it becomes boring. Embrace a theme, but revel in making tiny changes that bring a uniqueness to your room. For instance, a more modern room could have an under cabinet charging station, such as a Docking Drawer, hidden in an end table. You could also embrace a country home theme through the textures of the pillows or furniture you choose.
Decorating well is a talent to be sure. However, it’s not something that’s impossible to achieve for the everyman. Using the tips we’ve outlined above, you can give any room in your home a special spin that will have your guests oohing and ahhing their whole visit.
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