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How we decorate is completely subjective. What is visually appealing to one person is not necessarily so for another. These are just a few suggestions to be taken into consideration as a guide to help improve the feel, look and flow of your home.
Each room needs appropriately sized furniture. The size and scale of furniture needs to be proportioned to the rooms’ dimensions. Avoid crowding a room with too much furniture, sometimes one large piece is all smaller room might need. Contrary to what many believe, furniture can make a smaller room feel large than it is, even that on a large scale.
Know the size of your room, measure it first before you go shopping to make sure there is enough space for everything in the room. More often I help home owners relocate and re-position items in their rooms so that the flow, space, and items in the room feel in proportion. Not only consider depth and width but consider height also. If everything is to scale it will feel right.
I have been in some fantastic homes but the rooms feel blah because everything is pushed out toward the walls. By moving furniture off the wall and using them it to frame or highlight a focal point in the room like a fireplace, now you’ve got a room that’s speaking and pleasing to the eyes. Consider the flow of the furniture to the space of the room.
Listen, I know it is really easy to go to a store and get the room on display, but boy is it boring! Rooms that come to life have texture, pattern and color from other items in a room. This is what gives a room depth and dimension. Solid color sofas can really be perked up with various patterned pillows; add a chunky throw and a great patterned rug and you have a recipe for an awesome space.
Outdoor light coming in makes a huge impact in a room, although proper lighting is essential in every room. Having just recess or one overhead light is typically not enough light for a room. It is best to layer lighting to make a room feel comfortable. Consider table lamps for ambiance but be careful of proportion. Task lighting can be useful and dramatic- think of reading, but also consider highlighting an architectural detail in your home such as a stone fireplace. Dimmers are indispensable in rooms because they allow us to adjust the amount of light in a room. More light, the bigger the room feels.
Furnishing a home can be very expensive, but when shopping I always tell my clients to wait for a sale on a sofa they love if they cannot afford it, versus buying a less quality one. Certain items are worth buying the best you can afford even if it means having to save up a while for a particular piece. Replacing a sofa every 5 years is not cheap. There are other areas where money can be saved. A smart decorator has many sources and can save you time and money this way.
Yes, everyone that will be sitting on the couch/chair/dining table test it out. Everyone that will be using the pieces on a regular basis, have them see if the item is in proportion to them. Also when deciding on a color theme test out a sample first before going for the $45 can of paint. It is not only the paint but the labor and the headache you will have to live with. Same with fabric or accessories bring them into the space you will be putting them in to see if they work color and proportion wise. If they don’t work, return and move on.
While testing things out go by what you like, it is your space that you will want to enjoy for years to come. Investing in good quality piece that you like, you will have for years, and the less expensive things like the accessories- well ok you can live with that ugly pillow your mother–in-law got you for at least a year.
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