Expert Decorating Tips
While there are plenty of books and magazines that illustrate decorating styles that you can use in your home, there are also a few "decorating don'ts" that you should keep in mind when decorating and accessorizing your home. While you should feel free to express yourself creatively when decorating your home, by keeping these few guidelines in mind, you will avoid some of the pitfalls that can be detrimental to the overall effect of your decorating efforts.
Don't choose your paint color first
There are an almost limitless number of paint colors available, and many paint stores will even custom-match a paint shade from any swatch of fabric or item that you can bring in. It's much more difficult to find a sofa that looks good with the paint color you have bought than to find a paint that looks good with the sofa fabric. Unless you are using a neutral wall color, choosing your paint color first will limit your options.
Don't neglect your room's natural focal point
If you have a room that has a natural focal point in it, such as a fireplace or large picture window, enhance it instead of ignoring it. If you neglect to enhance the room's focal point, you will be missing out on the opportunity for a lot of design pizzazz.
Not everything has to match
"Cookie cutter" rooms where everything coordinates perfectly tend to be a little dull. Instead, work towards a color scheme for the room that includes a couple of coordinating accent colors, combined with a couple of neutral shades. Using this color scheme as a base, you can combine furniture of various styles and accessories that complement each other but do not match, as well as adding other styles to create an interesting eclectic look.
Don't place all your furniture against the walls
Don't place all the furniture in a room directly against the walls unless you are really limited by the room's size or shape. Instead, create interesting groupings of furniture within the room, which will give a warm and more inviting look.
Don't create difficult walkways
Always design the layout of a room to create a good flow through the room, without creating awkward corners and obstacles. A clear walkway will make the room feel better designed.
Don't display too many knickknacks
While personal accessories and mementos can add a nice touch to a room, using too many small decorating items and knickknacks will simply make a room look and feel cluttered. Instead, display a few at a time, and create interesting collections of items as opposed to scattering items all over the room
Don't add furniture and accessories that don't serve a purpose
Everything you use in decorating your room should be there for a reason, whether it's because it is useful or because you especially like it or find it attractive. Using fewer items in a room as opposed to more is often a more effective decorating approach.
Don't use colors or items that "clash"
While eclectic decorating can be a fun and stylish way to accessorize a room, some colors and styles of items just do not look good together. Avoid using items together that are just plainly mismatched in an unattractive fashion.
Don't buy furniture and accessories based solely on price
Don't always buy the cheapest of everything. In many cases, you would be better off to put off the purchase until you save up enough money to get a better quality item, especially if it is something that will be used a lot, such as a sofa.
Don't let others dictate your decorating style
Unless you live alone, you will undoubtedly need to coordinate your decorating preferences with at least one other person. However, never let somebody else totally sway you when making decorating decisions.