(Source: All pictures in this post via Pinterest)
For many, designing a room in one's home can be
an overwhelming process. Magazines, home decor shows,
and local home improvement stores make it all look
so easy...but, it's really a process that involves taking more than
just furniture and decor items into consideration.
I often get asked how it is that I decorate my home, and make it look so effortless.
To answer that question, I am sharing my thoughts and ideas on how to make
the process of designing beautiful spaces in your home not so overwhelming.
Here are a few tips that I feel are among the most important when designing
a room in your home.
(Consider the overall purpose of the room.)
How do you plan to use the room? Will it be a home office, playroom, guest room?
The function of the room is crucial so that you invest your time
and money with the main purpose of the room in mind.
How will you maximize space within the room for not only furniture placement,
but for storage purposes as well. Even if you plan on clearing everything from the room
as it currently stands, you will need to think about where you will store items that are essential to the space, yet won't necessarily be out on display. This is an extremely important design challenge if the room you
are designing does not have a closet (i.e. the family room or a loft space), at which point you will need to find alternative storage solutions such as baskets, chest of drawers, shelving, and/or storage benches/ottomans.
Consider furniture placement as perhaps the most important
step when designing a room. This is extremely crucial, and will help you avoid
buyers remorse by not purchasing that huge sectional you fell in love with at the design center only to
find out that it is waaaay to large for your space.
I recommend the following steps when considering furniture placement
1. Remove everything from the room so that you can view the space as a blank canvas. This will allow you to see the bones of the room. You will have a better perspective of how to furnish the room especially those areas such as nooks and landings for example.
2. Take measurements of the overall space, and make sure to take those along when shopping.
3. Consider windows, doors, and closets within the space. You will not be able to block these
with furniture pieces or artwork, so it's crucial to take note of them and there location within the space prior to shopping for furniture as well as decor pieces.
4.. Photograph your empty room with your cell phone. This will allow you to refer back to the space in the event you have trouble visualizing the layout of the room while out furniture shopping.
5. If after finding some amazing furniture pieces you are still not sure how they will flow in your space, measure the pieces at the store, and use painters tape to recreate their shape on the floor of your room so that you have somewhat of an idea of how the pieces will look in your space.
Lamps Recessed Lighting Natural Lighting
Lighting, or lack there of, can really make or break a room's overall look, as well as impede on it's function.
In a room without windows, you want to bring in as much light as possible within each area of the overall design of the space. In a room with an abundance of natural light you have more opportunity to use the natural light to your advantage, but you will still need to add lamps or overhead lighting of some sort for evening and nighttime. Choosing the right type of light for your individual space is also very important. You don't want your room to feel like it is overpowered by the lighting you have chosen.
For most of us, we enjoy the process of decorating a room much more than designing the overall space.
However, decorating faux pas are quite common when decor is involved. While there are decor rules such as groupings in sets of three etc., people often tend to over purchase and therefore unnecessarily clutter their space. So, when purchasing decor, don't make a mad dash for the decor store. Take your time browsing magazines and home decor sites for pieces that will enhance the overall look of your room, and compliment your taste. Clip decor pics from magazines and take them with you when shopping. This will provide two purposes, one, it will keep you on track and focused on the pieces your set forth to buy. Secondly, you can compare similar pieces that resemble one another, but have a more affordable price tag.
One rule of thumb, if the decor store allows you to return unused items, don't take the price tag off the moment you get home. Once home, place your decor pieces in the desired spot, and wait a day or two, or even three to see if you actually like them in their intended location, or if you like them at all. This will allow you to preview them. You will then be able to decide whether to keep them, or return them. I do stress to make sure the store return policy is clear before your pay for said items.
So the next time you set forth to design a space in your home, don't allow yourself to become overwhelmed; simply, take the ideas and recommendations above as a guide to making the process of designing your space productive and realistic...and Above all, fun!
*PS. As you might have noticed, I did not touch on the topic of paint. Securing a paint palette is always my first approach when designing a room. However, if I wrote about paint selection, this post would be a mile long. So, I will spare you the torture for now, and save my thoughts on paint selection for a future post.
(Picture Source: Pinterest)