Professional interior decorators and designers are usually employed by celebrities or the very well off while the average homeowner doesn’t want to put any of their limited decorating budget towards a professional decorator. But occasionally professional designers take to the internet to share some of their secrets. The following tips come from a professional interior designer.
Less is more
A rookie mistake is to try and cram too much into a space. Even if all of the pieces and accessories in a given room are carefully selected and aesthetically appealing, the overall look can come across as cluttered when you try to do too much. A little empty space goes a long way in creating contrast and visual interest and it makes the elements that are there stand out more.
Mix and match
The novice decorator assumes that matching is all-important for a good-looking design. But it’s not. While you do want certain design elements such as good symmetry and color scheme to tie everything together, there also needs to be contrast. Sometimes it’s a little bit of juxtaposition or seeming chaos that completes the look. When decorating, avoid purchasing ready-made collections of furniture sets or décor items. Instead spread out your purchases. Mix time periods and styles. Keep the charm but also make it modern by leaving the baseboard heaters and covering them with sleek baseboard heater covers.
Good lighting is everything
Even the best interior design can be ruined by poor lighting. There are three types of lighting that are essential for good design but most people only use one or two. Ambient lighting is for mood. It’s the overhead lighting that illuminates the entire space. Dimmable LEDs are a great option for ambient lighting since they can be brightened or dimmed as the mood calls for. Task lighting is more about functionality of the space, a reading lamp near a favorite recliner or under-cabinet lighting in the kitchen. Finally, accent lighting calls attention to focal points such as interesting architectural features, a gallery wall, or a favorite piece of artwork. Good design will have all three kinds of lighting spread throughout the space.
Make it yours
Don’t worry about trying to impress anyone else and certainly don’t aim to recreate a photograph you saw online or on the cover of a magazine, unless it perfectly reflects your personality and tastes. It’s your home so first and foremost in your mind should be creating a home you want to spend time in. Display something you collect, hang pictures from your travels, show off photos of your kids and/or pets.
Consult a professional
While hiring a professional decorator to oversee the whole process of decorating is outside the price range, most home owners can afford a one- or two-hour consultation with one. They usually charge between $100 and $175 per hour but they can save you more than that by helping you avoid common mistakes. This is an opportunity to get the opinion of a professional and run your own ideas by him/her before doing the work yourself.
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