You certainly don’t need to be an interior design expert to design a beautiful home. If you want to make the most of what you have, however, a certain understanding of what not to do is very much required.
Here are ten of the most common mistakes that homeowners make when it comes to DIY decoration and design.
Adding Too Much Storage Space
Most people are familiar with the problem of having too little storage in their home but did you know that having too much can also be problematic? The more storage space you have in your home, the more likely you are to keep things that should be thrown away. In other words, excess storage has a strange habit of creating excess clutter.
Painting Before the Furniture’s Been Chosen
Another common home decorating mistake is to paint a room before you’ve chosen the furniture. Finding a shade of paint to match a new couch isn’t difficult. But finding a couch to match a shade of paint very much can be. A room should be defined by its furniture, not by its walls. Always leave the painting until last.
There are many factors that need to be considered when furniture shopping but arguably one of the most important is scale. It doesn’t matter how much you like a particular couch or coffee table if it’s too big or too small for the room in question, it’s not a purchase that you should make.
Making Dark Rooms Darker
Some rooms are always going to receive more natural light than others and it’s important to keep this fact in mind when making interior design decisions. Bright rooms obviously leave a lot of leeways but when it comes to dark rooms, there are two key rules to follow. First off, a bright shade of paint is an absolute must. And secondly, because dark rooms tend to feel smaller than they actually are, it’s important to keep furniture to a minimum.
Adding a Specialty Room That Nobody Needs
If you work at home, converting a guest bedroom into a home office can make a lot of sense. Or if you have children running around the place, a lot can be said for the installation of a dedicated playroom. It’s important to keep in mind however that such rooms are only a good investment if somebody actually ends up using them. An unused specialty room serves no other purpose than to serve as a magnet for boxes and laundry.
Copying the Show Room
Showrooms can be a great source of inspiration but it’s important to draw a firm line between inspiration and replication. In other words, stealing a few ideas makes sense, but basing your entire room on what you see in a department store is a recipe for disaster. In most cases, you’ll wind up a room that looks both forced, out of place, and completely without character.
Obsessing over the Latest Trends
Another area of interior design that some people take a little too literally is the latest trends and fashions. This is a mistake for two reasons. First off, a home decorated according to the tastes of others is never going to feel truly yours. And secondly, interior design trends tend to disappear just as fast as they appear.
Forgetting About the Cats
If you’ve got children, cats, dogs or even teenagers living in your home, it’s important to keep this in mind when making interior design decisions. Cream couches might be luxurious but they rarely stay that way in a home populated by anything other than responsible adults.
Not Knowing When to Stop
The only thing worse than an unfurnished room is a room with so much furniture that you can barely move. In many areas of interior design, less is very much more. Before adding a piece of furniture to a room, always ask yourself whether or not it’s actually worth the space that it will take up. Don’t underestimate the aesthetical and functional importance of space.
Finally, we have matching furnishings, when used in moderation, they are a staple of a well-designed home. Unfortunately, however, when used in excess, they can make just about any room looks boring, impersonal and even, downright bizarre. For every three pieces of matching furniture, always try to add at least one piece that breaks the chain. Sometimes, it’s contrast and not similarity, that really makes a room pop.
Mary Wilson frequently blogs to offer some really useful home improvement tips and tricks to readers. By day, she works for a leading CT roofing company.