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Decorating your Space - 5 Common Mistakes & Solutions


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If you were to ask someone if they knew anything about interior design, the answer for the majority of people would be an emphatic 'No'. This is the right answer of course, but somehow when it comes to decorating their own homes, a rush of creative energy comes over them and before you know it, you're being invited to a house warming in a house that seems to clash and clutter everywhere you glance. Not all of us have an eye for how to make a house a home in terms of furniture and decor, but if you are unwilling to call in a professional or a friend who's decor you admire, then for everybody's sake, you should jot down the tips that are in this article.

If you are looking to furnish and decorate your home, visit our online showroom at


Top Five Home Decorating Mistakes (and how to fix them)
By: Stacey Wiktorek

Home design mistakes can be the root of that room in your home that just isn't "quite right". Help is here! For every design mistake, there is a lesson to be learned, and an even better home design to be achieved. So, I’ve collected some of the most common home decorating mistakes, from the wrong window treatments to over accessorizing, and I've come up with some creative ways to fix them.

It’s happened to anyone who has decorated a room. You put in tons of blood, sweat, and tears (not to mention money) designing a room with the perfect color scheme, the perfect furniture, the perfect window treatments -- only to find it’s lacking that certain something.

A common design mistake could be the culprit.

But don’t lose hope. For every design mistake, there is a lesson to be learned, and an even better home design to be achieved. So, I’ve collected some of the most common design mistakes and some creative ways to fix them.

Design Mistake #1: Bad Lighting
Let’s face it – no matter how trendy your color scheme, no matter how fashion forward your furniture, if you can’t see it (or if the lighting is so poor it alters the look), you can’t appreciate it.

How to Fix It:
First of all, make sure your best no-cost lighting accessory (the sun) is getting through. Effective window treatments that combine fashion and function are key in this solution. Any shade or blind that allows you to control incoming light is going to help you out here: sheer shades with horizontal or vertical vanes that can be adjusted are one solution. Plantation shutters also offer a classic look, with the ability to control the light that comes through.

Also, try not to ever limit any room to a single light source. Add floor and table lamps, even when there is an overhead light fixture. This will not only give you more resources for brightening the room, it will also give you more options for changing the ambience, as you can play with the number of lights you have on at once.

Design Mistake #2: Looking Up to Your Art
For some reason, many people try to balance out a room by placing their wall artwork high above their furniture. However, instead of balancing the room, it makes the pieces appear as though they are "floating", achieving a disorganized effect instead of a "put together" one.

How to Fix It:
Wall decor should relate to the furniture below it. Some designers suggest that there should be between 66"-72" from your floor to the top of any hanging wall artwork or pictures. Of course, there are exceptions with larger pieces, but this is a good rule of thumb that will help you keep your wall decor from floating away.

Design Mistake #3: Everything Matches!
While we’re not suggesting clashing colors and furniture is in, too much matching can actually be a design nightmare. When everything matches exactly, a viewer’s eye is not drawn to any one thing in particular, which can make the room appear dull. In addition, with nothing standing out to break up the monotony, a completely matching room can actually appear more cluttered.

How to Fix It:
Coordinate, don’t duplicate. When choosing accessories, furnitures, and colors, pick items that will blend well together but do not repeat themselves. For example, in a room with different sets of windows: if the windows differ in size, it's okay to get a vertical blind for the larger windows and a horizontal blind for the smaller windows. You can coordinate the colors of the blinds, without getting the exact same blind for each set of windows.

No plans to replace that matching furniture suite? No problem! You can neutralize extreme matching by changing colors. Choosing a different wall color can tone down the patterns.

Design Mistake #4: Choosing Quantity over Quality
This is one of the most common design mistakes, and often results in over furnishing, over accessorizing, and way too many knick-knacks. It works against a unified look for a room, as every space becomes crowded with tiny accessories and picture frames. In moderation, these accessories accent a room – but their overuse can make a room feel crowded, cramped, and disjointed.

How to Fix It:
But what you love, and only buy it because you love it, not because it’s on sale. (Admit it, we’ve all done it) And if you can’t afford that gorgeous large wall hanging yet, don’t purchase small candle holders and picture frames instead. Wait and save up! Your room decor will thank you for it.

Let’s say you have a collection of knick-knacks and small items you adore; they really capture your personal style. You can still have quantity AND quality. Organize your favorite home design accessories by massing groups of smaller things together, for a more unified look. And don’t forget – not every accessory you own has to be displayed at once. Display one group at a time, and you’ll have plenty of ways to refresh your decor each season!

Design Mistake #5: I Just Want to Get it Done!
Home decorating takes time, exploration and research, but too often people make decisions too quickly, without testing the possibilities or researching various options. This can lead to paint colors that don’t look right (they can often look different in the natural lighting of your home), or even worse, an ignoring of your own personal style in an effort to get it done.

How to Fix It:
Test, explore, and research! And when you’ve done all that, listen to your gut! Home decor magazines are a great place to start your research, and from there you can decide what look is right for you. There are also a variety of online tools that can help, like's MyStyle, an online guide to design styles that is based on YOUR personal preferences.

This last design mistake brings me to the most important thing you should remember when decorating your home: trust your judgement! While these expert tips are good rules of thumb when designing the layout and decor of a room, they're not steadfast, and they don't work for everyone. But when you use them as a guideline, and you start exploring the variety of resources out there, you're sure to come up with a look for your home that you love!
Kristina's Design Studio
Kristina's Design Studio is an online resource for home decorating tips and articles, home design newsletters, online decorating tools, and even a chance to ask our in-house design experts your design questions!

By Stacey Wiktorek
Published: 4/14/2007

Date Posted: 2009-03-12
Posted By: Decor and Furniture
Listed under these Business Listing Categories: Manufacturing,

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