Decorating your home is an opportunity to let your personality shine and finish your space with the perfect look. However, sometimes knowing what not to do when it comes to decorating can be just as helpful as knowing what you should do. According to interior design experts, here are a few of the most common decorating mistakes you can make.
NOT TAKING INVENTORY BEFORE YOU BUY
Be sure you know what you have before you start buying things, and determine whether or not each piece has a place in your new home. Create a list of everything you’ll keep, sell, and donate to help avoid purchasing something you don’t need, and make some space for new items.
PURCHASING WITHOUT MEASURING
You’ll waste time and money if you buy anything without measuring first. It’s important to get accurate measurements to ensure the furniture or pieces you buy fit in your home, and in the room you’re putting them in.
- Width and height of entries, doorways, hallways, and stairways.
- Length from the entrance of the room to the far wall.
- Length and width of the room the furniture will go in.
- Height of the walls.
- Windows, radiators, fireplaces, or any other features taking up space in the room.
NOT BEING ACCOUNTABLE WITH YOUR BUDGET
It’s important to set a budget for yourself before beginning to decorate, and stick to that budget. Decorating can be expensive, especially if you have to do a whole room or even a whole apartment or house. Your budget will help make sure you don’t empty your wallet while you’re filling your home.
First, make a design wish list of everything you’d like to do and buy. Then, determine your actual decorating budget. Hit the stores and search online to research how much the items on your wish list actually cost. If you’re hiring someone to do work for you, factor that in as well. Be prepared to make some trade-offs, but you can save dollars by thrifting, shopping at discount stores, or using online resources like Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. You can even DIY decor.
AVOID MIXING AND MATCHING
Using different colors and patterns can add visual interest to your home. Decorators suggest using at least three patterns in a room, and varying the colors and scale. Different patterns can often work together if they’re of the same hue. So determine a color palette you love and select one or two main colors and one or two accent colors for an extra pop. When it comes to patterns, distribute them throughout the room—think about the area rug, throw pillows, throw blankets, and wall decor.
KEEPING AWAY FROM DIY
If you’re redecorating, you probably have some of your favorite DIY projects saved on your Pinterest board or screenshotted in your photos. Don’t be afraid to transform your interior space with some do-it-yourself projects. It can help save you money, and it will put an extra personal touch on your space.
CHOOSING PAINT COLOR FIRST
Paint is available in thousands of colors and can be easily changed. So choose your furniture and expensive pieces first and decorate around them.
HANGING ARTWORK TOO HIGH
Many decorating their homes hang art closer to the ceiling than they should. Artwork should be hung about eye-level, lower on the wall rather than higher.
OPTING FOR STYLE OVER COMFORT
It can be exciting to shop for furniture and new pieces for your home. Many furniture pieces look great but aren’t comfortable to sit on. Before making a final decision, always think about how you’re going to use the piece.
RELYING ON OVERHEAD LIGHTING
It’s good to have, but overhead lighting often doesn’t offer enough light, and sometimes it’s not very aesthetically pleasing. Have a mix of lighting fixtures, including overhead lights, wall sconces, floor, and table lamps. Not only will the room look better, but your eyes will thank you for it.
PLACING A TOO-SMALL AREA RUG
Rugs vary in size and shape, and they can be very expensive, so it’s easy to select a smaller one to save dollars. However, when your rug is too small, it breaks up the room and can make it feel smaller. You want to leave at least 6” of space around the perimeter of your room, but otherwise choose the largest size you can. Avoid covering vents and getting in the way of any opening doors.