We hear it all the time when talking with prospective clients.  “I know what I like when I see it but I just don’t know how to pull it all together.”  And that’s probably the number one reason most DIY decorators get stuck when DIY-ing.  Without much (if any) formal training, most homeowners simply attempt to recreate the looks they see and love without realizing just how much thought and planning goes into a well-designed space.

Trial and error is probably the most common method of decorating for most homeowners.  Another is to mimic or copy something seen in a magazine, on tv, online or in a store.  Of course, both methods work but are fraught with the potential for failure or lackluster success, at best.

No matter their process, professional designers & decorators rely on certain techniques to help create the pulled-together look their clients want and appreciate.  If you too find yourself struggling to pull things together, here are the Top 10 Tips used by design professionals:

Define Your Style: Before starting, identify your preferred style or theme for the space.  Whether it’s modern, traditional, minimalist, or eclectic, having a clear style direction will guide your decorating choices.

Focus on Functionality: Ensure that your decorating choices not only look good but also serve a practical purpose.  Consider the flow of the space, the activities that will take place there, and prioritize comfort and usability.

Start with a Neutral Base: Begin decorating with a neutral color palette for larger items like walls, floors, and furniture. Neutrals provide a versatile backdrop allowing you to easily incorporate pops of color and personality with accessories and accents.  However, if you prefer bolder colors for the larger items, it’s important to balance your look with more neutral furnishings, art and accents.

Create Focal Points: Identify key focal points in the room, such as a fireplace, architectural feature, or statement piece of furniture, and design around them to draw attention and help anchor the space.

Layer Textures and Patterns: Create visual interest and depth by layering different textures and patterns throughout the room.  Mix materials like wood, metal, glass, and fabric to add dimension and tactile appeal.  Judiciously repeating colors, patterns, materials and textures is another handy design trick to help create cohesiveness.

Balance Scale and Proportion: Pay attention to the scale and proportion of furniture and decor items in relation to the size of the room.  Aim for balance between larger statement pieces and smaller accents to create visual harmony.  But, don’t be afraid to experiment with scale by incorporating oversized or undersized elements to add drama and visual interest.

Play with Lighting: Lighting can significantly impact the ambiance and mood of a space.  Combine various light sources such as overhead lighting, task lighting, and accent lighting to create layers of illumination and enhance different areas of the room.

Maximize Natural Light: Make the most of natural light by using light-filtering window treatments and strategically placing mirrors to reflect light and visually expand the space.  Keep windows unobstructed to allow sunlight to flood into the room.

Declutter and Organize: Keep your space clutter-free and organized to maintain a sense of tranquility and visual clarity. Invest in storage solutions which are both functional and stylish to help elevate your overall look.

Personalize with Art and Accessories: Infuse your personality into the space by displaying artwork, photographs, and cherished objects that reflect your interests, experiences, and style.  Mix and match textures, shapes, and colors to create curated vignettes that tell a story.

Following these tips should help you as your work to pull things together and create beautiful, functional spaces for you and your family.  Ultimately, the most important decorating tip of all is to stay true to your personal taste and preferences.  Let your space reflect who you are and what makes you and your family feel comfortable and happy.

If you’d like more guidance or still need professional help, we’re just a phone call away.  Happy Decorating from Decor Designs.   815-245-2433