Avoid These 10 Interior Mistakes for a Beautiful Home
You’ve chosen the colors and arranged the furniture — but something is still not quite right. You might have some good instincts, but when it comes to interiors, a few common mistakes can turn a good idea into a bad design.
To help you along, here are the top 10 mistakes to avoid with your interiors. Let me share with you these secret solutions of interior designers:
Buying Paint at the Store by Looking at Samples
How many times have you found that great color at the paint store and then immediately gone home to put it on the walls? Before you know it, you have the completely WRONG color invading your home.
Don’t worry, you’re like 85 percent of paint buyers out there!
Colors can change a lot depending on the light in the room. Paint and hardware stores notoriously have bright lights — but chances are your living room doesn’t! Because of that, the colors that looked so good in the store may look very bad once you apply them.
The Solution: Find a few colors that you like, and then take AT LEAST 5 samples of the SAME color, if you are not sure about the tone, take different shades, and bring them home. Tape them onto the desired wall to give you an idea of how they’ll look during the day and at night. Chances are you’ll end up choosing a different sample than the one you first selected in the store.
Too Much of a Good Thing
The old adage “less is more” definitely applies to your home.
When you have too many accessories in a room, it gives the feeling of restlessness and discomfort.
Why is that? When there’s no visual balance, your brain goes into defensive mode. Physically, those items are taking up too much space, and it can cause you to feel the need to be free and able to move. Put all of those things together and you get a feeling of stress, moodiness and aggressiveness.
The Solution: Filter, select and rotate. Take out everything that you can do without, and keep repeating that process until order and balance are restored.
Accentuating Ugly Stuff
All too often, my clients have a piece of furniture, accessory or architectural feature that they hate, but they simply can’t get rid of it because it has sentimental value or it will cost too much to change. To make up for it, they add a flashy accessory that they think will solve the problem.
Wrong! What they’ve done is attract attention to the ugly thing.
The Solution: Minimize the amount of attention that ugly thing gets with accessories that camouflage the color. Also try adding an eye-catcher to the room — something that you love that will get all of the visual attention. It will be something so good that everyone will look at that thing instead of your ugly piece!
Choosing window dressings is difficult for almost anyone, but you don’t have to make one common mistake! All too often, people go for the “short pants” look, selecting curtains that are too short and take up too much of the window space. That’s a costly decision, so it’s far better to buy the correct size at the start.
The Solution: Hang your curtain rods wider than the width of your window, and do not put them just above the window. Use the “2/3 rule” to hang the rod 2/3’s of the way up, between the window and the ceiling. Ideally, your curtains will just barely kiss the floor.
Over-Furnishing Small Spaces
In apartments and small houses, space is at a premium. If you choose high furniture pieces for those small spaces, it’s going to feel like everything is about drop onto you.
The Solution: Use a simple design technique that’s ideal for small living spaces. Use low furniture pieces that are a maximum of 1-1.20 meters high. If you have a high element in the room, choose the same color tone as the one you have on the wall behind it, so as to visually camouflage the high piece.
Buying Furniture without Measuring
If you buy something without measuring it to make sure it’s going to fit well in your living space, you’re committing a serious “mis-purchase!’ When you buy furniture that’s too large for your home, it leaves the space feeling unbalanced and cramped. Fortunately for you, there’s a very simple way to ensure this doesn’t happen.
The Solution: Measure the space where you want to put the item. Then ask retailers to measure the desired piece for you, or get the dimensions from the Internet.
Making the Home a Playground
When I talk about children with my clients, they immediately think about 3 things: invasion of space, chaos and frustration, and clients just don’t know how to fix it!
It’s certainly a complicated issue, but it doesn’t have to be stress-inducing. You don’t need to choose between love them and sacrifice your own space.
The Solution: Give the kids a dedicated space that’s all their own. Make the space attractive and inviting for them, and let your kids know that this is their part of the living space. To make the idea stick, give the space a name with the child’s name in the title, such as “Anna’s Place,” for example. When you do that, your child won’t see it as a bad thing, but instead as a special thing. Once it’s built, teach your child to keep their own space clean, and provide them with simple storage boxes for their stuff.
Cables, Cables Everywhere
Flat-screen TVs give us a way to save space in our homes by hanging the TV on the wall. Still, there are the cables that come with that TV — and too often, those cables make the TV area look messy.
The Solutions: Having the cables hidden in the wall is the “perfect” solution, but that’s not always possible.
Instead, you can also:
- Use a cable wire cover and paint it the same tone as the wall
- Make a statement with wood paneling. A layer of wood panels can help hide the cords and hardware used to mount the TV.
Choosing the Wrong Lighting Color
Every light bulb has a specific color temperature, called Kelvin. In homes, people tend to want “warm” color temperatures that help the home look more cozy. Still, they go out and buy “cool” colors that make their spaces look like hardware stores or hospitals! Talking about the ¨hospital look¨ you should know that nowadays LED lights don’t have only ¨white color¨. LED is the future and can create cozy looks as well!
The Solution: Check the color temperature on the light bulbs before you buy. Ideally, you should buy bulbs around 2800 Kelvin. If you prefer a cooler tone, then make sure that you create uniformity at home.
Choosing the Wrong White
People tend to think “white is white,” but that’s not the case! There are many white tones out there and each one has a different impact on your home’s atmosphere.
The Solution: The standard white tone is RAL 9010, and it offers a neutral, natural look. It’s always the safe bet!
If you want something more fresh, choose RAL 9003. For something warmer and creamier, choose RAL 9001.
When in doubt, ask an interior designer!
That goes for all of the tips mentioned here. When you need more guidance for making your home look great, get in touch with me!
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