Interior design is a huge part of our everyday lives. It evokes the true essence of your home and it is a reflection of your personal style. Our home should be our sanctuary, a place where we can come home and unwind. Many of us pack our schedules so tight we forget to leave time to personalize our space. When we finally make time, we have no idea where to begin. Thankfully, I am here to help. I will be sharing some key design tips to help you get your home exactly how you have always wanted it.
Tip #1 Select a color palette.
How many of you love color? I personally love color; I love the energy it brings into a space. A room can be warmed, cooled or neutralized by infusing color into the scheme. Although there is no rule to how many colors you can use, using too many colors can throw off a color scheme. As much as we love to see color in other people’s homes, many of us are afraid to integrate it into our own space. Let us begin by using the 60, 30, 10 rule, 60% of your space should be your primary color, 30% your secondary color and 10% your accent color. A good foundational starting point would be to create a neutral palette within your home; this gives you the flexibility to integrate fun pops of color throughout the seasons. (Stay tuned for future posts, I will provide a break down on selecting warm and cool color schemes, and additional fun ways to incorporate color into your homes and fashion wardrobes.)
Tip #2 Furnishing your space.
What is the function of the room? Be sure to get a clear concise idea of how you want the room to function. Next, select a focal point. A focal point is the focus of the room. It can be a fireplace, a built in bookcase or defined artwork in the room, and simply put it is the first piece that stands out in the space. The eye will search the room for it until it finds it.
A small space should have smaller scale furniture; a large space should have larger furniture.
Before you purchase any furniture, become well acquainted with the space. Measure out your living room, dining room, bedroom etc…The worst thing you can do is purchase furniture that is too big or too small for your home. Take the time to ask questions about sizes and color options. Most furniture stores can provide diagrams that have dimensions for pieces; if it is not available, you can always snap a picture so you have them available. If you are bringing the pieces home yourself, verify the pieces will fit through your doorways. I learned this lesson the hard way when I had to take doors off the hinges just to get a large sofa sectional through the entrance. In most cases, once you purchase furniture, you, own it. So make sure you do your due diligence ahead of time.
Next, Position your furniture so it flows well. Create spaces according to the rooms function. If it is a media room, place pieces so everyone can see the TV from every angle. If it is a conversation area, place furniture facing each other so one can dialogue comfortably. Think of the ease of the room- does it flow well with traffic? Considering these elements will help you find the right pieces for your space. Be sure to leave some white space within the room, there is no need to fill every corner. A well-designed space will look for a resting point.
Tip # 3 Rule of Three
Do not take this rule too literal, use it as a guideline. Most accent pieces look best in groups of three and / or odd number configurations. Objects can be similar in color; with variations of artwork, etc…Using items in this configuration gives the space a calming feeling while providing visual appeal. Use the rule of three with color, accessories or various shapes and sizes. In color, repeat the same color in different elements, shades, or tones. When accessorizing use different shapes and sizes, they should all feel cohesive, to use with artwork. Keep the theme of the art in groups of threes. Each piece of art should have a common theme amongst one another. Use the rule of three in a perfectly symmetrical room and notice the room instantly become more visually appealing.
Tip #4 Decide if your space will be symmetrical or asymmetrical.
Symmetry is a balance of design elements placed in a room. One side of the room should mirror the exact opposite. Symmetrical design is favored by most, it is a simpler process; it feels calm, cohesive, and well balanced. To know if you have achieved symmetry in the space, use this rule of thumb. If you take the room and cut the room in half, will it look identical to the other side? If the answer is yes, then you have successfully achieved symmetry.
If symmetry is not your thing then it is likely you prefer asymmetrical design.
Asymmetry is the opposite of symmetry; the design is different on both sides of the space. This layout will take more time and effort to achieve, but it can be a much livelier design. To achieve asymmetry you will have to find an equal balance between both sides of the space. A large chair next to a sofa can be paired with a side table and hefty table lamp. The coordinating components do not have to be identical as long as they have an equal balance of weight or scale.
To know if you have achieved asymmetry in the space, use this rule of thumb. If you take the room and cut the room in half, do both sides of the space feel evenly weighted. If yes, then you have successfully achieved asymmetry.
Tip #5 Harmony and Unity
Harmony and unity complete a well-designed space. This is the soul of the space, it is the feeling it exudes when you walk in. There is a lot of flexibility in this range so have fun with it. You can achieve unity by using repetition of different groupings. There are many elements to unity; I am providing only a few to help you simplify the decorating process. Create unity by incorporating consistent shapes, colors and textures. A grouping of round mirrors in various sizes look great. Repetition of a color grouping unifies the room. A textured rug and textured pillows uniform the space. Harmony and unity can be achieved through various groupings so do not be afraid to try new elements just be sure to keep them all consistent.
There you have it; five key elements that will help you create a beautifully designed space you will love calling your own. I hope this helped you. This post is focused more on the decorating aspect of interior design as opposed to the technicalities of design.