You want your home to represent your style, but there are some basic rules and guidelines of design that can help you get the look you want.
Start by avoiding any of these “seven deadly sins of decorating”:
- Decorating for someone else’s lifestyle - Ever been in a house that had one fancy room full of expensive furniture that was basically off-limits for everyday use? Some people have a room that seems to be created for the life they imagine, not the life they have. Don’t be one of them.
- Hanging art and decorations too high or low - A lot of people hang artwork too high, but it should generally be hung at eye level. This applies to TVs as well, they should be eye-level from the couch or wherever you sit. That said, you don’t want everything hanging at the exact same height either.
- Buying furniture and TVs that are too big or small for the room - A huge TV is great, except when it’s in a tiny living room. Same goes for an itty-bitty sofa in an expansive den.
- Having too much clutter - Having some candles, figurines or knick knacks around is one thing, but if your home starts to look like a yard sale, it’s time to reel it in.
- Not considering safety - Most of the mistakes on this list won’t hurt you and the worst-case-scenario is that snobby guests will think you have bad taste. But some things, like hanging drapes over a heating vent and not having smoke and CO2 detectors in your home, can be downright dangerous.
- Not thinking of lighting - You don’t want your living room to look like an operating room, but you do want to be able to see the people sitting across from you, which means you need to get the lighting right. Think about how to maximize natural light in the space and how to block it out when you want to and make sure you have enough lamps and overhead lights.
- Carpeting the bathroom - Yep, there are people out here who do this, for some reason. But you’re better off sticking to small rugs that can be thrown in the washing machine because you know what goes on in the bathroom.