Six simple decorating rules that will make your experience updating your house a more pleasurable one.
1)Don’t decorate your home to impress your friends
If you decorate to impress other people and try to make them envy you, you lose EVERY TIME! I can not say this more emphatically without slapping you on the head. Here is why…This is your home, your lifestyle and your taste that you will be living with day in and day out. You need to L-O-V-E your home in order to feel good about it. Okay, you may get a some people who walk into your home and say “WOW” but you can’t please everyone and most people don’t have the same decorating style as you do.
Let You Be You
Even as I peruse through highly regarded interior design trade magazines and see rooms that are really well put together, some I like and some I don’t care for. They just aren’t my taste or style. Some decor although they’re pretty, I could never imagine living in them because they are way too stuffy for my lifestyle. When you decorate for others who don’t live in the home, you lose control of the feeling you are going for. Therefore the joy of the process is taken away from you. Kapeesh?
2). Decorating Rule: Your home, your design style…
Okay, listen up! Just this morning I was fabric shopping with a client and the sales lady was trying to talk my client out of using red. “Because no one uses red anymore at least not in the last 5 years.” I nearly choked her right then and there. After I discreetly rolled my eyes, I politely told my client to just go ahead and choose a red because that was what SHE preferred. As the design expert, it was up to me to make it work and look fresh and modern.
Just because grey is popular this year, doesn’t mean you should go and paint your rooms grey if you hate the color. You are just not down with grey, I get it… let it go and move on. Don’t force yourself to like something just because it is the “design trend” to do. Just wait a minute or two, that “trend” thing will change again. You see Chevron everywhere but you just don’t get what all the hullabaloo is about? Pass on it… this is your formal invitation to ignore the decorating trends if they aren’t your thang.
3. Decorating Rules are to help you…
As a Connecticut interior designer I have been educated in the “rules of good design”. I actually agree with most of them because… well, they mostly work. Decorating rules are guidelines and to be frank, very helpful in leading us in the right direction. For example, knowing how high to hang a chandelier over a dining room table is a helpful decorating guideline so that you are not talking through a chandelier to the person across from you. However, in life, sometimes breaking rules are too much fun to ignore and completely necessary! If your sofa works better in your layout against a wall, knock yourself out and put it there! If the design “rules” are giving you agita, fahgeddaboutit!
4. Don’t fight the lifecycle…
We are all at different places in our lives. The silk white sofa that you swoon over in Architectural Digest looks so pretty and romantic and in your head would look so beautiful in your living room. As a mom, I get that, believe me… I do! However, if you are living with little ones or pets, that white sofa quickly will become either the area that is off limits to all who live there or a peanut buttery nightmare. Trust me, there will be a time where you will be able to have that white sofa or display your fine china at toddler level. Be patient, know that nothing lasts forever and your time will come. For now, learn what you love and combine decor that works for your lifestyle, whatever that may be.
5. Beautiful Rooms take patience…
Here is a decorating rule that I find myself constantly breaking, although I know better. I am the queen of buying on an impulse! If I see something gorgeous, for my own home, I buy it. Trying to find a home for it later… WRONG! (Anyone need a few beautiful occasional chairs for their home?)
Continuously remind yourself to be patient. Beautiful rooms need to be lived in for a while before each decorating purchase is selected. Each piece should be considered carefully and you should be head over heels in love with it before purchasing. Don’t waste your money for “good enough for now” even if it’s inexpensive. It is just not worth it. So to sum up these decorating rules; Do you love it? Does it serve the function you were looking for? Will it marry with the lifestyle that you have right now?
It’s all temporary..
First, a room is never “finished” even if it is good enough for now. Your decorating needs and design style will change, your lifestyle will change and you are always able to move things around to change the look.
Second, at some point, your furniture will need replacing, there will be a need to put a fresh coat of paint on the wall etc… Your room will change, it is just temporary. Have fun with decorating, don’t take it so seriously, it should be a pleasure not a stressful project.
If you find that you are having a hard time following these decorating rules, go out and get a really reputable decorator. They will get to know your style, learn about your lifestyle and help lead you in the right direction. Your home should be a reflection of the people who live there. I said it before and I’ll say it a million times again! A beautifully decorated home can make you feel good and give you a better quality of life.
These are my top six rules to live by… What are your decorating philosophies? Let’s chat about them!
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