What is the first thing you see when you walk into a room? Colors? Furniture? Lighting? Accessories are typically the key to good interior design. Often they are the first thing someone’s eye focuses on when they walk in to the room- a focal point.
Where architects primarily design for form and function, Interior decorating can be just as vital in the overall flow, functionality and pleasing features of the space. Interior designers create spaces with signature features and finishing touches that are vital – the proverbial icing on the cake. It’s the expertise in all the small things in interior design that culminate in a finished space that is pleasing to the eyes and the soul. There are a few things to consider when decorating a space:
STYLE – The first step is to select a style for the new or re-invented space. If you are updating multiple spaces you will want to promote the design principle of unity and harmony by thinking of all the spaces in a unifying theme. It could be as simple as choosing a casual feel instead of formal or contemporary- or you can refine it to specific styles such as Victorian, Modern Vintage, French country, or Shabby Chic.
COLOR – Choosing a color palette is an essential part. You can absolutely have a different style and color scheme in each room you but will still want to tie it all together in a complementary way. Also consider the size of the room when choosing colors. Dark, heavy colors will make a small room feel even smaller – which may be your goal if you are seeking an intimate, cozy den for instance.
BALANCE – You want to distribute the visual weight in a room whether that is symmetrically or with asymmetrical balance. Maintaining a focal point –such as a fireplace or beautiful piece of art- creates visual interest in a room. Incorporate contrast and variety while repeating elements of the same color, texture or pattern.
PATTERNS – Mixing patterns is one of the more advanced parts of interior decorating that can be a little tricky. Although patterns don’t need to necessarily match they do need to coordinate with or complement each other. You’ll want to consider the color , scale and size or the pattern when trying to mix and match them.
FURNISHINGS – Although furnishings are a key element of decorating, they also tend to be the largest investment and a very large part of the budget. Since most of us do not have an unlimited budget and need to be frugal when updating a room, start with the pieces you have and evaluate them. Is there one piece that stands out that you could make more prominent in your design? Is there a piece that could be painted or re-purposed to incorporate it into your updated look? Sometimes the answer is simply eliminating some furniture. Too much can make the room feel cramped and crowded.