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Decorating dos and don’ts

Decorating your home is a very personal form of art. Still, there are some basic design principles that must be followed in order to be able to put together a coherent scheme. Even if you’re no stranger to a paintbrush, or you have a keen eye for vintage décor, knowing the Do’s and Don’ts of decorating will help create the right impression of your home. If you’re unsure of where to start, our decorating tips and tricks will transform your abode into a home that will make all who live in it, and guests, swoon.

Don’t: Go Overboard with Themes

Naturally, there will be particular design styles or eras that we love and favour. And when looking to shape a decorating aesthetic for your own home, often we look to these preferences for inspiration. However, a common mistake that many can fall into, is taking this vision too far and creating an excessively themed space. In these situations, you can tend to end up with a homage to one singular element, or a “try hard” look where everything looks out of place and mismatched. Instead of being too literal with themes, try dabbling in colours, artwork or furniture from the style you like and integrate these into your décor with other pieces. The end result will still be one that looks and feels like the one you like, but without it turning into an interior design blunder.  

Do: Group and Organise

There’s so much to work with in a home and it’s important that everything falls into place coherently, otherwise you could end up with a space that looks like the odd one out. Whilst it’s ok to be a lover of collecting as much as possible, it’s also crucial that you know how to balance these said items. To establish an atmosphere where everything works together in harmony, it’s important to group accessories and furniture, instead of placing them here and there randomly. Start by creating small groupings with items that you like, for example cushions.

The decorating tips that we swear by – ditch the multitude of picture frames scattered across the house and instead create one singular gallery wall. It’s in this way the picture will be appreciated more as the eye can see them all at once.

Don’t: Purchase Matching Sets of Furniture

When buying furniture for your living room, dining room or bedroom, it's easy to fall into the interior design trap of buying the whole matching set from one place. Of course, they all match and are of the same style. However, it's very predictable and more often than not can lack character.

Our top decorating tips and tricks here is to buy the bed, or the big three-seater sofa that you adore, and then personalise the look. You can do this by adding in complementary bedside tables or statement armchairs in patterned fabrics. This will establish depth, dimension and interest – creating a look that is completely unique to your home.

Do: Remove Clutter

We all have objects where we’d ideally like to have them on display, either from our travels or items that have sentimental value. However, if you add these in with your other décor, whether they be gifts, or from your latest shopping spree – your home can soon become cluttered. Not only will this look be aesthetically displeasing and visually busy, but it could also make small spaces in the home feel even smaller. The best decorating tips and tricks hold this style secret – pick only a couple of favoured collectables and limit the number of items you have on show at one time. Whilst you’ll have many items that you adore and feel like you can’t part with – why not instead work on a carousel basis? Store some away safely and swap them around a couple of times a year – just like a gallery does with artwork.

Don’t: Stick to One Colour

When it comes to decorating tips and tricks, decorating only around one colour, or devoting a colour to a theme, are big no nos. Choosing everything in blue and yellow will never make your abode resemble that of a coastal hideaway. And going for blinds and curtains around the home in the same colour can take away from the uniqueness you’re trying to establish with your interiors. If you want the Olla blind in grey in your living room, but the Beckham drapes in soft pink in your child’s bedroom – that’s a decorating do we encourage!

If you're stuck trying to build your own colour palette, this could be part of the dilemma – one shade, or an idea of a shade, could be getting in the way of the other colour traces. More often than not, your colour scheme is already hiding away somewhere in your home. Begin by looking at the shades in your clothing and accessories, favourite pieces of furniture, photographs or even something you've had since you were a child. It could be anything from a toy to a piece of material – anything that catches your eye or makes you smile. These will lay the foundations to start forming your dream colour scheme using tones that you enjoy.

Do: Create a Focal Point

When it comes to decorating tips, interior design’s most prominent nemesis is monotony. A well-designed space will always have (depending on its size), one or more focal points. And a focal point must be powerful enough to command attention, and interesting enough to inspire the viewer to look beyond the surface. Therefore, it needs to have a lasting impression as well as be an integral part of your home’s décor, linked through scale, style, colour or theme. For instance, you could use your fireplace as a focal point. However, if you don’t have such apparent focal points, consider using a statement piece of furniture or a captivating piece of artwork.

You want your new and improved home interior to fit like a glove. If you’re not completely satisfied with it, our decorating tips and tricks should help you on your way to a home design that makes a lasting impression. And remember – there’s no need to rush and do all the decorating at once. The best interior spaces truly are those that have evolved over the space of a few years.

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