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Today, we’re tackling a topic that hits close to home – literally – the interior design mistakes many of us unknowingly make.

Have you ever looked around your room and thought, “Hmm, something’s not quite right”?

Odds are, you’re right – but you’re not alone!

Join me as we chat about 10 common decorating slip-ups and, more importantly, how to avoid them.

If you love something, it will work. That’s the only rule.

 

Bunny Williams

So, grab a beverage, and let’s have a look at these 10 interior design mistakes together!

Lighting is Important

Think of lighting as the mood setter in your home.

It’s not just about banishing the darkness; it’s about creating the right ambiance.

Consider the room’s purpose.  For example, in your living room, a mix of ambient, task, and accent lighting works well. 

Experiment with different lighting options like pendant lamps, floor lamps, and sconces, along with natural light to create that perfect glow for every occasion.

When choosing artificial lighting, opt for bulbs with a color temperature that complements the room’s function.  Warm whites (around 2700K) are great for living spaces, while cooler tones suit task-oriented areas like the kitchen.

Aim for even illumination throughout the room. Personal preference plays a role too, so trust your instincts on what feels right for your space.

AND, don’t forget dimmer switches – dimming your lights creates instant ambiance.

 

Don’t Have Too Much Stuff

Imagine your room as a dance floor – too many dancers and it becomes chaotic.

Give your furniture some personal space.

It’s not just about avoiding clutter; it’s about letting each piece shine and allowing the room to breathe.

A well-arranged, spacious area feels more welcoming and makes it easier to move around, which becomes even more important as we age.

 

No More Matchy-Matchy

Your home isn’t a cookie-cutter, and neither should your design be.

Sure, coordination is essential, but if your bed, matches your side tables that match your dresser that match the chest of drawers (you get the idea), it can make your space look like it’s trying too hard.

Break away from the uniformity of matching everything.

Mix materials like wood, metal, and fabric to add layers and depth.

While a coordinated look is essential, an overly matched color scheme and furniture can make a room lack personality.

It’s these subtle contrasts that make a room visually engaging and uniquely yours.

 

Scale Matters

One of the most common issues I see is where the furniture is out of proportion to the size of the room.

When the furniture is too big or too small, it throws off the balance of the whole space.

It’s not just about fitting everything in; it’s about creating a balanced arrangement that feels just right.

So, make sure your furniture suits the size of your space, and you’re well on your way to a beautiful and inviting room.  

Pro-tip:  Scale is just as important with your area rugs.  An area rug needs to be large enough so that the front legs of your furniture rest on it.  A rug that’s too small will make your coffee table look like it’s floating on its own little island!

 

Don’t Forget the Fifth Wall

Ceilings are the canvas that often gets overlooked.

Including the ceiling in your design makes the room feel more complete and adds style to your space.

Treat it with the same creativity as your walls.

Whether it’s a subtle pop of color, a bold wallpaper, or elegant molding, adding interest overhead draws the eye upward, making the room feel more expansive.

 

 

a living room showing design mistakes - the sofa is too small, the artwork is two large and the area rug is too small for a blog about interior design mistakes.

Be Trendy, But Not Too Trendy

Trends are the spice of design, but too much can be overwhelming.

Combine trendy elements in your accessories or temporary pieces that can be easily switched out.

This way, your space remains fresh and modern without having to do a complete overhaul when trends inevitably change.

 

Add Your Personal Flair

Your home should tell your story, not just follow a design script.

While show-homes look nice, without any personal touches, they can feel cold and unwelcoming.

Sprinkle in elements that resonate with you – family photos, travel souvenirs, or that quirky piece you found at a flea market.

These personal touches create a home that’s not just beautiful but also uniquely yours.

 

Check your Art

When artwork is too high on a wall, it feels disconnected from the furniture and the overall room, making the space appear unbalanced. 

Hang your artwork so that the middle of the piece is at eye level (approximately 57 to 60 inches from the floor to the center of the piece) to ensure it can be easily appreciated.

If you have a collection, consider creating a gallery wall with a mix of sizes and styles. It’s like curating your own art exhibit right at home.

Pro-tip:  Does the image above, look a bit “off” to you? One of the reasons is the artwork.  Not only is it too big for that space, it’s the wrong shape.  Your artwork needs to mirror the wall i.e. A long rectangular wall needs a long rectangular piece of art.  

 

Put Functionality First

Every room in your home should be designed to make your life easier, not more complicated.

When adding new furniture or decor pieces, keep in mind comfort and practicality as well as aesthetics.

Otherwise, you might end up with a space that doesn’t work well for you or your family.

Functional design goes beyond just being practical; it’s a reflection of a home that works seamlessly with your lifestyle.

 

Include Negative Space

Negative space isn’t just empty; it’s an intentional break in your design.

If you skip using negative space in your design, things can get a bit overwhelming. 

Without those intentional breaks, the space might feel crowded or busy.

When you have too many things competing for attention, it can be hard for the eyes to relax and take everything in.

For example, if you have open shelves, don’t feel you have to fill up every shelf with something – leave some areas of the shelf intentionally bare to avoid visual clutter.

Negative space helps create balance, allowing elements to shine and making the overall design more enjoyable and visually appealing.

 

I hope these ideas inspire you and give you more confidence as you go about decorating your home.

Remember, your home is a canvas for your unique story, and each decision adds a brushstroke to the masterpiece.

Don’t worry if you’ve stumbled on a few design bumps – it happens to all of us.

The key is to embrace the learning process and make your space a reflection of the incredible person you are.

Here’s to creating a home that not only stands the test of time but also tells a story only you can tell.

Happy decorating!

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