You tried your best, but your living room just doesn’t look like all the amazing inspiration you see on Pinterest every day, does it?
That’s okay. You can try again – but this time, you’ll succeed. Why?
Because even though you might not be a professional interior designer, you can still design a great room. A few simple principles can take your room from messy amateur to stylish professional – and it isn’t even expensive!
“Yeah, I mean it would be nice, but why should I care?”
Well, simple: A nice home has a huge impact on your happiness and stress levels! Every time you see that couch that seems a little off, every time you look at your room and feel like something just isn’t as perfect as you want it – it all adds up.
Imagine walking into your room, and feeling like it’s meant to be like this.
It just feels right.
It’s like getting out of uncomfortable, itchy pants that you had to wear all day, and switch into cozy pajamas.
Imagine that for your home.
Do you like that idea? Want to have a home that feels cozy and warm?
Here’s how to do it:
When decorating your home, you probably made one or more mistakes, that diminish your home’s potential. Luckily, most of them are easy to fix!
Mistake 1: Too much symmetry
Are you a neat, order-loving person and have aligned everything perfectly? I totally feel you!
But sometimes, you need to break this order up, or your home might feel sterile and cold.
Solution: Add a different color, a different shape, or put a piece of furniture out of alignment. Not by only a bit – or it will look like it’s messy. Add asymmetrical pieces like chairs, display stands, side tables, plants, or mix it up with decoration that looks different without looking out of place.
Mistake 2: Size matters
I’d like a bigger apartment, with more space for furniture and decoration. Don’t you, too?
But when buying furniture, you have to remember to choose something for the room you have, not the room you want to have. Don’t buy a sofa that is way too big for your room. And don’t put a huge dining table in your one-person apartment, cramped up with all the other pieces.
Solution: If you have furniture that is too big or too small, put it in a different room where it fits, or remove it. If you can sell it and buy something different, you might even get money out of it!
Remember to keep enough open space around your furniture, or it will feel cramped. Put smaller items around big ones to keep them from fighting for visual attention. Big furniture looks great in a big room, but if you put it in a small room to mimic that style, you’ll only highlight how small your room is! Often, smaller furniture will make your room feel a lot more big and open, especially if you can leave some open spaces to breathe.
Mistake 3: Not keeping a coherent style
You have a mid-century modern living room, but loved that modern lamp and vintage coffee table?
Sometimes, you can pull it off, and it looks great. But often, it looks just wrong.
Solution: Variety is important, but it has to blend together. Love that rustic, vintage coffee table too much to give it away? Add mid-century modern side tables that look similar to create a design bridge connecting the coffee table to the rest of the room. Add some mid-century style decoration to it, and it will blend it a lot better!
Mistake 4: Attaching everything to walls
Putting something in the middle of the room can be scary. It’s like putting yourself out there, making yourself vulnerable.
But if you don’t spread your furniture out, your home will look bizarre and out of proportion. It can make it feel small, even stressed, and you lose so much opportunity!
Solution: Dare to move pieces away from the wall, even if only enough to just walk through it. It will make your furniture seem to float around instead of being “stuck”. You can then more easily add new pieces, or rearrange old pieces – and when you have to move stuff around to make space for guests, things won’t look ripped from their place!
Mistake 5: Not adding enough color and texture
I like a simple, minimalist style. A simple color palette. Modern, in white, grey, and black.
But if I designed my home with only that, it would look sad and depressing.
You need to add contrast to keep it alive, give your home personality with things that are different. Even if you want to stick to your style, and that’s good, add some specks of color, a different kind of texture, some decoration.
Solution: Find ways to add color – flowers, decor, pieces of furniture. Using black & white for your home? Add some dark wood or gold-framed side tables – adding variety without breaking your design! Using white wooden furniture everywhere? Add a light (not white!) piece, or use glass.
And of course, add decoration, anything from paintings to flowers. Even just a bowl to keep stuff from cluttering your desk can go a long way to mix it up a bit!
Once you identify the mistakes your made, fixing them doesn’t have to be hard! Start small, and when you like the changes you’re making, keep going until you fall in love with your home again!
Check out our carefully curated selection of (budget-friendly) mid-century furniture here, if your home needs a style upgrade!
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