So…….you’ve just moved in to your new place. You’re excited, overwhelmed and ready to turn this empty space into a warm, inviting home that you will cherish for years to come. Before you head over to your local furniture store and start racking up your credit card, hit the brakes and read through some helpful tips to make sure you get it right the first time.
1. Determine your Inspiration. This of course can happen in the months before you actually move in, but take some time to figure out your style and what attracts you the most. Design magazines, Pinterest and Instagram can all serve as visual materials to get you started. The inspiration does not have to be a completely finished room either. Your inspiration can be a piece of art that you adore or the print on a throw pillow that makes your heart skip a beat. There is nothing wrong with decorating a room around something that you love or feel inspired by.
2. Don’t rush! I referenced this earlier but I really mean it. Rome was not built in a day and your home should certainly not be furnished that way either. Maybe you are aiming to host a housewarming party in the first few weeks, but don’t let that rush you in to buying, or more accurately settling on some items that you think will get you by for now. Your home should be a collection of items that make you feel a certain way. The pieces that make you say, “Oh yes, I need that!” when you see them for the first time. If you surround yourself with things that you love, your home will be a happier place.
3. Matching is so overrated. Dated and mainstream decor will leave you with the impression that every item in a room needs to match. Don’t waste your time with that. The result will be a generic, lifeless space that feels more like a furniture showroom. This is not to say that anything goes and you can shove anything in to a room and make it work. Pieces should be coordinating and should follow a relative color scheme. The scale and proportion of your furnishings should fit the room. So throwing a giant sectional sofa in your smallish family room is not going to work. Before you bring anything home, take down the dimensions, grab some painters tape and tape out the area of the item on the floor or wall that you will be placing it. Does it feel right? Is there space to move around? If no, sorry but you must move on and know that there will be something out there that will be a better fit.
4. Don’t underestimate the power of texture. Time and time again we come across rooms that feel flat, univiting, and perhaps downright cold. The homeowner tries to infuse or change colors to counteract the lackluster space and for some reason, it is still not working. The room may just be starving for some texture. Natural materials such as Raffia, Linen, Jute do wonders to warm a space. Think storage boxes, baskets, vases, etc. Adding curtain panels to bare window will instantly warm up a room. Layering a throw blanket over your sofa with some pillows in a texture different from the sofa fabric will add interest.
5. Invest wisely. It is tempting to jump on the bandwagon of the lastest trend popping up on your Pinterest feed. It is totally ok to give it to the trends that you love in a small, tasteful way. If animal prints are all the rage in Home Furnishings and you love it, opt to display it in the form of a throw pillow, but maybe not in a pair of armchairs. You’ll want to invest your money in to the pieces that you will have for a long time such as a well made, comfortable sofa in a neutral, durable fabric that will stand the test of time.