TIP #10
Don’t make potentially disastrous mistakes in dealing with color.

Don't paint your walls then go out looking for fabrics to match. Paint can be mixed in any of a thousand colors, so select the final shades after upholstery, carpeting, and curtain fabrics are chosen.

Don't choose colors standing in a store. Try to take samples (of paint, fabrics, and floor coverings) back to your home and look at them in daylight and at night. Don't ignore the mood effects of colorred is exciting, pale blue soothing, green calming, and yellow is happyso choose color schemes that underscore the feeling you want to create in each room of your home.

TIP #9
Don’t ignore the importance of accessorizing correctly.

Make sure accessories are the correct size and scale for the surface you are decorating. Remember to create highs and lows with the placement of your accessories to create interest. When accessorizing, the eye tends to view triangular patterns as the most pleasing. Try to avoid too much symmetry in a room. Stiff placement of accessories and/or furniture in a room can make the room feel stiff and uncomfortable. Group your accessories in odd numbers for the most pleasing visual effect.

TIP #8
Don't keep those tired floral arrangements!

Dried floral arrangements normally have a life of 2-3 years and then should be disposed of. Silks may last longerbut make sure the style of the arrangement is not dated looking.

TIP #7
Don’t improperly use an area rug.

It can really throw off the look of a room. Never float a rug in the middle of the room. It should serve as an anchor to your furniture placement. Avoid using a rug that is too small for the space. With a typical sofa and love seat combination the rug should be no less then 5’ x 8’ in size. In the dining room the area rug should be large enough to allow the seating to remain on the rug even when pushed away from the table.

TIP #6
Don’t forget the impact of cohesion in the look of the room.

Do use the principle of repetition when planning shapes, colors, fabrics, and patterns. One red accent in a room may look like an afterthought whereas several red accents here and there will contribute to the color scheme. Do crosslink your rooms by repeating colors, fabrics, and themes in varying combinations.

TIP #5
Don’t Improperly Use Art Work.

One of the simplest ways to bring cohesion to your room is to examine the art work on the walls and make adjustments. A good reminder is to think “tall with tall” and “wide with wide.” Groupings of art work or a single picture should occupy about 2/3 of the space to achieve proper proportion. Do not automatically hang a mirror over your mantel. In most cases all that is reflected is the ceiling and the light fixturewhich is not what you want to be the focus of your room. Don’t hang artwork too high on the wall. A good rule of thumb is to hang it at eye level.

TIP #4
Don’t ignore the lighting in your room.

One large overhead light may light an entire room, but it will also make the room feel stark and cold. Make certain that your lighting is spread equally throughout your room. A very visually appealing way to do this is to place your lamps in a triangular pattern in your room. Use frosted bulbs and install dimmers. Lighting can really set the mood in a room and make it feel more cozy and inviting.

TIP #3
Don't turn your back on the focal point of the room.

Often, furniture will be arranged away from the important feature of the room, resulting in a layout that lacks impact and cohesion. Identify the focal point of the room (a fireplace, a view, a bed, an armoire) and focus your room around it.

TIP #2
Don’t forget to take the time to discover your own personal style.

By reading magazines, browsing online and in stores, you can learn what styles and colors really appeal to you. Do define a room's style in writing, being specific. (Not just "country French", but "French Country with gold , paired with blue & warm red accents – using wire baskets, copper pots, colorful pottery & lots of flowers & herbs in dented tin pitchers and pottery.)

TIP #1
And now…the number one deadly mistake of decorating…


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