1. Get inspired.
Don't box yourself into a particular design style. Today's design is about bringing together a mixture of elements that inspire you. Maybe you're mostly contemporary, but a rustic lamp really inspires you. Don't be afraid to mix and match -- just make it your own distinctive style.
2. More is not always better.
Don't buy decorative items just to fill space. Find items that mean something to you and inspire you. Don't settle on something that's just okay because it fits your room or budget. It's worth the wait to save your money and get decorative pieces that fit your personality and make you smile!
3. Have a plan.
When you have a plan before you start decorating it helps you to create a room that is functional and creates synergy throughout.
4. Buy quality.
Discounts and bargains are great, but make sure it's a quality piece. Just because it's pretty, doesn't mean it's quality. Buy brands that you trust, and remember it's worth paying a little more for something that will last.
5. Explore color.
White is boring. Color brings personality and style into a room. Be bold! Find shades that make you happy and liven up your room. It's especially fun to explore your creativity in smaller rooms that you don't use as often, such as a guest bathroom.
6. Keeping up with the Jones' - not necessary.
Decorate for you, not your friends or guests. Your style should be uniquely yours. Looking at trends to give you ideas is fine, but make your space your own. You will be the one living with your choices every day.
7. Lighting can change a room.
Of course you need lighting to see, but think beyond the functional. Lighting can set the mood of the room and with so many unique styles and finishes to choose from, consider selecting lighting as you would furniture. Maybe instead of a traditional lamp, try a sconce or chandelier as part of your design theme.
8. Art comes in many forms.
Art doesn't have to come from a pricey gallery. It just has to have value to you. Framing your child's drawings makes lovely art for a kid's room. Think outside the box. Even a unique light or fan can be the focal art of the room!
9. Use all six room surfaces: four walls, a floor and ceiling.
Look up! There's more than just four walls to decorate in a room. Don't forget the ceiling. Extend the color on the walls into the ceiling to create a cohesive look to the room. Just be sure to choose a ¼ lighter shade of paint on the ceiling since horizontal planes tend to look darker than vertical planes. Or try ceiling tiles or different textures. Also, make sure you choose quality surfaces for your flooring. Your floor get's a lot of use, make sure it cleans and wears nicely.
10. Room design should blend.
With so many open floor plans, you need to consider how your new design will fit or flow into the other rooms of your home. Do the color schemes and design styles work together? Coordinate the metal finish from your kitchen into the metal surfaces of the lamps and coffee tables of the living room.
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