- Choose Furniture That Doesn't Fit
You wouldn't wear clothes in a size that's baggy or skin tight, so why would you choose furniture that doesn't fit in your room? Before you shop for furniture, whether you're buying new or at a garage sale, measure your space, think about where you're going to put the piece, and write down notes. Resist the temptation to buy a too-big sofa, thinking you can put it on an angle if it doesn't fit. Write down the measurements an stick to it.
It's just as bad to buy pieces that are too small, thinking you can add more pieces to fill the space. Plan out your arrangement, think it over, and then find the pieces that are just right.
- Use Too Many Patterns and Prints
Don't pick up just any fabric or piece of furniture you like, thinking you can work around it. Plan your color scheme, select a main pattern, then find coordinating stripes, small prints, and plaids that enhance your choice.
Follow the Rule of 3: Select one main pattern, usually a large print. Then find one small, coordinating print and one stripe or plaid. Then call it quits. If you need another fabric, think about using a solid-colored texture or interesting weave instead of another pattern or print.
- Float a Rug in the Middle of the Room
The elements in a room should be connected, both visibly and physically. A rug on the floor adds color and a connecton between pieces of furniture. The rug should be tucked under the front legs of chairs, sofas, and tables.
A rug placed in the middle of a room, unanchored, poses a safety hazard. It would be easy to trip on an edge or corner of the rug or slip and slide if the rug moves.
- Push All the Furniture Up Against the Wall
You may think that a room will look larger if the middle of the floor is open, without furniture. But the opposite is true. Unless you're going to have a dancing party in the middle of your room, move the furniture into groupings in the center.
Arrange a sofa with a table behind it, away from the wall with a walking space behind. Show off the back of the sofa and arrange decorative items and a lamp for reading behind it. Move chairs out of corners and you'll have a more open, airy look in your room.
- Put Out All Your Collectibles
Whether you collect knick knacks from travels like ash trays or salt and pepper shakers or fine pieces of sculpture or one-of-a-kind hand-blown glass, you shouldn't put everything out at one time.
Do your best to select only the most important pieces, either in monetary or sentimental value, and get rid of the rest. If you can't bear to throw the pieces away, put them away and rotate the items on display. Less really is more!
- Decorate With Family Heirlooms Whether You Like Them or Not
Just because your grandparents chose to decorate in Victorian style doesn't mean that you have to. If you want to use something that was handed down, select one special piece and use it as an accent in your home. But get rid of the rest of the pieces that you don't want. Your space should reflect who you are, not who the people are who went before you.
Are you guilty of any of these no-no's? If not, great. But we're not done yet. Read on for more decorating mistakes that you should try to avoid at all costs.