Functional layout- Interior design must begin with a functional layout of a room. To begin, we suggest looking online for the numerous free offerings of online tools for room layout and design. In these design programs you can input room measurements, furniture measurements and then play with room layout to see what is most optimal. We learn a lot of our floor plan mistakes the hard way, so why not virtually design your room first, avoiding the drudgery of moving heavy furniture around, and failing repeatedly to get the proper layout. Functionality of your home is very dependent on individual lifestyles. If you have an empty nest, then you may be more willing to invest in expensive pieces and room decor, while busy families may prefer an open floor plan that is unobstructed by numerous decorative objects. Consider your individual living needs and then choose the right design software that can help you achieve your ideal layout.
Decorative objects- It seems frivolous to add objects into a room that have no real use. Why would I buy something that I cannot use? Well, the answer is simple—because it makes a style statement, thereby adding to your decor. An eye for appealing aesthetics is something that you may not posses right away, but through trial and error, you can discover the correct assortment of decorative objects that work in your home. A lot of interior designers say that if you absolutely love something, then buy it, you will find a place for it and a way to make it work. This mantra may work for those of us with a seasoned design knowledge, but not for the more timid newcomers to design. If you are at a loss, we suggest browsing through magazines and interior showrooms to see what you love. Take notice of the way showrooms display their decorative objects; notice that most things are placed thoughtfully into groupings and not strewn about individually through the room. Most of all, buy what you love; what speaks to who you are.
Splurge on seating- Most designers will tell you that if you are going to splurge on one item, then let it be the sofa. Choosing the correct seating for a room is overwhelming! What color do you choose? What fabric? What size? How much should you spend? What is a good quality sofa? This New York Times article offers some insightful advice when it comes to choosing a high-quality sofa. Visiting numerous design showrooms will also help you in the initial search of style options that suit your needs and tastes. But before venturing out to shop, MEASURE! It would be awful to fall in love with a piece only to discover that it is too large for your space. We suggest you narrow down your choices to a few final options and then choose based on highest quality. A sofa can be a lifelong investment when the best quality is purchased, so buy the best that you can afford. Oh, and choose a fabric that you won’t grow tired of who wants to live with a floral patterned couch or a dated “it was hot when I bought it” color the rest of their lives?
Stick with classic lines- Whether you are a poor student trying to furnish your first apartment or you are upgrading to the home of your dreams—it is always best to keep the lines of your larger (more expensive) furniture pieces classic. Classic lines are classic for a reason—they will never go out of style. Why spend $5000 on a sofa with bold angular lines that will date itself in 5 years? You can incorporate trends in less expensive pieces, but its best to keep your main furnishings simple, clean and classic. Look to the dining room in the image below. The black dining chairs are classic and go with any decor; they stay on-trend via the leopard fabric that can easily be changed, while the shape of the chair will never go out of style and is a great investment piece.
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