When it comes to decorating, I hate to see a completely store bought room. I really hate to be able to identify the store. To feel loved, a room needs personal touches. That doesn’t actually mean everything has to be hand built or made, it just means put more effort into your selection than buying the entire sofa set just because it is a set.
Matching Vs. Coordinating
Good design coordinates, it does not often match. Matching means that two things are essentially the same. The mirror attached to your dresser matches. The three piece living room set matches. Matching is boring. Coordinating is bringing together two things that do not match, but are still in harmony. Like a baritone and soprano singing together, there must be harmony for it to sound good. Coordinating often relies on picking one element that ties a room together. If you use multiple patterns, that element might be accents in a solid color that is in all of those patterns. That accent then becomes the real cornerstone of the room because without it, it wouldn’t make sense.
To break up all the matching and give your room more character, try these tips. First off if you do have an attached mirror on your dresser please remove it. They always screw on from the back, you can keep the mirror and find a different way to use it somewhere else. Find a mirror whose dimensions work well with your dresser, shape is up to you, and hang it above your dresser. I am willing to bet it will look like a whole new dresser. Don’t be afraid if the wood frame doesn’t match perfectly; if that will bother you pick a mirror with a mirror, metal, or no frame at all. Next, no more than two pieces of furniture in your living room should match. This could be two chairs, two sofas, and two end tables. Now you can have all 6 of those in a room, but only two at a time match. Great furniture doesn’t even have to be expensive. Hit up resale shops and auctions, you can find great pieces that might need a little love. I doesn’t cost much to spray paint and reupholster a chair, but it will make a $20 chair look like $200.
Built in shelving almost always looks better than bought. When you buy shelves they almost never fit just right. So pick an option, either build them yourselves, or become more proficient with “building in” your large items. If you have a set of book shelves that almost fit, but not quite, then trim is your friend. Fill in that awkward gap between the shelving unit and the ceiling. If you have several separate bookshelves pushed together, trim out the seams so it looks like one piece. These details will have a profound effect on how the piece looks in the room.
Obviously if you create something you get to make it exactly how you want it. But not everyone can do that for one reason or another, and that’s fine too. Just do not be afraid to buy pieces that aren’t together on the showroom floor and to make each piece your own.
Michelle is a home maker and a part time blogger who blogs on home improvement DIY tips and tricks. She recently called CCS, carpet cleaning Sydney to get her carpet cleaned which had got stains left by her small daughter.