Not everyone is an interior designer at heart, but believe it or not, it’s easier than you think. Giving your home that creative flair can be as simple as getting from A to B, as long as you follow the right tips. Who knows – soon enough your home could be showcased in those glossy design magazines like a professional!
To start, you need to have an open mind and an eye for style, not to mention a refined design plan and commitment. You don’t want to start this kind of project unless you’re going to finish it so it is best to do your homework and plan out what you’d like to achieve.
Jump online and find your inspiration. Start researching what interior design styles you like and what colours would work best for the space you have, then structure your design project around the results. Visit sites like www.houzz.com.au and save your favourite images to look back on in the future. You could even use shop catalogues and social media platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest to follow different designers or home styles you enjoy.
Just make sure you save all your images and store them in a safe place such as your home computer or mobile device – you never know when you’ll need them! Having a collection of images served as inspiration can help to keep you on track with your desired style. Not to mention, it will prevent you from buying any unnecessary items on impulse!
What is your theme?
After a quick look at your collection of saved images, it should be easy (or not!) to figure out what your desired look is and get down to selecting the right design theme to follow.
If it’s not so easy to see what theme you most favour, look closely at the images you have chosen and group common characteristics together. Just remember not to be too technical, themes can always be general such as contemporary, federation or French provincial.
It is also a good idea not to follow trends too much. While you might love that bronze lampshade now, in a couple of years’ time you will be probably be over it. Follow your true tastes and what you love, that way it will survive the test of time!
How about colours?
You simply can’t forget a colour palette! It is one of the most important decisions in interior design. Will you be working with a neutral, warm or cool base? Once you’ve made this choice, select a further three to five colours that compliment your selection. Also, take a quick moment to ensure your selected colour palette will compliment your theme choice.
Show me the money!
What budget are you working with? This is a critical one that needs to be deciphered long before any action is taken. Create a budget that you can definitely afford and try not to splurge over – we know you’ll regret it in the long run! Try to invest 70 per cent of the budget on furniture and spend the remaining 30 on soft furnishings and accessories.
If you’re on a tight budget, create an expenditure timeline and mark out milestone purchases along the way. The more they are spread out the less they will impact you and it will also help you achieve that cohesive look you are after – you’ll just get there in stages.
Now the fun begins! Visit retail outlets and local homeware shops around your city, markets, or browse online for the perfect items for your home. You could even consider the temporary assistance of a professional stylist to access special trade-only furniture suppliers.
It is always a smart idea to purchase your big items first such as your sofa, coffee table, dining set, bed or bedside tables depending on what room you are working with. These items are the largest, most expensive and probably the most permanent furniture fixtures throughout your home so it is best to get these over and done with.
Next, it is time to buy your soft furnishing items to match your colour palette. These include rugs, curtains, sofa cushions, candles, bed linen and floor cushions. Don’t forget to browse through www.etsy.com for some handmade goodness. You’ll be amazed at the bargains you can pick up that have a creative and unique twist, helping to make your home that bit more personal!
It is always a wise idea to plan how you will position your new space. It is very easy to get carried away placing your new purchases but you need to remember to leave room of walkways and traffic flows, especially in open-plan living areas.
Positioning has a lot to do with the type and size of the space you are working with, so keep in mind that it might be a case of trial and error until you are able to find the perfect flow throughout your room. If you are lucky you might even have a space that allows you to mix up positioning every once in a while. This will help you to give your space a little refresh should it need it in the future!
The final finishes are what help to complete a look and take your home to that next level. Think of your home as an outfit – jewellery is what brings it to life! Accessorize with clocks, frames, vases, flowers and delicates.
You can mix items that match your colour palette with metallic objects of gold, silver and copper which add a dynamic modern twist to your room.
Don’t forget personal touches such as scents or photographs help to add personality to any room, defining it as yours. Trinkets from your travels and family heirlooms help to create that magical living space you’ve always wanted!
Let your creativity run wild and have fun – good luck!