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Some Decorating Don’ts

Posted on November 28 2013

Wowzers guys thank you so much for all your feedback on where to take the Design School next year.  Between here and Facebook I’ve got a fabulous list of suggestions, so thank you again. We will sit down with the stats and work out a schedule and next year the Design School is going on the road, very exciting!

I thought it might be fun this morn  to talk about some decorating do nots. There are certain rules when it comes to decorating that you can either adhere to or you can break, but in order to break them you first have to know them, obvious right. However what books, magazines, TV shows rarely talk about are the decorating don’ts. It’s hard to learn ahead of time what things you shouldn’t do even before you start so below is a little list I’ve compiled of things not to do, EVER!

1. Don’t choose paint from a chip, you need to see it on the wall as it will look and feel totally different. If you don’t want to mess up your walls buy a cheap roll of wallpaper (paint the back) as much of it as you can and loosely hang that. You need to paint a big old swatch before committing.

2. Don’t let someone else make choices for you or tell you what works or what doesn’t. For example if you tell people you are going dark I pretty much guarantee from friends, to family to decorators,  they will try and dissuade you. By all means get opinions and suggestions but never listen; I never do, whenever I have I’ve hated the result.

3. Never buy fabric, flooring, or anything like that immediately from the store. Get a swatch take it home and check it out in natural light and in the evening when the lamps are on.

4. Don’t let your furniture hug the walls (EVER). Pull pieces into the middle, angle or put something behind the sofa if it has to back the wall – it’s a game changer if you want your room to have a warmer feeling of comfort.

5. Don’t forget about the details, details turn rooms from drab to fab. Cushions, art, candles, flowers, objects accessories take rooms from drab to fab

6. Don’t have an overhead pendant or chandelier as your main light source as the light it casts is super unflattering. Back it up with lots of accent lighting around the room

7. Don’t have pairs of everything  – duos are not necessary bad except they can read as a little dull if you over do it!

8. Don’t have every piece of furniture or accessory in the room the same size – otherwise known as monotony of scale. Mix it up put something tall next to something small, throw in tall verticals like the odd floor lamp it will totally bring the room alive.

So there you have it, I’m not saying you won’t make mistakes if you decorate my way or in any sort of eclectic fashion you will but these pointers should hopefully stand you in good stead.

Below some inspirational images of Angel Dormers NYC apartment that we shot for my book, Decorating with Style. Intriguing, full to the brim with interesting finds and whats more its a rental, and its decorated from the heart. I love it!

Photography Graham Atkins Hughes

Photography Graham Atkins Hughes

Photography Graham Atkins Hughes

Photography Graham Atkins Hughes

Off to hit the gym and then breakfast on a beetroot juice and a handful of cashews. What fun (ish)!





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