Top 10 Decorating Don’ts

Decorating Don't #10 :: Too Many Pillows!!

Here is a list of some of my interior design “don’ts" – however, these rules aren't written in stone, there are always exceptions.  Use the below list as a guideline when designing your space ::

1.     Matchy-Matchy Furniture.  Matchy-matchy is boring -- you always want one unexpected element in a room.  Step away from the matched furniture sets and avoid the "catalog look." Think blending instead of matching.

2.     Too Bright Overhead Lighting.  You’ll hear me say this over and over again ::  Too much/too bright overhead lighting can cast shadows and be deeply unflattering.  Lean towards more ambient light like table lamps, floor lamps, chandeliers and/or pendant lighting, and sconces.

3.     Mis-Hung Curtain Hardware.  Curtain rods hung too low crowd the windows.  Mount the rod high to let in more light.  Too narrow curtain rods.  Don’t block your view/light by hanging your curtains too narrowly so they block the light or view when the window treatments are stacked (pushed back.)

4.     Over-Doing It.  The adage “too much is never enough” doesn’t apply to interior design.  Edit, edit, edit.

5.     Pairs of Everything.  This follows in the too matchy-matchy camp.  Pairs aren’t always a no-no, but mix it up with trios or statement pieces.

6.     Beds + Sofas On a Diagonal.  If done wrong, it can make too much of a statement, take up valuable space and make the room feel unbalanced.

7.     Art Hung Too High.  Unless it’s part of a tall grouping, hang art at eye-level to avoid neck cramps.

8.     Trying Too Many Trends at Once.  Trends are fun, but they do come and go and applying too many trends into a single space can make it look dated.  Fast.  Bring trends into a room via accessories that can be easily swapped out when trends change.

9.     Ignoring Scale.  Scale is one of the most important elements of design.  Don’t end up with furniture that doesn’t fit the scale of a space, like too-small furniture in a large airy room.  An improper scale offense I see all too often is the "floating magic carpet" -- area rugs should always be in contact with your furniture in order to ground it.  That being said, you should always have a mix of big and small, tall and short furnishings and accessories in a room – it gives it life and interest.

10.  Pillow Overload.  Pillows are a great way to bring color, texture and pattern into a room, but if it takes you 20 minutes to make your bed or your butt can’t comfortable find the seat cushion, you’ve got a problem.