9 Bedroom Decorating Mistakes Interior Designers Notice

February 8, 2018 1:33 am by admin
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9 Bedroom Decorating Mistakes Interior Designers Notice

The INSIDER Summary: INSIDER spoke to three interior designers to find out what people are doing wrong when they decorate their homes.People often buy rugs that are the wrong size and orient them the wrong way.

Open storage leaves clutter out in the open for everyone to see.If furniture matches too well, your house looks like a showroom.A room without enough lighting or accessories lacks personality.

Few know this better than interior designers, who have seen their fair share of fabulous (and, yes, mediocre) homes. If you’re planning a renovation or want to give your room a seasonal styling update without expert help, read on. We called on 11 leading tastemakers to find out what are the most common home décor mistakes they notice so that you don’t repeat them. Are you making these 11 subtle decorating faux pas? Here’s how to fix them.

“Oftentimes the bedroom gets overlooked when it comes to artwork,” Melissa Warner Rothblum and Julie Massucco Kleiner of Massucco Warner Miller told us. “Not being a public space, it’s easy to get all the basics into a bedroom and then leave the walls bare.” While people often reserve their best artwork for the living or dining room, Rothblum and Kleiner suggest putting the same attention on art in less prominent rooms: “You go to sleep and wake up in your bedroom almost every day—so why not see something wonderful on the walls?”

In a common area like a living room, a rug should be wider than the width of your furniture so that it serves as a base. In a bedroom, it should be perpendicular to the bed.

The Fix: “When it comes to small-apartment living, we need to go for lighter fabrics and finishes that will lift the space,” she says. Opt for sofas or curtains in linen or lightweight fabric, and choose a light-reflecting color palette such as white, taupe, or pale yellow.

DécorFeb 17, 2018Interior Designers Always Notice These Bedroom Decorating Mistakes

The Mistake: London-based interior designer Abigail Ahearn says one simple styling mistake can prevent a room from reaching its full potential. “Without sounding like a drama queen, scale and proportion are the holy grail of design,” says Ahearn. “If everything is the same size or if everything is either too big or too small, your room will read like a hot mess.”

The Fix: Layer lighting. “Be sure to have lighting on dimmers and also coming from multiple sources at different heights, [such as] floor lamps and table lamps. And always choose soft white bulbs,” she says. Harsh fluorescent or white lights can make a space feel stark and uninviting. “Warm lighting not only sets the mood but also makes a room feel intimate and aglow.”

INSIDER asked three interior designers about the most common mistakes they see people make when decorating their homes. Here’s what they had to say.

The Fix: “Find a piece you love, save up, take the plunge, and then build the whole room around it,” she says. On a budget? “Hunt around on Craigslist to see if someone local is selling your dream sofa, or check out sites like Viyet or Chairish,” she recommends.

You don’t want your home to look like a furniture showroom. A collected look adds personality.

Extra lighting doesn’t just make it easier to see — it also helps a space feel more dynamic.

The Fix: Ahearn uses this handy analogy to perfect proportions. “The easiest trick is to think of your space as a city and fill it with a combination of heights and proportions. Look at any cityscape and you’ll find this intriguing mix of scale and a unique blend of fascinating shapes—that’s what you want to nail!”

Interior designers have an eye for colors, patterns, and textures, as well as a great sense of how furniture works in a space. They can tell when something is off, whether it’s the orientation of a rug or the amount of light in a room. They also know plenty of ways to make a space better that others might not notice or think of.

The Fix: “Instead, add three to five low-maintenance indoor plants or trees,” he recommends. Among Flynn’s favorites are fiddle-leaf figs, maidenhair ferns, and lemon button ferns. If you find watering plants a hassle, try his handy hack: “I usually just stick the lightweight plants in the shower and let it run for two to three minutes and drain before bringing back into the room.”

The Mistake: Rugs have the ability to completely transform a room and create a point of interest, but home style expert Emily Henderson says it can be hard to judge the right size for your home. Her pet peeve? Small rugs. “I see it virtually every day, and it pains me, especially when it’s so easily avoided,” she says. “A living room rug should really ground the whole seating around it. It tells everyone that this is where the conversation is. A small rug makes it feel disjointed and really cheapens everything.”

Another mistake that Haenisch always notices? Neglected bedding: “If you think about it, we spend almost one-third of our lives in bed. Nice linens are worth the investment!” Pay special attention to the quality and look of your sheets—not only will it improve your décor, but you might sleep better too. 

“We think it’s so sad when a bedroom ceiling is left bare or has a ho-hum flush mount stuck up there,” add the Massucco Warner Miller designers. “Have fun with lighting in the bedroom! There is no rule that says chandeliers are reserved for dining rooms.”

We know it right away when walking into a great hotel room: Everything is perfectly proportioned, the bed is meticulously made, and the lighting casts a soft glow on attractive and functional furniture. The rug has the ideal softness under bare feet, and the artwork is eye-catching but not overpowering. Hoteliers craft their guest rooms so effortlessly, so why can it feel so hard to replicate the same look at home?

The designers at Massucco Warner Miller also suggest paying special attention to the headboard: “There’s no reason for boxy beige headboards. Do an offbeat fabric on your headboard, or choose an unusual shape.” The headboard covers such an important portion of the space and should be treated as such. “If an off-the-shelf headboard has uninspiring fabric options, have it recovered just like you would a chair—and don’t hold back with color!”

“For example, I wouldn’t buy matching a bed frame with matching end tables because it’ll just make your room look like a catalogue,” interior designer Max Humphrey told INSIDER. “The best rooms are ones that look like they’ve been collected over time.”

PinterestPhoto: Courtesy of Emily Henderson; DESIGN: Brady Tolbert

DécorNov 9, 201611 Décor Mistakes Interior Designers Always Notice

The Mistake: Nate Berkus might be a leading industry voice when it comes to the hottest trends, but his number one tip for styling a truly unique space is to stop following fads. “The mistake people make is that they’re often insecure. They look over their shoulder and listen to what everyone else is talking about instead of sitting down and asking, What do I really love?” Berkus tells MyDomaine. “I think the best interiors historically from over years 300 ago to now have always been spaces where people let their personal style rise to the surface and ignore the societal norms and trends.”

The Fix: Position an artwork in an unexpected, subtle location and follow Humphrey’s hanging tip: “Eye level or so is a good starting point, and I always err on the lower side of that.” Use a removable hook to test the placement, and wait a few weeks before affixing it permanently.

Wollack and Zwickl are also careful not to use too many bright colors in a bedroom. “We like to use calm, natural colors to keep the space serene and timeless. To add a sheen texture that is not overpowering, we suggest a natural grass cloth.” Warm, light neutrals work beautifully in the bedroom, and a variation in textures helps the space feel softer and more inviting.

Interior designer Trip Haenisch always notices furniture that is too large or small for the bedroom. “Properly scaled furniture is tricky,” he says. “Everything looks the same size online. If you lay out the furniture with blue tape, it can help avoid a lot of mistakes.” To do this, take the measurements of the piece you want to buy, and tape the width and length in a rectangle on the floor. You’ll have a much better sense of the piece in the space.

It may boil down to a few decorating mistakes designers always notice when walking into clients’ bedrooms. From ignoring clutter to failing to address mood lighting, these small errors can have a huge impact on the overall look and feel of a room. We tapped some of the best interior designers in the industry to share the mistakes to avoid at all cost when decorating a bedroom. Are you guilty of these decorating faux pas?

This post was originally published on February 9, 2017, and has since been updated.

The Mistake: When planning a room, interior designer Betsy Burnham of Burnham Design says, people often fall into this simple styling trap: “For some reason, people love to push their furniture pieces up to the walls of their rooms. This makes designers crazy, and it really doesn’t save or create more space!” she says.

The Fix: Try “conversational furniture placement,” which focuses on grouping accents. “Pull pieces toward one another and off the walls to create more intimate, useful seating,” she says. If you’re unsure, she recommends using a sketch pad. “I always encourage people to draw even the most basic plan and play with the placement of their furniture, just as we do.”

One of Haenisch’s pet peeves in the bedroom is a bed that gets swallowed up by pillows: “I prefer using four regular pillows—two on each side—and only one or two decorative pillows maximum.” When it comes to decorative pillows, it’s all about quality, not quantity!

The Fix: “Living rooms almost always need [a rug that’s] at least 8 by 10 feet, if not 9 by 12 feet. You heard it. Considering a 4 by 6? Don’t. That’s fine next to a bed, in a kitchen, or for an entranceway, but a 4-by-6-foot rug will assuredly not work in your living room,” says Henderson. As a rule of thumb, she says a rug should be big enough to fit at least two chairs or sofa legs on it.

There is such a thing as matching too well.Gaf_Lila/Shutterstock

Sometimes you need more than an overhead light.MangoNic/Shutterstock

This story was originally published on November 8, 2016, and has since been updated.

“It should be hitting your bed like a ‘T’ but they’ll run it the long way of the bed, instead, so that it’s not underneath the nightstand and it looks kind of funny,” Caitlin Murray of Black Lacquer Design told INSIDER.

SEE ALSO: 12 useful gadgets that will do your housework for you FOLLOW US! INSIDER is on Facebook NOW WATCH: A company designed a bed that makes itself More: Design Interior Decorating interior design Interior Designer

The Mistake: “When people ask me what my biggest Stop doing that! peeve is, it’s adding elements of life with a bunch of sticks shoved into a tall vase and then stuck into a corner,” says Brian Patrick Flynn of Flynnside Out Productions. “I think this happens because homeowners run out of steam (and cash) at the end of a redesign, and they want to add some element of height and organic texture, but it really doesn’t add anything at all to the room.”

Make sure you’re including a variety of neatly-organized accessories and pay attention to color groupings. You want an artful, eclectic mix of items, not a chaotic mess.

The Mistake: Finding the perfect décor for a small apartment space can be a serious design challenge. Homepolish’s Tali Roth says she often notices one key mistake in small rooms: dark furniture. “Many people tend to lean toward heavy, bulky, and dark furniture pieces,” says Roth. While it might seem like a harmless choice, she says dark décor instantly makes a room feel cramped and cumbersome.

The Fix: Make it personal. Ask yourself, What does the space mean to me? What are the colors and textures I love, and what is the feeling that I want to have when I get home? Push trends aside, and make design choices based on your personal aesthetic to create a space that you’ll love for years to come.

The Mistake: Lighting decisions might seem like a practical part of the design process, but according to Athena Calderone, founder of EyeSwoon, it’s an aspect people often misjudge. “Lighting is incredibly important to any space. When lighting is washed over you from above, it can be unflattering and harsh,” she says. While overhead lighting often seems like the most obvious choice, Calderone says considered spaces have a plethora of light sources to create ambience.

PinterestPhoto: Karen Rosalie for Gray Malin; DESIGN: Laurel & Wolf 

The Fix: Opt for a round dinner table, which has the ability to accommodate more guests. “Purchase a 36- to 42-inch round dining table, preferably with a leaf extension. It can seat two people for everyday use and expand to up to six for larger parties! Another top tip: Use interior design website Floor Planner to plan a dining area before committing to large furniture.”

The Mistake: Finding the perfect piece of art for your home is only half the battle, says interior designer Max Humphrey. A key mistake Humphrey notices is when art is hung too high or positioned in an obvious way. “I think it’s a mistake to be too precious about highlighting the placement of your art. Just because you spent some money on an artwork doesn’t mean it won’t still look awesome over a sideboard in the hallway with a lamp and a pile of books right in front of it,” he says.

The Mistake: When it comes to getting more bang for your buck, Homepolish interior designer Ashlie Mastony says people often make the mistake of buying lots of inexpensive, small accents. It might seem counterintuitive, but she says it’s far more financially savvy to invest in one statement (and, yes, possibly expensive) accent instead. “The most common interior design mistake I see is when people buy lots of small furniture pieces, or piles of accessories, to avoid investing in a big high-impact item like a great sofa, an awesome headboard, or an amazing piece of art,” she tells us. “In the end, the little things cost just as much and space feels cluttered rather than cohesive.”

Between selecting furniture, experimenting with paint swatches, and positioning art, there are hundreds of small decisions that go into styling the perfect space. Even the slightest misjudgment, like hanging artwork too high or choosing paint in a gloss rather than matte finish, can have a surprising effect on a room.

The Mistake: Designing your dream space often encourages you to make decisions based on an ideal lifestyle rather than reality. While the thought of constantly throwing long-table dinner parties and extravagant events might sound appealing, the reality is often quite different. If you live in a small apartment, Chicago-based interior designer Brooke Lang says to avoid buying a large dinner table unless you’re sure you’ll use it. “It’s a huge mistake to buy a large dining table with six to eight chairs. Every inch counts in a small space, so flexibility is key,” she says.

The Fix: Always map out your space before committing to décor. “To avoid overcrowding or under-furnishing the space, keep gathering dimensions. Mark the height, width, and even the depth of furniture pieces using blue painter’s tape directly to the wall. This way you can visually see how much space you actually have to work with, instead of making guestimates,” he says.

“When your nightstand does not have storage, things start to pile up and a create an unnecessary mess,” explain Wollack and Zwickl. “It’s best to have nightstands with drawers that can hold books, chargers, and other necessities. We try to only use nightstands that have drawers with built-in chargers so there aren’t a lot of exposed cords.”

Explore More:Interior Designhome decor tipshome styling adviceinterior design secretsMistakeshomeStyle

It’s the little styling touches that make a space look and feel complete. Don’t underestimate how important they are.

Explore More:Bedroom Design TipsDecorating Mistakesinterior designer tipsBedroom Decorating TipsHow to Decorate a BedroomBedroom DécorMistakesStylehome

Hide clutter with covered storage.Johnny Michael/Shutterstock

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“It’s always nice to have a budget made and leave some money for art and accessories,” Moore said. “Those are just as important as the big pieces of furniture, the rugs, the TV, or whatever it is you want in your space.”

The Mistake: If you’re prone to making décor decisions on a whim, interior designer Mikel Welch says, you might be making a vital error. Before making a purchase, Welch says, it’s important to gather the dimensions of each piece to form a plan: “One of the most common interior design mistakes people make is relying on the eye to measure a space. Instead of purchasing furniture pieces because it’s your favorite, consider the overall volume of the space. Measure every nook and cranny.”

“A bedroom is supposed to be relaxing and breathable,” Shannon Wollack and Brittany Zwickl of Studio Life.Style tell us. “We suggest eliminating unnecessary items and making sure the furniture is not too large for the room.” Adequate storage can help minimize clutter. For the items you want to keep in sight, small trays and catchalls can help everything feel more organized.

“If you’re going to have open storage, like shelves or nightstands that have an open base, it’s really, really important to consider what you’re going to be putting on that, because that becomes your design,” said Murray.

“Sometimes people will have overhead lighting and they think that’s enough, but I like to layer lighting,” interior designer Holly Hickey Moore told INSIDER. “Have ambient lighting from your floor lamps and table lamps.”

For interior designer Tim Campbell, there is more to a bedroom than just overhead lighting—reading lights are also essential: “Add indirect and task lighting that keeps the glare of light away from the eye,” he says. The more sources of lighting you have, the better it is for the eyes (and the mood).

The rug should be big enough to hold all of the furniture.Artazum/Shutterstock

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