Decorating tips 7 foolproof interior design rules to follow mydomaine
This Is How Interior Designers Decorate A Room From Mydomaine

This Is How Interior Designers Decorate A Room From Mydomaine This Is How Interior Designers Decorate A Room From Mydomaine

Your deliverable: A floor plan (or a few floor plan options) depicting how you want your space to flow, complete with all the furniture you’ll need.

When creating a classic minimalistic interior, it’s all about the base color. Subdued hues rule here—from biscuit to greige and every ecru-inspired tone in between. Why? It’s clean, fresh-looking, and inspires a sense of calm. But just because classic minimalism tends to be color-averse, it doesn’t have to be bland or boring. In fact, minimalism at its finest is quite the opposite.

The challenge of working within the pared-back aesthetic is how little you actually have to work with. This makes the decision process even trickier than usual. You really have to consider each piece carefully before it enters the room, but this also means the end result is more thoughtful and considered. Your goal is to create a space that anyone would want to spend time in.

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Your deliverable: Your furniture plan complete with a lighting map—and a list of your lighting needs.

Your deliverable: A detailed shopping list outlining each piece of furniture you need to purchase. Don’t forget to measure everything twice before confirming your order.

This story was originally published on November 28, 2016, and has since been updated.

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If you truly want to embrace the minimalist design look and feel, these need to be cleared, stat. Ask yourself what can be eliminated, what can be stored out of sight, and what items aren’t essential; then organize according to priority. Be consistent with this process and come back to each room every few months with a fresh set of eyes. You’ll find there’s more you can simplify each time. To make sure your surfaces stay clear, give everything a special spot and stick to it.

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To prevent this dilemma from happening at all, we recommend putting Colleen Madsen’s “one in, one out” rule into practice. It goes a little something like this: For every item that comes into your home, something else should go out in turn. The 365 Less Things editor swears by this simple philosophy. “The one-in item does not need to match the one-out item, although to make a difference it would need to be of a least equal size or—better still—bigger,” she says. “It generally works out that they are similar items because it is usually that you are replacing one item with another,” says Madsen.

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A minimalistic room with neutral tones can tend to feel cold or bland, but there’s one foolproof trick that remedies this every time: texture. Turn up the temperature with knitted throws, beaded pillows, sheepskin rugs, and velvet décor for that much-needed comfort factor. While restraint is usually advised, feel free to go wild with these sensory touch points (so long as they’re in the same tonal family).

Lastly, add in accessories in your space as you create layers that will make it feel lived in. A mistake people often make is to purchase a ton of small accessories instead of the big pieces first because they’re afraid of committing to a design scheme. By picking the bigger items first, you’ll avoid ending up with a ton of small accessories that don’t work together. When picking accessories, consider art for the walls, storage like baskets and trays, coffee table books, coasters, vases, and anything else that might enhance your space while still keeping it livable and practical. Repeat the same steps 8 through 10 to budget your accessories.

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You’ve had time to digest your overall plan and aesthetic for the space, now it’s time to take concrete action. Make a list of every single piece of furniture you want. Consider side tables, sofas, lounge chairs, entryway consoles, and bar cabinets. Now is not the time to restrain yourself with budgets or measurements—let yourself dream up your ultimate wish list regardless of what actually makes sense. Have you always wanted a chaise longue? Maybe you’d like a vanity to get ready in the morning? Write it all down.

If you want to introduce some color, be sure to choose solid pigments that are easy on the eyes and fuse well with the neutrals, such as earth-tone browns, blues, tans, and greens.

Your deliverable: A painting plan complete with colors and paint finishes.

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Paring things down to the basics and ditching the superfluous can do wonders for your sanity—not to mention it looks super sophisticated and sleek. From monochromatic minimalism to laid-back luxury, this simple approach to interior design is one of our favorites. But just like the no-makeup makeup trend, it’s not as simple as it looks. If you’ve been a longtime fan of the look but are unsure about how to get started, our step-by-step approach to minimalist design will help you kick things off.

Now that you know all the steps to styling a minimalistic home, we want to take this opportunity to reiterate the underlying philosophy behind it: Keep it simple. Tone everything down, pare everything back, and abide by the “less is more” approach. That said, don’t think your new décor has to be boring. As you can see from our image selection (when done well), minimalist design can be beautiful, warm, rich, and inviting.

Your deliverable: A core list of activities that take place in your home and the requirements that accompany them (e.g., a desk for working from home or a table to play board games).

Chances are that during your furniture sourcing, you came across items you absolutely loved but that didn’t fit your budget, but that doesn’t mean you should cross them off forever. Keep these pieces aside and see if you could purchase them down the line or if the splurge is worth it. After all, one investment piece can elevate the furniture of a whole room, if chosen carefully. The types of pieces you may want to splurge on are unique statement pieces that will make a big impact on your overall design, or timeless larger items like sofas that you can see yourself keeping for decades.

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Now that you have a clear idea of what you need and where you need it, it’s time to start assigning dollar figures. To do this, input your furniture list into a spreadsheet with a total budget amount at the bottom—pick a figure you’re comfortable with and that seems reasonable with the amount of things you have to buy. Then, start assigning numbers to each item according to how much you think it costs or how much you feel comfortable spending on each. Play with the amounts until you arrive at a total that’s under your planned total. Remember to budget at least 20% for unplanned issues, taxes, delivery, and other fees.

PinterestPhoto: Alyssa Rosenheck; DESIGN: Jennifer Robin Interiors for Rue Magazine

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Your deliverable: A short list of a couple of splurge items to consider investing in for the long run.

Your deliverable: An accessories plan to add finishing touches to your décor and, at the end, a beautiful home you’ll look forward to coming home to.

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When it comes to designing a minimalistic space, remember to just take it one step at a time. Then sit back and truly enjoy the peaceful, calming, clutter-free space you’ve created. It feels good, doesn’t it?

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Naturally, we’re big fans of a white room, but not all bleached-out paints are created equal. Just ask interior design and author Will Taylor. “Yellow undertones give a white paint a warmer and creamier appearance, while blue undertones give a crisper look,” he tells MyDomaine. “A space with lots of natural light is likely to look warmer, so you can use a cooler shade of white to balance the room. Rooms that are artificially lit with LED or fluorescent lighting can look cool, so go warmer,” says Taylor.

Once you have a furniture plan, use the same floor plan to map out your lighting. Consider all sources of light: pendants, flush mounts, recessed, sconces, table or floor lamps—but be mindful of which types of lighting require an electrician and which ones don’t. Add floor lamps near lounge chairs and sofas, and table lamps on side tables, buffets, and consoles. At the very least, every room should have three sources of lighting at eye level, positioned around the room in a triangular shape. 

Now that you know your needs and wants, it’s time to place these items in a floor plan to see which ones make the cut. Use a paper and pen or an app like LucidChart to make a floor plan to scale, and start dropping furniture pieces in. Again, don’t limit yourself with budget—consider only spatial requirements. As a guide, leave three feet of walking space in high traffic areas and one to two feet between sofas and tables.

Your deliverable: A list of everything you’ll keep, sell, give, or donate—with actionable plans for each.

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The first step to decorating is to know where you’re going—and in order to do this, you need to have a plan. Start with gathering inspiration: interior images, furniture you love, textures, and materials. Group everything into a folder or Pinterest board to keep a clear and coherent vision in one space.

Your deliverable: A detailed budget plan to guide you through the purchasing phase.

Your deliverable: An ultimate wish list of everything you want in your space, regardless of space or budget.

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In this case, it truly pays to buy quality over quantity and invest in classics that will stand the test of time (and spark your interest). Impulse buys on trendy items that you’ll tire of quickly doesn’t work with minimalist design. Choose well-made pieces that are built to last, will withstand daily use, and look better as a result. Patina is everything. Besides, it’s much better for the environment. (Landfills are pretty full these days.)

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Once you have all your inspiration in one place, find the common threads. Do you have a penchant for marble, minimal designs, the color blue? Identify which items are catching your eye, and use these pieces, colors, textures, and materials as a base for your design plan. The goal isn’t to go overboard with any of them, but to create a coherent base and style for your space.

It’s astonishing how much one person can acquire in a short span of time. The empty kitchen drawers, bedroom closet, and bathroom cupboards from when you first moved in are suddenly full of nonessentials and unused products that are now collecting dust. Even when you can’t see it, this “stuff” is cluttering your headspace and taking up valuable room in your home. It’s time to clear out that junk drawer.

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You may think that the best time to pick a paint color is at the beginning, but we prefer choosing it at the end. Why? It’s easier to pick a tone to complement your entire furniture collection than the other way around. Pick paint samples and look at them against the furniture you’ve chosen until you find the perfect match. Examine them against fabric or material samples to make sure that everything works together. If you can, get sample pots and paint one-foot squares on your wall to look at under different lights throughout the day. Each paint will look radically different under natural light than it does on a paint chip.

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You may love small midcentury settees, but is it practical for your lifestyle? Identify your core needs so you don’t end up with a design that’s pretty but impractical. Consider how many people you want to seat in your living room or at your dining table; what type of activities take place in your home: Do you love playing board games, throwing cocktail parties, napping on the sofa, or watching Netflix marathons? Let your lifestyle guide your floor plan. Should your sofa face the TV, the fireplace, or a pair of lounge chairs? Should it sit in the middle of the room or by a sunlit window? How big should it be? These are all questions you’ll need to have answers to before picking furniture.

Interior designers know this all too well—when juggling dozens of clients and project, their approach to decorating is less akin to intuition and closer to a top-level project management method, complete with plans, spreadsheets, and actionable to-do lists. By breaking down each aspect of interior decorating, they can track their progress and keep a décor plan on schedule and on budget. Better yet, they can easily ensure that whichever individual piece they choose will work within the overall scheme of the room or even the home. So how do you decorate a room from start to finish using a project management approach? We outline the 12 steps that will get you from blank slate to beautiful space—and how to tackle it in just one weekend.

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There’s nothing quite like the feeling of a freshly spruced space. While science suggests messy people are smarter, studies have shown that women who live in cluttered environments are likely to have high levels of the stress hormone cortisol. (Sound familiar?) For those of us who lead busy lifestyles, keeping our homes clean requires daily diligence, but we have a better idea: Become a minimalist.

Look around: What do you see? If it’s anything like our surroundings, there are piles of paper (mostly bills and junk mail), car keys, shoes around the front door, empty cups, sunglasses, and random objects that somehow made their way from our bag to the kitchen counter. And that’s just the beginning. The dining table is another surface that tends to be a clutter magnet.

Your deliverable: A boiled-down palette of colors, materials, and textures to help you guide future decisions.

So you’ve cleared the clutter, applied the “one in, one out” rule, and chosen quality over quantity, but there are still a few stragglers hanging around. This is where you get sneaky and invest in stylish storage. Attractive storage allows the chaos to live inside while still appearing chic on the outside. This is great news for those who love the minimalistic look but are true maximalists on the inside. You don’t have to completely forgo your collector past, but the hoarder mindset has got to go.

Consider this—you’ve just bought a new home, signed a lease on a new apartment, or moved to a new city. You fell in love with the space that will become your new home, but when you think about decorating it from scratch, you get overwhelmed with options and decisions. Which paint color should I choose? Should I get a sectional or three-seater sofa? What size rug do I need? At a glance, a blank decorating slate can feel intimidating, but with a project-managing approach to interior decorating, you’ll find that decisions are much more easily made.

Once you’ve nailed down your aesthetic, take inventory of what you already own and decide whether each piece has a place in your new home. Can you find a spot for your favorite art? Does your grandmother’s antique buffet fit with your minimal scheme? Remember—mixing periods and styles can add to your décor, but only you can judge whether each individual piece will add cachet or clash with your overall look.

We asked Stockholm-based freelance art director and photographer Sara Medina for her tips on getting minimalistic texture right. “If you mix too many textures, materials, and surfaces of all different colors, the result will surely be headache-inducing,” she told MyDomaine. “If you have a white base, then opt for similar beige, dove-gray, and tan tones or any colors you would see together in nature. Generally, the colors that blend well are the ones Mother Nature intended,” says Medina.

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Now comes the fun part: Start shopping for pieces you love, starting with the biggest ones. It’s easier to place smaller items in afterward than the other way around. Don’t forget rugs, which will need to go in first. As you narrow down on each piece, add their price to your budget spreadsheet. If you go over, try making substitutions until you reach a budget you’re comfortable with. Most items and styles are available at a variety or price points, so don’t be afraid to visit budget retailers to see if you can find a similar item at a better price.

Your deliverable: An inspiration board filled with your favorite rooms, furniture pieces, colors, and materials.

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