3 Tips for Learning to Design

You many not have schooling in visual design or what you think is a well-developed sense of style. But you can cultivate your own sense of design in order to design your own room.  Here are 3 tips for gaining your own sense of style.

1.  Learn from the best
Every day, there are magazines, television shows, blogs, internet videos and articles written about design.  Generally, they have photos or videos of some of the best design accompanying them.  Take the time to look them over.  If you want to be inspired to do something great, you will want to spend your time reading and looking at the best books, articles, and pictures.  There are a wide variety of sources for interior design tips, from Pinterest to Better Homes and Gardens to a simple Google search.  In many places, there are shows like the Parade of Homes that allow people to wander through model homes.  You can use these opportunities to see what you like and what you don't like.

2.  Learn the basics
Lets face it, design is a lot more subjective than doing a math problem.  But visual design is based on principles that can be learned and used, just like in any other subject of study.  Take the time to find out about the basic principles of design, such as line, symmetry, proportion, contrast, color, etc.  These principles will help you understand what makes a good design, which will help you come up with your own.  You can even look at the RoomDesign lessons here:  http://www.howtodecoratemyhome.net/

3.  Take the time to analyze
So you have found a picture of a room that you like or you have seen someone's house that you love.  What about it do you like?  Why is it that you enjoy that design?  Is it the theme that you like, or the color?  Do you like its uniqueness, or its harmony?  Once you have found designs that draw you in, take the time to figure out what it is about the design that you particularly enjoy.  As you analyze different designs over and over, your own sense of design will evolve and you will be able to come up with your own ideas much easier.  Remember to learn from the best, and your basic knowledge of design principles will help you understand what you are looking at.

Room design can be a fun and rewarding activity. With a little effort, you can learn more about good design and create your own room designs in your own house. 

The Right Living Room For Your Home

For many homes, the living rooms is the most public and most used area of the house. Whether it is used to entertain guests, spend time with the family, or lounge while watching television or reading a good book, living rooms tend to be a natural place for us to gravitate towards. Your use of the living room and the style you decorate it in can vary greatly. Here are a few simple decorating guidelines that can help make your living room become the room you want it to be.

Seat positioning -

When using armchairs and sofas, be mindful of how near or far they are from each other. The living room is a natural place to have relaxed conversations, and as such, it should accommodate this. When placing sofas and chairs, try to make sure that they are always within 8 feet of each other. This will make it easier for people to talk with each other. Place the seats so that they face the room's focal point so people can see and hear everybody else.

Make it cozy, but not too cramped-

While you want the seating close enough to easily communicate, its important that there is enough space for everybody to feel comfortable and not feel stuffy and cramped. Make sure that there are open paths to walk between the pieces of furniture. Walkways of about 2.5 feet (30 inches) can give a nice aisle without making the room feel too spaced out. If you have a coffee table or other furniture in front of the sofa or chairs, you should leave 14-18 inches to allow for comfortable knee space.

Anchoring the furniture -

A great way to give the room a centered feel is by placing a rug in the center of the room. Make sure that it is either large enough for all of the furniture to fit onto it, or small enough that the edges touch the furniture pieces surrounding it. Facing furniture around a focal point, such as a window, television, or fireplace, also helps to achieve this.

Other useful ideas -

  • If space is limited, use nesting tables to save room.

  • Install in-floor electrical outlets to make plug-in access easier and to make the room more flexible when rearranging furniture.
  • If you are not placing a piece of furniture against a wall, make sure that the back is presentable and does not need repair or to be upholstered.
  •  Longer sofas are great for creating more seating space without more furniture.
  • Ottomans make great additional seating and can be moved near a cabinet or table when not being used. Upholstered ottomans can also serve multiple purposes, such as a footstool or extra table.

Use these tips to get started in making a living room that is comfortable and meets your needs, whatever they may be. For other useful decorating tips and methods, visit our website at www.howtodecoratemyhome.net.

Creating Your Perfect Family Room

Since families come in all shapes and sizes, family rooms should too . Whether yours is designed for an exciting night watching the ball game, playing cards with a group of guests, or letting the kids wear themselves out, you can make the perfect family room for your situation. Here are a few ideas that will help you create the room you want and need.

Many family rooms are in the basement, where space is more readily available. Because basements typically lack a lot of natural lighting, it is usually important to have adequate alternatives. Floor lamps are portable and easy to change so they can be a great lighting option. Using colors in your color scheme that reflect light is also a good idea, and can also help to give the family room a lively, energetic look.

Family rooms often are one of the biggest rooms in the house. You might consider breaking the family room into different activity areas. While you might have one area for watching television, another section could include a table for eating that doubles as a great surface to play games or for children to do artwork. Ping pong and pool tables are also a nice addition to a family room. Make sure that if you have an entertainment section you remember to position activity sections in a way that allows traffic to flow behind and around it - this will keep television watchers and gamers from being frequently interrupted.

Because family rooms are typically a very busy room, you need it to be easily cleaned. Slips and covers on couches and sofas are a great way to keep food and drink spills from causing any permanent damage. Options of hardwood or tile floors are a way to make sure floors can be kept neat with little effort. If you choose carpet, select an option that can be easily and quickly cleaned. Use drawers, tubs, bins, and baskets to make sure you have plenty of room for your favorite movies, games, gaming consoles, remotes, blankets, toys, and whatever else you choose to keep in your family room.

You will want to easily accommodate a crowd. Use large couches and sectionals to provide seating for the largest number of people without requiring many pieces of fixed seating.  Bean bags and ottomans are also a great and easy way to provide additional seating that is easy to store, and having a few folding chairs in the closet can be handy as well.

These simple tips will help you create a family room that is capable of serving all the different capacities that you will need it to. Making the “perfect room” can be hard, but by following some of these guidelines, you will have the right room on hand, whatever the occasion is. For more tips and tricks on how to decorate your home, visit our website at www.howtodecoratemyhome.net

Giving Your Living Room A New Look

It isn't too uncommon that we get bitten by the re-decorating bug and have the urge to freshen up the rooms in our home. If you are like most people, though, the bug often bites at inconvenient times when the budget is tight and resources are spread thin. You may have said to yourself, “This room looks old and a fresh, new look would be great...but right now just isn't a good time.” After giving it little more than a wistful thought, you write it off as another impossible dream that just can’t come true any time soon.

The great secret about the dream in this scenario is that it can come true. It can and should have a happy ending. Freshening the look of your living room doesn't have to break the bank. It won’t necessarily cost you a fortune to change things up enough to get a new, refreshing look. Here are a few easy and affordable tips to mix things up and give your living room that fresh, new feel you’re looking for.

Change your couch with a slipcover -

A slipcover is one of the easiest and most affordable way to change the look of your furniture. You can update the color scheme of your entire room by getting a few new covers for your sofas and chairs. This gives you the style benefit of a new set of furniture without a large commitment or cost.

Switch out your throw pillows -

Swapping out your throw pillows is another easy way to mix things up in your living room. You might even even change the pillows with the seasons or during holidays. Throw pillows are an easy and affordable way to regularly give your room a fresh, new look.

Add a rug -

Flooring makes up about 30% of what you see in a room. Adding a rug, whether on a carpet or hardwood floor, will give your room a new floor look and feel without the cost or hassle of actually redoing the entire floor.

Modify your walls -

Painting a single room is a easier and cheaper that painting your entire house. Pick a new color that fits with your current home decor (furniture, rugs, etc) and spice up your room at a reasonable cost. Adding molding or trim can be a little addition that makes a big difference. If you are looking for something a little more bold, paint just one wall and add something new like a painting or clock for a nice focal point.

Swap out your pictures -

An important design element in nearly all living rooms is the pictures. Swapping out some pictures seasonally or with the holidays can create a nice compliment to your other decorations. Switching full color photos for black and white will also help to create a fresh, new look.

These are just a few quick, easy, and affordable tips on how to revamp your living room without breaking the bank. Please share the tips, hints, or thoughts that have worked for. For more ideas about decorating your home, visit our free online lessons at howtodecoratemyhome.net.