Interior design is creativity mixed with science. While experimenting with colours, textures, arrangements, and shapes is fun, the reason the final result is so stunning when done by a professional interior designer is years of studying and practice. An interior designer’s eye is highly trained to visualise proportions, balance, colour compositions, and the overall flow of a space. That’s why, even if you spend tens of thousands of pounds on expensive furniture, fabrics, and wallpaper, you may end up underwhelmed by the outcome. So, while we always encourage our readers to be bold and brave with their interior design, today we will share a few rules that you should try to follow in order to maximise your chances of a Pinterest-perfect interior.
1. An area rug should be big enough to unify a space
An area rug is an excellent way to add that cosy feel to your living room or bedroom. It is also the easiest way to organise your space into various stations. Say you are selecting a rug for your living room. It should be big enough to unite the entire sitting area – a sofa, a set of chairs, side tables, and/or a coffee table. The legs of the furniture should be either partially on the rug or closely aligned to it.
2. Place at least four throw pillows on your sofa, mixing patterns or colours
One set of pillows looks skimpy, so place at least two pairs on your sofa. To make the look even more sophisticated, mix solid colours with patterns. Once you are comfortable with that, take it to the next level and mix and match colours, patterns, and fabrics. The great thing about throw pillows is that you can easily swap them depending on the time of a year or an occasion and give your sofa a fresh new look.
3. Hang your curtains high
Curtains complete a room, adding a soft, warm vibe to it. Make sure to hang them well above a window frame with enough length to touch the floor. If you plan on closing the curtains, don’t forget to account for the right width. Here’s a more detailed guide to hanging your curtains.
4. Don’t push all your furniture against the walls
It may seem natural, especially in a small space, to push your sofa, bookshelves, a dining table, and other furniture against the walls. However, instead of looking spacious, your room will end up looking empty and awkward. Experiment with the arrangement of your furniture. Try pulling the sofa closer to the middle of the room, balancing it out with chairs and a coffee table to create a relaxation area. If your space is large, having a sofa in the middle of the room will also allow you to separate the sitting area from the dining area, for example. This can also be achieved with bookshelves, plants, or a sofa console.
5. Pay attention to how high you hang your artwork and its composition
In a house with regular height ceilings, hang your wall art between 1.44 and 1.52 meters from the floor. This will display art pieces at eye level – a technique used by art galleries.
Furthermore, while hanging one big piece of wall art is usually sufficient for one wall, never forget to plan out the arrangement of wall galleries. If you have medium-size pieces, we suggest grouping them into a set of three. When it comes to small frames, create an entire gallery wall with 6 to 15 picture frames, depending on their size. This will make your wall décor look intentional and tasteful.
6. Design your lighting in layers
Lighting can make or break a room. You can use it to highlight your accent pieces or to hide imperfections. There are four types of lighting you should incorporate in your interior design: natural light, general lighting, task lighting, and accent lighting. The key is to understand the flow of light, the purpose each lighting serves, and its placement. This quick guide to lighting design is a solid place to start.
7. Don’t neglect your ceilings
When mapping out your interior, don’t forget to incorporate your ceilings’ design into the overall vision of a room. Yes, painting it a plain neutral colour is typically a safe option. However, if you want to add depth to your room and take your interior to the next level, consider a more sophisticated ceiling design. Your options here are abundant: murals, tiles, bold colours, painted or raw wood, skylight, textures, geometrical patterns, layered lighting, etc.
8. Add a splash of colour to your space
Designing in neutral colours is a pretty common risk-free strategy. However, the final result is usually quite generic and dull. Make sure to spruce up your space by adding a splash of colour, be it through furniture pieces, decorative elements, an accent wall, or art pieces. Here you will find 10 simple ways to add colour to your interior.
Of course, these rules are not set in stone. In fact, professional designers often break them. However, it does take a trained eye to create harmony and beauty in a space. If you are not 100% confident in your abilities to do that, these tried and tested techniques will allow you to create an interior that’s elegant, inviting, personal, and polished.
What are some of your guidelines? Share them with the rest of the readers in the comments section below.