Keep the big picture in mind
Home decoration starts with a solid concept. Whether you are going for a total makeover or are just adjusting some details, never lose sight of the big picture. Before you start it’s important to have a concept in mind: a particular style or atmosphere that you want to create. This will serve as your guiding principle. Recurring colors, motifs or handles are easy ways to bring unity and harmony in your home.
Make it warm and welcoming
Large open spaces that melt into one another create a spacious feeling. To prevent the room from becoming too impersonal and cold you can make cozy corners with pillows, bookshelves and a little home bar. Or why not create small ‘islands’ in that open space by dividing the room with furniture instead of placing all furniture against the wall?
Choose one type of flooring
Different types of flooring can look too busy. This holds true for large spaces but also for more traditional homes with multiple rooms. Be consequent and use one and the same floor covering throughout the house.
Combine different colors and materials
The choice of materials largely determines the overall appearance of your interior. A limited number of colors and materials creates peace and atmosphere. Warm-colored wood (hazel, cherry, European oak, wenge, zebrano or merbau), a rough wall in slate or a soft wool carpet transform your house into a warm nest. Combine dark flooring or furniture with white walls or vice versa.
Bring in natural light
Natural daylight is a free source of atmosphere we should all take advantage of. Bear in mind that natural light which falls in from above is always the brightest and most pleasant. High windows or skylights can work wonders for a dark interior. On the other side you don’t need to have daylight in every single room of the house. Many people like a cozy room with little daylight to relax with a book and a glass of wine.
If you are still in doubt about the color palette, lighting plan or furniture placement in your home, try this little trick: paint everything in white and live in the house for a while. After a while you will notice dark corners, walls that need decorating and the best place for that trendy sofa.
Play with lighting
Lighting is a great way to create a particular mood. A good balance between primary lighting and accent lighting. You need both, but it’s the accent lighting like floor spots or wall lamps that can really open up a room.
Use color accents
Warm color accents in the right places can give your home the ambiance and sophistication it needs, but the key is to not overdo it. A mishmash of accent colors will lead to a visual mess that will not contribute to the hominess of the house.
Mix old and new
Combining old and new stuff adds soul to your interior. Some antique or thrift store chairs can give extra character to a modern minimalist table. Remember however to always keep the big picture in mind.
Show off your books
Books bring life to a room. Therefore don’t hide your library behind closed doors but let it be part of your interior. Other personal and decorative items can have the same effect. Think about a beautiful vase or candle on the table or a bunch of soft pillows on the sofa. Just remember, less is more. One well-chosen eye catcher is much better than a motley collection of knick knacks.