There is always great excitement about decorating your first home. It’s a chance to start fresh and shape your living space from the ground up. This is also the biggest challenge. Starting from scratch means you have too many choices to make very quickly. There is also a question of money. Should you spend carefully and buy only a few pieces you actually love or furnish your place as soon as possible?
Here are a few tips that help make this process as smooth as possible:
Big things first
First of all, paint the walls. This is a good way to freshen up the place and it sets up the tone for all the other changes you want to make. When choosing the color, you need to take a few things into consideration. Number one is obviously your preference, but what you plan to use the room for is also important. Try to think about the big picture and imagine the furniture right away; this way, the wall color will serve as a background for your design.
Have a floor plan
This may seem like too much work or something that people always talk about and never do – but floor plans are actually useful and you should make one before you start rearranging furniture. A floor plan is a scaled diagram of a room as seen from above. It can (but doesn’t have to) include furniture and appliances or anything else you might need to have a better overview of your house. If you make one before you start, it will be easier to make changes (and there are definitely going to change). The Internet is filled with tools with which you can create one easily.
Choosing the right lighting can make or break your whole room design. This is why you should think about choosing the right lights before you start decorating. You should always have 3 aspects in mind: ambient, task and accent. Ambient lighting is the one that should lit the whole room and create the atmosphere in it. A task light has a specific purpose – like reading or applying make-up. And accent light is designed to highlight a particular object – a painting or a sculpture for instance. Combine the three to create a mixture of atmosphere and function.
If you’re familiar with photography, you have probably herd of the rule of three as a way to make your photos more interesting and engaging. The same goes for decorating your home. The idea is to group objects together in odd numbers, which would make them more memorable and visually appealing. At the same time, it’s good to mix different heights, shapes and textures. This doesn’t mean that putting three random objects together is all you have to do. The objects should be bind together with a common theme or purpose.
Mix and match
It’s perfectly fine (actually it’s desirable) to have a sense of style you want to create. But this doesn’t mean your home should be boring and monochromatic. Try to find a way to mix different styles, even in a single room, by adding one or two objects that will stand out. For instance, you can have classic bentwood chairs and a modern, all glass computer table designed to hide the cables. The same goes for mixing the old with the new. Even if you’re starting over, don’t throw away everything – scatter some of your old furniture or memorabilia around your new place.
A house is more than a “machine for living”. It’s a personal space and therefore it should reflect your personality. Make sure you put a personal touch on your place. Hang some artwork you like. It doesn’t have to be anything rare or expensive, just something you enjoy and that will light up your home. Simple floating shelves are a great place for memorabilia and personal photos. They also take less space and seem more modern.
Decorating your new home is a great way to show off your creative side and create an ambiance that’s the most suited for your lifestyle. It probably won’t be your only or the best looking home you’ll ever have, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t make it your own haven of peace.