Very often, you’ll see a gorgeous bed that looks so good you’re considering decorating the whole room around it. You make an impulse buy, all excited to see it arrive, and then it ends up barely fitting in. This should go without saying, but you need to measure everything before making purchases or committing to furniture. Measure every room thoroughly, and always check the measurements of the objects you want to buy, especially if you’re ordering something online. A lot of newbies tend to rely on their instinct and are prone to over eager enthusiasm, and this makes them forget some basic necessities of quality design.
Never taking comfort into consideration
Sometimes we forget that the home you’re designing isn’t a doll house and that real people are supposed to live there and actually enjoy it. Those dining chairs might be really chic and fit the space perfectly, but if you can’t sit in them for longer than 20 minutes without getting sore, then they’re not a good addition. Everything you incorporate needs to be comfortable and, above all, practical. There’s nothing worse than a pretty room that ends up feeling cold and distant because nothing in it truly has a practical purpose. Good design can’t be sustained on pretty things only.
Not considering how the room will be used
It’s not just about appropriating your design depending on which part of the house you’re trying to arrange. Think about what the room will truly be used for, and even more importantly, who will be spending time in it. Frills and lace are a fun addition to a bachelorette’s apartment, but will it be appropriate for hosting parties? Communicate with your client and ask them what kind of vibe they want.
Not planning for electric tracks
A surprisingly common mistake that can very often ruin the whole design. You need to pay close attention to wiring and electrical tracks in general and base everything else around these limitations. If the plug for your lamp is on the opposite side of the wall then you’re making a huge inconvenience for everyone, and if your large shelf is covering up a switch, then it’s likely to make everyone frustrated. Do yourself a favor and immediately note where all the plugs and wires are, and leave enough room around them so they can be used properly. Lighting fixtures and appliances are some of the first things you should consider when designing a room.
Choosing the wrong lighting
Lighting is so important, and yet most people get it completely wrong. “The lighter the better” isn’t necessarily a good idea, and a lot of rooms end up with a huge excess that makes it very uncomfortable. In general, it’s important to orient furniture so people can benefit from natural daylight as much as possible, but still have good lamps and chandeliers that make evening stays more comfortable. If you’re not sure how much light a room will need, use dimmer switches—they will allow the users to adjust them in whichever way they like. However, if you’re designing someone’s studio or home office, do make sure it can be brightly lit whenever needed because most people need that option. Another thing, avoid octopus-style lamps. They’re never useful, and even though they might be a fun décor trick, they’re severely impractical and frustrating.
Painting the room before getting the furniture
It might feel like a natural thing to do, but it’s a big mistake. Browsing a color switch and finding that gorgeous shade of turquoise is all great, but you could be facing a big problem when your walls end up clashing with the furniture later on. Every paint job needs to be adjusted to the furniture you already have, and it’s much easier to first pick the big items such as beds, sofas, and chairs and then hold up paint samples and match your ideas to what’s already there. It’s also much easier to match a single element such as the color of the walls to your furniture, than to start painting and then have to adjust everything to the color you picked.
Adding too many details
Regardless of whether you’re going for a retro 70s vibe or a totally modern minimalist design, you should always avoid unnecessary clutter. Rooms generally look great right after you just finish arranging them, but you want to keep in mind what it’ll look like once people actually start living there. Too many fussy details added to the general clutter could make the room look overwhelmingly messy. It’s good to pick a theme for all your little ornaments and avoid sticking something onto every single shelf and cabinet. You need to leave people some space for practical purposes—not everything is about décor alone.
Hanging up art in the wrong place
This is another common mistake. Art that’s hung way too high can give the room a very weird vibe, and if you can barely even see it without craning your neck, then what’s really its purpose? All art that you hang up should be at eye-level. Of course, this rule doesn’t apply if you’re making a whole “art wall” where the entire point is to cover it up with paintings or photography from top to bottom. To make sure you get it right, put up the pictures, then walk around the room and pretend it’s a gallery. Does everything feel pleasant? Then you can move on.
Following trends the wrong way
Trends are a pretty fun thing for a designer because they’re a source of constant inspiration, but they can undermine your artistic vision if you aren’t careful enough. Just because you painted everything in Pantone’s Color of the Year doesn’t mean you’ve made it truly modern, and it definitely doesn’t mean you’ve come up with practical design. Bear in mind that most people don’t redesign their entire house every year, and what’s popular right now might not look that great in a few months. Your design always needs to have a timeless element to it.
Never going out of your comfort zone
You don’t have to stick only to things you’ve learned at school! While following design rules is important, especially in the beginning, at one point you need to get out of your comfort zone and dare to try those things you’ve always wanted to. This will make you grow as an artist and make your designs truly interesting and memorable.Avoid these common blunders if you want your arrangements to look polished and professional. As long as you rely on your instincts and know what kind of things to watch out for, you’re bound to make something truly beautiful.