You Can Decorate With the Stars
Ever watch a TV show, and think, "Wow, I wish my living room looked like
that!" In fact, some starry-eyed homeowners try to make that wish come
true. They hire the same decorators that design the sets for major TV shows.
But it's not necessary to start with the same ingredients--a multi-million
dollar budget and professional set designers--to design your home. Set
designers use some of the successful principles; some are just common sense.
1 - Identifying the Way Your Space Will Be Used
Before you even get started, keep in mind how the room will be used. That
will set the tone for the mood you are trying to achieve. For a den or
sitting room that requires warmth, the two key factors are color and comfort
- warm colors such as red tones, bronzes, yellows or golds - or "cushiony"
pillows and soft upholstery. Lighting is also a key element to establishing
mood. Softer lighting is for warmth, brighter for contemporary, active
spaces such as the kitchen.
2 - Surround Yourself with Your Favorite Things
Don't choose a fabric, piece of furniture, or other element just because you
saw it on TV or in a design catalog. If it's not inviting even to you, then
something needs to change. One set designer is a flea market hound.
Sometimes flea market finds are diamonds-in-the-rough that can be refinished
3 - Don't Get Stuck in a Rut
Keep moving furniture around and changing color, fabrics and patterns.
There's no single formula or theme that's right, so don't allow yourself to
get bored. Try moving the sofa away from the wall or changing floor and wall
coverings, for example. And don't be afraid to slap some color on the wall.
Beige and white are not your only choices.
4 - Start With Color
One way to start is by gathering color or fabric samples according to a
three-part color formula involving a main color, a neutral color, and one or
two accent colors. A neutral is generally considered to be a white,
off-white, gray, tan or taupe color, but greens can also be neutrals.
Accents add pizzazz. Any color can be an accent color. With a dark or bright
main color, even white can be an accent.
5 - Try Interesting Themes
Sometimes a unique look or theme can unify and simplify your choice of colors
and materials. The "Lodge Look" for example involves the basic elements of
natural, native woods like pine or oak, fabrics with a Native American or
hand loomed look, and accessories and art that complement a sort of
"frontier" ambiance. Along with the natural browns, tans or reds, any
darker, richer toned color, such as dark green, blue, bronze will suit the