Your Stylish Home: 5 Easy Secrets to Decorate like a Professional

Timeless kitchenProfessional decorating involves downplaying your home’s weaknesses and emphasizing its strengths. Here are a few other designer secrets to help your home look professionally designed

1. Start with a plan. The theme of the home is the central idea that repeats throughout the home. Define the mood of your home as how you want to feel in the house. Theme and mood must agree with each other. The style of the home reflects your personal tastes and the way you live.

2. Color is one of the most powerful decorating tools. Maintaining color harmony throughout the home is essential. Pick a dominant color for each room to total about 60 percent of the color including walls and the floor. A secondary color may incorporate large upholstered furniture, window treatments or bedding. An accent color “pops” on smaller chairs, accessories, lamps, and pillows. Use all three colors in the home’s entryway, and make sure connecting rooms have a color in common. Use color to define focal points in the home.

3. Accessorize in threes. Maintain a balance among accessory sizes. Place the largest items first and do not allow accessories to overpower the room’s features. Coordinate accessories with the theme, mood, style, and color scheme plans. Accent furniture is important. One of the most versatile accessories is a cocktail ottoman topped with a beautiful tray. If you are a collector, carefully curate your items. Keep a few favorite items on display along with some books and vases and plenty of empty space.

4. Use fabrics to add character to your rooms. Choose the dominant fabric pattern first. Coordinate colors, textures and other patterns around it. Make sure the fabric does not draw attention away from a focal point in the home. Invest in a yard of the fabric, and live with it for a month before committing it. Make sure the patterns and prints in your secondary fabrics have some connection with the main fabric.

5. Use your color scheme to create beautiful walls. Be adventurous and try bold colors. Use paint as a backdrop for the room’s focal point. Paint moldings and trim in dramatic colors. If you are using wallpaper, consider papering just two walls in the room, or the wall behind the bed. Create a jewel box powder room with dramatic wallpaper and colors. Use mirrors on walls to create the illusion of space and to add light to dark rooms.

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