Following on from our last blog post, "The 7 Most Common Interior Design Mistakes That People Usually Make", and considering that we here at Estilo Living are all about everything home décor, we thought that it was only natural to address the most common home décor mistakes that we keep seeing time and time again.
Home décor is the heart and soul of most of our homes, but it is easy to take something that should be simple and beautiful and get it wrong. There’s a thin line between an amazing design and missing the mark all-together. So to help us avoid these common home décor pit-falls and address these simple mistakes, we have once again asked our in-house Head Stylist and Estilo Living Co-Founder, Jennifer Bomford, to give us her thoughts on these problems, and how we can avoid them in our own homes.
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1. Avoid Filling a Room with Too Much Matching Décor
2. Adding Too Many Décor Items
3. Choosing the Wrong Sized Rug
4. Hanging Artwork at the Wrong Height
5. Home Décor and Furniture That is the Same Height
6. Don’t Follow the Trends!
1) Avoid Filling a Room with Too Much Matching Décor
While home décor and furniture items tend to be sold, or at least marketed, as sets, sometimes having too many matching items in one room can dampen the charisma and aesthetic of a space. You run the risk of making your home look and feel like a décor catalogue more than a place that is lived in.
Jennifer Says: “Buying too many items that match can be a huge mistake when styling your home. I love to mix-and-match my favorite pieces to keep things interesting. This also gives you the opportunity to cycle different décor through the room as you feel like a change. And, best of all, if and when you want to replace something, you can do so…without having to replace the entire set!”
2) Adding Too Many Décor Items
We know just how tempting it can be to want to buy every amazing piece of décor that you see, and find somewhere to display it in your home. But as tempting as this may be, when working with a smaller space, such as an apartment or Tiny Home, it is important to decide on the look that you are trying to achieve first, before choosing your décor items. This is because having too many smaller items in one room is the fastest way to make it feel cramped and cluttered.
Jennifer Says: “Avoid trying to use many smaller décor items to style your spaces, and instead opt for only a few larger, bolder pieces, to create an attention-grabbing centerpiece or focal-point. This will draw the attention away from the size of the room, giving the impression that it is actually more spacious. I find that a bold vase or large piece of art is perfect for this.”
3) Choosing the Wrong Sized Rug
Have you ever heard the phrase: “That rug really ties the room together”? Well this has never been more true, and its a pain point that we see coming up time and time again. If your room is large and your rug is too small, it is going to make the dimensions of the room, as well as other elements, such as furniture and décor, look awkward. The same applies to adding a large rug to a smaller space - it needs to be just the right size, or it is going to make the room feel cramped and claustrophobic.
When choosing a rug, its important to measure the space that you will be using it in first. This may be the size of the entire room in a smaller space, or in a larger room just the area that you want to style (such as the sofa setting area in your living room, for example). A rug can essentially compartmentalize a room, helping to break up the space and create obviously defined areas.
Now this all depends on the size of your space, but experts recommend using rugs that are at least 8 by 10 feet, if not 9 by 12 feet in a more spacious living room. Smaller rugs and mats, such those that are around 4 by 6 feet, are fine next to the bed, or in the kitchen or entryway, but will not work in your living room.
Jennifer Says: “A great rule of thumb that I like to use, a rug should be big enough to fit all four sofa legs onto it, or alternatively two chairs. Depending on the size of the room that you’re working with, as well as the size of your sofa or chairs, this will dictate the size of the rug that you should be considering."
"A living room rug should really ground all of the seating around it, and subconsciously tell everyone that this is where the conversation is. Smaller rugs are fine in other parts of the house, such as next to the bed, in the kitchen, or around the entryway, but make sure that you take care to buy a rug that is large enough to compliment your spaces, and tie them together, but not stand out like a sore thumb!”.
Rug Size Guide:
ROOM / AREA SIZE
RECOMMENDED RUG SIZE
7 x 10 feet
5 x 8 feet
10 x 12 feet
8 x 10 feet
11 x 14 feet
9 x 12 feet
14 x 17 feet
12 x 15 feet
4) Hanging Artwork at the Wrong Height
When adding art work to our spaces, we tend to think that the key is simply finding the perfect piece of art that is going to compliment your room. But one major thing that is being overlooked here, and a common mistake that is made, is positioning your artwork too high on the wall, or in an obvious way.
This not only applies to the area of the wall that you hang it on, but also the area of the house that you decide to place it.
“Try displaying pieces in unconventional places. Just because it is your favorite piece of art doesn’t mean that it has to be displayed right in the perfect centre of the room above your mantelpiece. It would also look awesome above the buffet on the side wall, or in the hallway next to a bookshelf”, adds Jennifer.
Jennifer finishes with, “When hanging art work, I like to estimate the height by aiming for about eye-level, then off-setting it to hang at a slightly lower point than that. Test your placement for a few weeks with a removable hook, and then if it doesn’t work in the space, or you don’t like it, you can always move it to somewhere else.”
5) Home Décor and Furniture That is the Same Height
Scale and proportion are the key to creating a well designed room. One major mistake that people tend to make is trying to match everything, including size and height. If everything matches too well, then it will look out of proportion, and a mess.
Jennifer Says: “Scale and proportion are two of the most important aspects of design. Staggering home décor pieces at different heights and proportions will add depth to a space. If everything is the same size and height, or either too big or too small, then it will look and feel very staged and end up looking undesirable."
"I like to think of a space like a city sky-line, and fill it with a diverse mix of different heights and proportions. This metaphor works perfectly for creating an interesting room, and works just as well for both home décor and furniture alike”.
6) Don’t Follow the Trends!
Just like with interior design, it is much the same with home décor. As we mentioned in our previous blog “The 7 Most Common Interior Design Mistakes That People Usually Make“, whatever you do, don’t blindly follow the trends! It’s great to take inspiration from things you have seen in design guides or other people’s homes, but if you truly want to create a home that is unique to your own personal style and ambiance, then it is important to add your own personal style and touches through the décor that you choose to display.
Even though this advice was given in our previous blog, we feel that couldn't be more relevant here, so we've cheekily borrowed it again to add here again for you to read:
Always remember to embrace YOUR OWN style! Make your spaces personal and unique to you. Ask yourself, What does the space mean to me? What are the colors and textures I love, and what is the feeling that I want to have when I get home? Push trends aside, ignore what’s popular right now, and make design choices based on your personal aesthetic to create a space that you’ll love for years to come.
Jennifer says: “Remember to embrace your own personal style when choosing the décor for your home, or when displaying your favorite pieces. The biggest mistake that people make is trying to style their home like everyone else and redesign it every time there is a new trend”.
She continues, "If you truly want to create your dream home, stop following fads. The problem is that people are often insecure. They worry about what everyone else is doing, instead of sitting down and asking, "What does My dream home look like?". I think the best interiors are always those where you can tell that people have let their own unique personal style emanate throughout the space, ignoring the current social norms”.