Listen to your Design Style
See what colors, patterns, floor plans and styles that inspires you and makes you feel good. Do you like a busy look over a more minimalism interior? Do you like a warm feel over a colder feel?
Look in to your inner self and search what motivates you and what does not – scribble it all down or even better combine it with cutting out or pinning photos to different boards on Pinterest. Where possible save tactile materials as they are always best for the “right” feel.
Think Realistic/Maintenance and functionality
It is really easy to whisk away into a dream land thinking that a marble counter top will look amazing only to not think of that I on a daily basis cook with turmeric (which easily stains marble, well actually stains almost about any material). Or thinking that a bench for the kitchen table would look so right in my dining place but to forget that back support is crucial for both me and my partner.
Combining a nice style (and what our eyes wants) and combining this with what actually works for our lifestyle is important for a long lasting success. I would really hate to have to excuse myself from the table when having guests over, simply because I picked the wrong seating.
Make mood boards and proper plans
This goes back to listening to your interior design style…after you have started to come up with an idea of your style, then it is time to create some mood boards.
Make mood boards with the samples and products you have collected in design tip 1. Also work on understanding the flow of the space you have. Create floor plans using paper and pen, or Sketchup.
Hire a designer for the best result here or if budget is very constraint – a tips, showrooms have skilled design consultants who sometimes work out the floor plans for you. Also, visit a website like Apartment Therapy for more detailed interior design tips or look around for online design consultancy.
Budget the money
Every project usually have some kind of budget – whether it is low or high. My best advice is to put the money on objects and materials which you use on a daily basis for best quality matching your design budget.
Get as many quotes as possible and try to negotiate a discount if you purchase a furniture package at a showroom. Also think about those few pieces that stands out – that might cost a bit more but would have a big design effect (maybe you can find a money saver on that sofa instead?). I also sometimes have seen that couples tend to spend more money on the design elements in the end without using a design professional for help.
When using an interior designer for at least mood boards and plans it is sometimes much easier to follow “what only is needed” and not buy ” the” tons of wrong things and then ending up storing them away.
Plan your time. Time is money like the old saying goes.
Understand the different times each project within the home need. Shipping of goods, installation, delivery, setting of materials together with some extra time for any mistakes or workers who do not show up as promised – all this should be allocated for your design project to succeed in the time frames you set. (This is an interior design tips that I have encountered first hand – where time management led us to having to live at my in-laws house for a while due to workers not showing up on time and lease being out. Thank you in-laws for your patience).
No to Trends
I can’t say that I am not influenced by trends – I am and still follow them so this could be a bit of a contradicting design tips…. With that being said I still would advice not to obsess over following trends”.
Most important thing is to really listen to what suits the space that I have to work with, understanding the purpose of it and understanding how I want to feel in the space. Then whether an object is trendy or not…it does not really matter.
Also following trends tend to be a bad environmental and economical choice – picking only what is trendy for the sake of it or even the fact of picking something that everyone else has – could become more costly in the end.
Understand your Materials and How They Age
This one is easy to forget especially when falling in love with a material on a blog or over at Pinterest – but a material will age and can even decay over time when/if exposed to environmental elements that it is not suited for.
Some furniture can only handle certain levels of humidity – so while some furniture or materials works fine in the Nordic countries it might not have the same lasting effect in a more humid place. Working with materials that suits your environment is ideal.
Use Everyday Objects in your decoration
When decorating a room I do take into account everyday objects that will go into that room …. any thing from all those lemons that I want stored in a glass vase ready to be juiced every morning to the cook books I want out on a display in the kitchen.
It gives the space a personality and when I visit other people’s homes it is what I usually tend to focus my eyes on – they are the pieces that completes a decoration and that tells a story.
Add life and greens with plants
Adding indoor plants adds another dimension to a decoration – it adds an organic feeling that provides both comfort and cleanliness, or at least this is the effect they have on me. In a decor I prefer them in a subtle way even though I am still a sucker for dramatic and large plants on its own, or the plants that cleans the air – both can give such a positive effect to a contemporary interior setting.
Plan your storage wisely
Can there be too much storage? I would say never. If incorporated nicely into the interior design, especially if contrasting built-in storage solutions together with beautiful stand alone pieces, then storage is your best friend.
Hiding bits and pieces as well as keeping your space organized will help you from tidying up fast when guests are arriving a few minutes before or just for your own sanity. Keeping a tidy home is for sure a challenge for all with a hectic lifestyle but at least to me has become a priority in order for me to stay sane during the week…(still lacking storage though).