Common mistakes to avoid while decorating

The right spacing between artwork should be approximately seven to 10 centimetres. PHOTO/net.

What you need to know:

Cluttered homes feel chaotic and stressful, so if your space is limited, create a well-organised space with concealed storage

When it comes to interior decoration, the golden rule is less is more. If you have ever been in a home stuffed with furniture or bric-a-brac, then you understand why this is applicable. Many homeowners, often fill their homes with things they like without any consultation from an expert, sometimes the end result is good and sometimes it is garish. Isaac Shaka, a décor expert, says this happens because some people have a natural instinct for putting things together that please the eye and some do not.

He, however, notes that with some effort and expert guidance, everyone should be able to make choices on colours, furniture and accessories that create a good enough look for our living spaces.  Shaka gives tips on the things that one should avoid when doing interior decoration. 

Avoid similar designs

It is boring for the eye to look at the same pattern in every room. Each space should be decorated to suit the purpose for which it is intended to serve. 

“For instance, the paint colour chosen for the bedroom should be different from the one used in the living room. The bedroom is a place where one goes to rest so it should have colours that calm the mind and induce relaxation, while vibrant colours are perfect for the living room to create an upbeat atmosphere,” he says.

However, while the spaces should not be so similar, they should not be different that they look like they come from different houses instead, get a coordinating theme with the necessary variations. To achieve this effect, the expert suggests playing around with different shades of the same colour throughout the house.

Avoid wrong artwork display

Interior décor is never complete without some form of artwork on display. When displaying your artwork or using mirrors as décor art, the generally accepted rule is that  the artwork be at approximately 145 to 150cm  from the floor. This height is considered to be the standard “eye-level”.  You can go a few centimetres higher or lower, depending on if you have higher or lower ceilings. Hanging your artwork at eye level will connect it better to the other elements in the room and you will end up enjoying it more.

Another consideration is the size of the art pieces.  Hanging a small picture on a big blank wall will not get the desired effect, instead go for something substantial that will make a statement. However, if you choose to hang multiple art pieces on one wall, treat them as a single artwork but with the appropriate spacing. The right spacing between artwork should be approximately seven to 10 centimetres, according to the expert. If you are hanging art above furniture such as a sideboard, sofa or bed the right ratio is about two-thirds the width of the furniture.

Avoid clutter

Just because you have a lot of furniture, art or accessories does not mean you have to use it all at once. Pick the few items you love most and only use those. This way, you will save space and your space will appear more organised and stylish.  Cluttered homes feel chaotic and stressful, so if your space is limited, create well-organised space withconcealed storage. Periodically declutter your home and eliminate items that you no longer require. Also opt for concealed wiring, and install wire managers or a cord cover that matches the colour of the walls.

Purchasing low-quality furniture

Shaka says with mushrooming local workshops and Chinese furniture imports, poor quality furniture has become the bane of interior designers.

“A number of clients can hardly tell fake furniture from the quality one and this makes it difficult to convince them to go for the better quality since it all looks similar to them. Plus the poor quality makes sense to them because it is cheaper. What they do not understand is that buying sturdy and comfortable pieces which are easy to maintain will pay for itself in the long run because it will last for several years,” he says.  Another very common decorating mistake is pushing all the furniture against the walls, which makes every space look like a waiting room. Avoid this, especially in the living room but also make sure the furniture does not get in the way and harm the occupants.  Lastly, when buying furniture make sure the pieces are not too big or too small and they are the right colour, style and shape for your space.


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