I don’t know where to start when it comes to dec­o­rat­ing

Weekend Herald - Canvas - - CONTENTS - Tracey Strange

Back to ba­sics

Pin­ter­est, in­te­ri­ors mag­a­zines, In­sta­gram, tele­vi­sion re­al­ity shows — life can ex­pose us to a never-end­ing pic­ture reel of some­one else’s in­te­rior high­lights. With oth­ers seem­ing to live so stylishly, it’s easy to feel over­whelmed when it comes to mak­ing the choices you need to dec­o­rate your own home. So start with some ba­sics.

1 Con­sider the big­ger pic­ture.

Take a holis­tic, room-by-room ap­proach. Try to work out how each room works in bal­ance with the oth­ers. Find colours, tex­tures and pat­terns you love and con­sider re­peat­ing them through­out the house. Re­strict­ing your choices to a colour/tex­ture “palette” in­creases the chances of your home feel­ing co-or­di­nated and har­mo­nious.

2 Em­brace the house’s nat­u­ral char­ac­ter.

It’s pos­si­ble but dif­fi­cult to im­pose se­vere moder­nity on a tra­di­tional build­ing, in the same way that or­nate swags and tails don’t re­ally work with alu­minium win­dow frames. Be­ing rigid in your choices rarely works. Hon­our the house’s her­itage.

3 Recog­nise that few things are per­ma­nent.

If you get them wrong, most fix­tures can be swapped, fur­nish­ings re­placed. Slow down and plan but don’t get so snail-like the project is aban­doned.

4 Neu­trals are okay.

There’s noth­ing wrong with white walls and beige so­fas. You don’t need to go bright to cre­ate im­pact. But do con­sider tex­ture and pat­tern. Even neu­tral shades have the “wow fac­tor” if they are lay­ered.

5 Think of your walls as a can­vas.

Highim­pact wall­pa­per, cre­ative paint colours, the in­tro­duc­tion of mould­ings, trims and pan­elling, gallery walls and group­ings — dis­play your cre­ativ­ity all over your walls.

6 Calm a room with a clas­sic piece.

Mix­ing old with new means your in­te­ri­ors will date far less quickly. Think a crys­tal chan­de­lier in an oth­er­wise mod­ern sit­ting room; a vin­tage rug in a con­tem­po­rary kitchen.

7 Mix up your prices.

Never un­der­es­ti­mate the ben­e­fits of com­bin­ing big-ticket items with bud­get — or re­pur­posed — ones. It al­lows you to add a few in­ex­pen­sive on-trend pieces, adds per­son­al­ity and makes the ex­pen­sive items stand out.

8 Take your time and in­vest where it matters.

Al­low­ing your in­te­ri­ors to “grow” or­gan­i­cally makes them more in­ter­est­ing — and af­ford­able. You evolve, so should your house.

9 Never sac­ri­fice com­fort.

Test seat­ing be­fore pur­chase. No mat­ter how pretty it is, an un­com­fort­able couch will never be a good in­vest­ment if peo­ple won’t sit on it.

10 Com­bine de­sign styles.

Slav­ishly ad­her­ing to one look is re­strict­ing. But some decor styles go to­gether bet­ter than oth­ers. Scandi with boho, for ex­am­ple. Stream-lined con­tem­po­rary with mid-cen­tury. Coun­try with shabby chic.

Bal­ance out the sleek lines of mid-cen­tury fur­ni­ture by invit­ing na­ture in­doors. Fur­nish­ings and fur­ni­ture avail­able at Good Form, good­form.co.nz

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