How to Shop Like an Interior Designer

Interior design tips from an award-winning interior designer

As an interior designer I often hear my clients complain that they get overwhelmed when they are trying to decorate a room themselves. Here are a few tips that can help you avoid common decorating mistakes.

Don't know where to start? Use inspirational pieces, like your favorite pottery, a sweater, art or jewelry you love. Use your inspiration as your starting point to pick up colors and elements of style in your room.

Next, get yourself organized! When designing a room nothing is more important  than developing a master plan… measure, take photos, know your style, make lists, prioritize rooms. Group your materials together in a ziplock bag for each room.

To help you visualize what will work when shopping always bring photos of your room, room and furniture measurements, swatches of fabric and paint, and your inspirational items.

When mixing fabrics vary the sizes of the patterns… for instance use a large floral with a small geometric and a textured solid. Unite the fabrics with a common color.

Use a large-scale pattern for large pieces of furniture or walls, medium or small scale for small pieces or trim. For a designer look add contrasting trim to pillows and window coverings.

When it comes to scale, err on the side of too large. It’s better to have substantial pieces, lamps and art than too wimpy.

Curtain panels should always be more than the width of the area to be covered and should be lined and interlined--unless it’s a sheer. Fuller curtains are 2 to 2/12 times the width of area to be covered.

To add drama and emphasize the height of the room install curtain hardware close to ceiling.

Use wallpaper in unexpected places… on the ceiling, in the laundry room, in foyers. A great color and pattern or texture will change your experience.

Not sure what to do with the ceiling? Paint it 25% of the wall or trim color.

Don’t buy a rug that’s too small for a room… it makes the room look smaller. 

I hope these tips will help you create a beautiful space in your home without getting overwhelmed!

Kingsley Belcher Knauss

KBK Interior Design, ASID


This post is contributed by a community member. The views expressed in this blog are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Patch Media Corporation. Everyone is welcome to submit a post to Patch. If you'd like to post a blog, go here to get started.


More »
Got a question? Something on your mind? Talk to your community, directly.
Note Article
Just a short thought to get the word out quickly about anything in your neighborhood.
Share something with your neighbors.What's on your mind?What's on your mind?Make an announcement, speak your mind, or sell somethingPost something
See more »