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Monday, February 22, 2010

Rules To Live By

I am referring to design rules, not the rules your mother taught you as you were growing up like "don't forget to clean behind your ears"...these are some hard & fast guidelines for anybody's house, whether for staging or for living.  Check 'em out:

  • Don't be "matchy matchy".  Flash back to the 1980's when everything matched and you'll know what I am talking about.  Today's style mixes fabrics and textures and metals and materials for a more unique space.  This includes your wood floors, if you have them:  don't match your furniture legs to the wood floors, especially if you don't have a rug separating the two.  The monochromatic looks is BORING.
  • You watch TV so include it in the design plan.  Unless you have a media room or a den, go ahead and account for the television in your living room.  Recently, TV frames have become more popular so the big, black box doesn't look so much like a giant wart in the room.  Here is an example from Pottery Barn, but there are many companies who can create something similar or more specific to your style:

  • The top of your coffee table should always be lower than your couch.  You don't want the blood rushing out of your feet while you have them propped up watching your cool, framed TV do you?
  • When displaying items on a shelf or tabletop, odd numbers of items usually look best.  I don't know why, it just does.  And don't do the matchy matchy thing; see the first bullet point if you need a reminder.  Here is an example from one of my favorite stores, Mecox (a blog on their fabulous-ness is coming soon!).

  • Use enough furniture!  If you have a large space, you need to fill it with furniture.  If you can't afford it, get a smaller place.  Consider creating "zones" where people can sit and visit and if you have an architectural point of interest (fireplace, ocean view, etc.) then be sure you include that focal point when setting up your furniture.  The furniture should be proportionate to the space and to scale with each other.  
So we haven't even touched on art placement, lighting, or colors so stay tuned and we'll address those points soon....  (Sneak peek:  colors should not all be "matchy matchy" - are you surprised?)





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