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Three Easy Steps To Interior Design

Quite often a neighbor or friend will stop by and exclaim that they love my home. They will say, “I need you to come help me decorate my house” or “help me pick colors” to “how should I arrange furniture”? Even though I absolutely love to go and help friends, I decided to come up with a short three step list that anyone can follow to pull their existing decor together and bring it to the next level. I have noticed that most people just don’t know where to start. It’s like writing a term paper, that intro paragraph is the struggle. Once that part is written, the rest comes easy!

Three EASY Steps to Interior Design:

 1. Identify existing finishes and materials. By this I mean the “bones” of your room. For instance, my kitchen is open to a large family room. I can’t just pretend it isn’t there, it just wouldn’t look right if I didn’t make a cohesive statement. The “bones” of my room are the kitchen cabinetry, back splash, counter top, and flooring materials. I even considered my black leather couches as existing finishes. All of these existing item’s have one thing in common, they would not be changed, replaced or painted. So this is the starting point.
The bones of my room. Color here was chosen in step 3.
To add a bit of whimsy to my design I added ceramic textured knobs 
to the cupboards as well as “Bon Appetit” above the pantry door.

 

Existing “bones” in the connecting room were carpet color,
cedar beams in the ceiling, and lighting fixture.
Paint and stenciling were added in step 3.

If you don’t have “bones” yet in your home may I suggest what you choose for your kitchen cabinetry and moulding’s to be used throughout the rest of your home? There is something pleasing to the eye when things flow nicely. It is like comfort instead of chaos. By this I mean use the same color of stain on your cabinetry in the bathrooms, or something that speaks the same language from room to room.

The formal dining area of my home was transformed into a
music room for P. I carried the same color theme into this area
because the rooms somewhat connect and I wanted flow and
continuity. Notice the large bookcase is walnut like the wood
flooring and cedar beams. The grand piano is black like my
leather furniture. The light fixtures throughout my home
and door handles are oil rubbed bronze.
2. Select patterns and textures (fabrics and art work) that correspond to #1. Now that you know what your existing materials and finishes are, this is where the fun begins! Take samples of those finishes and have fun picking out patterns and textures. These would be window treatments, a throw rug, wall art, and throw pillows for your couches.
 Clock collage wall corresponded with the color of cedar beams as well as the colors 
and round pattern in the fabric I chose for my window cornices.
The collage on the huge stenciled wall has frames in every color
used, from dark walnut, to black, and even a lighter brown.
 Note that the two wicker chairs as well as the sofa table and coffee table
are almost the same “walnut” color as the cedar beams. This color is also
in the wood flooring of my entryway as well as the light fixture/fan. The
darkest color in the fabric {in my cornices} is also this dark walnut brown
as well as the color of the island and cupboards in my kitchen.
Not pictured is a round table in the dining area in the same walnut
color as the cedar beams and wicker chairs. I opted for off-white chairs
in this area that match the paint on my cupboards.

Lay these patterns and textures out and create a “project board” or area. Now you will be able to easily see how everything falls into place and comes together. If something doesn’t belong you will know it, if you aren’t sure then go with your gut instinct or ask a friend. {Don’t ask your husband, because that could start a fight! hehe}

3. Extrude paint colors from #2. Once you have come this far it is time to choose your paint color. A lot of people will see a color of paint that they like in a catalog or at IKEA and use that color without doing the first two steps. I call this reverse design. Seriously, unless it coordinates with your existing finishes and materials it may not look good. {Take my word on this, I promise} Furthermore, believe me when I say this, it is MUCH HARDER to find fabrics and textures to match and coordinate with existing paint colors than the other way around.


I found the perfect paint swatch! Notice that the darkest color
mimics the walnut color in the flooring, beams, table, fireplace,
 and cupboards. There are so many different greige colors to choose
 from I never would have been able to choose a color before and
match all of these details together. I ended up using the two middle
colors, the lighter as the overall color in the kitchen and dining area,
the darker color on the stenciled wall.

And just an extra tid-bit of advice…remind sweet hubby that his space to decorate is the garage. Of course I am being funny here, but Doug and I rarely argue about anything other than interior design. He’s a big know it all since he has a masters degree in Architecture and Interiors. To make matters worse, I’m very opinionated and know what I want. That being said, I often remind him that his place to decorate is the garage. It’s a standing joke in our house. {Love you D <3}

The huge open framed collage wall is a favorite, because I love
to decorate with each season and this allows me to switch out and 
change things up each season.
 
Money Saving Advice. Use textures and colors in throw pillows which can affordably be recovered or switched out when you get tired of a certain color or trends change. Paint the walls in your home somewhat “neutral” for the same reason. Buy couches that are basic colors which will stand the test of time and are “classic” in nature {not trendy}.
 
I hope that these ideas will inspire you to start decorating your own home. Please share what you have done in the comments below, I love seeing other people’s decor and sharing inspiration! Below is a short video clip taken from my phone which shows this area of my home! Thanks for viewing.
XOXO, Amylia

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