When it’s time to decorate a new room in your home, you don’t want to try tackling the project without a plan. Speak with an interior designer as you re-imagine the space—and spend some time covering it temporarily with patterns, designs and images. Here are some steps you can take to ensure a smooth design project for your room:
1. What’s the purpose? First, before you start to decorate your room, you need to decide what its purpose will be. Here are some common rooms and their purposes:
a. Living room: entertainment, relaxation, watching movies
b. Bedroom: sleeping, relaxation
c. Dining room: eating, entertainment
d. Home office: work, entertainment
Once you decide on the purpose of your room, you can plan the decor around it.
2. Keeping your preferences. While you should decorate the room around the purpose, you should also keep personal preferences in mind. You don’t want to include colors, designs, and decor that you hate just because they flow with the purpose. You should choose designs that you’ll enjoy. Interior designers are particularly good about blending what you need with what you like to create a perfect result.
3. Create a budget. Stay within budget and get a great room at the end of the project. Figure out how much you’re willing to spend on the decorating project without breaking your bank. You’ll also need to factor in the cost to hire an interior designer, which can average between $1,500 and $4,500.
4. Devise a floor plan. As you start thinking about interior decor for the room—furniture, plants and standing lamps, for example—make a plan to avoid cluttering the room. Draw a rough sketch of the room to scale and plan where you might put furniture and other decor. It will help you stay within budget, keep the room well-organized and put you on a straight course for success.
5. Pick a color scheme. Decorating the interior means choosing a color scheme. You can play geometric patterns and floral prints and mix them with colors. Maybe you want to go with a natural decor theme, with lots of plants and greens and browns. Or, you could choose just one or two colors. It’s important to choose colors that will complement the furniture and other decor to avoid clashing.
6. Remember other rooms. When decorating this new room, remember to keep other rooms in mind. You don’t want to paint this room in a completely different color scheme or decorate in shades that may conflict with those in the rest of your home. You can change it a little bit, use a few different colors.
7. Choose furniture carefully. Remember that the furniture you choose is going to be with you a long time. Don’t pick a sofa, loveseat, or chair that’s going to be difficult to move or incorporate into a new home later. You also want it to fit easily through the doorway and be fairly simple to install. You might also consider furniture that can fit into other parts of your home, in case you decide to switch it up down the road.
8. Don’t forget the lights. Once you have painted and placed all of the furniture and decor in the room, it’s time to add lighting to accent everything. You want task lighting for areas you’ll work or spend the most time in. You might also install ambient lighting to set the mood, depending on the purpose of the room. Consider standing lamps if the room is large.
More From Life Cheat Sheet: