Make a Focal Point
Whether you're decorating your living room, bedroom or kitchen, you need a focal point. This is the first thing guests see when they enter the room, and it creates a dramatic impression. Use any architectural feature, such as a large stone fireplace in the living room or a wall of windows in the kitchen. If the room lacks any type of feature you want to highlight, create your own focal point. Hang a large piece of colorful artwork on one wall, or group smaller images in the same color scheme. Turn a treasured collection, such as pottery pieces, into a focal point.
Mix and Match Styles
Use a combination of styles and pieces to avoid making the room look too perfect. Remember that your home should have a comfortable and lived-in feel, rather than looking like it just walked out of a design catalog. If you do opt for a specific style, find ways to give it your own stamp. Paint white cottage style furniture a bright color, or add an Amish hickory rocker to a contemporary living room.
Bring in Color
Use color as an accent. If you don't feel comfortable using color in a big, dramatic way, try small ways until you're confident. Introduce just a few shades in a new piece of art or pillows for the couch. Those small pops of color can have a big impact in an otherwise neutral room.
Home decorators are often tempted to go overboard, cramming a room full of accessories and furniture, which makes the room feel cluttered and heavy. Stash the clutter, and find ways to store some of the things you use less often. Put video games in a wall-mounted bookshelf, and tuck magazines into baskets under the coffee table. Step back and look at the room from an outsider's perspective. If the room looks cluttered, then start taking things out.
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