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Big Mistakes in Designing Rooms

Here is a home with high ceilings and beautiful windows. The wall color is neutral and easy to work into a good color story. So what is the concern? When you have high ceilings it is very important that the art work, mirrors and wall designs fill a good portion of the wall. The mirror over the fireplace is a good size in height and width. However the smaller pictures by the TV don’t cover enough wall space and lead your eye off the wall. How would you fix this?

It would be best to have larger artwork and the arrangement could be placed with the one closer to the TV higher and move the outside piece over the TV and have it the highest. It would be more appealing to cover more of the wall going higher and wider.

Another issue is the placement of the rectangular table between the sofas. It needs to be round or square to fill the space properly. Presently the angles of the table fight the lines of the sofas.

In the same room we see 5 small pictures with different shapes on a BIG wall. They are too small, and the two verticals between the horizontal pictures looks odd. It would be much better to have a large piece of art, or two large paintings hanging side by side. Tiny pieces on a large wall simply don’t work.

Here is another example of a large wall and these pictures are a better size, placed over the sofa at the right height above the sofa. However when you have this much wall and an angled ceiling, it is better to have a large round piece of art, mirror, or multiple round plates to cover more of the wall. The round shapes don’t fight the angle of the ceiling and it is always good to add curves to a room.

The other issue that is obvious are the matching end tables and coffee table. This is old school and matching everything is far less interesting than adding another shape for the coffee table.

In this next house the shelves have a variety of shapes and sizes of the items setting on them, which is excellent. The only thing that is needing help is the placement. Every shelf seems to be two sections, left and right. If on the second and fourth shelves there was a single larger piece it would be more interesting. It would break up the straight lines going down on each side of each shelf. It is a small detail but adds more interest to the arrangement.

The vases on the mantel could use a little greenery to soften the space as everything is so hard edged. It is truly the little things that can make a room come together.

How could we improve this room? The pictures over the sofa are too small in height and are hung straight across over the curved top of the sofa. The curve always makes it a bit of a challenge. One way to work with it is to have three items with the middle one being hung higher than the outside ones. Also, the amount of space between the top of the sofa and the base of the pictures should be about 6-8 inches max. To fill the space properly make sure you have enough height. If you have enough room to hang 2 of the same size item above each other, you know it is too small.

Another way to help unify the room is to add a rug that is large enough for the front legs of the furniture to be on it. A rug makes an area feel warmer and cozy.

To maintain balance in the room a second matching floor lamp at the other end of the sofa would work. It helps frame the look on that wall.

The space in the center is completely open and really would look better with a round coffee table. Why round? When you have angled chairs it is better to not have corners that fight the angle. It also saves your knees as you walk around it.

This room has good sized windows, but, by hanging the valance over the top of the window the light and height is cut down. Take down the valance and hang two drapery panels up to the crown molding. They can be stationary drapes on two 24 inch rods. The drapes hang to just above the floor, add color and weight to that side of the room.

These small changes will make such a difference in this room!

Can you guess what the problem is in this room? The drapes!!! Not only are they too long, but someone could trip and hurt themselves on these. They should hang straight and end a 1/2 inch above the floor. Since they have blinds on the window the drapes could actually be hung just below the ceiling on each end and eliminate the middle ones. If the purpose of the drapes is to block out more sunlight I would recommend Hunter Douglas blinds with black out material. It would be much easier than pulling drapes back and forth daily.

Adding a rug would add warmth to the room. It should be placed so that about a third of the rug is under the bed and rest is visible out from under the bed.

I love the height of the mattress and box springs. It is high and looks good, especially in a vaulted room. However, a taller set of nightstands and lamps would be more in proportion with the bed. Proportion in furniture, draperies, and wall hangings is so important!

Every home has interesting architectural features. Some are great big windows and curved windows. Others are smaller nooks and crannies. Some houses have very high ceilings, others are angled. Whatever you are working with can cause some moments of confusion in your design. I definitely recommend getting a professional designer involved before you make expensive mistakes.

Nelson Designs works with you on figuring out the best way to resolve your problems. Our team of very experienced designers can offer you multiple options and guide you in your home or office update or remodel. Hopefully these examples given with guide you in your choices.


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