Sometimes it looks good to break the rules when decorating your home

Posted 27 May 2016

We all have an idea of what we think the inside of our house should look like. We take inspiration from magazines, television programmes and even the shops we visit.

Most of us unconsciously stick to the well-defined rules that appear to be ingrained in the vast majority of us. Well, perhaps it's time to break the rules, to throw aside what we think we know about appealing interior design and mix things up a little.

You don't have to go wild, but here are a few ways that you can take a stand for individual design in your home.


Not every room needs an overhead light

It sounds strangely wrong on a fundamental level but it's true, not every room needs to have a 'big' light. Overhead lights are necessary in some spaces such as the kitchen, bathroom and utility room, but other options are available elsewhere. Using a less is more approach and buying a selection of lamps and candles can actually improve the ambience of a room, creating the soft lighting and restful, calming atmosphere you need in bedrooms, snugs, and other rooms where relaxation is the goal.


Furniture doesn’t always need to match

We're so used to buying our furniture in sets or trying to stick to a committed 'look' for a room, that we've forgotten the joy of mismatching. Mixing a room's furniture between old and new pieces is a sure-fire way to make it stand out as an individual statement.  Mixing colours and styles can also add real flair to your home, and you should never underestimate the quirky charm of mismatched dining room chairs, a drawer full of mixed cutlery or a varied array of patterned crockery.


Symmetry isn’t everything

If you really want to draw the eye around a particular room, then moving away from symmetry is a good start. Mixed furniture of the type mentioned above can help, but placing it at various angles will really help to break up a linear layout or those smooth lines that can feel oppressively uniform in open plan living spaces. Different sized furniture will also help you get the asymmetrical look, while unusual angles and positioning can enhance the off-kilter effect no end.


Colours and patterns don’t need to match

It's all well and good picking a pattern for a rug or cushion that will compliment an existing piece of furniture, but that's not always likely to make it stand out or create that more relaxed and haphazard ambience that can be cosy and reassuring.

There is always a time and place for matching soft furnishings, of course, but do not underestimate the importance of having features, fittings or fixtures that break from the norm. Besides, colours can still compliment each other without being an exact match.


Not every room needs to be a picture in colour

If you want to make a move into minimalism or simply fancy bucking the trend and ditching the wallpaper and coloured paints, then crisp white walls can make a bold and beautiful statement in certain rooms. Not every internal space needs to mimic the feel of a Mediterranean villa; instead why not use light and individual furnishings to add a subtle accent to simple white walls.

Using lighting creatively can also provide a genuine alternative to paint in rooms such as the kitchen or even a bedroom. Use the play on light and dark to add enough contrast to stop a room from appearing boring, without caking each surface in vivid colours.

So, next time you come to decorate your house, take a second to consider whether there are some rules you might want to break.


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