How to avoid common furnishing mistakes

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Whether you are on the cusp of moving into your first apartment or remodelling your home, there is much consideration that needs to go into how to furnish it. This can be a daunting prospect as there are innumerable pitfalls that many people just can't seem to avoid when it comes to interior decoration.

Today on homify we will look at some of the most common furnishing mistakes and how it can be fixed quite simply. It is all about being mindful when you plan and design the space in your home, and these helpful hints will give you a good indication of what to keep in mind when doing so. These basic rules are great for any room in your home and can be seen as general guidelines for furnishing in any style and during any time period and trend.

Let's look at six ways to avoid regrettable design choices. 

1. Bet against sets

classic Living room by CC Construction
CC Construction

Light and bright!

CC Construction

The thing about furniture sets is that they are very generic due to its necessity to be able to suit well in many different settings. This is most often perpetrated in living rooms. Purchasing a furniture set means greatly diminishing the possibilities you have for furnishing and decorating your room any further. Colours, materials, decorative items—all have to be planned around the furniture set and that can be extremely restrictive. 

Furniture sets have been popular for decades due to its affordability and continuity in design. It is a clever trick of manufacturers and sellers, though, since we are led to believe that we need the full set and all the individual pieces. You will do yourself a favour by buying only pieces that you need and according to the style you are going for. 

2. Functional aesthetic

 Household by Otago Design
Otago Design

Otago Design's first collection

Otago Design

Artwork is often overlooked when it comes to making furnishing decisions. Although a work of art is primarily aesthetic, it can go a long way in creating the right kind of atmosphere in a room and in bringing all the different elements and pieces of the space together in a coherent whole. 

The biggest pitfall when it comes to choosing artwork in interior design, is centring artworks as focal points in a room instead of orienting it around the furniture. Art can definitely be an extremely important element of any room, but it will have to follow the primary function of that room. In this sense artwork is complimentary to the basic furniture, but can make or break the design of the space. 

It is also easy to fall into a ditch of cliché art, but if you keep the rule of thumb that any artwork should have meaning in mind, you'll be on the safe side. Opt for off-centre piece rather than on, since this creates visual interest. 

Pictured here are pieces from Otago Design, which are simple, subtle, diffuse and absolutely beautiful. 

3. Pay attention to lighting

modern Living room by 4 home store
4 home store

Suspensão modelo Coltrane

4 home store

Good lighting is essential for furnishing any space in any home. There is no point in picking out all the right pieces of furniture and decoration, when its true effect can hardly be seen! The first key lighting consideration of a well-designed space is to allow as much natural light as possible to permeate the space. This will save cost on lighting expenses, provide healthy light and make any space feel lighter and more open. The implication of this is to avoid blocking up sources of natural light with furniture, accessories and window treatments. 

Another lighting mistake will be to limit yourself to overhead lighting. Although this is usually the primary source of artificial light in most rooms, it does not always reach all the corners of the room and can feel rigid. Add lamps and other light sources to your overhead lighting to increase the mood and illumination. 

4. Mix and match

An easy mistake to make for those who like to air on the side of caution, is a lack of variety. Although coordination is favourable for decorating and furnishing home space, you don't want a monotonous or boring room. What you really want is to use various different colours and materials to created variety and depth in the space. This can be achieved by carefully planning colour elements and including different textures and textiles. 

Another way of falling into this trap is by choosing furniture pieces which all have the same silhouette. A room can look just plain awkward when you walk in and all you see is legs. Use a combination of legs, skirts and solid forms to create an interesting balance. 

5. Out with the old and in with the new

New home decoration and interior design trends should not be feared when planning your new home or remodelling. Naturally, it is easy to make a huge mistake with a passing fad, but there are a few ways to be more certain you are on the right track:

1. Consider how the trendy piece will work with the rest of you furniture and your primary elements.

2. Zone-in on trends that feels like you—there will be some trends you can get on board with, and some about which you are hesitant. Stick to the former. 

Bringing nature indoors is most certainly a growing trend, and it is something many people could take to. It is definitely a trend which will work very well in any room and is affiliated by the ever-increasing ethos of sustainability. 

For more inspiration, you might like to check out: Home Trends 2016: What Will Be Big Next Year.

6. Personalise!

The last basic principle of avoiding terrible home decoration and interior design mistakes, is to stay true to yourself. Your home is your space, and should reflect your own personal style. If you do not feel comfortable with the furniture and decoration in your home spaces, no-one else ever will. 

Furnishing and decoration is really one of the few space where we can express ourselves and our unique identity if we are not visual artist. Little can go wrong if you start out with some simple basics and add smaller touches that reflect your personal taste. If all goes well, you start looking at adding larger individualistic elements. This is an excellent way to explore your own tastes, to build your self-esteem, and to find your identity in home decoration. 

Have you ever been victim to any of these pitfalls and how did you fix it?
modern Houses by Casas inHAUS

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