Decorating Mistakes to Avoid

Decorating your home is about sprucing up your living space with items you love and creating an ambiance of comfort. Beauty is subjective, as one person’s choice of the perfect home decor elements will vary from another person’s. However, there are some decorating mistakes you should avoid, regardless of your style preferences. So, are you planning a home decor project anytime soon? Here are some mistakes you might want to avoid. 

Photo Better Homes & Garden



Too much of a good thing 


You’ve chosen your colors, selected furniture, and added accents.  Sometimes after I arrange seasonal decorations in the living room, I must come back the next day and adjust it.  This usually happens when I add too many items to my space. For many of us this happens at Christmas.  You collect so many pretty, shiny objects and want to use all of them.  Editing your space can simply mean removing a few accents to let the room shine without distractions. You want your interior to look organized, homey, comfortable, and most importantly, beautiful – and a cluttered space achieves the exact opposite.   Better Homes & Garden has an excellent article, 6 Decorating Mistakes That Can Make Your Room Look Messier Than It Is. Using too many colors and too many accent pillows, arranging furniture against the wall and and placing too many decorations on the tables can make a room feel like it’s too much. This is especially true if you’re working with a small space. 




Living Room

Photo The Spruce




Don’t choose paint color first



If you are not going to use a neutral paint on the wall, don’t choose your wall color first.  I personally prefer neutral walls, but some designs call for bolder colors. Never choose the paint color first. Paint is available in thousands of colors and can easily be changed. Choose your most expensive pieces first like a beautiful sofa and chairs. Then decorate around them. Match the wall to the furniture instead of furniture to the wall.  And speaking of colors, the next point is also vital. 



Photo Behr Paint




Test your wall colors before you paint



Your wall color can easily make or break your home’s interior decor. One headache you don’t want is to realize halfway during your painting job that you don’t like the color you chose. To avoid this, you should test the colors before you start painting – in fact, even before buying the paint. And the same principle should apply to wallpaper use. Small squares of colors or fabric do not give you a sense of how a large wall will look.  Get samples  of colors and try putting them on a wall  side by side .  Use one of the visualizers offered by many paint companies to see a room with selected colors. 



Air Purifying Paint

Photo Ecos Paint




Ignoring health and safety


As much as you want your home to look beautiful, you don’t have to ignore health and safety issues. For example, allowing enough sunlight in your home, adding some plants, making room for natural ventilation all come with essential health benefits. Since we just discussed wall colors, I must add I only buy low VOC paints. A low-VOC paint has a reduced amount of volatile organic compounds. Therefore, the paint won’t give off as much of that harmful gas as a traditional paint. The term “low-VOC,” however, is only in comparison to other paints. Typically, paints that use this term should contain fewer than 50 grams of VOCs per liter. Finally, ensure that you improve security issues with options like a high security deadbolt lock and effective outside lighting, etc. 




Eggshell Paint

Photo Ecos Paint



Choosing a small rug area



Interior designers constantly remind us that the biggest decorating mistake you can make is choosing a rug too small for your space.   This is one of the most common home interior decor mistakes. Don’t add a postage-stamp-size rug to a large room.  At best, you should have all your furniture sitting on your rug. If that’s not possible, at least your rug should reach the front leg of the main furniture pieces.



Open living room with sheer curtains

Photo My Domaine




Going all-monotone




White always adds a touch of pristine class to any interior decor space, but leaving everything white will only leave your home feeling and looking dull, boring, and lacking depth. The same applies to any other color once you go monotone with it.  Stylish and beautiful monotone interiors are not easy to execute.  No matter how appealing a particular color is to you, it’s best to always match it with a complementary color or two. Even a tiny burst of coordinating color wakes up a room. Below I think a colorful backsplash would add so much to this all white kitchen. It’s just too white.



Photo by Urban Kitchens




In conclusion…


Decorating is all about the things you do:  the colors you pick, the furniture you love, and the accents you choose to finish your space off with that perfect look. Decorating is also about the things that you don’t do. Keep an editing eye on your surroundings as you adjust your space to be perfect for your family.





Ladder in bright living room


Photo The Spruce













This is a collaborative post but all opinions are my own.

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I was raised in Tennessee but have lived in Florida for many years. Love my small home in the Tampa Bay area and its developing garden. My decorating style is eclectic - some vintage, some cottage, all with a modern flair. Pursuing a healthier lifestyle. Spent many years in social services but am happily retired.

5 thoughts to “Decorating Mistakes to Avoid”

  1. This is a terrific article, Carol. Thanks., I know Christmas is always my most challenging time. My house is too small for all I have! I’ll try to keep this in mind!

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