8 Common Decorating Mistakes

Our homes are our sanctuaries, so go ahead and decorate to please yourself! Sometimes we get stuck when a room just feels a bit ‘off’, but don’t know how to fix it. These 8 Common Decorating Mistakes will act as a north point on your decorating compass and take you in the right direction when styling your space.



Furniture issues play a roll in decorating mistakes

Furniture issues

There is nothing more important than the layout of your furniture in a space. A great furniture arrangement creates ease of traffic flow, shows purpose of the room, and generates a comfortable vibe. When you have too much furniture in a space, you get a claustrophobic feeling. When all your furniture is pushed to the outside of the room against the walls, the space feels too rigid and uninviting. If your furniture is the wrong scale for the space, your room can feel too big, or small. To make a space feel just right, furniture selection is key!


Curating great room design is an art and a science. As a professionally trained and certified home stylist, I can help! A Discovery Call is always Free.



Inconsistent Design

Inconsistent Design

Your home should tell a design story with color, style, and furnishings. A common decorating mistake is not carrying your design throughout the entire house. Eclectic style is great for a living room, but it doesn’t look good with a Victorian dining room and a modern-minimalist bedroom. If you have a design style that speaks to you, incorporate it in variations through your whole home. Create a color palette that travels from room to room in bits and pieces to create a cohesive design. For a few tips on decorating a home with a cohesive design, check out this article.



Feels Impersonal

It Feels Impersonal

What makes a home feel like a home? It’s you! It’s your style, your preferences, your tastes. Another common decorating mistake is taking that gorgeous Instagram inspiration photo and recreating it, only to find that it completely lacks your personality. Creating a comfortable, organic design requires intentional thought and planning. Ask yourself what colors make you feel good, what kind of furniture makes you most comfortable, what art resonates with you. When you start with a little soul-searching in the beginning, you will discover a style that is uniquely you.



Missing finishing touches is a decorating mistake

It’s Missing Finishing Touches

So, you’ve nailed down your color palette, picked out your furniture, and set up your TV but it still feels off. Are you missing the little tchotchkes that bring a room to life? Don’t forget the finishing touches that add warmth, drama, and visual interest to a space. When you bring in an area rug, some art, greenery, and personal items that you’ve collected, the room begins to take on a personality and life. Not only will it begin to feel more like home, but it will also showcase your personality too!



Too Many Accent Pillows

Too Many Accent Pillows

The biggest difference between a staged home and a lived-in home can sometimes come down to the pillows. In real life, a couch loaded with accent pillows in not comfortable or ideal for ease of living. When you have 4 layers of accent pillows on your bed, it makes you wonder why you bother with them each night when you must remove them to get into bed. Bottom line is, too many pillows are just not practical.  Consider just a couple accent pillows for your couch that you can easily drop into a decorative basket when watching a show. Accents should be just that, accents! Not the show-stopping main feature.



Badly hung art is another decorating mistake

Trouble with Art

Art is a fabulous way to make a room feel finished, it is also one of the most common decorating mistakes when done badly. Hanging art can be fraught with mistakes. Consider the scale of the piece you want to hang. Does it look too small with the sofa? Erring on the side of too big is always safer than too small. Large art will feel intentional, whereas art that is too small will always feel like a mistake. What about placement? There are some general rules of thumb when hanging art. Center the art between 57-60” from the floor. Art should be ½ – 1/3 the width of the sofa, and roughly 6-8” above the sofa. Hanging art can be tricky, so I’m here to help if needed.



Rug is too small

Rug is Too Small

The easiest way to anchor a room is by adding a rug. Rugs are great to define spaces, add texture, incorporate color, and create a cozy vibe. When adding a rug to a seating area, it is important to make sure it’s the right size. When you have a rug that is too small for a space, it looks off and feels a bit hokey and uninviting. If a rug is too big, it can overwhelm the space and  make the room feel small. A simple guide to anchoring a living room with a rug is to make sure that all the front feet of the furniture touch the rug without crowding the conversation area. Just like a round dining table lends itself to a round rug, a rectangle dining table should sit on a rectangular rug. Here’s a quick rug guide to check out. A bad rug falls into one of the 8 Common Decorating Mistakes people inadvertently make. Don’t fall into this one!



Poor lighting is another common decorating mistake

Lighting is Poor

Everyone knows candlelight is the best for erasing wrinkles, but we don’t want to spend each evening basking in the glow of candles. Lighting is crucial when designing a space. Kitchens are by nature utility areas and should be bright. Theatre rooms are destined to be darker. Bedrooms should allow for both overhead and lamp lighting options. No one wants to pack for a last-minute trip at night in a room that is less than well lit. Creating layers of light encourages different levels of ambiance and can enhance the mood of a space. Lighting layers also offer a great way to add more style and visual interest with a well thought out lamp or sconce.


Now that you know these 8 Common Decorating Mistakes, avoid them! Use these tips as a rough jumping off point to hone your aesthetic and trouble shoot areas in your home that could use a little tweaking. Still, stuck? Message me or schedule a Free Discovery Call. Let’s chat about your space and create a plan to put it right!



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