It is easy to make mistakes when decorating, and it happens to everyone. Ordering an item that is the wrong scale or forgetting to consider electrical details. But the good news is that there are solutions to these common mistakes, so keep reading and learn how to avoid making them in the future.

7 Decorating Mistakes to Avoid and Take Your Room From Rookie to Polished

Don’t Choose the Paint Color First

The first thing that you may do when moving into a new home, eager to decorate, is think of paint colours. However your best bet is to paint after everything else is done. Paint colours are unlimited and can be tinted and finetuned to suit your desires, so consider your expensive décor elements first and decorate around them. The leading manufacturer of paint has 3,500 colours so you can get exactly the right hue to complement everything once it is in your home. If you are not sure how to narrow it down, we have a list of our go-to whites for you.

Don’t Choose Small Area Rugs

Using rugs that are too small for your space is a very common decorating mistake. The rule of thumb is that all furniture should be sitting on the rug. If this is not possible, then the front legs of larger more solid pieces should be on the rug. If you want to learn more about typical measurements for living rooms, dining room and bedrooms, please check out our blog posts.

Don’t Hang Artwork Too High

A common mistake when hanging artwork is hanging it to close to the ceiling. Artwork should be hung at eye level however this varies for every person. A more precise measurement is to hang artwork 60 inches from the center of the artwork to the floor. If you are hanging art above furniture, measure 4-6 inches from the base of the artwork to the top of the piece.

Don’t Hang Your Chandelier Too High

The aim when hanging chandeliers is to light up the room, not the ceiling, so by hanging your chandelier too high will limit the spread of light in your space.

When hanging a chandelier over a dining table, the base of the chandelier should be roughtl 34” from the surface of the table. You also want the chandelier to be proportionate to the size of the room and the table. We have written about typical heights for lighting for you.

If you are hanging pendant lights over a kitchen island, the bottom of the light should be approximately 30-36 inches from the top of the island. If you are hanging multiple pendant lights, keep them 30 inches apart and at least 6 inches from the edge of the countertop.

Don’t Use Small Accent Pillows

Accent pillows should be relative to the piece of furniture that they will be placed on. A small pillow would look unusual and a bit lost on a large chair. However, you do not want the pillow to be too big either as it will make sitting down awkward, so make sure to leave enough room to sit comfortably. You can read about the reason we love these pillow sizes for more.

The go-to size for throw pillows are 18 inches which fit most seating. If you want a cozier feel, go for 20 – 24inches and for low back furniture, 16 inches will work or try a lumbar for your best bet.

living room seating grouping in neutral colours

Don’t Push All Furniture Against the Walls

Pushing furniture against the walls creates an awkward and empty space in the center of the room and creates an overall unwelcoming vibe. Depending on the size of your room, try to pull furniture away from the walls to create intimate conversation areas. This is particularly key in living rooms. If you are worried about people seeing the back of your sofa, placing a console table behind it, or other accessories such as throws or plants can help to alleviate this worry.

Don’t Hang your Drapes Too Short

Draperies that are too short can make your windows too smaller and your room look shorter. Curtains and drapes should skim the floor, however it’s okay if they’re longer and puddle on the floor, and reach as high above the window as they can. If you want to know how to measure curtains accurately, check out our blog post, curtain hanging.

Decorating can be fun! If you follow some pro guidelines you can get a terrific result. Have fun with it but pay attention to scale and proportion. This is where most people fail to get a stellar result.