Interiors: Redoing rooms in your home

McClatchy-Tribune News ServiceFebruary 20, 2014 


Want to add a punch of color, but in an unexpected way? Try adding that color to the ceiling - and keeping the walls neutral.


Often it is heard that people say they wish they could trash everything in their house and start all over. But usually that is not a practical or affordable goal. If you have the urge to start over, consider redoing rooms that are used frequently like the family room, the kitchen, the master bedroom or the master bath. Start by flipping through design magazines and clipping pictures of rooms that catch your attention. At first, the clippings don’t have to have anything in common, just that they attract you. Eventually, there will emerge a pattern.

After spending several weeks in your “research” start to figure out what it is that draws you to those pictures and then take the time to figure out what will work best in the room or rooms you intend to redo. Do remember though, that sometimes doing one room will cause a domino effect making you need changes in other rooms. The best caution I can give is to stick to the same theme already established in the home, including the same color scheme. If you intend on redoing the entire house, one step at a time, then anything goes in the room or rooms you intend to start with.

Here are some ideas to get you started on your project. On the windows you might consider making them appear taller by installing window treatments that extend beyond the height of the window and having those treatments go to the floor.

If formal is the way you prefer the room to look, soft carpet and dark wood will do the trick. Also, arranging furniture in a mirror image with sofa facing sofa or love seat will give the room formality. Comfortable chairs placed at right angles to the sofa will complete the look.

If casual is your preference, a heavier and more textured carpet is a good idea. An informal balance in the furnishings works well here by using end tables that don’t match or night stands that don’t match. All the furnishings need to blend; they just don’t have to come from the same style or ensemble. If privacy is not an issue, then consider not covering the windows at all as this will help open the space. If leaving the windows totally bare is not to your liking, a simple top treatment might be the answer.

Is the room oversized? Make it more inviting by creating groupings of furniture and dividing it up with rugs and plants. Warm colors on the walls and the upholstery help if well blended and don’t be afraid of using dark colors on the wall as the dark colors help make the room look less overwhelming.

Is the room small? Cool colors work here, and light instead of dark colors work well. Mirrors and glass table tops help open the space a bit.

OK, your turn. Get the ball rolling.

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