5 common interior decorating mistakes

Latest update: 23 February, 2021

At Rentola, we love taking the time to decorate our rooms. This post will be the first in a series of interior decorating tips, based on our own experience.
Most visual disciplines like interior decorating are very personal, and what looks good for us might not look good for you. This list’s purpose is merely to help you decorating your rooms in a more harmonious way, by giving you broad guidelines and making you think about elements or principles you might have not thought about before.

Not thinking about the commanding position in your room

Feng Shui is the ancestral chinese art of harmonious furniture placement. The discipline still has thousands of followers to these days, which is a testament to its longevity and efficiency. A key concept of Feng Shui is the “Commanding Position”.
This is the exact place where you spend most of your time when you are in that room. Easy to figure that out! It could be your desk chair, your favorite kitchen chair, your couch or your bed depending on the room.

The Feng Shui principles suggest you to :
- make sure that you get a nice view of the door from that position

- place that commanding position diagonally across the door within the room.

The proper commanding position is supposed to give you control and vision in the room.

Not considering how heavy your furniture is compared to the size of the room

When we say “Heavy” furniture, we do not necessarily mean furniture that is heavy to carry, but furniture that takes a lot of space, with, for example, a large portion of it touching the floor, making it visually “heavy”.
Look at the furniture around you. Do you have such “heavy” items around you? If you do, then imagine how the room would look it your furniture had longer, thinner feet under it instead of a wide base. You could probably see more of the floor, and you would probably feel like the room is bigger and breathes better.

While “Heavy” furniture is not bad per se, it generally looks better in large rooms, where there would still remain a lot of floor in sight. In the case of a big room, “heavy” furniture might be a better decision than light furniture.

Putting too much furniture against the walls

This is a common mistake, when unsure of where to place furniture, a lot of us tend to line them against the wall. This contributes to making rooms feel crowded, smaller, without necessarily being more functional.

When decorating, keep in mind the words popularized by minimalist architect Ludwig Mies van der Rohe : Less is More ! A few carefully picked pieces of furniture, chosen accordingly to your needs, the size of the room and placed according to the general Feng Shui guidelines should make your room more airy and relaxing to be in.

Forgetting to dress up the walls themselves

When you stand in a given room, your eye will direct itself towards the furniture and the elements of decoration present in it. When you forget to dress the walls, a part of your field of vision will not receive as much attention, and you are missing on an opportunity to make it feel more personal, as well as saving some space.

There is so much that can be put on the walls! For example: Instead of stacking books in heavy pieces of furniture against your walls, why not find some small bookshelves and hang them on your wall?
You can easily install small planks of wood on your wall in order to place your lamps, plants, which will save space and reduce the furniture clutter.

It is also the perfect opportunity to place your favorite photos, posters and art in order to make the room feel more personal.

Needless to say, consider asking your landlord how much you are allowed to do on these walls before you start drilling!

Consider second-hand furniture

Buying new furniture is easy and quick, but unless you plan on spending a serious amount of money, it is very likely that you will be buying items made out of cheaper materials like compressed wood, which does not age in a pretty way. This is obviously not the most ecologically-friendly option to pick!

When buying used furniture, it is possible to find unique and high quality items at a fraction of the original retail price. Older furniture (especially before the omnipresence of mass-produced furniture) was often made with in solid wood, which can easily be sanded down repaired and oiled over and over again.

Buying second-hand furniture generally requires research and a bit of elbow grease, especially if the furniture is very old or used, but with the right amount of effort, you should be able to obtain beautiful and unique pieces. Also, second-hand furniture can sometimes be bought for next to nothing!

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