We’ve all heard the décor rules, we’ve even written about some décor guidelines. Home décor trends change over time, yesterday’s shabby chic becomes today’s boho chic, but some of those old rules stick around. So first, most rules are there for a reason, and if you’re at a loss for what to do, they’re a good way to create a framework for your décor. However, rules are meant to be broken, and in today’s décor, well… the rules are more like guidelines, actually. We’re about to put a few of our favorite décor myths to rest.
Small room = small furniture
Please toss this one. Put small furniture in your tiny home and you’ll feel like you’re living in a child’s playhouse. Scale is important, but using one or two larger pieces will feel more spacious than a room cluttered with miniscule seating.
Small room = light colors
Yes, light colors brighten a space. Great, but sometimes you want a cozy intimate feeling. A powder room in jewel tones will feel much richer than one in dove gray. Instead focus on furniture placement, lots of light and creating the right feeling for your space, and use whatever color makes that work.
Dark rooms look smaller
Sort of the flip side of the coin, the truth is, dark colors can add warmth and dimension. Dark walls can look amazing in small spaces. They make a perfect backdrop for stunning art and can channel anything from welcoming warmth to high drama. The secret to making dark walls work is lots of light!
Low ceilings should be light colored
Yes, it’s true that dark painted ceilings require that your room – furniture, walls, décor, etc – should be lighter than the ceiling. Yes it’s true that they’re a dramatically different choice. It’s also true that a well-done dark ceiling can make the room feel like it goes up and up and up forever. Again, the secret is lots of light and reflective surfaces like mirrors.
White is uninviting
Sure, white can be cold and clinical. But white can also be soft, tranquil, and luxurious. White is what you make of it, and there are many, many shades of white. The key to decorating with white is to use tone-on-tone to create a sense of depth.
You must have a pop of color
Sure, we love this tip. Especially in monochromatic rooms. But is it an absolute, unbreakable rule? Nope. If you want a genuine monochromatic look, use different shades and textures to create interest and variety, then you won’t need that pop of color.
Patterns and prints don’t mix
Says who? We love the look of mixed patterns and prints. So long as there is a unifying element of color, go ahead and mix those stripes, checks, florals, and plaids. They’ll look great together!
Have only one focal point
Why? There are four walls. In an open layout, having only one focal point could be impossible, and confusing. So you’ve got a great view, a fabulous fireplace, your TV, and an amazing piece of art. But you can only have one be a focal point? We think not! Arrange your room around points of interest that make sense to you and the way you actually live.
Pick a style
Why? Most of us aren’t that one-dimensional. Think of your space as a reflection of who you are and go ahead and blend your different loves. Infusing your personal style makes your space feel more like a home and less like a museum.
Limit use of area rugs
Oh please don’t! Area rugs are the perfect way to add layers of color and texture to your room. Using more than one can help define spaces, soften hard floors and add welcome depth and texture to plain spaces. Just stick within your color scheme and you can layer to your heart’s content.
Follow the “rules”
Why? Rules are meant to be broken. And those rules may not suit your style. We think rules are a great place to start, but test them out in your life and see if they work for you. If they don’t, simply toss them and move on. Your home should be a reflection of you, your tastes, your passions and your style. Not someone else’s.