Let’s face it most of us have no idea when it comes to home decorating! If like me you love the thought of turning your home into a designer masterpiece, then just like me you need to turn to the experts who really know the tricks of the styling and home decorating trade.

Luckily for us there are so many places now to turn to gather information on the do’s and don’ts when it comes to decorating  your home, there are magazines, TV shows and of course the world wide web. So whether you are looking to simply update a room or two or looking to makeover your entire home for yourself or for a sale, I’ve done some of the hardwork and come up with a few tips from top designers for you to take on board.


Don’t create rooms that are too “themed”

We all have some particular design style or era that we love, and when we are looking to create a decorating style for our own homes it is often this “look” we turn to for inspiration. But a common mistake is taking this inspiration too far and creating an overly themed space. What you can end up with is an homage to Bali, which is out of place and often also out of context. Instead of being too literal, try looking to colours, artwork or furniture from the style you like and incorporate these in your decor with other pieces. You will still end up with the look and feel that you like without it becoming a theme park.


Don’t buy matching sets of furniture

When buying furniture for your lounge, dining or bedroom, it’s easy to fall into the mistake of getting the whole matching set from one place. Sure they all match and are in the same style, but it’s predictable and can lack personality. Plus, do you really want your home to look like a display window from a catalogue? The trick is to buy the bed, or the large three-seater lounge that you love, and personalise the look by selecting complementary bedside tables or striking single armchairs in a patterned fabric. This will create an interesting look – and one that is yours.



We all have objects we like to display, either from our travels or memorabilia. If you combine these objects with gifts or your latest shopping spree you can end up with lots of clutter, which can easily take over a space. Not only does it become visually busy, but it also makes small spaces feel even smaller. The secret is to edit your collectables and limit the number of items you have on show at one time. If you have many loved items you can’t part with, perhaps store some away and swap them around over time – like a gallery does with artwork. Your special pieces will look more important when they’re not jammed in, competing for space.


Size does matter

When it comes to art, oversized pieces will always make a big statement. Invest  in one piece that you really love and placing it in a key position, like above the lounge or in a foyer, to set the stage for your home styling. A big piece of art means you don’t need lots of other clutter in the room, as it remains the star of the space. Alternatively, a large piece of amazing fabric, framed or on a canvas, can work just as well.


Power in numbers

Make a statement by grouping similar objects like vases, bottles or bowls together, so that they become a stronger design element than they would be individually. One of the tricks is to place three or five candlesticks (always odd numbers) of differing heights in one place. When lit, they become one large light feature, creating great ambiance.


Prints and patterns

There are patterns everywhere in nature, like the bark of trees, or stones in a river. Natural patterns create interest, so why not use them inside as well? They don’t have to be over the top either.

A great way to add pattern is with cushions, throws and rugs, which can work together or independently to help you create the mood you want in your home. Or why not try patterned wallpaper instead?


Less is more

The term “less is more” means that having less of something makes a stronger – and more enjoyable – statement than overwhelming the senses with too much all at once. Strong colours or patterns, though amazing, create a better impact when used sparingly in interior design, than when lots of both are crammed together in one space. The same rule applies for mixing styles of furniture. Using mostly clean lines and neutral tones lets you add one outstanding piece. It can then sit comfortably, without competing with other pieces.


Go green

One the most cost-effective ways to accessorise any room is to add some greenery. A great thing about indoor plants is that they help to blur the line between inside and out, making rooms feel larger and fresher at the same time.  You can easily enhance mood with an interesting basket or pot, chosen to work with the existing style of your interior.



If a room is lacking in light, stay away from dark paints and furniture. This will close a room up and make it feel even darker than it already is.


Color is best used in small spaces that you pass through. A dramatic color in a room where you’re going to be spending a lot of time might feel too heavy or dark, but if you use it in a foyer or pantry, it makes the whole house feel colorful.

When it comes to small spaces, smart storage is key. Whether it’s something like installing cubbies beneath the bed, make sure you’re being creative with storage space.

When space is tight, it’s important to create areas that are multifunctional. Add a pull out sofa into a lounge room for guests to sleep.