Jul 3, 2018 | By: Julia Abriola, Delia Designs Intern
This week on the Blog, Julia Abriola, our talented Design Intern takes over and discusses her thoughts on interior design rules you should break in your home.
We all know those tried-and-true design looks that have never failed us and continue to remain classics. But just because something has been proven to work in the past, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t mix it up and try for something new. It may be faster to take the easy way out and copy styles you see in magazines and on television, but it’s okay to ignore some of those rules you’ve always been told to follow. Here at Delia Designs, whether it's for a hospitality or residential project, we like to get creative and produce designs that are unique and edgy. So here are ten interior design rules you should break—because sometimes it’s okay to break the rules!
1. “Don’t mix bold patterns.”
If you love crazy colors and prints, you don’t have to stick to only one pattern in a space. Using multiple patterns in a space is a fun way to add color and visual interest. The secret to mixing patterns is to use fabrics that share colors so the room still feels connected. Start with one large-scale print, and then add in some smaller, more detailed patterns so the space does not feel so overwhelming.
Dark colors have always been a no-no in small rooms because there is concern that it could make the space feel smaller than it already is. But painting the walls of a small room a deep, rich color can actually add depth to the space. Keep the rest of the large items in the room on the lighter side to balance out the space, or keep it dark for a cozy, elegant feel.
To instantly make your space feel more chic, consider leaning your art on the walls rather than hanging it. This style may seem unrefined or immature, but it actually elevates your space and makes it feel like a sophisticated art gallery. Layering your pieces creates a hip, bohemian look. Plus, save time and money by not nailing your art to the walls.
It may seem like the obvious choice to have every piece of wood furniture in your space be the same finish. But this style can make your space feel flat and boring. Bringing in multiple wood finishes adds contrast and depth to the space. If you have dark wood flooring, bring in furniture pieces in lighter finishes to brighten up the space; deeper and richer woods will add warmth to a room with lighter wood floors.
5. “Shades of black, white, and brown are the only neutrals.”
Your space doesn’t have to feel so blah with classic neutrals like black, white, and brown. Any color can be a neutral in your space! Paint your walls one color that will act as your neutral, and then add more pops of color throughout the space for accents. By choosing a base color that will be seen the most throughout the room, you have instantly created a new neutral. Try styling your room around navy blue, forest green, or even millennial pink.
Don’t be afraid to move away from perfectly mirrored symmetry. Adding asymmetrical elements to your space creates visual interest, while still appearing balanced. If you’re not feeling as daring, simply change up your artwork on either side of your room, but keep your furniture symmetrical. Or throw the rulebook away and choose pieces in your space that are different in style, but keep it balanced by playing with scale.
Just because you have that brass chandelier in your dining room doesn’t mean that every metal piece you buy also has to be brass. Mixing metals can create a really beautiful look in your space, and make it feel like you have collected all of these different pieces over the years. Stick to two or three finishes in a space, and use each one continuously throughout the room so the space feels connected.
Many homeowners believe that painting your ceiling a color that isn’t white can make the room feel shorter. On the contrary, painting your ceiling a bold color can actually make your space feel taller. It moves your eyes upward and adds a fun surprise to the design. Plus, if you have a nice architectural detail in your space like vaulted ceilings or a tray ceiling, adding color will make it stand out.
The days of having a matching bedroom or dining room set are over. For a fun eclectic look, style your dining room with mismatched chairs; go crazy and have each chair be totally different, or tone it down by using chairs in the same finish or color but in different styles. Pair your chairs with a simple and understated dining room table to not make the space so overwhelming. In the bedroom, opt for mismatched nightstands for a different look. A good tip when mismatching furniture is to make sure the pieces are similar in weight so the room doesn’t feel off-balance.
If you have a traditional home with lots of charm, it’s okay to bring in modern pieces. Mixing design styles add interest to a space and can show off your personality. Keep it grounded by using a common color palette throughout the space.
Julia Abriola, a native of Philadelphia, is a rising senior at George Washington University and has been involved with art and design all her life. From media such as fine arts, dance, and photography, Julia has always pursued her creative passions. She has been fortunate enough to have traveled to many countries around the world, exposing her to a variety of cultures and people, and further influencing her everyday life. Currently pursuing a bachelor’s degree in interior architecture and design with a minor in art history and fine arts, Julia hopes to one day open her own interior design studio.