Sometimes, as we move from one room to the next, our home doesn’t feel whole. Chaotic colour, crazy clutter and disparate designs can make it seem like a totally different person decorated each room in your house. But you can bring harmony back to your design by using colour, texture, flooring, window treatments and lighting. Here’s how.
*Flooring can be used to create a visual as well as a physical flow throughout your home. One way is to use the same hardwood or laminate throughout the house (with the exception of kitchens and baths – in those rooms you can pick up the same look with baseboards and moulding). Area rugs are another easy way to unify the walls, furniture and accessories in a room. Look for a rug that picks up colour accents from your walls, furniture and decorative objects.
*Think in the box and use your walls to harmonize your home. Take a good look at the existing elements of your home. Take note of recurring colours (your favourite colours usually turn up over and over again) and patterns (for example, maybe you’re a fan of Indian prints). Then try wallpaper that combines these existing hues and motifs. Always bring pictures of your home and fabric samples from the room to help you match up wallpaper and paint samples. When you find a colour or paper that you like, take a paint chip or wallpaper sample home and tape it to your walls. Seeing a sample with your home’s furniture and lighting can give you a better picture of the end result.
*Monotones need not be monotonous. And using a dominant colour scheme is a great way to link rooms together. Again, take stock of your furnishings and carpet and look for a colour that will best contrast or complement them. If you choose a buttery yellow colour for one room, then try a lightened up shade of the same colour in your hallways. Or use a deeper tint of that same yellow as a trim in the kitchen and bathroom.
*Use fabrics to harmonize your home. For example, if your kitchen has a collection of mismatched wooden chairs, try a toile print fabric for the upholstery or slipcovers. Take the same print and use it for drapes in another room. If prints aren’t your thing, try texture. Echo the weave of a raw silk drapery panel with canvas slipcovers and linen wallpaper. You can even unify with furniture and decorative objects. Carry a warm feeling throughout the house by using wood as a focal point. Just beware of too many objets d’art – clutter can be distracting and disruptive to the flow of your rooms.
*Every room should contain a focal point in order to unify and strengthen the interior, and windows often provide that strong, visual interest. You can focus the style of your décor by using similar window treatments in every room. Dark shadows and dimly lit passages can also interrupt the visual flow of your home. Look for lighting fixtures that brighten up dark corners. Track lighting can be used to direct illumination exactly where you need it most, while halogen bulbs help to provide a bright, uniform light quality throughout the home.
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