Living room by Design Intervention

15 pro secrets to decorate your home with style

Amy Buxton Amy Buxton
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We're constantly in awe of the amazing things that interior designers can do, in terms of creating beautiful, covetable homes for their clients. But if you fancy mastering some interior styling yourself, you've come to the right place! We think that we've really honed in on the top tips that all professionals work to. 

Some of these ideas are common sense, but when it comes to creating that really designer-curated look, there are some surprising techniques that you might not have considered yet—and that's exactly what we are going to tell you about today.

So if you're planning a home refurbishment, don't do anything until you've read all of these professional-inspired tricks that will really make all the difference!

1. Create contrast.

 Living room by Design Intervention
Design Intervention

A Sassy Sensation

Design Intervention

While a lot of people think that you should only work with a palette of neutrals, for an interior designer look, you need to think about adding in some piquant contrast somewhere. Whether you select a colourful sofa for your living room or experiment with some bold patterns, the injection of an eye-catching feature will really bolster the other sophisticated choices you have made.

2. Invest in a great headboard.

Nothing quite sets off a superb master bedroom quite like a striking headboard. An easy way to inject instant luxury, you can make your headboard the focal point and decorate accordingly, for a cohesive and opulent finish, without going to over the top.

3. Pale walls make a room look bigger.

This probably won't come as a shock, but it's worth reminding you that pale wall colours really do help to make small spaces look and feel far bigger than they actually are. You don't have to go super minimalist though, as white walls can be contrasted, as we discussed earlier, with bold accents, such as black focal  points.

4. Loft styling is great for small spaces.

 Bedroom by homify
homify

Modern Studio Apartment in London

homify

Speaking of small spaces, if you have a studio apartment, you need to consider using loft styling to make more of it. What we mean by this is using gentle room divides to carve out separate areas which are still as functional as you want them to be. Here, you'll see the bedroom boxed in perfectly to offer some extra privacy, but the overall look is still wonderfully open.

5. Don't skimp on textiles.

 Bathroom by homify
homify

Beautiful Classic Bathroom

homify

Here is a pro tip that you might not have heard before! Instead of having bath mats in your bathroom, swap them out for proper rugs. You'll be shocked at how much more high-end and designer the space will instantly look, as some sophisticated textiles really do bring a room together and don't look too 'budget'.

6. Don't ignore your hallways.

 Corridor, hallway by Design Intervention
Design Intervention

A Dashing Dazzler

Design Intervention

So many people forget that hallways are, essentially, an extra room in the house and they are left so plain and understated. Make more of them, by giving them a definite style and it will look as though you've called in professionals to give your home an extra touch of class and pizazz!

7. Great lighting is key.

Every room in your home needs to have the very best lighting that it can and that's not an exaggeration. Why go to all the rouble of getting great wall finishes and installing beautiful furniture, if your lighting is just going to be average? It needs to offer high levels of functionality AND look great, so always allow some of your budget for this.

8. Neutral bases allow for vivid accents.

 Living room by Timothy James Interiors
Timothy James Interiors

Open-plan living room with eclectic furnishings leading into kitchen

Timothy James Interiors

If you can't face the thought of living in a home with no colour, that's no problem, but always remember that neutral base hues will offer the best basis for adding in some punchy accents. Keep your walls pale and plain and accessorise with bright objects that can be moved about, so you're not tied into one scheme.

9. Layer your textiles.

 Bedroom by The Cotswold Company
The Cotswold Company

Evelena Emerald Green Throw

The Cotswold Company

Layering textiles is a fantastic way to ensure that your home looks and feels cosy, well put together and comfortable. Consider things such as floor cushions, scatter pillows and throws, all in corresponding colours for the rooms that they will be going in.

10. Mirrors are your best friend.

 Living room by IQ Furniture

Every professional interior designer knows that mirrors are an amazing resource for ensuring that natural light bounces around the home and spaces feel as large as possible. Hallways, in particular, always look better for a well-placed mirror, but don't forget to add some to any room that could use extra light.

11. Plants speak for themselves.

 Artwork by Tim van de Weerd
Tim van de Weerd

Monstera Magnifica & Monstera Fugiens

Tim van de Weerd

Homes that have a lot of plants in them always look so chic and designer-inspired, because organic features just add instant class. Choose interesting planters for an even more impressive effect and don't forget to water everything regularly!

12. Sliding doors create extra space.

 Windows by ROCOCO
ROCOCO

Kitchen Development with Bi Folding Doors

ROCOCO

If you want to give your home a modern makeover, one of the best pro tips we can give you is to consider sliding doors at the rear, which will offer an intrinsic connection to your outdoor space. Often as not, these doors are placed within kitchen extensions and really do dramatically improve the look and feel of a home.

13. Your wardrobe HAS to be functional.

 Bedroom by Ardesia Design
Ardesia Design

Oakhill Court, Putney

Ardesia Design

It's no use having a wardrobe in your bedroom, if it isn't up to the task of actually organising all of your clothes and accessories properly. You can adapt built-in furniture with customs shelving and lighting, but if it's time for a new wardrobe, always look for something adaptable, which will accommodate your possessions as they increase in number.

14. White furniture creates a modern look.

If you are updating an old fashioned home and you want to know the secret to creating a modern, fresh look, it's white furniture! Don't shy away from it because you worry it will be hard to clean, as the days of impossible to maintain furniture are well behind us now. Instead, look for simple pieces and sofas with removable covers, which you can just pop straight into your washing machine. Contemporary, cool and a doddle to keep clean!

15. Optical illusions really help!

Every home has some small or awkward spaces to tackle and the secret can be as simple as creating an optical illusion! For narrow rooms, striped wallpaper can give the impression of a far larger area and in shallow spaces, large wall mirrors offer double depth and altered perception. Identify the problem areas and then figure out how to trick the eye!

For a few more decorating tips, take a look at this Ideabook: 12 designer tricks to increase your home's value.

Are you ready to put a designer touch on your home?
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