interior redesign training, home staging training, furniture arrangement training
   Decorate-Redecorate.Com - Decorating Tips for Home
home staging, staging homes, how to stage homes
interior redesign, furniture arrangement, furniture placement

Decorating Tips I - February, 2008

Tips for Winterizing Your Home

You can easily transform your home into a warm winter haven with a few simple tips and products. Keep from getting chilly. . . . Tips for Cold Weather

One Stylish Kitchen

In any room you decorate, you should try to draw inspiration from some place or some piece or element in the room or just outside it. In your kitchen, it's a good idea to make it a comfortable space for family gatherings, particularly if it is a large kitchen. . . . One Stylish Kitchen

One Stylish Bedroom

Choosing your acce You can turn any bedroom into a stylish bedroom by what you do with the bed. Even if the window treatments aren't fabulous, the focus always goes to the bed first, then elsewhere in the room. . . . One Stylish Bedroom

One Contemporary Kitchen

If you want the most fabulous kitchen in the world, you want to mix form, function and fab food. The space should appeal to family and friends and help them enjoy each other's company. With the right design,  . . . One Contempoary Kitchen

One Formal Kitchen

There's just something about the formal kitchen that is timeless and always welcoming and appealing. Perhaps it reminds us our our younger years and growing up. . . . One Formal Kitchen

Questions & Answers

wall grouping "I am wondering if you can take a look at this picture and tell me what you think about this wall grouping. It is my own personal wall and I've been avoiding it because I don't feel like dealing with touch ups : ). I really think it could be improved upon, just don't want to make any more mistakes. Would appreciate your expert opinion and thoughts. Happy New Year and hope you're doing well!"

ANSWER - Nice elements but you have some serious design issues. 1) Wall is off balance as presently arranged. 2) Grouping of 3 looks top heavy. Solution: Move clock from the wall and hang elsewhere. Put large piece on the bottom. Hang the other 2 side by side above the bottom piece, about 3" apart from each other and from the bottom piece. Entire grouping should be placed on the wall so that the vertical center of the "grouping" is slightly above average eye level. Entire grouping should be hung in center of the wall so hang the bottom piece first, then the top two. Lay all pieces on the floor first and arrange and space. Take measurements. You can even make paper shapes the same size, note where the nails should go and use the paper templates to decide placement on the wall first. Send me pictures of the finished arrangement. My only concern is if the 3 pieces by themselves will be too small for the wall. You can test this with the paper templates. If too small, then add a couple more items into the mix that blend color wise and rearrange. Your horizontal width of the grouping should fall somewhere between 1/2 to 2/3rds of the width of the wall.

wall groupingRESPONSE TO ANSWER - Thanks Barbara! Yes, I've known that there were some serious problems but I was trying to keep the clock in the area. I've done away with it though and here are the new pictures. Let me know what you think now. Thanks again!!

This seriously looks much better, Pam, with one exception. The entire grouping is much too high. What is the exact height of the grouping itself? From base of lowest piece to top of highest piece? With the chair rail below, the eye is drawn to the expanse of space between the base of the grouping and the chair rail. Closing that gap more would be ideal.

Gee Barb-you are so right. I knew there was a reason I still wasn't satisfied. The vaulted ceiling line has kind of thrown me on this one along with the fact that I've never really worked with wall groupings a lot. Any rules that I can stick in my head regarding the mistakes that I've made? What is the design rule for putting the large piece on the bottom? Also, how far up should the bottom of the piece be from the top of the chair rail - it is 31 inches tall from top of small pieces to bottom of large piece. Thanks so much-this has been bugging me since I hung it a few months ago. Can't have these design mistakes around me now : )!

wall grouping

If your door is standard height (about 81-82 inches including door jam), I think you'll find it will work out well if the top of the grouping pieces are about 5 inches below the top of the door. Yours are higher than the door right now. The larger piece is both larger in size, but visually heavier than the two smaller pieces. Therefore by putting it on the bottom, it gives visual support to the lighter weight pictures above. You need to see the grouping as one giant oval piece, and so you hang the whole oval at eye level. That of course is different for everyone, but you try to hit a happy medium. Were it my grouping, I'd hang the tallest piece about 5 inches below the top of the door. This will place it closer to the chair rail and remove much of that gap - I'm estimating a good foot or more? I basically ignore ceilings because one is always wanting to direct the eye "into" the room, not up to the ceiling.

TRICK I USE - Take a measuring tape and pull it out 31" (metal tape is usually yellow). Hold the measuring tape up against the wall and try to hold it here the yellow part feels like it is a good height for your eye level.  If you're really short, you have to compensate. If you're really tall, you also have to compensate.  By holding the tape against the wall you can place a tack in the wall at the base or top of the tape so you have a guide when you start to hang the grouping.  If you're starting with the bottom piece, put the tack in the wall at the bottom of your measuring tape. If starting at the top of the grouping, do the opposite.

FINAL RESPONSE - You're terrific! Thanks so much for your help yesterday. These are the final pictures-I think it looks great now. Could have maybe come down one more inch but I'm good with it now. Have a wonderful week and thanks again!!

FINAL FROM BARB - Pam, this looks much better. I agree, it could yet come down a bit more, but in any event looks much better and carries the wall sufficiently now. If you change out your wall switch plate to the same color as your wall, it will stop grabbing all the attention away from your art and visually disappear. I've never understood why manufacturers make fancy switch plates when that is the last place one should want attention to go. I'm happy you're happy now. Good job.

I am attracted to the idea of having a black and white tile floor in the kitchen.....would like to do it on the diagonal......does this fit in with my "traditional" style????? If I have the money....the kitchen counter also needs replacing......don't know whether to go black or white....... the accent color will probably be dishes etc. are blue..

Black and white tile in kitchen is kind of retro 50's - makes you think of diners - recommend black counter and white cabinets, or the reverse. Diagonal black and white will be very pretty but add a very strong design element which could get tiring over time, so make sure its really, really what you want. Accessories are usually those 50's posters or Tuscan / French posters with lots of red, but you can also find blues and yellows in the mix. Sort of a Mondrian palette. Let your accessories dictate and you can't go wrong. It can work with traditional style, but you should pull in some black into other rooms to get a "flow" going from room to room. Might not be so great for resale value, so you have to think not just in terms of what you love for today, but what if you should ever want or need to sell. 

If you go white throughout the kitchen, the blue dishes will pop out more as accents and focal points but you're coming from an all white kitchen, so maybe you're tired of that. If you add black to the mix, be sure to bridge with some element that includes black, white and blue altogether - say curtains for instance. You can find some great simple ideas at IKEA with good pricing when the time comes.

Free Newsletter!!!!!

Get free decorating tips for your home or the homes of your clients. Send a blank email to our List Manager and you'll be added automatically, but you must CONFIRM your subscription request. A request for confirmation will be sent to the email address you provide. We are a spam-free site and will never sell, trade or give away your email address to anyone for any purpose.
Decorating Newsletter - Must Confirm

Recession-Proof Your Personal Income

Learn how to start, grow, build and manage your own profitable Home Staging and/or Interior Redesign Business. With the housing market in a complete mess, home owners are having to go to extraordinary methods to sell their homes. They are prime candidates for home stagers and re-designers. Tap into this growing market to supplement your income or to start a career.

Home Staging Redesign Courses

Learn How to Decorate Like the Experts So It

The most common problem I see in people's homes is the failure to place their furniture and accessories in the right place. Even the most beautiful furnishings will fall flat in the space if not placed properly. That's why learning how to arrange what you have purchased is so critical for the successful completion of your home. Learn how the experts do it.

Decor Secrets Revealed

Barbara Jennings is author of 10 decorating books: Decor Secrets Revealed, Rearrange It, Home Staging for Profit, Home Staging for Yourself, Arrange Your Stuff, Advanced Redesign, Pro Art Consulting, Wall Groupings: The Art of Arranging Art and Photos, The Art of Hanging Art, Great Parties! Great Homes!

2002-Present Copyright Decorate-Redecorate.Com | Terms of Use