Top 10 Decorating Myths

Mon, 30 Sep 2013

1. Small rooms must be white, or a pale neutral color 

It was once thought that white or pale spaces would brighten up and make a small room seem larger than it is. And while this is in part true, the size and scale of a room have less to do with wall color and more to do with furniture scale and placement. And sometimes one wants to keep a small room feeling small, creating a space that feels warm, inviting, cozy and intimate. There is nothing wrong with a small room that is welcoming and comfortable. The addition of color to walls, in bedding, or in accessories will greatly warm up your small space.

2. Dark rooms have a tendency to make your space look smaller

Dark rooms can add warmth, texture and dimension to your room. They can add a sense of sophistication, glamour and drama. Dark walls can be a wonderful canvas to work with. A piece of art, when hung on a dark wall, can make a much more powerful statement. It’s less the color of your walls that make your space seem smaller, than the placement and scale of the furniture within the dark walls. Keep furniture proportional to the room – if incorporating larger scaled furniture, use fewer pieces. Keep the room open to create and keep a perpetual flow. Rooms tend to seem smaller when they are cramped and crowded.

3. Dark ceilings have a tendency to make your room look shorter/smaller

As with the above statement, this is not accurate. Colorful ceilings add texture, dimension and drama. They can add a sense of sophistication or whimsy. In a smaller space you may want your walls or furniture in lighter shades than your ceiling, if you opt for a dark shade. But otherwise a painted ceiling should not make your room feel smaller. If you are worried about your space feeling small or not bright enough, you can always add decorative mirrors to reflect and create additional sources of light.

4. Don’t mix patterns and prints!

And we say, why not? There’s no better way to add color, texture and to infuse your own personality than by adding various patterns together. Yes, stripes, checks, florals, plaids can all live together harmoniously! In order to do this successfully, however, you will need to stick to your chosen color pallet. Whether you’re working with blues and greys, pinks and greens or black and white, you absolutely can mix fabrics and patterns.

5. Stick to one focal point

Why? We are not one dimensional and neither are the rooms in which we live. Each living space has four walls, why must only one wall be your focal point? Is your bay window any more or less important than your fireplace? What about your great grandmother’s Picasso that you’ve just inherited? The windows, the fireplace and the grand work of art are all worthy of their own attention. By giving each wall a focal point you’re not only adding texture, and dimension to your room, you’re infusing your own sense of style and personality.

6. Stick to one style

This is like telling someone to stick to one sport or one hobby… or one passion. We are multifaceted and therefore why shouldn’t our homes be the same. What if you’re a world traveler? What if you’ve collected artifacts from Greece, China, Japan and France? To say to you to stick to one style would be to tell you to choose your favorite collected piece, which you may very well have, but there’s no reason that your Japanese sculpture cannot co-exist beautifully next to your antique, classical French table. Or perhaps one lives in a modern style home yet has an extensive antiques collection. Blending, merging or infusing various styles gives your home a layered feel and is perhaps the best way to incorporate your sense of style and self.

7. Dining room tables and chairs must match

In so much that fabrics and furniture must match… nonsense! You can absolutely incorporate different styles and textures to your dining room chairs. Do, however, stick to a common color – keep woods light or dark. Or if you do blend the two, and have blended styles consider adding seat cushions that are a unified color or fabric. The goal is to create texture without causing dizziness! By that same token, there’s nothing wrong with using different, coordinating fabrics on the cushions of matching chairs.

8. Children's Art Belongs on the fridge!

If you have children in your home I say bring out their art work. Create a studio or gallery wall showcasing your petite artiste! There’s no better way to add color, wonder and whimsy to your walls then with a framed piece of art by your child or children. Sometimes the most simple of paintings can add so much to your room.

9. White spaces are uninviting

White space is what you make of it. White spaces can seem drab, empty and devoid of personality, yet they can be wonderfully tranquil. As we’ve noted above, texture and personality are key to creating a lush space. There are many shades of white, so when opting for a white room be sure to use several shades to add depth and warmth to your space. Ivory colored walls, linen couches topped with off white throws and pillows can evoke a sense of calm and tranquility. White doesn’t have to feel sterile and cold.

10. Every room needs a pop of color

You may want to add some color to every room, but it certainly doesn’t mean that this must be done. By using one color in varying shades and tones, take grey for example, enough variety, texture and contrast is creating so that the need to add color is no longer. If you were to stick with just one tone, then you would be best adding some color to create a sense of depth and texture otherwise your space could feel too flat and one dimensional

Go ahead, break the rules -we defy you to!


Royal Lepage
Viraj Tanna

Viraj Tanna
Sales Representative




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8 Sampson Mews,
Suite 201,
Toronto, ON,
M3C 0H5 


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