You’ve probably seen home stagers in action on HGTV or the Amy Adams rom-com “Leap Year.” These experts can transform rooms and sell even the most unsaleable homes.
They are also full of excellent home decorating tips. HuffPost asked professional home stagers to share their best decor tips, from accent walls and tabletop designs to everyday non-experts who want to make their spaces more inviting.
Make your bed into a haven
Making your bed is tedious, regardless of whether you sell or live in a home. It is easy to make your bed feel like a hotel using white linens, plump pillows, and crisp sheets. You can find bulky, fresh, white bedding at major home goods retailers (bed-in-a-bag or comforter, duvet, and crisp sheets). Then, you can layer two or three accent pillows on top, quickly changing them seasonally. — Karen Otto. Chief staging officer, HomeStar Staging
Maureen Bray of Staging Room Solutions says: “In the main bedroom, create a magazine-style look using a duvet or comforter in a solid or subtle color. Add coordinated pillow shams to the bed pillows and a decorative pillow or two.”
Mirrors can make a big difference
Mirrors placed on opposite walls to light sources will brighten and amplify the light. Mirrors are great because they can double the square footage in any room. Hang three or four large mirrors in front of a window. They will reflect both the light and the view.
Your art should be significant
When it comes to art, bigger is better. Large canvases can make a room look bigger and add an exciting statement.
Where to hang wall art or another decor? It should be centered above the furniture below (sofas, sideboards, fireplace mantels, dressers, console tables, etc.), with the middle of the artwork about 60 inches off the ground.
Drapes create the illusion of height
Create the illusion of higher ceilings by using simple floor-to-ceiling drapes. White sheers are a great way to save money but they must be hung correctly. The drapes should begin at the top and end just below the floor.
Less is More
“De-cluttering and stress-relieving. Space can feel crowded with fewer objects on the coffee table, chair cushions, and wall artwork. Keep your room clean and modern by sticking to only a few statement items.
Less is more! “Less is more” means to show off your style and personality through carefully placed art and accessories and avoid clutter.
Consider the color
Use new throw pillows that match the wall art or decor of nearby walls to refresh your seating area.
“You’re trying to add color, but it feels wrong. Use one color accent in the same room three times! Using color throughout the room, such as in a rug, artwork, pillows, or decor accents, will almost always work and feel right.
Your furniture can be floated
If a room doesn’t “feel” right, it’s probably not. Furniture is often pushed against walls to create a feeling of spaciousness, but the result feels more like a waiting area and does not encourage conversation. Try floating furniture instead of wall-hugging.
Choose a central area in the room. This can be around the fireplace or under the ceiling fan. If you have to, place it around the TV. I recommend getting an area rug at least 6’x9″ if your floors are solid surfaces like tile or wood. A carpet of the right size will anchor the space and the furniture. The coffee table should be placed in the middle of the rug. Arrange your furniture around the table, leaving 18 inches between it and soft furnishings. If your furniture doesn’t fit at this distance, you may need to use a more significant piece to anchor the table. Putting the front legs of soft furnishings on the carpet and the back legs off is perfectly acceptable.”
Paint and repaint
A fresh coat of paint can significantly affect how a room looks and feels.
Freshly painted walls in a neutral color will highlight your furniture and wall décor to the best of their ability (and make your house feel well-maintained). The wood trim around doors, windows, and baseboards can also make the room more attractive, primarily if you use white paint in contrast to the wall color.
Buy staples in neutral colors
“Select neutrals for large pieces such as sofas, beds, and rugs. Art and accessories can add color, interest, or drama. Clients will spend thousands of dollars on a sofa with a vibrant color or a highly stylized design, only to be bored in three years. If you are tired of your current ‘look’ but have yet to invest too much, you can redo it again on a budget with accessories and art. Choyet to investent color or style. It’s fun, easy, and inexpensive!”
“Odd number rule for staging or designing to sell. Keep it simple for tablescapes if you do not want too much clutter. Also, remember numbers 1 and 3. Use one large piece of decor or three similar pieces. (Think succulents in beautiful planters, hurricanes, or large metallic bowls). They are inexpensive and easy to make, perfect for dining or coffee tables. You can also change them seasonally.”
When creating a centerpiece, choose three items of different heights. A hardcover book or two, a plant, and an exciting article work well together. Two or three large coffee-table books stacked on a coffee table also look great.