Identify your style… and your stuff,"First, you need to decide what kind of look you are going for," says Erica Lugbill of Lugbill Designs in Chicago. Do you envision a light and airy living room? Or do you prefer something calm and serene? Perhaps your style is simple and earthy, or bold and dramatic."Secondly, look at all of the items you own that need to be incorporated into the space," adds Lugbill. Consider your furniture, storage pieces and accessories, for example. Get inspired, Begin by selecting an inspiration piece. An inspiration piece typically has a palette of three to five colors. Try to envision those colors in your living room. "Choose something you love, such as your favorite outfit or a painting by your favorite artist," says Sehra Han, an interior designer at Scarlett Designs in Los Angeles. "Many people make the mistake of starting with a paint color," adds interior designer Robin Baron of Robin Baron Design in New York City. Instead, "find the one thing you know you want to put in the room… like a fabric," Baron says. "Even a favorite pillow is a good place to begin. Play off that item for your color palette.
Gather Influences From Around the World. After deciding on a general style to follow for your design, further engage in photos and inspiration that spark your interest when it comes to influence and color. While each basic style can provide an individual and distinctive look, really getting into the details can make the difference between feeling like you're in a New York City loft and an Irish home on the coast. Consider influences like the following: French Country Style: French country decorating usually involves mixed patterns, symmetrical chairs, chandeliers, and a pop of color in an ivory kitchen. Tuscan Style: Tuscan decor combines natural stone, wood, and earthy colors. Think terracotta, open cupboards, copper pots, and rustic shutters. Swedish Style: Light, clean, white, and blue is the Swedish way. The casual look is key when it comes to minimalistic surfaces with gold and red accents, straight lines and gentle curves for furniture, and simple woven fabrics. Paris Apartment Style: Adding romance and mystery to your apartment can be achieved with a little bit of Paris. Think baroque, rococo, and neoclassical with rich jewel colors, luxurious silks, and large posters of French landmarks.
Stop Living Dorm-Style. Does your living room scream overgrown teenager? This small bachelor pad is brimming with tips for "adulting" an apartment. The elegant bike shelf keeps wheels up and out of the way while turning the bicycle into a decorative wall hanging. Another smart idea that doesn't squander floor space is the floating desk that spans the left side of the room. Its built-in drawers provide a good deal of storage. But what transforms this 500 square foot studio into a cozy grown-up home are the various details and décor styles that add one-of-a-kind character from the colorful prints to the refined furniture. Once you graduate college and enter the “real world” you sort of have to become a “real person.” So what does that fucking mean? That fucking means you have to start remembering your weekends, learn how to eat meals that you didn't order online or don't only require you to add boilng water, and actually make your apartment a home and not a place where ashes coat your coffee table and “art” isn't slung on your walls with double stick tape.
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