The author of Interior Bliss, and Interior Designer, Jonathan Hopp, showed viewers how to re-design a room like a pro!
Decide what appeals to you
Ask yourself “What grabs you?” Is it spare and modern? Traditional and refined? Casual and worn? Colorful? Neutral? How do you live now? Are you tidy and put away or do you like a more rumpled lived in place? While the questions may seem endless, don’t get discouraged if the answer doesn’t appear right away. Design is an evolutionary process and the more you know the better your choices will be.
Start looking around
The best place to begin is magazines. Tear out pictures that have an emotional appeal to you. Create a design file that includes images of everything from cabinet knobs and paint colors to furniture, window treatments or display ideas. Most designer’s use this technique when working on a project to convey an idea to a client. One of the benefits of creating a design file is that it can clear your home of the multitude of magazines that collect over time. The greatest benefit is that it narrows down the many options that attract you to a few that are now easily accessed.
Don’t pay attention to price
Focus solely on what draws you in regardless of cost and appropriateness. Even if something is outside your budget now, there is often a way to get the look you want. A modern chair at a store may have a knock off on-line. Trust me; the good stuff always gets reinterpreted.
I know this sound horrible to some. Personally I have a shopping addiction, so if someone gave me this assignment I would do a happy dance. If you aren’t so inclined, be smart when you plan a shopping trip. Set out with a specific time limit and a goal. You can be more casual and find a store here, a shop there – or do a power shop and hit every store within a certain radius. When you’re shopping, do the same thing as when you searched magazines. Find what grabs your heart. At this point you’re only taking pictures for your design file – and again bear in mind that you will sort this all out later. (Here is a tip: take a full on picture of the item and then a separate picture of the price tag. It will make budgeting and remembering the store much easier.) The goal in shopping is to discover what you really want and it also is an education in pricing items. It’s always comes as a shock to most people what things cost.
Pay attention when you’re out and about. Portland is filled with amazing places, talented architects and gifted designers. I love looking at open houses – nothing makes me happier than walking into a nicely designed and furnished home regardless of how much is spent on furnishings. I’ve seen bungalows that are better designed and decorated than huge homes in the West Hills. Do you love the interior of a hotel? How about your favorite restaurant? Most of us are now blessed with a digital phone that can easily take photos. It may be a lighting fixture, window treatments or simply the way a room is laid out. Is it a bathroom you like?
Surf the web
A final source of inspiration for me is the internet. Use search words that have come up in your homework. “Chandelier” “Upholstered chair” “Stores like…” As we all know, the internet is an enormous resource and is invaluable in getting information. Not only will it help you find local stores, often the on-line catalogs carry far more items that can be shown in a retail space. Remember that chair you saw at a store and couldn’t afford? The internet has become so competitive that almost any search item will come up with multiple suppliers. What’s more, larger retailers’ photos show rooms that are merchandised in a way that can provide additional inspiration and give you a sense of how things can be used together in ways you may not have thought about.