Arrangement: Try re-arranging your furniture in different ways. Don’t just visualize, MOVE IT! Don’t do the usual either, be bold. After years of moving my couch and love seat from wall to wall, I did something a little different. Since my living room is very narrow, there is little I can do with it. After a lot of moving experimentation, I found an arrangement that really put a spark to my living room.
Instead of moving it’s back along the wall as usual, I placed it so that only the arm touched the wall. It sort of T-boned my couch. And since I have a built in bookshelf behind it, I placed it about 4 feet from that wall. I then placed a work desk along the wall behind it. To my delight it created a whole new space in my living room.
Lighting: Lighting plays a very important role when it comes to setting the mood. You don’t have to use traditional lamps either. Try a hanging lamp or even an oil lamp. Oil lamps won’t give you as much light as modern lamps, but they will give your home an antique-ish feel to it, very cozy.
Paint: Nothing livens up a room more than a fresh coat of paint on the walls. And certain color schemes can produce dramatic results.
Try painting one wall a dramatically different color from the others. This is done for a main focal point in a room.
After painting you can add chair rail or do a larger project, like installing wainscot. Or, you can:
Create a Wainscot affect by painting the upper half of a room’s walls a different color from the top half. Then add chair rail as a divider. The standard height for both chair rail and wainscot is 32 inches. When I repainted my living room, I did this effect, however I already had chair rail installed. I just had to tape it so no paint would mess it up. Blue tape of course, it comes off easy. However in my experience it still can lift up paint right along with it.
Photo frames should all be one color unless you are going with a wild theme. I’m not a matching freak, but I’ve seen a hideous collection of frames all crammed onto one wall. Don’t clutter the wall with endless frames either. However many photos can work well on one wall if they’re different sizes and have some flow to them.
Real wood is lovely and under most circumstances should not be painted. I may also note that matching wood, all light/all dark is a thing of the past. Dark wood and light wood can contrast pleasantly.
Ask friends to help with ideas, moving furniture and especially when it cones to hanging photo frames, it’s hard to judge distance and straightness from up close.
Look at pictures in magazines for ideas. My bookshelf looked more like a drab library until I looked in a reader’s digest. A few books on each shelf, punctuated with a piece of drift wood, on another shelf, books and a wooden basket really made a difference.
Bonus tip: When it comes to small rooms, like most bathrooms, do not be afraid to throw a lot of colors together. I did this in my personal bathroom because I didn’t consider myself a good judge of color coordination. People who visited it made numerous compliments and they didn’t even know it was redone.