I put out a call on Facebook and Instagram stories for your “Rapid Fire Decorating” questions and am answering a few of them in this post which might turn into a regular series if you enjoy it. . . These are just quick ideas, mostly based on the first thing that pops into my mind, and I’ve pulled some pretty images to illustrate my answers. Hope this helps! Feel free to leave your rapid fire questions for a future post in the comments below.
Q. Would love tips on how to create a good mix in a dining room where you are still using a nice traditional table. I love having a nice dining room table (after holding out forever!) but it’s a fine line between a stuffy look and a weird mishmash of items.
A. I love a good mix of traditional and modern in a dining room. If you’re looking for the quickest way to give your space an update, I’d start with lighting, pairing a more modern chandelier with your table. Next on my list would be adding modern artwork and changing out all (or just some) of the matching chairs. More chair ideas here. (Image via Jennifer Barron Interiors.)
Q. Mixing patterns in a room is my problem. I have an oriental rug, solid chair and sofa, printed second chair, but stumble on throw pillows. Designs seem too busy, but solids may be too bland.
A. I do think solids (especially in great textures) are good for anchoring a space. But, my advice on mixing pattern would be to not overthink it to the point where it all becomes too coordinated. The main thing you want to concentrate on is mixing the scale of the pattern. For example, you don’t want too many big, bold prints layered right next to each other. Spread them out so that you’re mixing smaller scale prints in–a ticking stripe or a leopard pillow, for example. If you do this, you’ll be surprised at how many different patterns can actually work in one room. (Image via Nick Olsen Inc.)
Q. Do you have budget-friendly options or tips for framed chinoiserie panels?
A. As you know, the price tags on some of these (especially vintage) are pretty steep. I would order the 24×36″ rolls of chinoiserie wallpaper I found here (most are around $23-$25/roll) and use this 20×30″ brass metallic poster frame that I found here to create “panels”. (Image via Society Social.)
Q. What are your best tips for art arrangement and size of art behind a sofa?
A. I feel like most people err on the side of too small when they decorate the daunting wall behind their sofa. My philosophy is to go big and fill the space visually and usually vertically. A more vertical arrangement counteracts against the length of the sofa and makes more of a statement. I recently added a tall leaner mirror behind my couch and “built it out” by hanging smaller art on each side. See more here. (Image via Andrew Howard Interior Design.)
Q. What do you hang over a four-poster bed or should that space be left open?
A. My personal favorite look is to hang a small (roundish) mirror above the headboard. It doesn’t compete with the grandness of a poster bed but it makes it look finished. I also like a small framed piece of art like a landscape. (Image via Heather Chadduck for Flower Magazine.)
What quick decorating questions would you like me to address?