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Decorating by numbers produces pleasing arrangements in room design

March 17, 2014

Southern Vista hardwood floorsGenerations of decorators have found that displaying an odd number of accessories rather an even count is more aesthetically pleasing. An even, balanced number signifies a formal home design style. But decorating the average family's home works best with a more versatile approach, like having a choice of distinctive finishes for hardwood flooring in Anderson's Southern Vista collection.

Three is often seen as the magic number in a decorator's bag of tricks. Three, or sometimes five, is a manageable number that produces a finished look for a room design without overpowering the overall decorating scheme. For instance, three fabric patterns or five grouped photos seem to be just enough.

Displaying items in an odd number can be done effectively on shelves, in a free-standing curio case or on a coffee table between chairs and a sofa.

Accent pieces and accessories will also have greater aesthetic appeal if they're shown in a mix of shapes and sizes. Indoor plants are a good example of that concept. With so many to choose from, they can be arranged by selecting a variety of plants in different sizes and types. Leaving some space between each plant - or items displayed on a shelf - prevents the look from being too cluttered.

Patterns and prints recommended choosing fabrics in a well-coordinated mix of color, pattern and texture for soft furnishings. To strike the right balance, one large-scale pattern may be offset by two smaller designs or a solid that serves as the anchor color. Using all the same size patterns causes each one to overpower the others.

However, home decorators should be cautious about decorating with smaller patterns, because from a distance, they sometimes blend together and lose definition. Stepping a few feet away from such patterns will provide a better view of how the final result will look.

Varying the tone and texture of fabrics is also important. In a selection of three fabrics, one should be light in color, another medium in tone and the third should be dark. Textures should be mixed as well, from smooth to rough-textured materials.

Consider the effect of lighting in a room, which can give an entirely different cast to a particular color during the day than it would at night. In addition, any embellishments such as beading or sequins provide a unique texture that should be factored into the final home design choices.