This weekend I took a road trip with my Mom up to my Aunt’s home in Massachusetts for a little redecorating and revelry. It always helps to have a fresh set of eyes look at your home because after a while you might miss things that need updating. We had a blast moving around furniture, planning out new paint colors and envisioning plans for a few other rooms. I had a lot of fun doing this for myself a few years ago when we moved into our home and it reminded me of three favorite sites I use when designing or decorating a room that can help solve a few common dilemmas.
Dilemma #1: Will my furniture fit in my room and how can I arrange it?
Solution: Whether you’re moving into a new home or just browsing online for a new piece of furniture, I swear by free tools like Plan Your Room or Floor Planner. Both are fairly intuitive to use, low-frills and help to visualize a room layout without having to actually physically move furniture around (which I did all day yesterday – ouch). I used this for every room in my house before we moved in because I had to figure out what furniture would fit and how I could lay it all out. The only catch is you need to have accurate measurements of the room before you can begin.
Dilemma #2: How will a paint color look in my room?
Solution: I’m a HUGE fan of the site Houzz for home decorating inspiration but one of my favorite ways to use it is to preview how paint colors or even certain items may look in a room. For example, say you think you’re ready to commit to a color but not sure if it’ll look good in a room or what other colors / styles might go with it. Houzz can give you a little bit of a preview. Simply type in the paint color and brand and start peeking around at how the color appears in other homes. Take the example of Benjamin Moore’s Palladian Blue. This is a beautiful blue-green shade that I have in a bathroom in my home but it looks a bit different in each of these settings – a living room, a bathroom and a kitchen.
Dilemma #3: Will all my items “go” together?
Solution: Make a mood board! If you’ve ever watched HGTV, you know exactly what I’m talking about. If you haven’t, then all you need to know is that this is simply a collage of images that can help you visualize how certain items may – or may not – work together in a room. I always make mood boards for rooms before I design to see if things will actually work once they’re purchased or used. I just toss a bunch of images in a PowerPoint file to see how they’ll work together but today there are websites that specialize in this such as Olioboard. Here’s a little primer on a how they do it from Layla Grace: How to Make a Mood Board.