Buying your first home is such an exciting time! Maybe it’s because it has been almost 6 years and life has changed so much with two littles around us, or because I follow so many awesome home décor blogs (like this, this and this one) but this past year I’ve looked at our house in a new light.
In 2016 I hope to share many of the updates we’re making to improve our home for both a modern aesthetic and for function. To start off this series, today I’m sharing my home decorating rookie mistakes (complete with some pretty poor photos as most were taking prior to understanding lighting or having my nice dslr camera) to stop any new or soon to be new home owners from repeating the same mistakes we made that we’re now fixing.
- Trying to match the existing paint color. Derek’s color blind so I only have myself to blame for any color choice options that we no longer love. However, I did (and still do) like the yellow color in our living room. The problem is, it’s an unnamed color! After moving in and patching up any holes in the wall, we tried to scrap some paint off to make a duplicate and paint over the patches. Well we saw all the spots where we covered up those patches so that didn’t work as planned. We ended up having to paint the whole room with this non named matched color mix. I should’ve just picked a new similar color so we’d have a better reference!
- Not choosing a color palette for each room. All the rooms I always love in magazines, online or decorated in store have MULTIPLE colors in them, not just one. Look in our living room or bedroom and you’ll see brown furniture with brown wall picture frames. BORING! I was afraid (or didn’t know how to properly do) pops of color in the home. I will now be going back to try and DIY to update these frames or mix in some other accents to help give a little life to this otherwise boring display.
- Not paying attention to scale. This is evident on my entry way mirror choice. It was way too big for this space. In an attempt to still make this mirror work, I painted it, changed the orientation, then painted it again! I’m still not convinced this is the right mirror for the space but it’s getting closer to the look I want!
- Not testing greys. Grey is such an awesome (trendy) neutral. But you should know there are warm greys and cool greys and they can all look different in different rooms depending on natural light that enters. Our then guest room which is now Brielle’s bedroom has a warm grey paint. It goes well with her pink accent color now but I wish I had paid more attention to this warm/cool issue or even paid for the small sample and painted it on the wall originally as it didn’t really go with the blue accent colors I had used back then.
- Buying textiles online. I believe I bought 3 rugs for Brielle’s nursery before returning them. To me, rugs are one of those things that need to be soft and therefore should be touched before purchasing. I feel the same way about pillows, blankets and maybe even curtains so I am not really one to buy these online without first having that tactile experience I store.
- Non kid friendly furniture choices. We were 29 and 30 years old and had been together over 8 years when we bought our home. It was evident we were going to get married and have kids within a short time so I’m not sure why we didn’t focus more on this eventual future when considering furniture. In particular, my kitchen table (as seen above in that poorly lit photo from when we first moved in). I love the table but it has a channel groove all the way around the edge. It makes for a pretty design but also a crumb catcher for kids! See an UPDATED look to this space!
- Rushing to buy. Most of this post is about decisions made that weren’t thoroughly researched or thought through so now I take the time to do research or find inspiring rooms that I can mimic. Hello pinterest! Trust me that it’s worth the time to research what you like and take the time to find the right pieces/colors instead of regretting a purchase, even a cheap purchase.
- Not buying the matching item when you see it. UGH! Ever regret not buying something when you saw it? I regretted this many times, especially with items from Home Goods that can often be there one day and gone the next. Do yourself the favor and buy the item and take note on the return policy in case it doesn’t work out!
- Keeping a style/treatment because everyone else loves it and you don’t. OK so this one isn’t really my mistake as it’s more like something I DIDN’T do. The previous owners painted it a vertical stripe pattern in the half bathroom on the first floor, which everyone always comments on loving. Yes, it’s impressive as most first think it’s wallpaper since the lines are SO straight but it’s never been a design element we love. UPDATE: We eventually did remove these stripes and love the updated look of this powder room!
- Buying knick knacks that aren’t meaningful. I’m not even sure that’s how you spell that term but you know what I mean. Trinkets, dodads, tchotchkes <– woah thanks autocorrect as I would’ve never gotten that one. Sure you can buy a cool bird sculpture just because you think it’s cool but eventually it will just be another thing on your shelf collecting dust. Instead I want the little elements in my home to reflect a vacation, a memory or have a family meaning to them (which, of course, still fit my color scheme or design style).
So what mistakes have you made that you’re now correcting?