Our favorite cringe-worthy mistakes that are totally worth avoiding.
- Too small (or awkwardly placed) rugs. You want at least half of your furniture legs on the rug. When in doubt, go bigger rather than smaller.
- Art that is hung far too high. If you have to crane your neck to look at a piece it's probably not right. 60" from the ground is the museum standard and works for most pieces and walls.
- Bad lighting. Let's be honest: light bulb selection is all shades of boring. But it matters. Also included is poorly thought out lighting schemes. Overhead lighting is great, but should be complemented with floor, table, task and accent lights.
- Too much of the same thing. Vary your furniture, lighting and accent purchases to avoid looking like a manufacturer's showroom.
- Really bad gallery walls. These are fantastic when they work and horrid when they don't. If you're feeling unsure about an arrangement, map it out on a large roll of craft paper on the floor first. For something more fail-proof, consider a diptych or triptych arrangement.
- Pushing furniture up against walls. It almost always feels weird, crowded or far too open. Give pieces some breathing room.
Simply avoiding these top offenders puts you in a much better position to have a lovely and livable space that you enjoy and that other enjoy being in. For extra credit, add in plants, objects with personality and vintage finds with more modern accompaniments. Mix eras, play, have fun. There's usually at least a touch of something garish in all beautiful things.