Easy Décor Changes That Make a Big Impact

Featured Image Source: Veranda

You all know my approach to refreshing the design in my own house, which is basically that I get tired of things so quickly that I’m constantly changing my décor.

At least that’s what it looks like to most of my houseguests, though the reality is a little different. When I move things around, swap out objects, and have things painted or recovered, I’m doing a little design dance — trying out new theories of how things work together. When I find some great new piece, I may move it around in my house half a dozen times just to get a feel for it, and then it may end up for sale in my store or in a design I’m working on for someone else.

Not everyone has that luxury, I know. For those of you who don’t have the time to be constantly refreshing your designs, and don’t have the energy or budget to do a full-fledged redesign, I’ve got a small bag of tricks for you.

Here are a few changes that can make a big difference:

Image Source: Veranda | Vogue
  1. Add a pop of color with upholstery. And I don’t mean add a slightly brighter blue pillow to your dreary blue living room. Find a color that’s unexpected, not something matchy-matchy, and recover a chair or a sofa. If you don’t have something you love enough to recover (and you should!), then buy a bright, new ottoman to put in front of the fireplace. The same theory applies with a shiny lacquer end table, or stunningly colorful lamps, or even (yes) a new set of pillows — so long as they make a statement.

Image Source: Veranda | Vogue
  1. Make a grand entrance. First impressions being what they are, you can make a big impact without a huge amount of work just by changing your entry hall. Give up the beige and go for something bold like chartreuse or eggplant. It’s the first thing people will see, so it will make them notice. There’s no need to spend tons of money on new wallpaper when you can just pick out a gallon or two of paint. If you’re afraid to commit, find a big painting you love and slap it on one of those beige walls to give visitors something beautiful to focus on as soon as they walk into your home.

Image Source: Veranda | Vogue
  1. Get into prints. You don’t have to have become an art collector to have beautiful walls. There are tons of great prints out there, in all sorts of styles from historic to Deco to modern to architectural, and in all sorts of sizes. They’re easy to find online, and the time you spend shopping for the perfect ones is going to be a delight (as opposed to most of the rest of the time you spend online, I’d bet). And if you find a great series of prints, you can create a gallery wall to take up a lot of space easily.

Image Source: Veranda | Vogue
  1. Rethink your coffee table. This is really just a smaller version of the way I decorate, except instead of reconfiguring your entire house, you’re just redecorating a 2-by-4-foot space.  Get rid of the candle, two books, and decorative box and start over, or at the very least change out the books that you’ve been looking at for the past year. Get three pretty vases and fill them with seasonal flowers, and add a bright coffee table book like my current favorite, Art Flowers by Olivier Dupon. Perhaps you’ve got a small sculpture that can take the place of the candle, or an old piece of machinery or art glass for some more visual interest. You’ve probably got plenty of interesting things in your china cabinet that are just waiting for a time to shine.

I do want to warn you: decorating small is a gateway drug to decorating big. When you see the difference these little changes make — and feel the confidence you’ve gained by doing a great job on a small project — you’re going to want to make some bigger changes.

Let’s start with that dreary blue living room.


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