Lookbox Living Issue #56
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10 common interior design mistakes to avoid

Avoid these common interior design mistakes and you’ll have yourself a well-designed space.

Text by Vanitha Pavapathi

#1 Bad lighting

stylish showroom interior design by Image Creative Design

Most people rely on overhead lighting alone and it’s a big design faux pas. Unless you want your home to look like a hospital, it’s always best to layer different types of lighting. Recessed lights are great for general lighting while floor lamps, wall lamps and pendants are great for ambient lighting. Accent lights such as spotlights are ideal for highlighting artwork and photography. Task lighting is also incredibly important in the study and kitchen. Just remember: dimmers and warm white lighting are your best friends.
Design by Image Creative Design

 

#2 Placing furniture against the wall

Poetus 3-bedroom penthouse unit living and dining - interior design

In the past, the backs of furniture pieces are usually unfinished and not so pretty to look at. Nowadays, the backs of furniture are as pretty to look at as the front. So it’s okay to not have the sofa and bed against the wall. In fact, large-scale furniture is great at demarcating spaces. You may be surprised at how much space you actually have after changing up your furniture placement.
Design by Poetus

 

#3 Wrong size rug

Modernist Melbourne home by WOWOWA Architecture Gemmola living room interior design

There’s nothing worse than getting a wrong size rug. Too big and it swallows up the room; too small and it doesn’t help in anchoring the space. Place all furniture on the rug if they are floating in the centre of a large room. When furniture is against the wall, aim to have the front two legs of all the furniture on the rug. For a tighter space, a small rug can be placed just beneath the coffee table. Just make sure that the rug’s length is covering the length of the couch.
Design by WOWOWA Architecture

 

#4 Under or oversized furniture

Ruffey Lake House interior design by Inbetween Architecture

Scale and proportions are very important in space planning and the interior design of a residence. To avoid making the wrong purchase, measure your space thoroughly first. Use painter’s tape to mock the furniture placement so as to check that you have the right fit before you swipe your credit card.
Design by Inbetween Architecture

 

#5 Hanging curtains too low

Semi-detached Sydney home designed by CM Studio - interior design

Most people tend to hang curtains just above the window frame, which doesn’t do much to a home’s overall interior design. Instead, hang your curtains right up to the ceiling to heighten the space and make the windows appear larger. Make sure your curtains kiss the floor too, regardless of how wide and tall your windows are.
Design by CM Studio

 

#6 Holding on to heirlooms or hand-me-downs

Semi-detached Sydney house designed by Day Bukh Architects - interior design

It’s totally okay to give your heirlooms or hand-me downs to charity or someone who appreciates them more than you. While they’ve served you well for a while, it’s time to invest in pieces that truly sing to you while complementing your overall interior design.
Design by Day Bukh Architects

 

#7 Too many decor pieces

Free Space Intent interior design of a Bukit Timah condominium

Yes, there is such a thing. Too much of a good thing is a bad thing. In design terms, it translates as clutter. So take organising expert Marie Kondo’s advice on having only things that spark joy. Your home should be a world-class museum with carefully curated collection of items, not a jumble sale store.
Design by Free Space Intent

 

#8 Plain white walls

modern Merlbour home interior design by Gray Puksand

The white walls trend has been going strong for years now. But unless, you are an absolute minimalist, don’t leave your white walls bare as they can look stark and uninviting. Add dimension and interest with paintings or photographs. For a cheaper alternative – because we know large-scale paintings can be expensive, install wall paneling instead for that dramatic and luxe effect.
Design by Gray Puksand

#9 Matching furniture sets

Akihaus Design Studio condomonium apartment interior design for dining space

Matching furniture sets are so passé; not to mention, predictable and boring. To create an eclectic and stylised interior design that reflects your personality, dress your home with pieces you adore from different brands and stores. Just remember not to overdo it though. There should be one dominant style that sets the tone for the rest of the property.
Design by Akihaus Design Studio

 

#10 Not utilising the balcony

Wee Studio & Free Space Intent balcony - interior design

In Singapore, space is a commodity. So maximise every square inch of your home including the balcony, no matter how small it may be. Don’t just use it to dry your laundry; create an herb garden, an outdoor lounge, or use it as an extension of your indoor living space.
Design by Wee Studio and Free Space Intent

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