• Jan 21, 2014
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Inexpensive & Easy Updates that Make a BIG Difference

Articles Blues/Purples Carpet Dining Room Hardwood Lighting Transitional

We asked The Decorologist, Kristie Barnett, to share some her expert tips for easy updates that can transform your home. Here's what we found out:

BDMS: What are some of your “go-to” no (or low) cost ways to re-do a room?

The Decorologist: Shopping your own house. When I first begin working with a client, I make sure we scour their entire house - including closets, drawers, storage areas - to see if they have furniture or accessories that we may want to use in a different way or in a different room. They often have more to work with than they think - they just need someone to help them see using things with fresh eyes. Another way to re-do a room for no cost is to simply rearrange the furniture and accessories. Clear out the room completely so that you can look at it objectively. In your new arrangement, balance the furniture on architectural focal points (like fireplace, windows, light fixtures) to create harmonious groupings. Only rehang art after your new furniture arrangement is in place. Finally, a new paint color is inexpensive and can change the way the entire room feels. Always test colors before committing to a brand new one.

BDMS: How can a new coat of paint change the way other parts of your room look (flooring, furniture, etc.).

The Decorologist: Color is relative - paint colors look slightly different in every space, depending on lighting conditions and surrounding fixed elements. I find that a background paint color in the green or blue families make natural woods (furniture and flooring) look richer in contrast. Since the undertones of wood are either yellow, orange, or red, using those colors as a backdrop is not the best way to go if you want to complement the wood. Those colors will either compete with the wood or make it look bland and washed out.



Bedroom design by The Decorologist.

BDMS:  What type of flooring would you recommend that would be easily adaptable with changing trends.

The Decorologist: In my opinion, the most timeless flooring is medium dark hardwoods, with very little orange or red undertones. I really like dark walnut - it works with everything and always looks on-trend. For carpeting, I like to use one that straddles the line between light beige and gray. I always take wall color samples with me when shopping for flooring - it's important to see if the wall color and flooring will work well together.


Dining room design by The Decorologist.



Kristie Barnett is an expert in Residential Paint Color, Staging, & Decoration. She earned graduate degrees in both Psychology and Education, and has a passion for Environmental Psychology as it relates to the home setting. Kristie is a fully licensed Property Staging Consultant (PSC). She serves on Benjamin Moore’s Professional Advisory Board, is a Benjamin Moore Color Expert, and is a True Colour Expert specializing in Benjamin Moore paints. She is also a Certified Color Consultant in Sherwin-Williams paints.

Learn more about The Decorologist by visiting her website.

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