"What NOT To Do" -- Explained

"What NOT To Do" -- Explained

Sadly, the Interior Design world is still changing a lot.  But, just because so much is now online plus...many, many Trade Sources will work with anyone who pays, it doesn’t mean you don’t need an Interior Designer to do the job.  With my fingers crossed, I hope this was a "Do It Yourself-er".

Okay...look at this odd space.  My freshly brewed café au lait is refluxing in my mouth as I try to digest this photo.  What’s wrong?  Why is this room unsettling?  It’s ugly by default, I guess, but each element, on its own, could be quite nice.  There are, however, too many disputing elements here.

The fireplace:  the stone façade is lovely, even though the individual rectangles are a bit large for the proportions of the room.  The floor:  a wood floor is quite classic-looking.  The planks are wide and that makes them balance the larger stones on the fireplace.  The direction of the planks works very well, too, though I am sure this was determined by the construction of the room rather than by a conscientious decision.  The coffered ceiling:  is great!  It’s not very common, but it’s white and it creates a nice grid for the lighting.

Then what?  I would love this “Mandala” design in the middle of a yoga spa floor, but here?  No!  It’s just distracting and doesn’t work at all with the room's more classic details.   Next:  the wood tiles on the fireplace wall?  They are, well, awful.  I have actually sold these wood tiles in the past, but as the main accent in a space.  Here it almost looks like an afterthought.   Perhaps it’s supposed to take the place of paneling from the 60’s that was removed.  But next to the gray stone it’s the wrong proportions:  the sizes of the individual pieces are too small for such a large area.   The colors are also are not compatible with the Cherrywood tone of the floor either (if the photo’s accurate).

Above all of these many wood tones and the dramatic fireplace is a lovely white coffered ceiling with well-spaced lights.  I’d like to assume that the whole room is large enough for the ceiling to look bright and dramatic.  The very large fireplace would look quite classic with this architectural feature, but if the room is small, it could be oppressing.

All in all, if someone would take me into this room and say “Now what?” I would remove the wood wall tile, paint the wall and perhaps add a texture to the paint to balance the fireplace surround, and then I would buy a lovely rug and just cover the middle of the floor.  Is this the only option?  Of course not, but it would be easier on the eyes and offer a way to rethink the rest of the choices to make this room complete.  And there would be many more choices than trying to integrate this (ahem) fiasco into a comfortable design scheme.

Thank you, Jennifer Scully, Designer, for sharing this photo originally and allowing me to write a blog post called “What NOT to Do”.


Also:  I am putting together some new items for my website...look now and come back (pretty) soon!




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