It’s the little things

its the little things

Darren Palmer has a broad portfolio, having studied fine art & graphic design, originally working in advertising and owning his own graphic design company. After succumbing to his true passion, Darren now operates his own interior design studio and has been a judge on numerous seasons of The Block.

The art of creating a room is something that takes professional designers years to hone and during this time they become experts in navigating the minefield of challenges that most home renovators experience during their first foray into home improvement. Here are the most common small, yet significant mistakes people make throughout their reno journey:

MISTAKE #1 – Failing to set a brief

Designers will always start a project with an in-depth conversation with a client to understand who it is they are working with, what their aims are, how much they have budgeted, the time frames allocated, which elements of the space are particularly important, which that are less so and so on. This conversation then forms the basis of a documented brief that acts as a guide for all decisions and approvals throughout the entire design process.

Not having such a document is where most home renovators come unstuck, so take the time to have a similar conversation with yourself and ask everyone else in your home for input too. That way, you’re more likely to get a result that delivers on everyone’s expectations.

MISTAKE #2 – Refusing to let go

By designing rooms around specific pieces that have sentimental value, but which simply don’t fit with the new vision for your space, you run the risk of creating a room where the overall effect simply doesn’t work.

Think instead about whether you can condense the essence of the object into a keepsake and let the object itself go. For example, could you could take photographs of the item and incorporate them into a more aesthetically aligned piece of artwork?

MISTAKE #3 – Not considering the concept as a whole

With the above point in mind, when making choices for you home, it’s essential to explore whether your ideas actually work together.

Building up a collection of samples – of paint chips, tile pieces, carpet cuttings, fabrics, everything you possibly can – and layering them up will allow you to look at everything as a whole. By taking a macro view in this way, you’ll be able to see whether everything flows together and easily adjust the elements which don’t before you make the investment.

MISTAKE #4 – Forgetting about the practicalities

Designers are experts in blending considered palettes of materials, colours, patterns and textures that not only reflect a client’s personality, but also support the way they interact with the space.

So, when updating your interiors, don’t just go with the things you think are nice. Disclose to the sales people you deal with exactly how the space is going to be used and ask what materials you need for it to be appropriate, making sure to query things like the rub rate of fabrics, the UV characteristics of floor coverings and so on. This will allow you to then make decisions based on the options that fulfil your brief.