Unless you seat 8 to 10 people at your dining table every week, your chairs probably don’t get much use. Steal two from the dining room, and use them to flank a console table in your entry, a dresser in your bedroom, or the sideboard in your living room.
Outdated lampshades can make a room feel stale. To give your space a more modern feel, trade your pleated shades for simple drum-shaped ones -- they’re better looking and easier to keep clean. If you really want to make a statement, forgo a white shade in favor of something more dramatic, like gray.
To lighten up a large piece of wood furniture, try painting a happy color on the inside.
Look around the house for things that share a common element. Maybe you have a plethora of white pitchers or silver picture frames. Group them together on a tabletop for an instant collection. Remember that odd numbers of items often look better together.
When decorating, we often spend our time, money, and energy on the rooms that we assume will be appreciated by other people. But if you find that you spend more time in your study (or bathroom, for that matter), it should be decorated with the same zeal and enthusiasm as your living room. Take one object you love -- try a lamp, painting, or pretty book -- and move it to a place where you can appreciate it most.
Open floor plans are all the rage, but some spaces call for a more intimate approach. Hang curtains in a doorway to close off a room or call attention to a small space with a big personality.
Instead of a standard chandelier, try hanging a lantern over your dining room or breakfast table for a less fussy look.
Many sofas come with a pair of pillows in a coordinating fabric, but the matchy-matchy look can be a bit obvious. Upgrade to down-filled pillows with removable covers in a fabric you love -- and don’t be afraid to mix it up with different patterns. A graphic floral looks fantastic against a small-scale stripe.