25+ Decorating Tips To Make Your Home Look Magazine-Worthy
Why do magazine interiors look so perfect? Talented designers and stylists, great lighting, and professional photography is the honest answer. But in the age of Instagram, where practically everyone is snapping pictures of their spaces, we’re pulling back the curtain and sharing tips torn straight from the pages of House & Home. Click through for clever decorating moves that will make your home look like it belongs in a magazine.
Paint It Black
Every room needs a touch of black, but dig a bit deeper and the payoff is a gallery wall with loads of attitude. In this case, a black accent wall becomes a dramatic stage for a grouping of baskets.
A Colorful Sofa
It’s easy to play it safe with neutrals, but a chromatic sofa, like this verdant green showstopper, is a star that makes an entire room sing, and signals homeowners who aren’t afraid to let their personality shine through.
Often called the fifth wall, designers play up the ceilings with contrasting paint and details like coffers or medallions. This Parisian pied-à-terre is full of formal, fancy touches, but it’s easy to replicate the romantic architectural detail with a painted-out fibreglas medallion that mimics plaster.
A Statement Chair
Investing in one standout piece turns a functional furnishing into a sculpture that only grows more valuable over time, and bumps up the look of any living space. In this case, designer Julie Charbonneau reupholstered a classic Pierre Paulin Ribbon chair in a bouclé fabric for a cosy update.
Snag A Stool
Ceramic garden stools have been making their way indoors for years: they are both pretty and portable. Handy sculptural versions like this mod pair can be pressed into service not just as seating, but also as accent tables.
Punchy Patterned Tile
Turn a backsplash or shower into a major statement with tiles that go beyond white subway versions. In Olympic kayaker Adam van Koeverden‘s bathroom, these tiles resemble an intricate — and waterproof — piece of artwork.
Spring For A Banquette
Banquettes don’t just offer extra seating in small or awkward spaces: they’re an opportunity to experience a beautiful view up close and personal, and frame a pretty window. Just look to designer Brian Gluckstein for banquette inspiration in the 2018 Princess Margaret Showhome.
A mural (paint or a wallpaper version) gives depth to a space and instantly makes a room more memorable. This hand-painted cherry blossom mural by Peter Costello in silver and gold leafing steals the show in this luxurious bathroom.
A luxe, oversize headboard scores big points for not only framing the bed, but also creating a soft landing when reading. This burnout velvet version has a tactile, modern texture that breaks up the dark, petrol blue walls.
Lights As Sculpture
It’s a recurring theme — so many standout rooms in our pages are elevated by a sculptural light fixture. Some criteria that makes the difference between expected and exceptional includes a large scale, a warm finish and beautiful lines.
Throw A Curve
Rectangular tables are de rigeur in most dining spaces but there is something much more democratic about a round table, especially when it has a sculptural pedestal base like this one.
Layer In Luxe Rugs
Some will scoff, but a lush tribal rug updates spa-inspired bathrooms with softness and color that a white terrycloth bathmat could never muster. It’s a classic stylist’s move.
Curate A Collection
Picture this wall bare and it’s easy to see why these plates make this image sing. An edited collection not only reveals a homeowner’s passions, but it also enlivens a space.
Aim For Symmetry
Want the look of instant order? Symmetry delivers a polished effect that’s innately calming (human brains are even programmed to prefer it). A large piece of abstract art keeps this living room from feeling overly stiff.
Try A Trendy Tree
Plants can go in and out of fashion just as furnishings do (think of the ubiquitous ’80s ferns, now supplanted by the darling of the houseplant world, the succulent). Ficus standards have too been jostled aside for more tropical options, like large palms and fiddle leaf figs. Here two large palm standards up the luxe impact of this living room.
Frame With Unison
Steal a page from designer Brian Gluckstein’s 2013 showhome and tie a gallery wall together by selecting the same style of frame and matting. He furthered unified the look by choosing artwork with a garden theme and the result is arresting and intriguing.
An unexpected find or vacation souvenir brings a layered touch to homes. Whether it’s a Moroccan pouf or kilim rug, global pieces often feature beautiful handiwork which makes them unique, and in turns makes a space look memorable and personal.
Opt For Round Mirrors
What goes around comes back around, and right now this shape is having a major moment. Perhaps it’s the soft, organic shape that’s a perfect complement to curved furnishings that are also trending, but they instantly make a space look fresher.
Splurge On Wallpaper
Not all wallpaper is created equal. When a pattern combines quality with a classic print, like Cole & Son’s Nuvolette, it’s worth it. Can’t swing a whole room? Buy a double roll for a feature wall.
Dress Up A Headboard
Don’t limit yourself to just changing up your linens — it’s equally easy to transform the look of a bed by layering up an upholstered headboard with a great textile.
Opt For Custom Drapes
Skip the solid panels for something with personality. The artisanal quality of these drapes in a pattern by Kelly Wearstler acts almost as artwork and serves as a vibrant frame for a window.
Use Hammam Towels
Consider it the antidote to standard hotel and gym-issue towels. The fringe and subtle stripe of Turkish Hammam towels are anything but cookie cutter, and unlike terry versions, they look amazing casually draped from a hook.
It’s a common dilemma that homeowners struggle with when it comes to heirloom pieces: an antique frame plus dated upholstery can feel dowdy. A graphic indoor-outdoor fabric breathes new life into a traditional cane-back chair and turns it into a piece of art.
Think Inside The Box
No fireplace? Transform a plain wall into a focal point with a mantel and smart styling. This living room fireplace swaps out flames for a framed map topped with a picture light and an artful arrangement of birch logs.
Too often this medium is overlooked in favor of framed artwork, but sculpture injects a tactile, sensuous volume into spaces that’s unexpected. The choice of the clear plinth keeps the look modern and fresh.