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Room Arranging - the Basic Principles

Aug 18, 2007
The three most important basic principles of room arranging are proper scale, balance and proportion. Use these principles and your imagination and you'll have a room that is perfectly arranged - for you.

The key to a well-arranged room is how well your furniture and accessories work together, no just on the style of the furniture.

When planning a room arrangement scheme, take into account the livability of the room. This means it should be comfortable and adaptable to your family's lifestyle. Determine the functions of a room. Is the room formal or casual? How much seating will you need? Will you have guests or family eating in this room? Will you need extra storage for games, music, or other hobbies? Perhaps you'll want space for a computer and the accessories that go with it. You will need to accommodate these needs to get the full benefits of the room.

Family rooms are normally more casual than a formal living room because the function is geared toward family pursuits such as playing games and watching television. Living rooms are usually kept more formal for entertaining. Some families must combine the function of family and living rooms so the room arrangements may have to take that into account.

Your rooms should have an easy traffic flow and be designed to enhance the function - or functions - of the room. You don't want to have people who are in a conversation area interrupted by other people trying to get through to another room.

Once the comfort and convenience basics are met, then you'll start focusing on the room's balance, scale, and color - the actual "eye appeal" of the space.

Taking into account the actual function of the room, decide on the furnishings that you want for it. One thing to think about: It's usually better to have just the amount of furniture that you need. More is not necessarily better. A crowded room is not very appealing to the senses.

Decide on a focal point for your design. Some rooms may have a natural focal point such as a fireplace or a lovely bay window. In other cases, you might need to create your own focal point, such as an armoire, a tall cabinet or nicely arranged artwork.

Use area rugs to define different functional areas of your room. For instance, one rug to define your conversation area and another to define a dining area that has been incorporated into the room. I have also seen a room "divided" by back-to-back sofas. One facing the room's natural focal point and the other facing a television in an armoire. If done right, this can be a very satisfactory solution - especially for a large room.

Room arranging can be challenging. But using your imagination and keeping the room's function(s) in mind, you can have a room that is arranged to meet your family's specific needs.
About the Author
Jude Wright is the owner of http://decoratingsimple.com where you can find great decorating ideas for those on a budget.
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