How to Design a Home: 5 Steps to Customize Your Interior Wish List

If you’ve ever decorated your home or office, you know your tastes change, the fab becomes drab, and you might get the urge to scrap everything you own and start over. But just as you wouldn’t go to the grocery store without a list, the same goes for your interior. Building a cohesive, beautiful space starts with a personalized wish (and shopping) list.

You must first define your vision for the design of your home! What do you want your space to look and feel like? What’s your personal interior design style? We always hop on Pinterest or flip through my favorite interior design magazines to get inspired. Take a look at what surrounds you now… What do you like? What are you tired of looking at? Are there sections of your home or office that you avoid? Comb through every room in your home and identify the following:

  • What items or decor do you want to keep?
  • What room or rooms make you feel calm?
  • What rooms are the most chaotic or the “catchall” for junk?
  • What room do you want to see improved the most and why?
  • What do others say about your space when they visit?
  • What would you like people to say when they come visit?

If you could sum up what you want your style to be, would you say the same thing?

As We’ve discussed, creating the right space for you heavily depends on a feeling, or mood. So, always lead with how you want to feel in your space, and then customize your list from there. You can identify your feelings when you’re inspired by being in someone else’s home or looking at pictures. Become aware of your feelings and why you are moved by a particular space. This will offer great guidance!

5 rules to streamline your residential interior design wish list

Start with the Basic Interior Design Items

W What basic items do you need? A new couch? Chairs? Dining room table? Bed? Walk through your home, room-by-room, and make a list as you go. (Don’t worry about style or particular brands just yet).

Pick Your Big Ticket Interior Design Items

W What’s the most expensive item you need? Is it furniture? Wall art? Window treatments? Deciding where to splurge and when to save matters. If you need a new mattress, splurge. If you need a cool coffee table, a great flea market find will do the trick.

Choose Decor That Will Make an Impact

W What will make the most impact visually and emotionally? When you walk through your home, notice where your eye naturally lingers. Do you have tall ceilings? Lots of wall space? Identify focal points in each room and see how you can capitalize on certain features by rearranging what’s currently in the room or purchasing key pieces that will make each room pop. Do the same for potential ‘eyesores,’ or things you don’t like. Is there a way to emphasize a tricky feature you can’t completely get rid of? Get creative and pull the eye where you want it to go.

Set a Budget for Your Interior Design Project

W While having a wish list is key to knowing what you want, a budget is imperative so you don’t give in to impulse purchases. Divide the budget into categories: hardware (brackets, rods, etc.), furniture, and accessories. Where do you naturally want to spend the most money? This can often tell you what you really enjoy buying as well. Do you love purchasing new bed linens and pillows every few months? Are you a dish fiend? Do you lust over a new sectional or wrought iron bed? Make a list of every single item you might need and want, and then take photographs of current color schemes in your home, as well as measurements of rooms, tables, couches, beds, dressers, etc., so when you are shopping online or out and about, you don’t have to guess. Know your numbers!

Declutter Your Home Before You Purchase

M Make it a rule that before you bring anything new into your home, you must get rid of something you no longer need or want. Learn how to declutter your home and make room for truly meaningful items. This is where your vision comes into play. Consumerism becomes a habit like anything else — when it comes to your space, less really is more. You want your interior to shine and breathe, not suffocate because you saw a great set of items on sale that don’t have their own place in your home.

Whatever it is that you need to spruce up your space, do it with intention. Tailor it to your desires, take down all the information you need to work with — and then shop, design, decorate, and enjoy your space in a brand new way. If you need help designing the home of your dreams, consider hiring a residential interior design firm or even an online interior designer to help guide you through the process of designing a space that speaks to you.

Be a ruthless editor of what you allow into your home. Ask yourself, ‘What does this piece mean to me?
-MAI SAAD

About Mai Saad

Mai is an experienced interior designer providing high quality residential and commercial interiors across Egypt and Gulf. Mai has a strong eye for pairing the traditional and contemporary, a self-confessed textile fanatic and colour enthusiast she enjoys working in close consultation with the client to create an environment that works perfectly in both form and function.

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