Take It Slow

Design expert Wanda Colon recalls returning home after school only to discover her mother in the center of what looked like the aftermath of a cyclone. There would be lamps, throw cushion, and furniture piled high in the center of the room. Colon, who is a regular on HGTV's 24 Hour Design and hosts TLC's Home Made Simple, says, "She rearranged our furniture a lot. I remember we’d rotate lampshades."

Colon says her mom was her first design teacher and taught her the principle that accessories can change the entire look of a room. Learning where things look best, she says, is trial and error. In fact, there may not even be a right or wrong way to display your home furnishing.

Inject Personality

Keep in mind that part of the fun of decorating your home is in keeping things fluid. Changing things around will keep things from getting boring. Note that each time you change the way a space looks; you'll have injected your personality and mood into the room so that the space comes alive.

Colon is in great demand as a celebrity designer, and can count among her clients, singer/actress Cher as well as Frasier star Kelsey Grammer. Her favorite tip is to tell people to slow down and not expect to complete the decor of a home overnight. Color, for instance, takes a great deal of consideration. Choosing the right colors takes time.

Sample Sizes

Sample-sized cans of paint are now available at most paint stores. These allow you to take home several colors so you can apply a bit to the wall and see if the color suits. That way, you don't have to spend a fortune on paint only to find that the color is all wrong.

The designer suggests that when you are working with color, it's necessary to inject a bit of whimsy. Try bold colors and different combinations, and don't attempt to force your preferences into a mold. Colon also suggests that after applying a paint sample to the wall you take a look at the color as it appears in the morning, afternoon, and evening light.

Simple Maneuver

Another suggestion is to take any fabrics in a room and turn them over to see their opposite sides. This simple maneuver makes the more subtle colors pop out. You may not have seen all the colors within the pattern. Once you identify these less obvious colors, you can accentuate them within your décor by adding details in these colors.

When asked about the most common design mistake she sees in people's homes, Colon says that people really blow it when they place furniture smack up against the walls of the room. According to the popular designer, this takes all of the intimacy out of the room. Colon suggests that corner pieces are an easy way to perk up a room and give it a better flow.