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How to get going on redoing rooms

By Rosemary Sadez Friedmann
McClatchy-Tribune News Service

If you have the urge to start over with your decor at home, consider redoing rooms that are used frequently, such as the family room, the kitchen, the master bedroom or the master bath. Start by flipping through design magazines and clipping pictures of rooms that catch your attention. A pattern will emerge.

After spending several weeks on your research, start to figure out what it is that draws you to those pictures and then take the time to figure out what will work best in the room or rooms you intend to redo. Do remember though, that sometimes doing one room will cause a domino effect, making you need changes in other rooms.

The best caution I can give is to stick to the same theme already established in the home, including the same color scheme. If you intend to redo the entire house, one step at a time, then anything goes in the room or rooms you intend to start with.

Here are some ideas to get you started.

• On the windows you might consider making them appear taller by installing window treatments that extend beyond the height of the window and having those treatments go to the floor.

• If formal is the way you prefer the room to look, soft carpet and dark wood will do the trick. Also, arranging furniture in a mirror image with sofa facing sofa or love seat will give the room formality. Comfortable chairs placed at right angles to the sofa will complete the look.

• If casual is your preference, a heavier and more textured carpet is a good idea. An informal balance in the furnishings works well by using end tables that don’t match or night stands that don’t match. All the furnishings need to blend; they just don’t have to come from the same style or ensemble.

•  If privacy is not an issue, then consider not covering the windows – it will help open the space. If leaving the windows totally bare is not to your liking, a simple top treatment might be the answer.

• Is the room oversized? Make it more inviting by creating groupings of furniture and dividing it up with rugs and plants. Warm colors on the walls and the upholstery help if well blended, and don’t be afraid of using dark colors on the wall, because dark colors help make the room look less overwhelming.

•  Is the room small? Cool colors will work well, and light instead of dark colors work well. Mirrors and glass table tops help open the space a bit.

OK, your turn. Get the ball rolling.

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