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Soft Finishes

Use these hot designer tricks for choosing the right soft finishes for your home

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Use these hot designer tricks for choosing the right soft finishes for your home

When it comes to soft finishes, like your wall colouring, fabrics, carpets, cushions or curtains, I think the best way to begin is to figure out what your home style is, and how you envision your space to look. Some of the best inspiration can be found in some of your favourite decor magazines, Pinterest boards or even a favourite TV show. For me, when I’m travelling there is nothing better than the selection of design-inspired magazines you can find virtually all over the world. I’ll take clippings of spaces I love so I have something tangible to refer to when I’m ready to design a new space. Also, I think it’s important to remember that you want every space in your home to feel comfortable, friendly and welcoming. Long gone are the days of formal sitting areas and posh powder rooms that are rarely used. You want your home to be inviting, so consider that when deciding on those soft finishes, too.

Even if you’re not a designer, you can still have the ability to visualize your space and understand what marries well together or what may clash, but there are a few designer tricks you can employ that will help you even further when deciding on the myriad of finishes you need to think about. From wall colours, to throw pillows; a carpet, or some curtains, consider these suggestions and you will be well on your way to a beautifully harmonious home.

60-30-10 rule

This is a timeless decorating that is meant to maintain proportion and balance in the colours you use in any space. Your 60 per cent is the main colour of your room, so this could be your walls, large accent pieces such as area rugs, or a couch. The idea being that this colour is the majority rule of which everything else is based from.

Your 30 per cent is your secondary colour. Since you will only be using half as much of this colour as your main colour, this could work for curtains and draperies, bed linens, or an accent wall. The secondary colour supports the main colour, but can be different enough to distinguish them, while also giving your room some interest.

10 per cent is your accent colour. In a living room, this is for your throw pillows, decorative accessories, and artwork. For a bedroom, your pillows on your bed, lamps or other decorative pieces.

Work from your base colours

I always make sure my larger pieces of furniture are neutral, regardless of the room in my home. From my bedroom to my dining room, all of my major furniture (couches, chairs, dressers or tables) are in muted shades, such as charcoal, grey, white, black or navy. These work as your anchors to ground the room, while also giving you the opportunity to take a bit of liberty with colour in the paint or your fabrics.

Forgo trends

Trendy decor looks are always fun, but they rarely last the test of time. If you invested in that purple velvet couch, chances are you may grow weary of it in the next couple of years. Trendy pieces can feel very dated very fast. The good news is that you can easily change your couch with a slip cover, switch out your curtains or try different carpets if you feel like experimenting and creating something new. I always refresh my space like this come the different seasons.

Choose your colour scheme based on the largest pattern in the space

Say you have a patterned carpet, or a large piece of artwork hanging in the space, select colours for your soft finishes (like a great throw pillow or ottoman) based on what hues you love in those patterns. That way there will be certain flow in the whole space if colours are similar. If you’re looking for a more neutral wall paint colour (and I strongly encourage that), look to the pattern’s whites or beiges to match.

Go for grey

This is a very popular neutral, and with good reason. It has the ability to appear warm or cool making it easy to pair with virtually any colour on the wheel, whether dreamy pastels or bright pops of colour.

Lisa Rogers is the exclusive interior designer for Dunpar Homes.

Lisa has shared her style and design expertise on popular television programs, such as Canadian Living TV, House & Home TV and The Shopping Channel.

Lisa is one of the most familiar faces on CityTV’s Cityline as a regular guest expert for fashion and image, health and wellness and interior design.


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